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SELF DRIVE CLASSICAL TOUR, IONIAN ISLANDS, AND EPIRUS

11 Days / 10 Nights
Free Cancellation

Athens, Olympia, Zakynthos, Kefalonia, Lefkada, Zagorohoria, Kalambaka and Delphi

Map Itinerary Download PDF
From USD 1,009.69 USD 908.72

Daily year-round departures. In the winter the route from Kefalonia to Lefkada will take place via Astakos.

Book Now! All our programs in up to 12 installments without interest

What is included in this package

  • 3-night accommodation in Athens.
  • 1-night accommodation in Olympia.
  • 1-night accommodation in Zakynthos.
  • 1-night accommodation in Kefalonia.
  • 1-night accommodation in Lefkada.
  • 1-night accommodation in Zagorohoria.
  • 1-night accommodation in Kalambaka.
  • 1-night accommodation in Delphi.
  • Guided evening walking tour through Monastiraki, Plaka and Anafiotika.
  • Car rental as per itinerary.
  • CDW insurance, excess amount Eur 750.00
  • Unlimited kilometres
  • 24-hour Roadside Assistance.
  • Ferry tickets with numbered seats Kyllini - Zakynthos - Kefalonia - Lefkada (including the cost of the car).
  • All transfers as per description.
  • 24/7 Emergency Phone Assistance
  • Daily breakfast

Not included & Optionals

  • Personal expenses, Gratuities (optional) & Municipality Tax.
  • Athens Sightseeing tour
  • Fuel and tolls
  • GPS, snow chains, child seat and additional driver upon request.
  • Add extra nights in Athens, Nafplio, Olympia and Delphi by clicking on "Customize your Program" or in step 1 of your reservation. Where applicable, any additional nights will also entail additional days of car rental.
  • Find out the answer to your most frequently asked questions, including hospitality by category here.
  • 10% discount for groups of more than 10 travelers

What do I need to rent a vehicle?

Find out more about the car rental requirements in Greece by clicking here

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Package Tour Itinerary: Self Drive Classical Tour, Ionian Islands, And Epirus

ATHENS - CRADLE OF CIVILIZATION
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ATHENS - CRADLE OF CIVILIZATION

After your arrival in the mythical city of Athens, the transfer to your hotel will be conducted in one of our private vehicles. A member of our English speaking team will meet you at your hotel, help you with the check-in, inform you of all the details of your trip, introduce you to the city and its everyday way of life and answer any questions you may have. The rest of the day will be free for you to relax and enjoy Athens at your own pace.

Greca Tip: Extend your stay by adding more nights during Step 1 of 3 of your booking!

DAY AT LEISURE  AND ATHENS BY NIGHT
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DAY AT LEISURE AND ATHENS BY NIGHT

This will be a free day in Athens, where, after a delicious breakfast, you will have the chance to visit some of the famous attractions and places of interest in the city. Alternatively, you can enjoy a leisurely stroll in the city center and make your own discoveries as you go along.

In the evening you will join a guided walking tour through the most stunning districts of Athens, such as Anafiotika, Thisio, Monastiraki and Plaka.

Greca Tip: Enjoy a tasty souvlaki in one of the taverns in and around Monasteraki Square.

FROM ATHENS TO OLYMPIA, THE CRADLE OF THE OLYMPIC GAMES
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FROM ATHENS TO OLYMPIA, THE CRADLE OF THE OLYMPIC GAMES

After collecting your rental car, you will head towards the Peloponnese peninsula

The first stop will be at the Corinth canal, a great engineering feat first devised in 630 BC by Periander, a tyrant and one of the seven sages of antiquity, and completed by the French in 1893. This channel, about 6 kilometres long, facilitates the passage from the Ionian Sea to the Saronic Gulf and thus saves days of navigation around the Peloponnese peninsula.

On the route, you can make a detour to Kalavryta, a city with magnificent views and its steep slopes, river springs and pine forests.  At a distance of about 17 kilometers from Kalavryta, you will come across the Cave of the Lakes. The cave extends for 2 kilometers underground and has 15 lakes inside. The combination of the colors and waterfalls together make an impressive spectacle.

Alternatively, you can drive to Diakofto and from there catch the train known as "Odontotos" towards Kalavryta. This train rises to a hight of 750 meters above sea level and crosses the entire Vouraikos gorge. The views are splendid, with lush forests, waterfalls, and tunnels carved into the rocks. This is the tour of such striking beauty, that you should not miss out on the chance of taking it. 

After these two compulsory stops, you will arrive at the destination of the day, Olympia. There, you will visit the site of the former Olympic stadium, where the first Games were held (776a.C). The importance of the Olympic games was such that all Greek cities ceased hostilities and participated on a large scale.

Olympia was also the most important sanctuary of the Ancient Greeks, a place to worship Zeus, the king and father of all gods.  Here also stood his gold and ivory statue, a gigantic sculpture made by Fidias himself and one of the seven wonders of the ancient world.

Total distance: 285km

Greca Tip: Relax and make the most of your hotel's amenities or hike through the beautiful surrounding countryside.

FROM OLYMPIA TO ZAKYNTHOS
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FROM OLYMPIA TO ZAKYNTHOS

Today, after a delicious breakfast, you will leave the Peloponnese region to discover the islands of the Ionian Sea. These islands differ from those of the Aegean Sea for being covered with forests and fertile valleys, mountainous areas, olive groves and vineyards. 

First you will drive to the Port of Kyllini, from which the ferry will depart. You will have a trip of just over an hour to reach the island of Zakynthos where you will rest. 

This island is known for the shipwreck beach or "Navagio Beach". This postcard-only summarizes a thousand adjectives that describe the hidden Greek beauties located in the Ionian Sea region. The island was inhabited by Achaeans until the Athenians took it in the 5th century BC. Later they were succeeded by Spartans, Macedonians, Romans and Byzantines. The Venetians ruled over it from 1484 to 1797, and the island finally joined Greece in 1864. 

It is recommended to visit the Keri caves or the Marine National Park where you can find the Caretta Caretta turtles.

Total distance: 125 km. 

Greca Tip: If we have more days, we suggest adding nights here and going on the PIRATE BOAT CRUISE IN ZAKYNTHOS, visiting Navagio Beach, Keri Caves and Oasis Beach!

 

FROM ZAKYNTHOS TO KEFALONIA, THE WONDERS CONTINUE!
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FROM ZAKYNTHOS TO KEFALONIA, THE WONDERS CONTINUE!

After a tasty breakfast, and as you become more and more familiar with the Greek way of life, you will head towards Agios Nikolaos Port to continue on to your next destination, Kefalonia. The ferryboat will bring you to the port of Pessada.

The island of Kefalonia, "Kefallinia" in English (a name which comes from Céfalo, that according to Greek Mythology, was the lord of the island) is one of the most famous of the Ionian Archipelago.

Do not miss the chance to visit the must see attractions of Kefalonia Island: The Cave of Drogkaráti and The Cave-Lake of Melissani.

Drogarati Cave, located nearly 200 feet below the surface, was discovered 300 years ago when an earthquake exposed the entrance.  This spectacular cavern features stunning rock formations, while the acoustics in its magnificent hall, called "Sala of Apotheosis", are so perfect that the cave is used for concerts and other shows.  

Lake Melissani was a Mykenean sanctuary honouring the god Pan.  A manmade tunnel leads to the water's edge where you will board a small rowboat for a scenic cruise around this majestic cavern. Take in the awe-inspiring beauty that surrounds you as shafts of sunlight filter from above, enhancing the vibrant aquamarine colors of the glistening lake, where, according to legend, the nymph Melisaní drowned when she was spurned by Pan. (In Greek Mythology, a nymph is a minor feminine deity typically associated with springs, streams, mountains, sea or groves).

After making the most of the fascinating beauty of the island, it is time to have a well-deserved rest.

In the evening we suggest a nice walk on the pedestrian streets or the coastal road of Argostoli, the main city on the island.

Greca Tip: If you have more days at your disposal, we suggest adding extra nights here to embark on a barbecue cruise from Argostoli, visiting XI Beach, Vardiani and more!

FROM KEFALONIA TO LEFKADA, THE TREASURE OF THE IONIAN SEA
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FROM KEFALONIA TO LEFKADA, THE TREASURE OF THE IONIAN SEA

After an exquisite breakfast, you will drive to the Port of Fiskardo to take the ferry to Lefkada.

You will disembark at the Port of Nidri, where the best resorts of the island can be found. From there, small boats depart to the nearby islands such as Chelonaki, Madouri, Meganisi and the famous island of Skorpios, which once was a private property of the magnate Onasis.

Here in Lefkada, we suggest visiting the most incredible beaches of the Ionian Sea. On one hand, Porto Katsiki, the most popular beach on the island, is located at the foot of a cliff.  In this way the green of the mountain contrasts with the turquoise waters of the sea. Another spot that you should not miss is Egremni beach, with the stunning blue and turquoise waters of the sea. At the moment this beach is inaccessible by land, so it can only be reached by boat.

At night, we suggest taking a walk along Nidri's seafront.

Greca Tip: If you have more days at your disposal, we suggest adding extra nights here to discover the most unmissable beaches on the island (Egremni, Porto Katsiki, and Agiofili) enjoying a mini cruise!

FROM THE IONIAN SEA TO ZAGOROHORIA
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FROM THE IONIAN SEA TO ZAGOROHORIA

After a hearty breakfast, you will leave the amazing Ionian Islands and depart from Lefkada to the Zagori region.

First you will pass through Preveza, sandwiched between two bodies of water, the Ionian Sea and the Ambracian Gulf.  Preveza will charm you with its lovely jetty, yacht-filled marina, dozens of restaurants and meze-bars, pedestrianised centre and stylish shops.  It belongs to the Epirus region and considered one of the quietest areas in Greece. It is also a heaven for the seafood lovers and famours for the grey mullet, called the caviar of the Ambracian Gulf.

You will then reach the Zagori region, where the Pindus mountain range is located. Pindus is the most important mountain belt in the country, with peaks that exceed 2,000 meters in height. There you can either visit the Pindus National Park or the majestic Vikos–Aoos National Park, where you can go hiking and kayaking in its rivers. In the heart of this region, you will find Zagorohoria (towns of Zagori), a series of towns that seem frozen in time, with great Slavic and Northeast European influences. The town of Kipi has the best examples of the architecture of the area, for instance, the Plakida Bridge. Likewise, you can visit the town of Konitsa, which was very affected during the Greek civil war. Another place highly recommended is Metsovo, a tree-shaded village with its two storey mansions and stone-built drinking fountains perched on the side of Pindos mountain range.

Another important town is Ioannina, the capital of Epirus, located 500 meters high on the shores of Lake Pamvotis. We strongly recommend visiting one of the most important caves in the world, the Cave of Perama. This cave is a huge opening in the depths of Mount Goritsa.

Total distance: 350 km

Greca Tip: Take a walk along the Ioannina's Pamvotida lake and enjoy fresh fish, eels and trout from its waters or frog's legs, the special delicacy and hallmark of the Ioannina cuisine.

FROM EPIRUS TO METEORA (KALAMBAKA)
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FROM EPIRUS TO METEORA (KALAMBAKA)

Leaving Zagorohoria after a hearty breakfast, you will visit Metsovo, a tree-shaded village with its two storey mansions and stone-built drinking fountains perched on the side of Pindos mountain range.

You will then head towards Kalambaka and visit Meteora, declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1988. Meteora combines the natural charm of the region with the eternal monasteries or hanging 'meteora' on the rocks. The first monastery, "The Great Meteoron", was built by Athanasius after being expelled from Mount Athos, in order to escape his pursuers. Nowadays, only 6 remain in use for the monastic community: five for male monks and one for female nuns.

After visiting the monasteries in this a hectic day, you will have a well-deserved rest.

Dress code in monasteries:

Over-the-knee shorts or skirts are forbidden. Men are not admitted wearing sleeveless shirts. For women sarongs are available at the entrance if needed.

Total distance: 111 km

Greca Tip: In Metsovo you can shop for local handicrafts, the famous Metsovon cheeses, meats and the distinct Averof wines, which mature slowly in one of the most mountainous vineyards of Greece.

FROM KALAMBAKA TO THE ORACLE OF DELPHI
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FROM KALAMBAKA TO THE ORACLE OF DELPHI

After a delicious breakfast, you will depart for Delphi. On your way, you will have the opportunity to stop at Thermopylae, where the statue of the Spartan king Leonidas I is to be seen.  King Leonidas was the intrepid leader who confronted the Persians and died in the homonymous battle.

You will finally arrive at Delphi, the center or navel of the ancient world and host to the notable Delphic Oracle was located (consulted either by kings or pilgrims). Delphi was declared UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1987 and attracts thousands of visitors up to the present day.

When all your questions to the Oracle of Delphi have been answered, you will have time for a well-deserved rest.

Total distance: 237 kilometres

Greca Tip: Visit the village of Chrissó in Delphi, wander around its cobblestoned streets and enjoy a coffee break under the century-old plane tree at the village square.

FROM DELPHI TO ATTICA, THE RETURN
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FROM DELPHI TO ATTICA, THE RETURN

After a delicious Greek breakfast, you will start your journey back to Athens

You will drive along the slopes of Mount Parnassos rising to 2457 meters height and you will make a short stop in Arachova, a popular winter resort full of taverns and handicraft shops. 

Further down the road you can visit the town of Levadeia, which, in ancient times, flourished and grew in importance as a consequence of its possessing the celebrated oracle of Trophonius, found in a cave.

Back in Athens, you will return your rental car to the station and your adventure through Greece at our own pace will have come full circle. Now it is time to have a well-deserved rest with the memories of all the places you have seen and the people you have met still fresh in your mind.

Total distance: 186 km

Greca Tip: In the village of Arachova you can shop for local products, such as the traditional woven carpets, honey and the local formaela cheese.

FAREWELL GREECE!
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FAREWELL GREECE!

At the agreed time, our driver will transfer you to Athens Airport to board your international flight back home or to your next destination.  You will check in your luggage and benefit from the tax return resulting from any last minute "tax free" shopping for family and friends.

Undoubtedly, and after spending a few fantastic days with Greca, we hope to see you again soon to create new and extraordinary moments that will be lovingly etched in your memory.

Have a nice trip! Or as Greeks say: "Kalo taksidi!"

Greca Tip: As a going away gift you can choose from a wide range of brightly colored flokati rugs, handmade sandals, embroidered covers and Greek honey or olive oil.

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