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Frequently Asked Questions about Greece

I can't see any mention of ATOL or ABTA why is this?
What’s the weather like?
What’s included and what’s not?
I don’t want to do a course, I just want some peace and quiet
How do I book the trips?
What type of food is available?
How much is a meal out in a restaurant?
What other activities are available locally?
How much are the buses?
How much is a taxi?
Will there be an opportunity to learn some basic Greek?
Can I rent a car or scooter?
What are the passport and visa requirements?
Do I need any vaccinations?
What kind of insurance cover do I need for Greece?
Will I be met at the airport?
Do I have to share a room?
Can I come with a friend?
How do I get there?
Are there any banks nearby?
Can I get onto the internet?
Will there be someone there to get advice and information from?
What level of fitness do I need?
Will there be any spa treatments available?
Can I borrow a book or two?
What happens if I need to cancel?
Do I need to bring my own towels?

I can't see any mention of ATOL or ABTA why is this?
We don't need ATOL bonding as we don't offer the flight element of the holiday. ABTA is a voluntary organisation that is not really geared up for small independents (in other words it's REALLY expensive).  There IS a legal requirement for Tour Operators - it's "The Package Travel, Package Tours Regulations 1992" and we conform with that because we have the following insurance in place:

"Serenity Retreat is a company committed to customer satisfaction and consumer financial protection. We are therefore pleased to announce that, at no extra cost to you, and in accordance with ''The Package Travel, Package Tours Regulations 1992'' all passengers booking with Serenity Retreat are fully insured for the initial deposit, and subsequently the balance of monies paid as detailed in your booking confirmation form. The policy will also include repatriation if required, arising from the cancellation or curtailment of your travel arrangements due to the insolvency of Serenity Retreat.  This insurance has been arranged by Towergate Chapman Stevens through HCCI International Insurance Company PLC.

In the unlikely event of Insolvency you must Inform Claims Settlement Agencies immediately on +44 (0) 1702 427 239 or at submitclaim.co.uk/TDC15. You can also write to them by email info@csal.co.uk or by post at 308-314 London Road, Hadleigh, Benfleet, Essex, SS7 2DD. Please ensure you retain the booking confirmation form as evidence of cover and value.

Policy exclusions: This policy will not cover any monies paid for Travel Insurance or any claim relating to Air Flights. Please ensure the Company you have booked with has the appropriate CAA / ATOL Bonds in place."

So, your money is safe! 

What’s the weather like?

Average maximum air temperatures (in Centigrade):

  • May - 22 degrees
  • June - 28 degrees
  • September - 28 degrees
Gorgeous!

What’s included and what’s not?

Price includes:

  • Your choice of accommodation
  • Being met at Preveza airport
  • An Introduction to Meditation and Mindfulness
  • 5 Guided Meditations
  • A walk through the cypress trees and olive groves, incorporating mindfulness practices
  • 3 classes of about 30 minutes of mindfulness movement in the mornings (weather dependent) per week
  • Welcome Lunch – an opportunity to meet everyone officially and to book trips, massages and ask questions
  • Services of your Serenity Retreat Team in the UK
  • Some transfers (see note below)
  • Access to affordably priced massage therapies, facials, reflexology and some beauty treatments
  • Evening out in Lefkada (dinner is paid for individually)
  • Trip out to a taverna in Ligia
  • A trip to the waterfalls in Nidri for meditation
  • Sometimes life can feel a little bit overwhelming. We can listen if you would like us to.

We find that the biggest concern for most travelling solo is eating alone in the evening. We have four organised meal meet ups, one of which is on the first evening. Most of our guests end up eating together most evenings anyway, although it's certainly not obligatory.

Whether you do a course or not - there will be plenty of opportunity for sunbathing, reading, sleeping, knitting, chatting, shopping, eating .....

Price does NOT include:

  • Flights (Find out about flights here)
  • Breakfast, Lunch or Dinner (apart from the welcome lunch)
  • Travel Insurance
  • Local Trips
  • Courses

I don’t want to do a course, I just want some peace and quiet
That’s completely fine. Do as much or as little as you choose.

How do I book the trips?
The trips are booked separately at the venue and are payable to the local suppliers in Euros.

What type of food is available?
Traditional Greek with some Italian influence.

How much is a meal out in a restaurant?
Well it largely depends on what you have, of course. But two courses will be anywhere from £8 to £18. Vegetarians get the better deal. A Greek salad and fresh local bread will fill most people up though and you can get a good one for about £5

What other activities are available locally?
There are all sorts of watersports available in Nidri, yachts for charter, motorboats for hire (very cheap at 50 euros for the day, they take 5 people). There is normally a Greek night going on somewhere too! Most of these things you would need to take a bus or taxi to.

How much are the buses?
The bus from Nikiania to either Lefkas Town or Nidri was 1 euro and 80 cents at the time of writing.

How much is a taxi?
Lefkada: Going into Nidri it’s about 10 - 12 euros and into Lefkas Town it’s about 10-14 euros, as a guide.

Will there be an opportunity to learn some basic Greek?
Yes, of course. The Greeks love it when you try and speak their language – it shows respect. Even if it’s just please and thank you, they’re glad that you’re giving it a go.

Can I rent a car or scooter?
Yes, car rental is about 35 euros a day for a small corsa type car. Scooters are about 10 euros a day.

What are the passport and visa requirements?
Greece is in the EU so none needed. Although make sure that your passport has at least 6 months left before it expires, just to be on the safe side.

Do I need any vaccinations?
No (hurray!)

What kind of insurance cover do I need for Greece?
Getting an E111 (European Health insurance – it’s easy to get online) is the most sensible place to start although this will only cover the basics. Going to this website will give you advice and recommend some companies: www.travelinsuranceguide.org.uk

How does the E111 work in Greece?
Take your E111 and passport to the local IKA office (the Greek social insurance agency – there’s one in Lefkas Town), where you'll be given a 'health services book' and directed to an IKA clinic or a doctor or dentist in the IKA scheme. Consultations and treatment are free.
But you'll have to pay part of the cost of secondary examinations, such as X-rays. You'll also have to pay for supplementary treatment like physiotherapy, and for dentures. For prescribed medicines, hand the prescription and the 'health services book' to any chemist in the IKA scheme - IKA offices will provide a list.
You'll have to pay a small standard charge, plus 25% of the actual cost of the medicine, which is non-refundable.

Will I be met at the airport?
Yes, one of the team will be there to make sure you get your transport and to answer any initial queries you may have.

Do I have to share a room?
Absolutely not. We don’t have any rooms for sharing. You get your own space, your own bathroom, your own time alone.

Can I come with a friend?
Please do! We welcome friends who want to travel together, we just don’t have rooms for sharing.

How do I get there?
See the Getting Here section

Are there any banks or cash points nearby?
As of 2014 we have our very own cash point in Nikiana.  It was cause for huge celebration....

Can I get onto the internet?
Yes, there are plenty of places in both venues to connect to the internet - although not at the accommodations

Will there be someone there to get advice and information from?
Yes, Kim is around most mornings and is happy to help.

What level of fitness do I need?
A certain level of mobility is required for some of the trips (getting up and down ladders for example) but if you’re coming to do a course or just to lie in the sun, then very little! We welcome everyone.

Will there be any treatments available?

For 2017 we have the lovely Giota joining us once again.  She was a great hit in 2016!

Can I borrow a book or two (or three or four)?
We have a lot of books available to borrow - help yourself!

What happens if I need to cancel?
See the bookings page

Do I need to bring my own towels?
Yes, for the beach. But no for showering

We’ve tried to think of everything you might want to know. If we’ve missed something out, please tell us so that we can add it.

 

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