This route includes all the major locations mentioned in the 12 Labours of Hercules myth, as well as other significant archaeological sites and places of interest. The bike tour should last 25 days, and starts and ends in Athens.
Here's a look at the route for my Labours of Hercules bike tour of the Peloponnese.
Herculean Bike Touring Route
Like all bike touring routes, I have no doubt in my mind that this will get changed around and altered when I am actually out there on the road! Still, you have to start off with a rough outline when planning a bike tour, and this is mine.
As I previously mentioned during the blog post about the concept behind the Hercules Bike Tour of the Peloponnese, my route is based on places mentioned in the Greek myth of Hercules and the 12 Labours.
These form the core of the bike tour, and once I put them as dots on the map, it was then just a matter of connecting them with a route that made sense.
Cycling in the Peloponnese
The Peloponnese has an incredible landscape, which can vary from untamed mountains to secluded beaches. There's also a number of scenic routes in the Peloponnese, and so I have also tried to include them where possible.
To be honest, I'm not sure how clever this is. My experience of bike touring has shown me that anything marked as a scenic route is normally pretty hilly, and the Peloponnese has an awful lot of hills!
According to my brief research though, I shouldn't have many days of bicycle touring where the combined elevation during a day exceeds 1800 metres. So that's nice.
Map of my cycling route in the Peloponnese
Here's an interactive map of my proposed cycling route around the Peloponnese. You should be able to zoom in and out to take a closer look.
No promises, but I might even add photos etc to this map if I get time. During the journey, I'll be using a mix of wild camping, official campsites, and affordable hotels for accommodation.
I haven't marked my night stops on the map. Instead, I'll include them in a table below.
Peloponnese Bike Tour Details
Here's a more detailed look in a table format of where I intend to stop each night, and what I would like to see along the way. I have no idea if this renders correctly on Facebook or mobile phone. If it doesn't, please look at the desktop version instead!
You will also notice that there are a bunch of ‘free days' at the bottom of the cycling itinerary of the Peloponnese. Basically, I've built in these buffer days to allow for tired legs, bad weather, or interesting places I would like to stay longer.
I will just slot these into the itinerary as I go. This will make the route the same, but the days on which I do stuff different. Hope that makes sense!
|Date||Day||See during day||Finish at||Approx distance||Notes|
Hotel booked-Acropolis Hotel
|19 April||Thurs||Tiryns, Port at Nafplion||Nafplion||51kms||
Hotel Booked – Artemis
|20 April||Fri||Mycenae, Emeia, Lerna, and Elouys site??||Nafplion||60kms all day?||
Hotel booked – Artemis
|21 April||Sat||Nemea,Kleones||Free camp near lake?||70kms||
Make sure I have water!!
|22 April||Sun||Stymphalos||Akrata Beach||70kms||Camping ground|
(maybe free camping/cheap accommodation)
|24 April||Tues||Dafni, River Ladon||Dimitra||70kms||
probably wild camping
|25 April||Wed||Lampeia, Lalas||Ancient Olympia||80||hotel|
|26 April||Thurs||sightseeing||Ancient olympia||hotel|
|27 April||Fri||Ancient Elis (stay at same hotel olympia)||Olympia||80||Hotel|
|28 April||Sat||Temple of Apollo||Kalamata||120||campground|
|1 May||Tues||cape matapan||Gythio||100||hotel?|
|2 May||Wed||Temple of Athena Alea||Tripoli||100||hotel|
|3 May||Thurs||Ermioni||100||No idea|
|4 May||Fri||troezen, Epidavrous Port||New Epidavrous||80||No idea|
|6 May||Sun||Athens||Back home!|
Bike Touring Gear
So, the next step in my preparations to cycle around the Peloponnese, is to sort out my bike touring gear. It's been a while since I used some of it, so I'll have to make sure the tent doesn't have holes in, and the sleeping bag doesn't smell too much!
Here's a look at the bike touring gear I am using on the Hercules Bike Tour.
Find out more about the Hercules Bike Tour Of The Peloponnese.
14 thoughts on “Bike Touring Route in the Peloponnese”
Great, I’ll try that. Thanks!
Great to discover your blog. I’ve been spending a lot of time in Athens over the last three years and about to get a bike at last!
Thing is, it’s in Villia – I’m planning to ride it back to central Athens, but I’m put off by the highway from Elifsina into Athens. I’m looking at alternative routes; via Megara – Salamina – and the ferry to Pireaus and metro into Athens – or north via Ano Liosia – Neo Ionia.
I wondered if you could advise me?
The best route for me when I try to get from Athens to Corinth, is to go via Leof. Nato.
Take a look at Google maps, and switch the method of travel to ‘waling’. You’ll see there’s two routes, one which goes up over Elefsina. That’s the one I generally take.
There’s the old highway leading up to Megara, (not the tollway). The old highways are pretty much ok to use.
Your Hercules bike route of the Peloponnese sounds just the route that Ive been looking for. I’m planning on a 3 or 4 week trip this July/August, which will be manly wild camping and camp sites. Please could tell me which maps you used for your trip.
I hope you are enjoying your weekend so far!
I planned the route using mainly Google maps, although I do cross reference with Garmin Connect to check the elevations. Where possible, I try to limit the total ascent per day to under 1200 metres!
Thanks for the info.
I’m planning to follow your Hercules trip for 4 weeks this July/August, I’ll be starting from Kalamata instead of Athens. It looks to be a great trip, which I’m looking forward to.
We’re spending July touring Greece (from New Zealand).
Any idea on the time to drive from Monemvasia to Kalamata via Gythio and Areopoli? What sort of road conditions can we expect on this route?
Sounds like you’ve got a nice road trip planned for July in Greece!
The area you are talking about is wonderful for driving, so although it might not seem initially worth it, perhaps a couple of days spent there might be nice.
Road conditions are good, but wind a lot due to the hills and the mountains.
I made a road trip of the south Peloponnese by car a couple of years back. You might like to check out my post about it for further infirmation – https://www.davestravelpages.com/peloponnese-road-trip/
Cheers for the indo. I made it down to Monemvasia in the end. Decided to pack it in a day early because I couldn’t psychologically face going up another mountain!
Good quality roads, not too many cars, interesting mountain villages and friendly locals.
I’ll continue to enjoy the vlogs. keep doing what you’re doing!
Glad to hear you hit the road!
And to be fair – you took quite a challenging route down that way, so I’m not surprised at your thoughts on the mountains!
If I had a little more time on the trip I would have thrown it in – Monemvasia is very nice!
Looking forward to hear of you discover any other bike touring routes near Athens.
Cheers for the reply. I actually tried that ride to Sounion but gave up after a few miles. Too much highway! I’m assuming that things improve further down.
Anyway, you’ll be pleased to know that your blog posts have encouraged me to tour the Peloponnese myself, from this Saturday to Tuesday. My current plan is to get the train to Corinth (skipping what I assume is a fairly busy section of road from Athens), and then follow the same route as you over the north coast of Peloponnese, then down south.
However, I’m mostly interested in seeing cool scenery and remote areas. I’m wondering if you have any different recommendations for 4 days only, eg. going south from Corinth?
Cheers & take care,
I hope you have better luck heading to the Peloponnese! The road to Sounion does get a little quieter, single lane by the coast.
As for the Peloponnese – I’ll assume you are prepared for plenty of hill work!
For 4 days, I’d look into the Nemea area. You could see what information there is online based around ‘the wine trail’ and perhaps put a day or even two of that in. Stymphalia Lake is another area to look at – Not much of a lake as such, but a stunning area as seen from up on the mountains you have to climb to get there! You can see some views of that area in this video I just put up – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4oeTbR80vzo
Have a good ride – take sunblock!
Been in Athens for a few months and I’ve got a tourer with me, but am hard-pressed to find pleasant rides near the city.. Enjoyed some of your other touring blogs and I’ll be reading your updates on this one with interest.
Hope you are well!
It has to be said that Athens is one of the most cycle unfriendly cities in Europe! Like you I found it tricky trying to find a nice variety of rides. The ride up to Mount Ymittos is nice, the ride down to the coast at Rafina/Marathon is ok (once there you can choose quieter lanes). Inevitably though, there is always a nasty bit of city to get through!
The two (or one very long) day ride to Cape Sounion is ok. The bike path runs from Technopolis in the centre all the way to the coast. From there, the road to Cape Sounion is relatively quiet.
One other option (haven’t done it yet) is to put the bike on the surburban, and perhaps get off at Corinth and do some cycling there.
If you find any nice cycling routes in Athens, let me know!
In the mean time, I’ll make plenty of updates from this cycle tour in Greece around the Peloponnese!