Expedition around the Santorini group of islands. Nov 4-10, 2024.

Santorini is well know for its dramatic scenery, spectacular geology and famous sunsets.  This 5-day expedition will explore the coastline in detail with 4 nights wild camping on remote beaches.

A challenging expedition for experienced paddlers only. The central Aegean is well known for its strong and persistent summer winds and wild winter storms.  November is the calmest month, on average,  however we can expect stormy weather about once per week interspersed with days of calm and sunny weather.

An outline of the expedition, showing a possible route, campsites and daily distances.

The price includes:

2024 Price : €650

Arrival and departure

The advertised dates indicate your arrival and departure dates to and from Santorini

  • You must arrive in Santorini anytime on (or before) November 4.
  • Depart from Santorini anytime on (or after) November 10.
  • You can fly direct to Santorini from Athens with Olympic/Aegean Air or Sky Express.
  • There is a daily ferry from/to Piraeus with Blue Star Ferries.
  • Book a hotel near the centre of Fira.

Expedition Plan

The advertised dates allow 5 full days’ kayaking on Nov 5-9.   The starting point and actual route will be decided the evening of your arrival date based on the latest forecast.  You will take a shared taxi from your hotel to the starting point on the morning of Nov 5.  The total distance we intend to cover is approximately 100km, or about 20km/day, with frequent (+/- hourly) stops at places of interest – beaches, villages, hot springs and the volcano.  There will be a hike, at least every day.  Good hiking footwear is required, especially for the volcano.

A typical day will involve rising at first light (6am), on the water at 8am, arriving to campsite at around 3pm.  NB:  Sunset is at 5.30pm, it is dark by 6 pm. Most nights we will have a campfire.  

Launching and Landing

The Santorini caldera has few beaches.  Many of the access points will involve launching or landing from a high dock.  Launching from a dock involves lowering the kayak into the water then stepping into the kayak.  This is a group exercise involving a tow rope to retain the kayak and peer assistance for safety and balance. Some courage and agility is required, especially when there are waves.  See a simple video example here

Maps

A laminated A4 map will be provided.

Required Paddling Experience

This expedition is for experienced sea kayakers.  You should have enough stamina to paddle up to 30 km per day, which may take up to a total of 6 hours.  You should be comfortable with the idea of paddling in moderate wind and waves, as challenging conditions are likely on at least some of the days. You should have practised an assisted sea kayak rescue and know how to do an assisted deep water re-entry.

If you have limited paddling experience, our Explore Milos Package will provide excellent preparation for this expedition.

Camping

Camping will be wild on or near beaches.  Most are remote and there will be no facilities, not even water. All camping equipment, food and water must be carried in the kayak.  A strong lightweight tent is essential.

Food

The expedition is self catered.  Usually we each look after our own breakfast, lunch and snacks and take turns to prepare a group evening meal.  Food can be bought in local shops on your arrival day. You are welcome to bring food items from home.  There will be an opportunity to stock up on the third day.  Occasional stops at restaurants and coffee shops are a possibility.

Stoves and fuel

We recommend stoves powered by gas canisters with a screw-on fitting (camping-Gaz or coleman type), readily available in local supermarkets.

We have camping stoves for hire upon request €30/week – suitable for up to 4 persons.  The Trangia stove, includes 2 x 2lt pots, kettle and frying pan. see photo

Weather

Daily temperatures will be in the range of 13°C-20°C. Water temperature will be around 18°C and there will be 10 hours of daylight per day.   On average, rain falls on 8 days so we can expect at least some wet weather.  See Weather on Santorini for November

What to wear

For paddling, shorts and a shirt will be sufficient on most days.  A cagoule (waterproof paddling jacket) and neoprene or “Reed” trousers or similar will be required if it’s windy, overcast or raining.

See a complete Packing list >

Geology

Recommended reading: