Naxos and the Small Cyclades

From the turquoise waters of Koufonisia,  to the towering cliffs of Keros, this trip offers dramatic contrasts and unparalleled Cycladic beauty. The trip will start from the port of Naxos; island hopping around the small Cyclades and returning to Naxos at the end of the trip. 

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

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

The Price includes:

2023 Price : €750

Arrival and departure

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

  • You must arrive in Naxos anytime on (or before) November 11.
  • Depart from Naxos anytime on (or after) November 19.
  • You can fly direct to Naxos from Athens with Olympic Air or Sky Express.
  • There is a daily ferry from/to Piraeus with Blue Star Ferries.

Expedition Plan

The advertised dates allow 7 full days’ kayaking plus your arrival and departure days (9 days in total).  The total distance is about 140km or about 20km/day.

  • Day 1 (Nov 11): Your arrival on Naxos, stay at a hotel, shop for supplies at nearby supermarket.
  • Day 2: We will travel by car to the south of Naxos, to begin our journey.
  • Days 2-8: Cross to Iraklia and spend 7 days to island hop around the small Cyclades.
  • At the end of day 8: paddle back to Naxos, drive to Naxos town, stay in a hotel.
  • Day 9 (Nov 19): Your departure from Naxos. 


Laminated A4 maps at various scales will be provided.

Required Paddling Experience

This expedition is for experienced sea kayakers.  You should have enough stamina to paddle up to 25 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 the T-rescue and know how to do an assisted deep water re-entry.

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


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.


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 for the first stage 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 every second or third day, therefore we can travel light and live well.  Occasional stops at restaurants and coffee shops are a possibility.

Stoves and fuel

Camping stoves will be provided – one per 4 persons.  The Trangia stove, includes pots, kettle and frying pan.  The stoves are powered by gas canisters with a screw-on fitting, readily available in local supermarkets.


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 some wet weather.  Source

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 may be required if it’s windy or overcast.

See a complete Packing list >