Self-Guided: The WP Way

For independent walkers with a dash of pioneering spirit

Choose your companions, set your own pace, and book a self-guided walking holiday with us to experience the Cycladic islands like never before!

  What are our self-guided tours about?

The Cycladic islands are exciting territory for walkers, and Walking Plus is the only truly local company to offer independent walking holidays there. Our routes take you deep into the rural heart of Greece, revealing the full diversity of island life and landscape. Some traditional paths, which have fallen into disuse, have been rediscovered and opened up by Walking Plus; some are way-marked but not in a consistent way: in any case, you are unlikely to encounter anyone on route but a lonely goatherd. But no-one’s got lost yet: clear, reliable directions and maps are combined with interesting information about what to look out for on the way, carefully collected, and researched and written with the well-informed enthusiasm and local spirit that is the company’s hallmark.

How are our self-guided tours special?

We want you to enjoy our self-guided holidays in utmost comfort, peace of mind and safety. Every island has its local Route Manager, who meets and briefs you in detail upon arrival, and whom you can contact in an emergency. Apart from solid notes and maps, you also get a smartphone pre-loaded with your daily routes (GPS tracks) – so you are never in doubt about following your route.

We want you to be immersed in the beauty of the island: our daily routes are island explorations that take you to beautiful inland villages, where your room and your luggage are waiting for you. All you carry with you is a day pack. You will eat and drink at local, traditional tavernas or cafes at your own sweet time, fully savouring the ambiance. No more bus timetable/route restrictions or uncomfortable bus rides to & fro the island’s busy capital!

Walking Plus will book you into and transfer your luggage to clean, simple but tasteful accommodation, for the most part small family hotels or traditional village rooms, where owners are friends or acquaintances. Where meals are not available at the premises, we direct you to the best nearby tavernas, cafes, and shops. We also arrange your private transfer to/from your day-hike start/end point. And if you face any difficulties, we – the local route manager – are on the island, only a phone call away.

Who are they for?

Self-guided walking tours are for experienced walkers who have an adventurous spirit, love to hike, explore nature, discover new cultures, and care about making the world a better place through responsible tourism.

Travelers should be willing and able to walk anywhere from 10 up to 14 km each day. If you have any concerns or questions about the activity level of this trip read our Fitness page or contact us before booking – we want to ensure that everyone on our trips is safe, and will be able to keep up with the active itinerary.

We strongly recommend that for safety reasons, our self-guided walks are booked by two or more persons planning to walk together. We will, however, accept bookings by individuals who are experienced walkers, but this is subject to the additional provisions relating to solo walkers to be found in our Terms and Conditions.

Where to?

We cover four of the largest Cycladic islands:  Paros, Naxos, Amorgos & Tinos. Each island has its own distinctive character and landscape and offers plenty of hiking and sightseeing possibilities. You can do a week’s walking exploring a single destination or combine two of the islands for a satisfying fortnight’s holiday- with a discount! Convenient ferry connections are available among most of these islands. The Amorgos self-guided walking programme can be 9 or 11 days long to allow for extra traveling time and a longer holiday, but can also be combined with another island.

 Many of our guests stay on for a week of Greek island relaxation and gentle exploration after a week’s walking and book into our affiliated country houses in Paros or a recommended hotel; please contact us for ideas.

If you like the sound of a WP self-guided walking holiday, please check out our Destinations and our Walking in the Cyclades page.

Best time to visit?

An advantage of self-guided holidays is that you choose your dates.
Your Walking Plus holiday can start any day from March to mid-June, and from September to mid-November.  We do not usually offer these holidays in late June, July and August because the weather can be too hot for walking, wildlife is in aestivation (a dormant state to cope with heat & drought), the islands are crowded, and accommodation prices are high.

Please visit our Essential Information page for more details, or check out our Self-Guided Tours for inspiration!

How do I book?

To arrange a self-guided walking holiday, go to your preferred Self Guided Tour page and fill-in either the Booking or the Enquiry form. WP will then make a provisional booking for your group and hold this for an agreed period (up to one week) until you confirm it.  As soon as we receive your booking form and deposit (€90 per person, refundable only in the event of non-execution), we will send you confirmation of the Walking Plus holiday you have selected.

The balance of the holiday is payable 35 days prior to departure. If you are booking within 5 weeks of the date of departure, full payment is to be made at the time of booking.

For more information, please visit our booking Terms and Conditions page… or simply ask us!

Excellent directions

 I would say the walking notes made our holiday!

“Excellent directions (considering the complex terrain) with an unexpected density of interest – archaeology, vegetation, geology. An important part of what we pay for is local knowledge and attention to detail. The combination of linking with ancient Greek island culture while walking and eating well was a very special experience that we could not have had without your excellent guidance.”

Helen & Robin Grove-White, UK

“Route notes are a strong point: better than most, maybe even the best we have used”

John & Monica Erwin Alton, UK

“We have done all the Walking Plus self-guided walks and never lost our way. I would say the walking notes made our holiday!!  The routes and island landscapes are so much prettier and more unspoilt than some of the better-known walking destinations, and we seemed to have the countryside to ourselves.”

Penny Perkins, UK

The Plus in Self-Guided Walking

Route manager

Your local contact a phone call away

Village to village

Hike into the heart of Greek landscape

Private transportation & luggage transfer

All you carry is your day pack

Quality directions & digital maps

Discover and never get lost

Hand-picked accommodation

Family hotels & traditional village rooms

Local & responsible

Benefiting local people & nature, every step of the way

Included in our price

Not included in our price

Hand-picked accommodation with breakfast

The accommodation has been carefully selected mainly referring to family-owned village rooms that offer a warm welcome, an authentic setting, and quality services.  We want you to feel like home, experience the Greek hospitality, and have the opportunity to meet locals and enrich your cultural exchange experience during your unforgettable adventure.

Local route manager

Upon arrival at your destination, you will receive a briefing from our local route manager. During your walking holiday, you will have a 24h support either by WP or the local route manager who will be a phone call away using the provided mobile phone.

Unique route directions

You will receive detailed, reliable, well-informed, and interesting route directions and maps including GPS tracks. 

Private transportation

Private transfer is provided on arrival and departure day (between port/island airport and hotel) as well as to and from our starting and ending walking points, in coordination with your local route manager.

 

 

Transfer of luggage

Luggage is transferred from village to village in coordination with your local route manager.

Applicable taxes

Taxes may concern a surplus of an accommodation tax and/or 24% VAT .

Mandatory travel insurance

It is a condition of your acceptance on a Walking Plus holiday that you are covered by adequate travel
insurance.  It is your responsibility to satisfy yourself that your levels of insurance are adequate. You are advised to take out a policy particular to walking and its associated risks.

More information in our Booking Conditions page.

Flights in & out of the country

Book your own air tickets from your home country to visit Greece. You will arrive at Eleftherios Venizelos airport in Athens, or at Mykonos or Santorini International airports. Keep in mind that Naxos & Paros islands do have airports.

Visit our Getting there page for more information.

Transport to/from destination island

Transfers from/to the airport of Athens to/from the hotel upon arrival and departure are at your own cost. There are public means of transportation (public bus, metro) at the airport the cost of which does not exceed the price of 10euros. Private transfer is also available. 

Ferries from/to Athens to/from your destination island are also at your own cost. 

Please contact us if  you require further information or assistance.

Meals

Where meals are not available at the accommodation, we direct you to nearby tavernas, cafes, and shops.

Solo walkers

We strongly recommend for safety reasons, to book our self-guided walks by two or more people planning to walk together. We will, however, accept bookings by individuals who are experienced walkers, but this is subject to the additional provisions relating to solo walkers to be found in our Terms and Conditions.

Extending your holiday?

Combine with other WP tours and get a discount!
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