Trip reference number: 2812
Trip Operator: Peter Sommer Travels
The islands of the North Dodecanese are the emergent tips of a sub-sea mountain range that stretches across the Aegean sea. Each one has a subtly different feel from its neighbours, a variety expressed in their cuisines and their architecture, but above all in their landscapes and vivid histories. Viewing them from the deck of your gulet as you cruise between these islands with a perfectly chilled glass of wine in hand, it's easy to marvel at the geological forces that shaped them, but to appreciate their true grandeur walk their undulating valleys, over their rugged hills, and rise to the very tops of their breath-taking summits.
This trip brings together the best experiences this area can offer: the elegant and laid-back pleasure of a gulet cruise, the thrill of hiking through an array of wonderful landscapes, the region's fascinating multi-faceted history, the joy of swimming in the blue waters of the Aegean and the delights of fresh local cuisine, enjoyed both on and off the gulet. It is a unique opportunity to explore these island landscapes on foot and to discover superb archaeological sites far from the beaten track.
The combination of the islands you will visit and the walks we have prepared on each will offer you a panoramic insight - literally and metaphorically - into a region of enormous historical depth, and one that conceals a great wealth of hidden beauties rarely noticed by visitors. Accompanied by our expert guides, you will gain an intimate understanding of each island, its landscape, its past and present, and its individual character.
On Kalymnos, a long and peaceful valley unfolds an archaeological timeline from Classical Greece to the Byzantine era and beyond, as one site after another lines-up along the border between lush agricultural land and the island's characteristically rocky uplands. In the centre of the island, we encounter a different phase of its history at the remarkably rugged site of its former main town, hidden away on a fortified slope. On Leros, a seemingly serene mountaintop holds a fascinating array of mementos of the island's turbulent role in the Second World War. On tiny, rarely-visited Telendos, we walk a route through a remarkable collection of Byzantine monuments. In Kos, we will explore the hidden remains of a barely-excavated ancient Greek city and ascend to the pinnacle of a soaring crusader castle that commands fantastic views of the neighbouring islands. Nisyros sees us hike the bucolically fertile slopes of an enormous volcanic caldera and enter a spectacularly-located ancient Greek fortress. Step by step and story by story, this remarkable voyage will unfold the layers of history, combining into an unforgettable experience of riveting tales, stupendous vistas and the sheer natural beauty of each island.
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