If you like your luxury travel with a dash of active adventure, this weeklong Greek itinerary is the perfect fit. The fun starts right away, with sea kayaking along the Athenian Riviera. Then, trade the capital for Crete and the city of Heraklion, where you'll descend into the Cave of Zeus and tour the mythical Knossos Palace. End on Santorini, exploring the island's coastline by catamaran, hiking its rugged Caldera, and closing your trip with an exclusive private picnic at an organic farm.


  • Take a private sea kayaking tour to the ancient Temple of Poseidon
  • Sit down to an authentic farm-to-table dining experience on Crete
  • Trek underground into the mysterious limestone Cave of Zeus
  • Hop between Santorini beaches with your own private catamaran and crew

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Athens, Welcome Dinner with Acropolis View Athens
Day 2 Sea Kayak Tour of Sounio & Poseidon Temple, Athenian Riviera Dinner Athens
Day 3 Fly to Heraklion, Explore the City, Farm-to-Table Dining Experience Heraklion
Day 4 Guided Excursion to Lassithi Plateau: Cave of Zeus & Knossos Palace  Heraklion
Day 5 Ferry to Santorini, Luxury Sunset Catamaran Cruise & Barbecue  Santorini
Day 6 Guided Hike of Santorini's Caldera, Farm Picnic in Oia Santorini
Day 7 Depart Santorini  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Athens, Welcome Dinner with Acropolis View

Catch sunset views of the Acropolis while dining in Athens

Welcome to Greece! Your flight lands in the capital city of Athens, a bustling metropolis that combines ancient landmarks and architecture with a modern, upscale vibe. Your driver will meet you at the airport and transport you to your accommodations at the AthensWas, a 5-star boutique hotel located just steps from Greece's famed Acropolis. Offering tastefully appointed rooms with a 70s retro theme, you'll enjoy luxurious amenities, proximity to major sightseeing spots, and an on-site Michelin-starred restaurant with panoramic rooftop views. 

Once you've had a chance to rest and regroup, head out on a self-guided exploration of the city, starting with a walk around the Acropolis. This ancient citadel sits above the city and is considered the cornerstone of Greek history and culture. In addition to being the home of the Parthenon, you'll find the ruins of several historically significant buildings here, not to mention stunning city views. Stroll down Dionysiou Areopagitou Street, making your way along the narrow pathways of Plaka and Anafiotika, and stop in at the Monastiraki neighborhood's lively flea market for unusual souvenirs. 

This evening, discover the culinary wonders of Athens with dinner at a recommended restaurant. Options include everything from traditional Mediterranean meals to high-end fusion and quaint seaside cafés. You'll be able to choose based on your own preferences, and a private driver can be arranged if you desire. 

Day 2: Sea Kayak Tour of Sounio & Poseidon Temple, Athenian Riviera Dinner

Take a privately guided sea kayak tour to Sounio's Poseidon Temple

Discover more of Greece today via a private kayaking tour, meeting your guide in the morning and heading toward Cape Sounio (Sounion), which is located on the southern tip of the Attica peninsula. This scenic drive takes you along the Athenian Rivera, a beautiful coastline with hidden bays and white-sand beaches. Arrive at your launch site, and after a safety and equipment briefing, begin your paddle along the turquoise waters of the coast.

Cruise along the sparkling sea, stopping on the island of Archi if the weather permits, or on one of the many beaches for a swim and snack. Then, continue to Cape Sounio and the Temple of Poseidon, a gorgeous, white marble ruin originally built in the fifth century to honor the god of the sea. Enjoy sea-level views of the temple, then come ashore to tour the temple grounds on foot, taking in the immense columns and ancient remains. 

The day ends with an indulgent gourmet dinner at one of the Riviera's premiere restaurants. Choose from dishes that include fresh fish and other seafood (including a "catch of the day" prepared two ways), traditional Greek appetizers, and delicious local desserts, all paired with various wines. Afterward, your driver will return you to your hotel in Athens, where you can rest up for tomorrow's adventure. 

Day 3: Fly to Heraklion, Explore the City, Farm-to-Table Dining Experience

Enjoy a tranquil 5-star retreat in Heraklion (photo courtesy of Manili Boutique Suites & Villas)

Your next destination is the island of Crete. In the morning, take a private transfer to the airport for the quick, 50-minute flight, landing in Heraklion, Crete's capital. This port city is known for its vibrant Old Town district, peaceful shorelines, and extensive archaeological history. Upon arrival, your driver will transfer you to Manili Boutique Suites and Villas, a 5-star retreat with custom wood furnishings, rich stone accents, and pool and barbecue areas. Room options here include private suites with their own hot tub, expansive three-bedroom villas, and tranquil sea-view terraces.

Check in at the hotel and drop off your bags, then take a stroll through the city streets, admiring age-old architecture that echoes the island's Venetian past. Highlights include the elegant arches of the Loggia, now in use as the town hall, and the Koules Venetian fortress along the harbor walls. In the afternoon, don't miss the Archaeological Museum, home to one of the largest collections of Minoan artifacts in the world. Walk through the Old Town district and Lion's Square, and if you're hungry, grab a snack at the popular Anchorage Traditional Mezedopolio.

Tonight, experience an authentic farm-to-table dinner at a top-rated restaurant. Sample dishes based on traditional Cretan recipes and fresh ingredients, all sourced from a local farm and cultivated with sustainable agriculture practices. Your travel specialist will also make sure the menu accommodates any specific dietary requirements or allergies. 

Plan your trip to Greece
Chat with a local specialist who can help organize your trip.

Day 4: Guided Excursion to Lassithi Plateau: Cave of Zeus & Knossos Palace 

Learn about the legend of the Minotaur at the remains of Crete's Knossos Palace

After breakfast, hop in your luxury chauffeured vehicle for a private tour of eastern Crete's Lassithi Plateau. Located approximately 43 mi (70 km) from Heraklion, the plateau stretches across 50 square miles (13,000 ha) and features colorful villages with rich traditions, historic sites, and incredible cuisine, all set against the backdrop of expansive, fertile plains. 

Cruise along tranquil roadways, taking in the lush forests and farmlands, many of which are dotted with iconic windmills. Stop at the village of Krasi to see its monumental plane tree, with a trunk that spans nearly 80 feet (24 m) and is thought to be more than 2,000 years old. Visit Byzantine monasteries and see ancient Cretan art, as well as a family-owned ceramic shop. Have lunch at a village café, then head to the Cave of Zeus, a phenomenal limestone cavern that was once worshipped as the birthplace of the thunder god. 

Finish your tour with a visit to Knossos Palace, whose origins date back to the Neolithic era. Legend has it that the palace was the residence of King Minos, who is rumored to have kept the Minotaur within a labyrinth here. Meander through the remains of the palace as your guide shares insight into its history and role in Greek culture. Return to Heraklion in time for dinner and a sunset walk around town. 

Day 5: Ferry to Santorini, Luxury Sunset Catamaran Cruise & Barbecue 

Cruise around Santorini via a private luxury catamaran 

You're off to Santorini, one of the Aegean Sea's Cyclades islands. Known for its cliffside white and blue houses (built on the side of a once-active volcano), exquisite sunset views, and endless beaches, the island is a popular destination for visitors from across the globe while still retaining an authentic feel. Check out of your hotel in the morning and take a private transfer to the port, where you'll catch a local ferry over to the island.

A driver will meet you and take you to your hotel, the Andronis Concept-Wellness Resort, a 5-star accommodation located in the village of Imerovigli. With suites and villas that offer private infinity pools, cave pools, and terraces with private hot tubs, you'll enjoy peaceful relaxation amid breathtaking panoramas of the surrounding sea. Don't linger too long in your rooms, however, as you'll be heading out shortly for a private catamaran sunset cruise! 

Meet your driver and head to Vlychada port, where you'll be welcomed onboard your luxury catamaran. Your first stop is Red Beach, a volcanic beach with—you guessed it—red-hued sand. This is a great spot for swimming, snorkeling, and Instagram-worthy photos. Then, head to White Beach, where you can swim while the crew sets out a sumptuous Greek barbecue. Feast on shrimp saganaki, grilled chicken skewers, roasted vegetables, pasta, and more before ending the day with a dip in the mineral waters of Santorini's hot springs. Return to port amid the brilliant hues of the sunset stretching across the tranquil sea.

Day 6: Guided Hike of Santorini's Caldera, Farm Picnic in Oia

Hike Santorini's Caldera for expansive views of the countryside 

One of the best ways to experience the famous views of Santorini is to hike along the Caldera, which was created thousands of years ago by a massive volcanic eruption. This morning, meet up with your private guide to see more of this incredible landscape, starting along the popular route out of Fira, and then making your way to some of the hidden and more authentic sides of the island. Hike along the well-kept trails as your guide shares information about the history and lore of the area, then finish with a picnic at an organic farm in the village of Oia

Walk along cobblestone paths to the first organic blackcurrant vineyard on Santorini, where you'll see local varieties of herbs such as capers and thyme. Learn about the production and harvest of the produce, visit the property's on-site cave, and try a tasting of infused olive oil curated on the farm, all followed by a picnic meal. Take in the sunset views of the Caldera and Aegean Sea, then return to your hotel to enjoy your last evening in Greece. 

Day 7: Depart Santorini

Savor a final morning by the pool before your departure (photo courtesy of Andronis Concept-Wellness Resort)

Sadly, it's time to say farewell to Greece. Your driver will collect you from your hotel this morning and transport you to the airport for your flight home or onward connection. Safe travels!

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Map of Luxury & Adventure in Greece: Athens, Crete & Santorini - 7 Days
Map of Luxury & Adventure in Greece: Athens, Crete & Santorini - 7 Days