Imagine…azure seas and crystal clear skies, few tourists, fantastic views and tempting traditional food. No need to imagine – enjoy it with Mountain Beach! Mountain biking doesn’t get more laid back than this; just you, your bike and miles of stunning scenery. Aimed at more leisurely pace than our centre based holidays in Nidri, we will be off-road ‘touring’ on the islands of Lefkas, Cephalonia and Ithaka. Additionally, there will be time to explore some of the wonderful hillside and coastal hamlets, eat at off the beaten track tavernas and chill out in quiet waterside guesthouses of an evening.
Maximum group size is 10, plus two Mountain Beach guides. These trips will only take place out of the main tourist season, i.e. May and September. You can choose to add the trip onto one of our regular Nidri holidays (either as a first or second week) Accommodation is based on two people sharing a room; a supplement will apply for single occupancy. A vehicle carrying your baggage will accompany you on the trip, and you are reminded to pack as light as possible whilst on the Islands; you can safely leave larger cases/bags at the Avra hotel on Lefkas. As we will be highly dependent on the local weather conditions for ferry timetables, our trip may be subject to last minute alterations.
Challenging or chilled out For those who want it, some of the biking is certainly strenuous (like the 1600ft. climb to the Monastery at Kathara). But the laid back Greek lifestyle soon weaves its spell and there is plenty of enjoyment to be had simply cruising the coastal tracks and exploring quaint villages. The islands are immersed in history, each differing from the other in character and ‘feel’. On our three day journey across Cephalonia we visit Assos with its stunning natural harbour, swim from the beach at Mirtos and stay in the coastal village of Sami (where Captain Corelli’s Mandolin was filmed). Landing on Ithaka is like taking a step back in time. This magical island steeped in Greek mythology remains relatively untouched attracting very few tourists. Bliss.
Our first night is spent in Nidri, giving you chance to catch up with other guests.
Kick off, off-road riding down to Vassiliki, before catching the ferry to Fiskcardo on Cephalonia.Our waterside villa accommodation has magnificent views towards Ithaka and Fiskcardo has a good selection of tavernas.
It’s a mixture of off-road and back roads to Assos with a choice of route to suit you. A leisurely lunch should give you time to prepare the forty-five minute climb out, then it’s on to Agia Evfimia and our beachside accommodation at Sami.
Day 4 Some great local biking can be found right from the hotels doorstep. A visit to the local caves is optional,and there are numerous places of interest to ride to, both on and off-road.
We take the early morning ferry to Ithaka and ride on towards Vathi for a taverna lunch. Later there’s great off-road climb and descent towards our accommodation in Frikes. Try out our favourite taverna at Stavros in the evening ….its amazing!
The ride to Kathara Monastery via several hamlets is rewarded with breathtaking views, as well as yet another fantastic lunch stop. A gentle ride to Kioni for gorgeous ice cream, then how better to spend your last night on Ithaka than in the Polythemus Taverna?
From Frikes we catch the ferry back to Lefkas (look out for dolphins) and take an off-road route to Nidri. No doubt we will sample another cracking taverna!
A short transfer to Preveza airport and it’s time to fly home.
the ionian islands