The warm sun, clear seas and long history don't need to be overplayed; they are what we all picture with Greece, and they are a constant.
But there's also the faultless scenery, refreshing 'back to basics' island lifestyle and a people famed for their warmth and generosity towards visitors. This is the Greece you will find on the seven-night Active Crete walking and painting holiday.
Conceived and hosted by Sunvil, who have been seeking out the 'best' of Hellenic Europe for 45 years, it's a very special trip that we are proud to publicise.
Set in western Crete, the holiday includes five guided 3-hour walks and 4 painting workshops.
Your local guide, Lakovos Triantafillou, introduces you to the mountains and landscapes of his childhood on five leisurely-medium paced morning walks. His knowledge of the area is unrivalled and you will learn about local fauna and flora, history and culture as well as local tips, such as where the best herbs can be found. This is the real Crete, a land shaped by its people.
Camille Marquand, our guide, is an English artist who has had several solo shows and has taken part in many group exhibitions. The four painting workshops are suitable for all abilities and can be completed using the medium of your choice (oils or water colours for example).
The family-run Cormoranos Hotel Apartments are located close to the beach in the hamlet of Nopigia, 7km from the town of Kissamos. Greek hospitality, wholesome breakfasts and relaxation are the order of the day here. In your free time, sit back in the lush hotel gardens, dip in the swimming pool or head to the beach and its waterfront tavernas.
Day 1: Flight from the UK to Chania airport
Transfer to the hotel where a communal evening meal will be held allowing you to meet the other participants and find out more abut the programme.
Day 2: Platanaki – Korfalonas - City of Kissamos
After breakfast, meet at the hotel for the first walk. Spend time in Kissamos for a visit to the local museum and shopping. Return to the hotel by bus for some free time for lunch in the afternoon. The first painting workshop will take place in the early evening, followed by free time for the rest of the evening to enjoy nearby tavernas and attractions. (walking time: approximately 90 minutes)
Day 3: Ancient Mythimna – Agios Georgios – Villa Trevizan
After breakfast, meet at the hotel for the next walk. Walking part of the expedition: about 2.5 hours. Return to the hotel for some free time for lunch. The second painting workshop will take place in the early evening, followed by free time.
Day 4: Drapanias - Potamida
After breakfast, the third walk: Drapanias - Potamida. Walking part of the expedition: about 3 hours. Return to the hotel for some free time and lunch in the afternoon. The third painting workshop will take place in the early evening, followed by free time for the rest of the evening for further painting or to enjoy the local attractions.
Day 5: Kotsiana - Rokka
You guessed it: after breakfast, meet at the hotel for the walk: Kotsiana - Rokka. Walking part of the expedition: about 3 hours. Return to the hotel for lunch in the afternoon. The fourth painting workshop will take place in the early evening, followed by free time for the rest of the evening for further painting or local sightseeing.
Day 6: At leisure
A free day to rest, ideal for further walking or sightseeing at your own leisure. You could enjoy the many attractions of Chania, or visit the famous Balos beach by a short boat trip or hire a car to explore further afield.
Day 7: Nopigia – Panagia Myrtidiotisa – Agios Vasilios
Your final full day begins with a three-hour post-breakfast walk between Nopigia – Panagia Myrtidiotisa – Agios Vasilios. Afterwards, head back to the hotel for lunch, free time and the Painting Exhibition, allowing you to exhibit your work, followed by a party.
Day 8: Return home
Transfer to Chania Airport for flight back to the UK.
Prices are from £1250 per person for 2 people sharing twin apartment on a bed & breakfast basis.
Single room supplement is £125.
Includes transfers (1 hour), 7 nights bed and breakfast accommodation (note: air conditioning is paid locally at €5 per day), welcome dinner and activities as described - all other meals are paid locally. Price varies according to date of travel.
The price includes Tuesday flights from London Gatwick to Chania, return transfers, 7-nights accommodation on a Bed & Breakfast basis and activities as detailed. Manchester flight supplement and single room supplement are available on request.