10 days self guided Central Northwest Greece

10 days self guided Central Northwest Greece

At a glance

Our 10 days self guided motorcycle Tour of Central Northwest Greece is one of our best sellers, and rightfully so. In 10 days you will discover locations of mainland Greece that for many years were left out of most touristic guide books.

The routes are mountainous and the riding is fantastic. The landscapes are fascinating and surprising : most customers that do this tour tell us afterwards that they would never expect that Greece has such scenery.

For your information, there is also a fully guided version in case you might be interested. The itinerary is exactly the same, but you are travelling with the easy of mind of being escorted and having all the support from our crew during the tour.

map of tour 10 days self guided central northwest greece

Start / Finish

Athens, Greece

Duration

10 riding days

Riding hours

Daily average: 4-5 hours on the saddle. A couple of days are longer (ca. 6 hours).

Distance

1,900 – 2,200 kilometers (route options) / 1,190 – 1,375 miles

Accommodation

3 or 4 star, elegant boutique hotels. All of them are top rated and personally selected by us.

Difficulty

Sections could be rated as “Moderate” level for most riders. Some other sections are “Advanced” because there are many tight and steep hairpins along the routes, on small narrow (single lane) roads. Please read here about how our tours are graded!

Roads

100% paved. A large amount of this tour runs on narrow, single lane, secondary mountain routes. See below :

TYPE OF RIDING

You will be riding mostly on small, secondary mountain roads, where traffic is often absent. We have included the most scenic routes, with the most amazing vistas, those that are considered by the local riders’ communities as truly the best of Greece in terms of scenery and landscape.

But a lot of sections of the tour run through continuous narrow winding roads, with little room to spare. You will ride as much as 100 kilometers of such roads in one single take! Successive ascending or descending switchbacks/ hairpins are often present, and many of them are very steep and tight.

There are occasional rough sections, with potholes or scattered stones dropped from cliffs on the surface, especially at the most remote mountainous roads that you will ride. Also, on those remote roads, due to extreme weather conditions that might have preceded during the winter period, there will be damaged sections that are in a state of repair. This means we might encounter short stretches (i.e. 10-50 meters long each) with dirt or gravel.

If you do this tour in mid May, the highest mountain pass will require caution: snow has not melted yet, and the width of the road at that particular pass will be just enough for one bike!

The following images were all taken along the routes of this tour (during Autumn), so they should give you a pretty good idea of what you should expect.

POPULAR ATTRACTIONS

The following are indexed by UNESCO as World Heritage sites:

  • ancient Delphi (“the navel of the world” according to ancient Greeks)
  • the Meteora Monasteries

Also, you will visit :

– The villages of Zagori (also Zagoria or Zagorohoria) in the northwest. Traditional stone built settlements full of character and beautiful architecture.
– The gorge Vikos, a breathtaking vista. Listed as the 2nd deepest in the world (and in some references, as the absolute deepest, in relation to its width!)
– The clearest river of Europe, Voidomatis. The colors of the waters will enchant you!
– The villages of Tzoumerka built by stone in steep gorges and on edges of cliffs.
– The island of Lefkada, with the turquoise colored beaches.
– The medieval coastal castle of Nafpaktos

Itinerary

Day 1: Athens – Delphi (route options, 165 – 170 kilometers / ca. 105 miles)

You leave busy Athens and soon you will find yourself riding on secondary roads. The first day is relatively easy going but we do give you optional routes if you want to make it more interesting and spend more hours exploring the country side.

You will arrive in late afternoon to Delphi with plenty of time left to visit the historic sites of this place.

Day 2: Delphi – Meteora (route options, 290 – 330 kilometers / 180 – 206 miles)

Today is a long day and the routes offer a variety: from an alpine pass, to small country roads, you ride through central Greece. As you will be approaching the town of Kalambaka, the “gateway” to Meteora, you will be stunned by the dominant view of the massive detached stone pinnacles, 400 meters above the ground. We ascend to the top to gaze upon the vistas. The Meteora is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. If you are feeling religious or just want to indulge to Byzantine history, pay a visit to one (or more) of the monasteries that are perched on the summits

Day 3: Meteora – Zagoria, 2 nights* in Zagoria ( 160 – 170 kilometers /  ca. 100 miles)

Today you enter the NW territories of Greece. You will cross a part of the eastern Zagoria, where once again the landscape is alpine. But soon you will find yourself riding along endless curves and corners, at this mountainous area. Then, the first villages of the west Zagoria appear in front of you. You reach your stone-built boutique hotel, at a tranquil site. Time for “meze” and “tsipouro” (local spirit)!

Day 4: Zagoria loop (185 kilometers / 115 miles)

Most people who do this loop get blown away by the beauty of the area. Most people say that they would have never thought Greece has such landscapes! It’s hard to put it in to words, but we guarantee you will enjoy the ride! The numerous villages that are along the route offer you many options for road-side stops, and the architecture of the houses, gives a unique character to them.

The wonder of nature, gorge of Vikos, will amaze you.

* This loop will end : either in Zagoria again (thus making your nights here 3 in total) or a little further to the south, in the town of Ioannina, depending on how you would prefer to spend the next day. If you long for the tranquility of the small villages, it will be in Zagoria. If you would rather spend the evening in a beautiful town, with more options for dining, bars, and sightseeing, then it will be Ioannina!

Day 5: rest day in Ioannina or Zagoria, with options to ride 

If you choose to stay in Zagoria for one more night, then this day is offered for relaxation away from crowds, or you may opt to do some extra riding (route options are provided).

If you choose to end your loop ride from yesterday in the town of Ioannina, then you will spend the day strolling around the old historic center, enclosed behind the fortifications of previous centuries! There are many interesting things to do and see in Ioannina, and your stay there won’t disappoint ! Our handbook will reveal most of them to you!

Day 6:  Zagoria (or Ioannina) – Tzoumerka (130 – 160 kilometers / 80 – 100 miles)

Don’t be fooled by today’s “short” distance. You are entering Tzoumerka!

After a first section of the route that will bring towards the east part of Zagoria, and then to the village of Metsovo , you will turn south. The Tzoumerka area is wild, remote, and – depending on how early in the season you will do the tour – will demand an extra level of caution. Your “adventure” mood must be on, at all times. The scenery though is truly spectacular.

You will ride over the highest paved mountain road of Greece, the Baros pass.

Day 7: Tzoumerka – Lefkada, 2 nights in Lefkada (160 – 170 kilometers / ca. 100 miles)

You start the day with some more of Tzoumerka. The roads are ever winding, the scenery is lush, and the riding is simply fun.

You will go deep in the Kalarytiko gorge where the views are spectacular and the villages are built on top of cliffs. Exiting this beautiful area, the ride gets smoother and much easier as you head to the plains of Arta and then on a relaxed easy-going pace you finish the day at the island of Lefkada, which is accessible by road, so no need to take a ferry here!

Day 8:  Lefkada island, rest

Have a look at the images below, so that we need to say nothing else! Of course, those of you who wish to ride, may do a loop ride of the island.

Day 9:  Lefkada – Nafpaktos (route options, from 205 to 320 kilometers / 128 –  200 miles)

You have two options, a coastal ride that is scenic and relatively easy going. Or you may opt for the long way round, that will take you though the country side roads of Evritania province. The ride is amazing: gorges & lush scenic landscapes are on your way, this is on of our favorite rides, albeit a long one (6+ hours)

Day 10: Nafpaktos – Athens (route options, 280 kilometers / 175 miles)

Follow the coastal road until Itea, from where your ride continues on secondary country roads all the way until Athens!

Dates

Best experienced during May*, early June, the 2nd half of September and October.

* In May: the highest paved pass of Greece, Baros, usually gets cleared and opens after the 1st week of May. If you do choose to do the trip earlier than that, 99% you will not be able to ride the Baros pass. So the routes (and the itinerary) for the day before and after will have to be altered.

July and August can get hot and crowded. The sea will be at its best though, if you decide to add non-riding days!

In November you are taking your chances with rain, especially in the northwest.

This tour is not recommended during the winter.

2019 Prices

(all prices in euros)Single RiderRider + Pillion2 riders sharing
BMW R 1200GS3,0003,2354,820
Duc Multistrada 950S2,8403,0754,500
BMW F 750 GS2,6302,8654,085
BMW F 700 GS2,5252,7603,875
HONDA CB 500x2,2102,4453,245

Booking deposit, per person : 650 euros

Remaining amount is paid in 2 parts:

  • 50% : 45 days before arrival
  • 50% : the day you collect the bike.

Note: prices shown are based on quotes from hotels offered to us for group tours on fixed dates. Depending on the time of your travel, prices may be slightly different (for example during peak season). 

What is Included in the price you pay

– 9 nights accommodation with breakfasts, in personally selected hotels.
– Rental of Motorcycle, with side panniers, top case, comprehensive insurance with excess.
– Rental of 1 GPS per 4 people, with routes and POIs pre-loaded for every day
– Paper map with routes marked and a handbook with key information for the trip, suggestions, tips etc.
– 2 helmets, of basic quality, European standards approved. Options available to upgrade to high quality helmets, for an added daily fee.
– Free luggage storage at our premises.

– All taxes

– accommodation in Athens, when you fly in and when you ride back to Athens (we can certainly arrange it if you wish)
– airport transfers (offered as an option)
– Fuel & tolls
– Food, drinks, personal daily expenses & tips
– Fines, tickets
– Entrance fees to local museums, tourist sites
– Ferries, parking
– Personal travel insurance
– Visas (if required)

Also, not included are the costs of any “added” days you may choose to have. Those costs will typically have to include the daily rental rate of the motorcycle plus the accommodation cost, which varies depending on where you choose to spend those added days.

Costs of Extra Options:

Airport transfers. Prices are per 2-way transfer (to and from the airport), not per person. 
Up to 3 pax90
4 to 8 pax150

Please read the Tour Terms & Conditions which include our Cancellation Policy.

Check the Frequently Asked Questions

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact us for further information!

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