GREECE

CRETE

June 1 - 7, 2020

May 31 - June 6, 2021

Travel, Landscape, Architecture, Seascape and People Photography

Includes

  1. -7 Days

  2. -Only 4-8 Guests

  3. -Photographer | Guide

  4. -4 or 5 Star Hotels

  5. -Breakfasts

  6. -2 Dinners

  7. -Local Transportation

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PHOTOGRAPHY ADVENTURE VACATIONS

Crete

Heraklion, Agios Nikolaos, Rethymno, Balos, Chania, Knossos

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Diverse landscapes, stunning beaches and the picturesque villages.

Crete Photo Adventure Vacations – Inspire, Create and Learn.

The enchanting island of Crete is situated at the southern Aegean Sea forming a crossroad of three continents: Europe, Asia and Africa. It is the largest and most famous island in Greece and the 5th largest island in the Mediterranean. Crete is known for its varied terrain, which ranges from fine-sand beaches at Elafonisi to the White Mountains. Mt. Ida, the tallest of the range, is home to the Ideon Cave, which was the birthplace of Zeus according to Greek mythology. The capital Heraklion is home to the Palace of Knossos, a mazelike hilltop ruin, and renowned Heraklion Archaeological Museum, housing Minoan artifacts. The center of the Minoan civilization between 2700-1420 BC, the enchanting island of Crete has been renowned for its great historical importance and cultural heritage. The island is also well known for its diverse landscapes, the stunning beaches, the picturesque villages, the excellent cuisine, the vibrant nightlife and the serene unspoiled attractiveness in many of its regions. It is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Greece as well as in all of Europe attracting tourists from all over the world all year round.

This adventure is designed not only to guide you to the most photogenic locations carefully planned for the best light, but to aid you in mentally visualizing a scene before capturing the decisive moment. Our aim is to raise your awareness and spark your creativity so that you not only go home with images to be proud of, but use your new found skills to improve and expand your photographic technique in general. Apart from the technical aspect of learning your camera settings and capabilities, you will learn how to turn an ordinary image into an extraordinary image by using your own creativity.

In addition, you will become knowledgeable on how to survey the landscape, utilize and approach your environment, photograph people indigenous to the region and the cultural considerations and challenges of photographing in a foreign country. Our time together will include individual and group discussions, inspiring ideas and great fun. We cannot think of a better location to express your creativity than the unique island of Crete.


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Group Size



4-8 Guests


Experience | Difficulty



Beginner, amateur, enthusiast and semi-pro photographers

DSLR, mirrorless, compact or iPhone cameras

Moderate schedule

Travel by car or minibus

Considerable elevation changes and lots of walking

(non-photographers also welcome)


Photographer | Guides



Laurie Cohen  |  June 1-7, 2020

Laurie Cohen  |  May 31 - June 6, 2021


Weather | Sun



June - Temps 83/67 F  28/19 C  Sunrise 6:05 | Sunset 8:30 (20:30)

September- Temps 82/67 F  28/19 C  Sunrise 7:00 | Sunset 7:34 (19:34)


Includes



Travel, landscape, seascape, architecture and people photography

Professional photographer | guide

Photo walks & discussions

Small group size (4-8 guests)

4 or 5 star hotels

Breakfasts

2 Dinners

Local transportation


Accommodations



Heraklion - Legacy Gastro Suites, GDM Megaron, Aquila Atlantis Hotel or similar

Rethymno - Rimondi Boutique Hotels, Bellagio Boutique Hotel, Macaris Suites & Spa or similar

Chania - Samaria Hotel, Casa Delfino, Serenissima Boutique Hotel or similar


Travel Information



Arrival Airport: Heraklion International Airport (HER) - Transfer time to hotel 30min

Departure Airport: Chania International Airport (CHQ) - Transfer time to hotel 30min

Our adventure begins at 11 AM on the first day and ends at noon on the last day.

Travel Visa: A visa may be required depending on your nationality. Go to Visa Map to find out.


Price



CRETE 7-DAY PHOTO ADVENTURE

Photo Adventure Vacation | June 1-7, 2020:  $6,595

Photo Adventure Vacation | May 31 - June 6, 2021:  $6,895


Single Supplement:  $800

(Optional) Early Arrival Hotel Room:  $325

(Optional) Late Departure Hotel Room:  $325


Deposit:  $1000


CLICK TO CONVERT CURRENCY




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*All prices are per person and based on double occupancy. Please select single occupancy for a private room. For your convenience we offer optional early arrival and late departure accommodations so you can extend your stay before or after the trip. We typically stay in boutique hotels in the 4-star category. Not all destinations offer these types of properties. We look for unique hotels which offer cultural, historic and/or authentic features. Depending on the size of the group, smaller boutique hotels may have limited room inventory. In some countries or in remote locations, we may be limited to lodges or branded chain hotels. Breakfast is included only if included in our room rates.






CRETE 7 DAYS


Day 1 | Heraklion - Agios Nikolaos 

We meet in the lobby of our hotel in Heraklion. During lunch, we will have informal discussions on what our guests are trying to achieve in their photography, subject matters, styles and techniques.

We will begin with lunch in the historic city of Heraklion (Iráklion) and the explore. In the mid afternoon we will take a one hour drive to the town of Agios Nikolaos, also known as Agios Nik or Ag Nik (but the whole name is pronounced eye-yoss nikor-lowse). Different to all other towns in Crete, Agios Nikolaos manages to mix - upon the three hills which support its girth - an arty, leisurely, sleepy and yet also bustling place. It’s a medium-size town with a small-town feel. It has several distinct waterfronts. It feels very friendly, like an old friend. The town has three faces to the sea: The Lake and port, Kitroplatia beach and the Marina. We’ll explore and look to capture the wonderful essence of this magical town. 

In the evening we celebrate with a “Welcome Dinner” at one of the cafe’s along the waterfront. Then return to our hotel in Heraklion. (D)

Day 2 | Heraklion - Ancient Palace of Knossos

We spend the morning exploring the city and the remains of this once great ancient Venetian harbor. Among the most outstanding sights of Heraklion are the fortification walls that delimit the “old city”. The first fortifications were built by the Arabs and were later reinforced by the Venetians (15th century). From the seven bastions, only the Martinengo bastion survives to this day. In the old (Venetian) port, next to the modern facilities, one can see the vaulted tarsanades where ships used to be built, while the western side is dominated by the Koule fortress (16th century). Next we’ll take a short tour of Heraklion’s beautiful not-to-be-missed Archaeological Museum. 

In the afternoon we will tour the Ancient Palace of Knossos. Knossos was undeniably the capital of Minoan Crete. It is grander, more complex, and more flamboyant than any of the other palaces known to us, and it is located about twenty minutes south of the modern port town of Iraklio. 

Knossos was inhabited for several thousand years, beginning with a neolithic settlement sometime in the seventh millennium BC, and was abandoned after its destruction in 1375 BC which marked the end of Minoan civilization. The first palace on the low hill beside the Krairatos river was built around 1900 BC on the ruins of previous settlements. It was destroyed for the first time along with the other Protopalatial palaces around Crete at 1700 BC, probably by a large earthquake or foreign invaders. It was immediately rebuilt to an even more elaborate complex and until its abandonment was damaged several times during earthquakes, invasions, and in 1450 BC by the colossal volcanic eruption of Thera, and the invasion of Mycenaeans who used it as their capital as they ruled the island of Crete until 1375 BC. (B)

Day 3 | Rethymno

After breakfast we will discuss PWA’s “10 Guiding Principles to Great Photography” and our “THE ART OF SEEING” photographic technique, and review some of our photos. 

After checkout we will depart Heraklion for the charming city of Rethymno where we will explore the town with it's beautiful Venetian harbor. You may enjoy strolling Rethymno's harbor just for the atmosphere. Look out from the harbor edge at the state of the buildings and seeing the abuse of this historic area you may be disappointed - perhaps you should suggest a renovation or two! But it all makes for wonderful photographic opportunities. The Fortress dominates the city and makes Rethymno very photogenic, its pedestrian streets below, strewn with charming old buildings. Venetian influences abound and the minarets and domed mosques remind of the Turkish influence long gone. 

In the evening, a sunset shoot along the harbor is a must. (B)

Day 4 | Rethymno - Imbros Gorge - Hora Sfakion - Libyan Sea

Today we will depart Rethymno for Imbros Gorge, located in the countryside of western Crete. It is one of the most popular gorges for hikers on the island. Our one and a half hour drive will take us through the mountainous interior of Crete where we will be treated to beautiful vistas. Hiking the gorge may not be in the cards because of the time required, but you can be assured that the mountain ranges and villages will present many photographic opportunities. 

Inbros Gorge is located a short distance from Hora Sfakion, a small coastal village on the Libyan Sea. We’ll stop there for lunch and some photography before heading back to our hotel. (B)

Day 5 | Chania

After breakfast we depart Rethynmo for Chania. The city of Chania remains unaltered with all of its characteristics, from the time of the Venetian rule up until today. 

“You will fall in love with Chania”. The atmosphere has a touch of Florence and Venice (a few years ago when those cities still had some room to walk), combined with the culture and character of Cretan people and traditions. Always the first thing you hear about Chania - the Venetian Harbor, the old port, the narrow shopping streets and waterfront restaurants. Just beautiful! After we check-in to our hotel we’ll begin exploring the city. 

In the evening we will practice some long exposure photography along the promenade that surrounds the port. And after sunset, dine at one of the many seafood restaurants that line the harbor. (B)

Day 6 | Chania - Balos Beach and Lagoon

We are up early for our off-road exploration and hike to Balos Beach and Lagoon. We can go by boat of car, but off-road is the preferred method because you can spend more time there and view it from above upon your arrival. 

Balos is famous for its turquoise waters, the wild natural beauty and the beautiful exotic scenery. These few hours of remoteness in such a heavenly place will remain etched in your memory forever. The lagoon of Balos has white sand and exotic white, vivid blue and turquoise waters. The sea is very shallow and warm. In many places the sand has a lovely pinkish color, because of millions of crushed shells. Beyond the rocks at the boundaries of the lagoon, the water is deeper and colder, ideal for a snorkeling. The lagoon and the wider area, with rare species of flora and fauna, are protected under the Natura 2000 program. Eleonora falcons, shags and cormorants nest in the caves of the area. Moreover, the area is a shelter for the protected monk seal and the loggerhead sea turtle (Caretta caretta). Despite the protection, some canteens and umbrellas have appeared on the beach in recent years. 

We first drive past Kissamos Harbor through some narrow streets until we come to the National Park. Here we take a dirt/cinder/stone road that will shake your bones. We’ll be sure to keep the car windows shut to keep out the dust and the bees. There are dozens of bee hives in this area and people selling local honey. At the end we’ll stroke the goats and walk 15-20 minutes down the hillside to the beach. It's a trek, so don't say you weren't warned. You can always ride the mule or horse. Most people walk down, but not everyone walks back. When you see Balos for the first time, you will not believe your eyes. 

In the afternoon we return to Chania town for some well deserved rest. 

In the evening we enjoy our wonderful “Farewell Dinner” with great fun and laughter as we discuss all the highlights of our adventure. (B) (D)

Day 7 | Chania

On our final day we gather for a group discussion, review our past weeks photos, trade contact information and bid each other farewell. We urge you to extend your stay in Crete or elsewhere in Greece and make good use of everything you will learn on our photo adventure. (B)

May all who come as guests... leave as friends®



  Options and Benefits



Private Guided Tours & Adventures



We offer amazing private guided photo adventures, cultural tours and vacations for individuals, couples, families and groups. We can customize any of our published adventures, as well as others, to meet your individual needs, schedule, budget and interests. This may include the finest 5-star accommodations, business-class travel, and private guides and fixers who are able to make the impossible possible. If you are not interested in a photo-centric vacation, but you love our approach to private travel, we will be happy to design and deliver an amazing adventure focused on travel, culture and cuisine. Click here to request a quote. Feel free to call us at 1-888-834-0288 or contact us for more information.


Travel Insurance



We offer travel insurance through Travelex. The cost for travel insurance can be as low as 4% of the total trip cost, depending upon age and other factors. Knowing you have trip cancellation coverage can make a big difference should you have to cancel for some unforeseen reason. Travelex Insurance Services is a BBB Accredited business with an A+ rating. Click here to get a free quote.


Blog & eNews




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   Subscribe to our Think Orange Blog and eNews. PWA THINK ORANGE is a wonderful mix of stories and tips related to travel, photography, adventure, culture, art, technology, cuisine, lifestyle, people and more. Our objective is to immerse you in a world you may only fantasize about. Raise your awareness and inspire your creativity. Perhaps even help make you a better photographer. We deliver similar experiential experiences that our guests enjoy on our photo adventures. Like all of our adventures, our blog is “photo-centric”, while also allowing you to experience all the nuances and cultural aspects of travel and adventure. Welcome to our world. We hope you enjoy. Our eNews is a great way to receive information about upcoming photo adventures, exciting new destinations, photography tips, special offers and more. Subscribe today!


Gift Certificates



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Give someone you know a Gift Certificate, good toward any of our Photo Adventures, Photo Tours, Private Guided Tours, Online Courses, Prints or Merchandize. Our beautifully personalized eGift Certificates are delivered to you electronically. They are fully transferable and have a 2 year expiration date. They are available in any amount from $100 to $5000. It makes a great gift for anyone who loves photography, travel or adventure. Order now, or email for more information.



Private Online Lightroom & Photoshop Tutorials



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We offer private online Lightroom and Photoshop photo editing tutorials for individuals who would like to improve their post-processing skills. Each is customized to meet your individual needs, schedule, budget and interests. We provide you with one-on-one discussions using online connectivity. Many of our Photo Adventure guests select our online post-processing as an extension to their trip. Click here for more information.


Combination Tours



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You can SAVE by combining two or more back-to-back photo adventures. Call us at 1-888-834-0288 or contact us for more information.


Loyalty Club**



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All registered guests on 6 day or longer Photo Adventures are automatically enrolled in our Loyalty Club. You will receive a $200 discount on your next Photo Adventure. After attending just 3 Photo Adventures, you’ve reached “Gold” status and a $300 discount good toward future Photo Adventures. After attending 6 Photo Adventures, you’ve reached “Elite” status and a $500 discount good toward future Photo Adventures. Elite status guests also receive other benefits such as additional discounts, special offers, room upgrades (when available), and more. Click here to learn more.



**LOYALTY CLUB: Loyalty discounts only apply to 6 day or longer Photo Adventures. The discount is applied to the Photo Adventure fee when booked directly through our website, and cannot be added to or combined with any “pay in full”, “pay in advance” or “discounted specials”. This discount cannot be combined with any other offer. Your discount will be applied to your final payment. Only one discount per person, per adventure. This discount has no cash value. Polar Adventures are excluded from this offer. Loyalty Club status will be eliminated after 3 years of inactivity.  


NOTE: We reserve the right to change hotels based on availability and pricing. Not included in your rate are alcoholic beverages, unscheduled meals, travel to and from our destinations, airport transfers, travel insurance and any optional excursions you may choose to book on your own or as a group. Breakfast is usually included unless it is not offered in our hotel package. As is standard in the travel industry, all accommodations are based on double occupancy. Please choose the private room / single supplement option if you prefer your own room. Double occupancy can only be offered if you are traveling with a guest. We reserve the right to change events and schedules throughout the itinerary due to adverse weather conditions or complications that may arise that are out of our control. Our number one priority is always the safety of our group.






 

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