Aeolian Islands, Italy Kayak Adventure

ID 15702222 © Roman Zaremba  ID 15702222 © Roman Zaremba

“I wish I could describe it but you must experience it.” -Burt M.
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From: Lipari, Italy
Price:$ 3,995

Single Supplement Applies.



Duration: 8 days, 7 nights
Dates:
June 14 - 21, 2019
September 20 - 27, 2019
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Duration:
8 days, 7 nights
Activities:
Sea Kayaking
Skill Rating:
1
Van Supported:
Yes
From:
Lipari, Italy
Price:
$ 3,995

Single Supplement Applies.



Minimum Age 10
Included: Guides, ground transportation, support vehicle, lodging, meals per itinerary (B,D), all kayaking equipment, instruction.
Not Included: Air or train and ferry to Lipari, Italy, lunches, drinks and one dinner, personal clothing and accessories, full medical, baggage and trip cancellation insurance, airport taxes, any unique historical tours and operas, gratuities for guides. Single Supplement: $800.

Itinerary:

Day 1: We will start our journey together on the beautiful island of Vulcano, the southernmost island in the Aeolian Island chain. This island was home to the blacksmiths of Hephaestus, the god of fire, metal work and the fine arts. From the ferry port we will drive to the southern tip of the island to our  accommodation nestled in the cliffs of the volcanic island. Dinner and welcome celebration will conclude our first day in the Aeolian Islands. D

Day 2: We start this day with the goal of circumnavigating the island of Vulcano. This will include 360 degree views of the volcano and stops to explore the cliff lined coast and enjoy the finest swimming beaches the Mediterranean has to offer. B, D

Day 3: Today we kayak north to navigate the channel formed by the Lipari and Vulcano.  Lipari is the largest island in the Aeolian chain and home to the Castello de Lipari which houses a famous archaeological museum.  Our day will allow time to explore the sights and sounds along with the local cuisine of Lipari.  B, D

Day 4: We awake ready to paddle up the western coast of the island. This western shore offers pristine beaches, dramatic rock outcroppings, and picturesque points. Our accommodations are on the northernmost point of the island with views of the islands of Salina nearby and Panarea in the distance. B, D

Day 5: Today we will cross the channel created by Lipari and Salina to catch a ferry to the famous, and the most active, volcano in Europe, Stromboli. Stromboli is the island furthest east in the Aeolian chain and we have the pleasure of spending two nights here. During our time on this island we plan to hike the  the volcano rim and paddle the shores of this isolated Aeolian Islands. B

Day 6: Our morning adventure options include a circumnavigation of the island by kayak stopping to explore the small fishing village of Ginostra. This circumnavigation will allow for spectacular views of the volcano and the exploration of the wild coastline of the island. In the afternoon, we plan a  hike to the rim of the volcano and peer into the most active volcano in Europe. Hiking to the top of the volcano will provide stunning views of the Tyrrhenian Sea and the Aeolian Islands from 3,031 feet. B, D

Day 7: Today we leave the beauty of Stromboli and return, by ferry, back to the familiar beauty of the island of Vulcano. Once here, we have the opportunity to hike to the volcano rim of Vulcano. Our final evening is highlighted by a celebratory dinner.  B, D

Day 8: We make our way to the ferry terminal on the northeast tip of Vulcano. From there, we will say goodbyes and depart for connections on the mainland. B

**This itinerary is subject to change. The Northwest Passage encourages you to be flexible throughout our exploration. 

 


Clothing & Equipment:

Clothing & Equipment:

This is all you will need - anything else is unnecessary baggage and will only be extra weight to carry.

  • 3-7 t-shirts, some synthetic for paddling
  • 1 shirt, long sleeved
  • 2-3 pair shorts (some quick drying)
  • Sun/rain hat Sneakers/cross trainers hiking; some prefer hiking in Tevas or other sandals with socks
  • Rain gear just in case! (Paddling jacket works well as an alternative) or windbreaker jacket
  • 1 pair sport sandals (Tevas, water socks etc)/ Paddling booties are great!
  • Bathing suit(s)
  • Underwear, socks
  • Casual clothes for evenings (shorts/summer dresses are fine!)
  • Clean change of clothing for the trip home

Miscellaneous

  • Passport (be sure to check expiration date)
  • Toiletry kit- toothbrush, toothpaste, shampoo, sunscreen, face cream, nail clippers, moleskin, baby powder, soap, washcloth (most hotels don’t provide them) etc. Personal medication kit- ibuprofen, aspirin, vitamins, band-aids, Dramamine®, cold/sinus meds if prone to colds
  • Daypack/fanny pack for hiking options
  • Collapsible walking stick for optional hikes
  • Sunglasses
  • Chums/Croakies® to keep glasses on your head are imperative
  • Water bottle (optional- bottled water is plentiful and cheap)
  • Small dry bag with carabiner clip (clear ones are very useful)
  • Camera, film, waterproof container
  • Paddling gloves (for the tender of palm- not neoprene but any open fingered glove can help e.g. biking gloves etc)
  • Small towel (e.g. PackTowel® works well)
  • Small travel alarm clock

Optional Equipment

  • Guidebooks
  • Mask and snorkel (can be purchased inexpensively)
  • Field glasses – binoculars
  • Paddle/personal PFD- we will supply paddles and PFD’s for group but if you prefer your own paddle and PFD, feel free to bring them along
  • Ziploc® storage bags (to keep stuff extra dry in dry bag)

What is special about this trip?

How do I get there?

What papers do I need for travel?
All US citizens require a valid passport to enter Italy and the EU. A visa is not required for citizens of the United States, Canada, and the European Union. If you are a citizen of another country, please check with your nearest Italian embassy for visa requirements.

Do I need to get any shots before traveling?
No inoculations are required when entering or leaving Italy.

How and where will you meet me?
We will ask for a copy of your travel itinerary prior to your departure. 

How long will it take me to get there?
The flight to Italy is usually an overnight flight, leaving the U.S. in the late morning or afternoon and arriving mid-day in Rome. Depending on the carrier and connection, you may transfer en-route. There are flights out of Rome to Naples morning through evening. An alternative option is to travel via reliable rail from a major Italian city hub Rome, Milan, Florence to Naples. Rail options can melt away travel fatigue and provide an economical alternative. Returning from Rome, most flights back to the U.S. are in the early afternoon, you should be able to make connections from Naples to major travel hubs the afternoon on the final day of your trip.

Where should I stay overnight around there?
If you plan to arrive early or stay late give the office a call for a recommendation on a great place to stay.

What money should I take?
The trip fee covers most of your costs. The only things you will be responsible for are lunches, drinks, one dinner, personal purchases, and gratuities. Lunches generally range 10-25 Euros. Dinner ranges 20-40 Euros. Personal purchases again vary- one can buy unique souvenirs made by the local Amalfi residents for 15 Euros or get fine jewelry for significantly more… it’s up to you.

What's the currency? Exchange rate? Where can I exchange money?
The Lira was the Italian currency. However, Italy converted to the Euro in January, 2000. For the most current exchange rate, there are several helpful websites. Oanda (www.oanda.com) will give you a handy conversion cheat sheet to take with you. You can exchange money throughout Italy. Exchange rates throughout may not be the most favorable as they often have higher commission rates and/or minimum commissions. There are ATM’s at the airports train stations which can be handy as there is not a commission, just the ATM service charge.  

Do they take plastic there? Are there cash stations?"
Cash stations are located in all of the major cities. Many of the more upscale shops will take credit cards. You can sometimes negotiate a better price on goods if you pay cash. Many smaller shops do not accept credit cards.

How much should I tip my guides?
Within the adventure travel industry, "tipping" is a standard practice, and it is welcomed by our guides. Our highly-trained and competent guides are on duty 24/7 for your safety and convenience, and recognizing their efforts is encouraged. Though it is not required and varies substantially, many participants tip approximately 10% of their trip price.

What's the weather like?
The weather in fall and spring is generally around 80° with lots of sunshine. Be sure to pack plenty of sunscreen, including lip protection. A broad-brimmed hat that secures on your head can also be very helpful. Water temperatures in fall tend to be in the mid to upper 70’s. Spring water temperatures are significantly cooler (high 60’s). Air temperatures cool off at night to the point you may want a light jacket. Rain is unusual but does occur. A light rain jacket can be handy.

What are the accommodations like?
Three and Four Star includes balconies, private baths and all the Italian amenities.

What is a Single Supplement?
The Northwest Passage partnerships with local inn owners are based on double occupancy. A Single Supplement is a fee paid by a solo traveler to compensate for losses incurred because only one person is using a double room. If you are a solo traveler and would like your own room for the trip duration the Single Supplement fee is applied. If you are a solo traveler looking to share a room The Northwest Passage will make every effort to pair solo travelers of the same gender together. We pair solo travelers together based on registration date. If you request to share a room and The Northwest Passage cannot pair you with another traveler, the Single Supplement fee is applied. The Single Supplement fee is currently $800 and subject to change without notification. 

What do I need to bring?
Upon registering, we will provide you with a detailed clothing and equipment list to guide you in your packing. Comfortable, casual and cosmopolitan define our Italian adventure.  While paddling, your needs in the boat will be minimal. A small dry bag with a carabiner clip to keep it attached to the boat is very handy. Clear bags are helpful to be able to find what you need. During the day, you will want to have sunscreen, some Euros for lunch and the cappuccino stop, sunglasses with something to keep them tied on with (Croakies®, Chums®, etc.) waterbottle (most folks will buy cold bottled water in the morning, eliminating the need to bring a water bottle), camera, mask/fins/snorkel (if you enjoy snorkeling), small binoculars if you already have some, and a small pack towel. If your hands are sensitive, a pair of gloves can be helpful to prevent blisters. You do not need neoprene paddling gloves- these will be much too warm. Any open fingered glove (including bike gloves, sailing gloves, golfing gloves) can work well (just figure that they will get quite wet). The key is to protect your palm between your thumb and index finger as that tends to receive the most friction. If you bring any items requiring electricity, be sure to bring both a converter and adapter plugs. These can be purchased at Radio Shack®, other electronics stores, travel stores etc. Let the salesperson know you are traveling to Italy and they can help you select the appropriate converter and adapter plugs for your equipment. Note that hair dryers, irons, and any other heat producing devices require a stronger converter than other devices. It is helpful to know the wattage of your particular equipment when purchasing the appropriate converter.

Can I drink the water?
The water is safe to drink in all the areas we visit. Bottled water is readily available everywhere and quite inexpensive so most folks choose to drink bottled water.

What's the food like?
Italian gastronomy is not in strange, unusual food combinations, but in the careful attention given to the taste and freshness of the basic ingredients. Your choices include an array of anti-pasta, pasta, seafood, various poultry, meats and homemade pastries and desserts. Italian culture is defined around the dinner table. We can only encourage you to join us and leave room for dessert!

What time zone will I be in?
Italy is one hour ahead of Greenwich Time, which makes it 6 hours ahead of US Eastern Time, 7 hours ahead of Central Time, and 9 hours ahead of Pacific Time.

How can people reach me in an emergency? Can I call home?
We will provide you with a list of our hotels including phone and fax numbers. You should also provide family/friends with The Northwest Passage number (800-RECREATE, 732-7328) as NWP staff will always be notified of any changes in the itinerary. You can call home using a calling card. All of the hotels will have phones in the rooms. Keep in mind the time difference listed above. It can be helpful to remind family and friends about this also. Italy country code: 39.

How much time do we spend traveling each day? How many miles? Do I have free time?
We will generally kayak 3-5 hours per day. The paddling is broken into multiple sections with plenty of time to explore the coastline, paddle in and out of sea caves and jump in and out of the water to cool off. We generally begin paddling at 8:30 each morning, and then take a cappuccino break after an hour or so. We stop again for lunch after another hour or so and generally reach our next hotel between 2:30 and 3:30 in the afternoon. Distance traveled varies each day, ranging from 4 -15 miles. Once we reach our destination, you will have some free time to shower, relax, and/or explore the town. We will generally offer some additional skill training for folks who are interested at the end of the day. Some participants have wanted to work on Eskimo rolling, paddling techniques, etc. Each day, the van will be following our route, meeting us at the cappuccino stops and lunch stops, offering multiple options. You can paddle to the cappuccino break, then hop in the van to the lunch stop, and then paddle again in the afternoon. Or start with a van ride and paddle later in the day. The choices are endless!

What kind of equipment do you use?
We have a combination of hard shell plastic doubles, singles and folding doubles. Some participants prefer to paddle in the doubles the whole time (paddling is a bit easier with two people powering the boat and the doubles tend to be more stable) and some prefer to trade on and off with the singles. We will provide kayaks, paddles, spray skirts and PFD’s (personal flotation devices) for all participants. If you prefer to bring your own paddle and/or PFD, you are most welcome to. Please let us know in advance so that we can pack the appropriate gear, especially if you have a particular need or unusual size.

How many people are on this trip? How many guides? Who are the guides / what are their qualifications?
Your guides will be knowledgeable Northwest Passage staff members who are highly skilled in all aspects of sea kayaking and wilderness travel and have years of experience leading groups. They all have training and/or certification in Wilderness First Aid.

How can I prepare physically for the trip? How much prior experience is needed?
We have had participants on this trip who have never been in a kayak before and others who have been paddling for years. We have found that all levels of kayakers have enjoyed this adventure. A good level of personal fitness makes the journey more enjoyable. For kayaking, upper body exercises that strengthen your shoulders, back and arms are recommended. Strengthening exercises with free weights can be very beneficial. Upper body stretches and exercises such as rowing are also useful. Keep in mind that we have had folks at all different levels of physical conditioning thoroughly enjoy this trip and the van is always an option! It is extremely important that you know how to swim and are comfortable in the water. Please don’t hesitate to contact our office if you have any questions or concerns about your physical capabilities for this trip.