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If Greek mythology was never your strongest subject, consider today’s escape your long-overdue homage to Homer.

You're off on an adventure of Odyssean proportions with an eight-day guided kayaking trip around the island of Crete with The Northwest Passage for $1,799.

Named one of Outside magazine's "48 Trips of a Lifetime", this award-winning company's most popular paddle follows along the unspoiled coast of Southern Crete, stopping at secluded beaches, the dramatic Samarian Gorge and the ruins of Venetian Castles and Minoan palaces.

"Sea kayaking among the Greek Isles will recalibrate your definition of relaxation," promises Outside. "On the Northwest Passage's eight-day, 80-mile circumnavigation of the islands of Paros and Andiparos, guests average three to six hours of casual paddling a day in clear waters... Pack light: the air and water temps are both 82 degrees."

Each morning, you'll awake from divine dreams at hospitable, family-owned inns ready to channel your inner Poseidon on the crystal-clear waters of the Aegean Sea. Nectar and ambrosia abound at the charming seaside tavernas that dot the route, serving fresh seafood and wine to slake your immortal thirst every evening.

Your Olympic voyage begins at the legendary caves of Matala, long a seaside retreat for such oracles as Bob Dylan and Joni Mitchell. After exploring the palace of Knossos and the ruins at Kommos, you'll trade in your paddle for a pilgrimage through the breathtaking Samarian Gorge.

Two nights in the secluded town of Loutro afford plenty of time for refreshing trips to the surrounding beaches and idyllic afternoons sipping cappuccino. Round out your historic journey with stops at the Venetian fortress of Frangokastello, the harbor at Agia Galini and the Heraklion Archaeological Museum.

Chock-full of scenery more heart-stopping than Helen of Troy and feasts that would delight Dionysus, this once in-a-lifetime odyssey sounds too good to be true. But trust us: this epic escape is no Trojan Horse.

Escape kit

  • An eight-day guided kayaking trip for one, from 24 to 31 August, 19 to 26 September, 28 September  to 5 October, 7 to 14 October, 16 to 23 October or 25 October  to 1 November
  • Most meals (breakfast and all but one dinner) provided
  • Stay throughout the week at different family owned inns
  • Book by 19 July

For details and to reserve your stay, visit LivingSocial Escapes. Then, for further inspiration on what to do and see, read our articles on southern Crete and the Greek isles or view our Dodecanese Island slideshow.

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