Known as one of the most intriguing destinations in Greece, resting on the slopes of Mt. Helmos in an area of exquisite natural beauty, Kalavryta is home to a selection of scenic mountain biking trails and asphalt back-roads. White during winter, multicoloured during the rest of the year, Kalavryta is the ideal destination for an authentic mountain biking adventure.
Day 1 Friday -
Welcome to Athens! After your transfer to your hotel, take a leisurely stroll and explore the beating heart of the city. Explore the colourful network of streets in the town centre and in the island-like paths of Anafiotika neighbourhood in Acropolis, and end your day relishing an original Greek dinner at a scenic restaurant overlooking the beautifully-lit Parthenon.
Day 2 Saturday -
Wake up early in the morning and hop on your private vehicle (van or mini bus), for a 2.30 hour scenic drive to Kalavryta-Peloponnese. Check in to a family run guesthouse, put on your biking clothing and let our driver take you to the first day’s ride starting point, at Mount Helmos at 1700m height. Follow your expert biking guide in the magnificent fir forest and stop midway at a refuge for photos and refreshments. The first part of our expedition ends at a charming little village. Lunch will be served at a tiny tavern by a local lady who will make us feel as guests at her house. Continue your ride through a single track trail which is later connected to asphalt back-roads which lead back to Kalavryta village. The rest of the day is free for you to relax and explore Kalavryta further at your own pace.
Meals B L
Day 3 Sunday -
Today we will ride to Agia Lavra Monastery one of the most important monasteries in Greece. The monastery was built in 961 AD, at an altitude of 961 meters, and can be described as the symbolic birth-place of modern Greece.
It is famously linked with the Greek War of Independence, since it was here that the call for “Eleftheria I Thanatos” (freedom or death) was first heard on the 17th of March 1821, launching the revolution against the Ottoman Empire. That day, Bishop Paleon Patron Germanos performed a doxology and administered an oath to the Peloponnesian fighters. The revolutionary flag was supposedly raised by the Bishop under the plane tree just outside the gate of the monastery.
Later on, take a short ride to the hill opposite to the monastery, where lies a monument dedicated to the heroes of the Revolution of 1821. Continue your backroads ride descent to picturesque Skepasto village, where you will have a short break for Greek coffee or herbs tea, before jumping back on your bike for a short remaining ride to Kalavryta. Take a refreshing shower and go for lunch in a traditional tavern serving delicious local food.
Your transfer vehicle will take you back to Athens International airport
Meals: B L
You will arrive in Athens on Friday according to your flight schedule. Your hotel is located at the Athenian historical center will be the ideal starting point for your city exploration. If you have arrived early on Friday morning, there is an optional 3 hour guided biking tour of Athens available (at an additional cost). Group meeting is at 7.00 pm at the lobby of your hotel where we will discuss the details of our weekend expedition.
We will spend the first night in Athens at a 2 or 3 star hotel with en-suite facilities, situated right at the heart of the historical center, at a quiet neighbourhood. In Kalavryta, we will be staying at traditional village accommodations with en-suite facilities. Rooms are on a twin share basis. In such case of solo travelers booking a double bed room on their own there is a single supplement charge applied. Please take a look at our photo galleries to get a taste of our accommodation style.
Our biking guides are professional MTB instructors, trail builders and course designers for the Greek National Cycling scene.
Breakfasts are taken in the lodgings and may include tea and coffee, orange juice, marmalade mage of local fruits, cereals, eggs, plus bread with jam, honey or cheese. Lunches are taken either during the biking expedition or in the end of it, in local tavernas, with a choice of homemade food with vegetarian and meat options.
On average, the warmest months are July and August. Kalavryta has dry periods in June, July, August and September. Between spring and autumn, pleasantly chilly mornings and warm afternoons provide the ideal weather conditions for our biking expeditions in Kalavryta.
In order to better appreciate the uniqueness of your holiday we advise you to be in good physical condition. On your last two weeks before the trip, it is a good idea to take several rides in hilly terrain.
Saturday: Total distance covered 25km, Elevation +100m -1000m. Terrain: forest dirt roads, single trail, asphalt back roads.
Sunday: Total distance covered 20km, Elevation +250 -250m Terrain: asphalt back roads.
On Saturday morning just before you start your adventure you will have a technical and safety briefing by your tour leader. This includes setting up the bikes and discussing basic information such as:
• How to use breaks
• How to use and change gears
• How to ride in a group (The rhythm is always given by the leader)
• How to stay behind the rider in front of you
• What to do if you feel tired during the ride
• What to do if you feel knee or other pain
You must stay behind your biking tour leader at all times. Your leader knows when to accelerate and when to slow down, according to the slope and type of terrain of the route.
In case of heavy rain or snow or in general adverse weather conditions, it is in our biking guide’s judgement to cancel or postpone a biking expedition. In such rare case we have alternative options which may or may not include outdoor activities, such as hiking, a cog train day trip, a visit to the famous cave of the lakes etc.
If you have not already arranged appropriate insurance cover, please contact our recommended Travel Insurance providers. It is an essential condition of joining a biking holiday with Personality Journeys that you have a valid travel insurance policy to cover the cost of medical treatment.
• Helmet (mandatory for participation)
• Biking gloves (long)
• Biking shoes – NOT with SPD
• Biking Shorts or bib tights
• Long socks
• Water resist jacket
• Warm waterproof jacket
• Day Backpack
• Water can – 1ltr
• Sun glasses with head lock
• Sun cream
• First Aid Kit including: antiseptic cream, throat lozenges, diarrhoea treatment (Imodium), painkillers, plasters and blister treatment, insect repellent
• Camera & batteries (optional)