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See the Acropolis up close, visit the Olympic stadium and stroll the markets of Plaka in Athens. Stop by beautiful Santorini for the world’s most astonishing sunset over white and blue-domed houses and get swept up in the island nightlife. Finish the week on the island of Corfu, where you can kayak, ATV and dance the night away in a toga at the beachside Pink Palace resort (plate smashing included!).
*Please note that trains may sometimes be used in lieu of a coach bus for transportation to/from Ancona Port
Ferry departure, arrival and travel times vary dependent on season and weather conditions. Please contact [email protected] prior to making any connecting travel plans.
Trip departs from the Florence Santa Maria Novella train station Friday morning. The meeting point is Reale Firenze, to the right outside the S.M.N Train station. Be sure to check in with your trip leader at least 20 minutes before the scheduled departure time. Travel is by luxury coach (Please note: trains are sometimes used in lieu of coach bus for logistical reasons). Estimated travel time to Ancona is 3-5 hours. Once in Ancona, we board the cruise ship for the 22 hour crossing to Greece. The ferry is the size of a cruise ship and has excellent amenities including a dance club, restaurants, bars and stores. This is the perfect opportunity to meet your fellow trip members.
We arrive on the Greek mainland at Patras. On arrival, we will hop on a bus for a 3-4 hour ride to Athens. We will arrive in Athens and check into our accommodation. Your guides will then give you a brief walking tour of the center so you can get acquainted with the city. At night we go to Vyzantino’s, a traditional Greek restaurant in Plaka for an optional group dinner. The dinner includes various Greek appetizers, a choice of entree, and unlimited wine. We will meet in the accommodation lobby. After dinner our Bus2alps guides will give you suggestions on where to go out and enjoy Athens’ rich nightlife.
We will depart for the walking tour of Athens after breakfast. This walking tour is a great way to get acquainted with one of the oldest and most fascinating cities in the Western World. You will see the Greek National Parliament, the 1896 Olympic Stadium, the Temple of Zeus, the Acropolis museum, and of course, the Acropolis. Your International Student ID will get you reduced entry to all the sites on the walking tour. In order to receive a reduced entry, your ID must be an international ID from your study abroad program. The walking tour ends at Monastiraki Square. Here you can have a sit down lunch or grab a cheap gyro from a traditional Greek Gyro stand. The afternoon is free to have custom sandals made, shop at the flea market and souvenir shops, visit the museums, or grab a traditional Greek Coffee.
Monday Morning we depart our accommodation by private bus transfer for the port of Athens to board the Blue Star ferry for Santorini. Santorini is the postcard Greek Island with the iconic white and blue buildings clinging to the cliffside. Travel time on boat will be approximately 7-9 hours. Upon arrival, we will be transported to our highly-rated accommodation located in the Fira city center. The afternoon is free to explore one of Greece’s most photographed cities. After a beautiful sunset view, there will be an optional group dinner at a local Greek Taverna followed by drinks.
Today we will have an optional bus tour around the island of Santorini. We will visit the red rock beach, the black sand beach and another incredible lookout spot. You are also free to explore the beauty of Santorini. We also recommend renting a scooter or ATV to better explore all of the small villages and the landscape of the island of Santorini. In the evening, there will be optional transportation to the town of Oia to watch the incredible and famous sunset over Santorini's white and blue houses.
Wednesday we depart Santorini on the Blue Star ferry in the afternoon. You will have the entire morning to walk around, do some shopping, and maybe even get a fish pedicure. After disembarking the 7-9 hour ferry that evening, we will hop on a private bus overnight (approximately 6-8 hours) that will take us to the port of Igoumenitsa. Upon arrival at the port, we will take a quick 1-1.5 hour ferry ride to the island of Corfu. We will arrive in Corfu in the morning.
We will arrive at the Pink Palace in Corfu and immediately check into the rooms. The rest of the day is free to hang on the beach which is a short walk from the hostel, or join in in one of the various activities. Dinner is typically served around 20:00 and is included with your stay at the Pink Palace.
Your options for the day include the Booze Cruise, the ATV Safari, rent an ATV yourself, go sea kayaking, take a day trip to Corfu Town or simply relax on the beach. Dinner is served around 20:00 and is included with your stay at the Pink Palace. The Pink Toga Party begins after dinner, however everyone will be wearing their togas to dinner. The Pink Palace is known for this toga party, which involves Greek dancing, plate smashing and of course, Greek Ouzo.
Today you will have the morning and afternoon free before we depart in the early evening. We will hop on the Pink Palace bus to the port where we will board a ferry for 1-1.5 hours, which will bring us to the mainland at Igoumenitsa. From here we will board our return cruise for Ancona. The cruise trip will be approximately 15-17 hours. Cruise boat travel is on the same cruise boat we travelled to Greece and travel times very based on sea currents.
Sunday afternoon we arrive in Ancona and board our private bus (or train) to return to Florence. Estimated travel time is 3-5 hours for an approximate return time in Florence of 19:00-22:00.
Athens Acropolis: Entrance into many of the Ancient sites in Athens are free if you have a valid international student I.D. from your international university with your name on it. If you do not have one, then a valid regular student I.D. will typically get you a reduced rate. Full Price Acropolis entry is usually €20, but is subject to change.
Santorini Scooter & ATV Rentals: A great way to explore the beautiful island is by way of motorized vehicle. You must have some sort of experience to rent a scooter and a valid driver's license to rent any type of vehicle. Prices vary depending on the company, vehicle and amount of time.
Santorini Island Tour: This tour brings you to the famous red rock and black sand beaches of Santorini and stops at an incredible lookout spot at the very top of the island. This activity is bookable in paid directly with your trip leader. That evening you can also enjoy a separate trip to Oia for a spectacular sunset.
Toga Party: The Pink Palace has become famous for its Pink Toga Party. The night kicks off with a group dinner in your pink toga, followed by a crazy party highlighted by Greek dancing, plate smashing, and lots of Greek Ouzo. For €25 you can rent your pink toga fabric along with a free drink voucher. Return your toga the next day for €10 back.
Pink Palace Booze Cruise: Hop on a crazy half day boat adventure around the island of Corfu. The booze cruise stops at places to swim in bat caves and hang out on a private beach. Prices are subject to change based on the season, and this activity is weather dependent. Approximate cost is €25-30. Bookable at the Pink Palace in person.
Corfu ATV Safari & Rentals: Spend your day trekking through one of Greece’s lushest islands, visiting beautiful vista points, hanging out in small Greek towns and blaring your horn at old Greek couples waving as you drive by. Prices typically range from €20-25. Bookable at the Pink Palace in person.
Kayak Safari & Rentals: Grab a paddle and spend your day exploring the Corfu coastline with stops for swimming and taking in the landscapes that surround you. This activity is weather dependent. Prices range from €15-20. Bookable at the Pink Palace in person.
Corfu Town Trip: Hop on the bus and head into Corfu Town to experience some of the island's local culture and museums. Approximately €12-15. Bookable at the Pink Palace in person.
*All prices are subject to change