One of the most popular day trips from Athens, as well for tourists as for locals, is a cruise to the 3 islands of the Saronic Gulf; Hydra, Poros and Aegina. I heard about that excursion many times from @travelbloggersgreece so when I got opportunity to do this daily cruise I was overexcited. I remember that I counted days before, and checking reviews about Evermore Cruises from other bloggers in order to be ready for the trip!
The meeting point was at Marina Kalitheas at 7.30 am. There are various ways to get there, by car, taxi, public transport or the transfer service that Evermore Cruises provides. I went there with Jessica from AthensCoast.com, she managed to locate Marina Kalitheas in advance thanks to the instructions of a polite lady from the boat.
The boat was full of tourists, and even though it was early in the morning, we were welcomed by happy sailors for photo-shooting! The brand new Cosmos ship is the first luxury yacht that operates a one day cruise boat. It is 70m long and it’s one of the fastest ships on its category. It also has a capacity of more than 600 passengers and spacious indoor and outdoor space that includes 6 bars, 5 spacious luxurious lounges, and a VIP area that can accommodate up to 120 people. This time, I got the opportunity to enjoy the luxury benefits as a VIP passenger.
The time needed to get to our first stop the island of Hydra passed very quickly. During those 3 hours of the trip, there was an experienced guide that gave us a lot of information about the program of the cruise, the places we were passing by and the islands we were heading to. I also learned about the organized islands tours such as the walking tour on Hydra, the excursion to The Temple of Aphaia and Saint Nektarios Monastery in Aegina which are optional, and their cost is 25 euros per person.
On the way to Hydra, the cafe was serving breakfast and refreshments. There was also a live orchestra playing Greek songs. At the VIP lounge, we were served a selection of finger food accompanied by soft drinks, tea, and coffee. No need to mention that this mouth-watering food is prepared by celebrity Greek Chefs.
Our first stop is Hydra island
It is lovely picturesque island that can be synonym for Greece. On this island, all motor vehicles are prohibited, so beside the taxi boats, locals use donkeys and horses for transport. The boat stays here for about 2 hours so there is plenty of time to stroll the streets of Hydra. Did you know that by the Greek mythology, the Learnean Hydra was a nine headed monster, sister of Medusa, and was killed by Hercules? Are you interested more into this island? Till the new upcoming post, let’s say goodbye to Hydra!
Back on the board, the lunch was served.
Oh my God! You know that I am such a foodie and that to me food matters a lot! This time I get to choose between meat, fish or pasta accompanied by 2 types of salads. Foodelicious! In the case you prefer different kind of food, or you would like some extra starters, salads, or desserts, you can order it by additional cost.
As I learned the complimentary buffet lunch that is offered was served twice (once between the island of Hydra and Poros for half of the people and once between the island of Poros and Aegina for the other half).
Second stop – Poros island
One hour from Hydra, there is Poros Island. Even though we had 50 minutes break here, I must admit that I didn’t explore so much! While the group was climbing to the historical clock tower, I decided to enjoy the magnificent view to the coast of Peloponnese.
Back on the board – fresh fruits and desserts were waiting for us at the VIP lounge
Third stop – Aegina island
Aegina is popular weekend destination by many Athenians. As someone who is based in Thessaloniki, till now I could only think about it and scroll over instagram pictures. Today, if you asked me about Aegina, I will tell you pistachio! Except pistachio ( and by the way awesome cocktails) Aegina has nice family beaches, seaside villages and interesting archaeological sites to visit. A drive around will bring visitors to fantastic places, such as the Ancient Temple of Athena Aphaia, the ghost village of Paleochora with the innumerable churches, the seaside villages of Vagia and Perdika, and so many other secrets to discover. Evermore Cruises has optional tours that can take you to the most beautiful beaches or the Ancient Temple. In case you are more interested to stroll around on your own, be aware that the time is limited to 2 hours and 20 minutes.
And the time flies fast! It’s time to board on the boat again! The last two hours of the trip we were listening live orchestra playing traditional songs from all over Greece and watching the two members of the staff dancing traditional Greek dances.
We even had opportunity to learn some steps of the Greek famous Syrtaki dance. No, I am not professional in that, so I will not show you those steps now. However, on my huge surprise, many tourists decided to join dance, practice their steps and drink ouzo. It was awesome international Greek party! The best way to finish our tour with!
This experience made my weekend! I really enjoyed being guest of Evermore Cruises and undoubtedly I would recommend it to anyone. I knew that these islands are something magical, but I didn’t expect that I will be able to discover them all in one day. For everyone who would like to feel Greece, explore, and learn more about Greeks, specially if the time is limited, this cruise is must visit! I never thought that I will be able to experience full Greek hospitality in one day, and it happens thanks to professional and organized crew.
Have you ever done Evermore cruise to the Saronic Gulf? How did you like it?
During my trip to Hydra, Poros and Aegina as I mentioned before I was a guest of Evermore Cruises and I traveled in the VIP lounge that includes finger food, welcome drinks and soft drinks, lunch buffet, and transfer service from/ to your hotel. The cost of the regular cruise is 110 euros per person, while the VIP lounge costs 225 euros per person. For more information about this cruise please visit: http://www.evermorecruises.com.