The Odyssey - Istanbul to Ithaca

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35 Day(s)
Moderate
Guided

Tour operator:  Bike Odyssey

What is in a name? Our Odyssey, the original Odyssey.

From the soaring Byzantine dome of the Aya Sofya in Istanbul, across the glittering island studded Mediterranean, to Odysseus´ home Ithaca in the Ionian Islands. 'The Odyssey' is true to its origins (besides its 10 year duration!) and the modern day definition of the word. Stage 1 starts in continent spanning Istanbul. From this city of cities we depart via the Bosphurus south towards Troy, the historic and legendary starting point for Odysseus' famed journey home. Turkey is heralded for its beautiful coastlines and rugged interior, the cycling tour of Turkey (the riders favourite UCI World event) is known for the same spectacular scenery. Taking in Gallipoli and Ephesus our historical journey spans the ages, then head towards Bodrum down the Lycian Way into the Turkish Riviera, also popularly known as the Turquoise Coast. We finish our Turkish adventure on the stunning Teke Peninsula which shows this country off at its most staggeringly beautiful - sweeping sandy beaches hugging a coastline gently caressed by jade waters, backed by forest-blanketed slopes dotted with ancient settlements. Scenery doesn't get much better!

Stage 2 is an island hopping adventure taking in the very best of Greek Island living. From the Dodecanese, Cyclades, Crete and into Athens this is a magical time on bike and boat! We start on Rhodes, which abounds in beaches, wooded valleys and ancient history. After circumnavigating the isle we hop, skip and ride through the Dodecanese rolling on our bikes along ancient pathways, never for long without a view of the azure Mediterranean waters. To the Cyclades we cross Naxos, Delos and Santorini then down to the biggest island - and arguably the most beautiful of them all - Crete. Crete is spectacular - historic cities, rugged rolling hills, stunning waters as usual and some of the best archaeological sites anywhere in Greece. From Heraklion we roll into the hinterland via gems such as Knossos, Zeus's home at Mount Ida and the Samaria Gorge to Venetian Chania, where we fast ferry to the modern and ancient capital of Greece, Athens.

In Stage 3 we will be exploring mainland Greece for the first 10 days, but don't worry, we will board a boat again as we finish with the irresistible Ionian Islands - famous for their cycling pedigree, history and beauty! Although one of our favourite cities for its amazing history, we are glad to mount our bikes and depart Athens heading north into Sterea Eliada, with magnificent archaeology at Delphi and the pass of Thermopylae. Skirting the beautiful Pelion Peninsula, our target in the Pierian Mountains is the home of the ancient gods, Mount Olympus, and what better mountain to conquer on our modern day Odyssey! We descend from the clouds to weave between the hugely impressive huge rock pillars of Meteora, which are surmounted by monasteries. To the Ionian Islands we ride - first Kefalonia, which has its very own Mont Ventoux called Mount Einos! This island is hard to beat for cycling, even considering where we have come from. After circumnavigating our penultimate isle we then head to Odysseus' 3000 year old home Ithaca where we celebrate completing our modern day Odyssey.

Ride one or more sections - see the full tour schedule.

Information

Tour Location

Country:
Greece, Turkey
Region:
Central & Northern Greece, Greek Islands
From:
Istanbul
To:
Ithaca

Tour Information

Guiding:
Guided
Support:
Supported, Bike Hire available
Duration:
35 Day(s)
Level:
Moderate
Terrain:
Road bike tour, On-road (sealed)
Accommodation:
Double Occupancy
Cost From:
EUR 14995
Single Supplement:
70 EUR per night

Tour Distance & Dates

Month(s):
May, June, September, October
Departure:
May 5, September 22, 2023
May 4, 2024

Additional Information

Inclusions

34 nights accommodation (5 nights aboard a Gulet).
All breakfasts, snacks all day (riding, post ride).
Picnic lunches 5 days a week.
Exceptional dinners 5 days a week.
Van support (with our coffee machine on our remote tours).            1 Vehicle per 12 guests.
1 expert guide per 6 riders.
Exceptional documentation - overviews, itineraries, accommodation lists and daily maps with information on locations visited and historical context.
Your own soigneur - At least 2 massages per week on tour to keep the legs and mind fresh on all our tours where we have 18 guests or more.
A history specialist to excite the mind.
Wine tastings and on many of our tours a sommelier traveling with the group.
Latest technology in navigation and tracking - each rider will have a user-friendly GPS device.
All drinks at dinner (approx 1/2 bottle wine per person and/or soft drinks & sparkling water).
Bike bag transfers. 

 

Exclusions

Airfares
Personal Insurance
Bike Hire
Personal expenses 

Booking Conditions

$1500 AU deposit required per person

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