ITHACA - TRIP INTRODUCTION
The legendary island of Ithaca is situated in the centre of the Greek Ionian islands and, not surprisingly, has been a source of fascination since the 8th century BC. It was at this time that Homer wrote the poem The Odyssey, a tale recounting the epic journey that King Odysseus made after the Trojan War to return to his homeland and beloved wife Penelope in Ithaca. This heroic 10-year journey was a homecoming that has inspired the imagination of many scholars and modern-day visitors alike.
The Big Blue is proud to add this island as a swim destination. It is unique in that it is a location with legendary status but remains largely untouched by the modern-day pace of life and tourism.
Ithaca is situated in the clear, warm and calm waters of the Ionian Sea to the West of mainland Greece and its intricate coves, beaches, caves and coastline have rarely been experienced by swimmers. This 7-day (approximately 5K swimming in total per day) programme starts on Monday and finishes the following Monday morning. We will greet you on your arrival on Monday evening with a welcome drink followed by an introduction to the location and a safety briefing from our Ithaca based team. During the week there will be an optional opportunity for a filmed swimming analysis and open water swimming coaching from our qualified guides. Each morning we will board our spacious, traditional 15m wooden sailing boat Mowgli and ‘cruise’ in comfort to the start of the swim, along Ithaca’s largely unexplored coastline. We will visit coves, caves and many locations inaccessible from the road that few people have visited before. At lunchtime we visit a different harbour every day to sample the mouth watering Greek cuisine of the Ionian’s traditional tavernas.
We have extensive local knowledge of the area and this 7-day programme of varied swims ensures you experience a variety of stunning swimming locations in a safe and fully supported environment.
WHAT IS INCLUDED IN THE HOLIDAY
The trip starts on your arrival at the Mentor Hotel, in Vathi. On your arrival day you will be welcomed and in the evening have a chance to meet your fellow swimmers and be briefed on the week’s itinerary and safety issues over relaxing complimentary drinks. On the first day of the trip our guides/coaches will video your swimming technique for an analysis session. We then view this with you and offer advice on achieving a more efficient, injury-free stroke. Individual advice can also be given during the swims. A buffet style breakfast is offered every morning at the hotel and we will then travel in our traditional wooden boat Mowgli to the swimming location (which is different every day). We will escort each of the swimming groups with motorised support boats and drinks will be offered at regular intervals during the swim. Our support boats are manned by fully qualified first aid experienced swimmers who will keep a close watch over you. So you don’t forget your amazing Greek experience you will be given an Ithaca-themed Big Blue T-shirt, sports drinks bottle and a swimming hat to use and keep.
• On Arrival: Complimentary drink, bespoke location Big Blue T-shirt, Sports bottle
• 1st Day: Individual underwater video, Individual stroke analysis, Swimming hat
• 7 nights’ Hotel accommodation
• 3 motorised boats (One main and 2 auxiliary)
• 3 qualified swim guides
• Local Greek boat captain
• Cold drinks along the swims
• Variety of snacks at the end of each swim
• Coffee, tea & hot chocolate at the end of swims