Period of operation: From April to October
• Guided 850€/person
• Self-guided: 610€/person
Duration: 8 days
Minimum attendance: 4-16 participants
Level requirements: The hikes offer a moderate trek with a maximum of 5-6 hours walk on rocky terrain. Participants should be in good physical condition with a little of experience.
Our 8-day trip, explores the southwest coast of Crete, with its spectacular White Mountains, the deep gorges and coastal trails that lead us to charming fishing villages and quite beaches, accessible only by boat.
Starting from Heraclion you will depart for the village of Agia Irini to hike through its quite gorge before emerging at the crystal clear waters of Mediterranean Sea.
Follow ancient paths to reach the second Roman city in Crete, visiting the temple of God Asklipios and exploring the ruins from Hellenistic, Roman and Byzantine period.
We will cross the White Mountains and the Samaria gorge - Europe’s largest gorge that offers one of the most rewarding walks through a spectacular botanic garden, the home of the wild goats (Kri-kri) and griffon vultures.
Our superb coastal walk passes by the picturesque St Paul’s chapel and the azure blue waters of Marmara beach to end up at the white-blue washed houses of the charming village of Loutro.
Relax in Loutro or hike to Anopolis -one of the most "authentic" Cretan villages, cross the Aradena gorge with its pink oleanders and drink fresh water from the "Sweet water beach".
The hikes offer a moderate trek with a maximum of 6 hours walk on rocky footpaths.
Sometimes you cross-streams in the gorges and on the coast you walk on sand and shingles for short distances.
Participants should be in good physical condition with a little of experience.
1st day: Heraklion
Arrival at Heraklion airport. Transfer to the hotel.
2nd day: Chania - Paleochora
Heraklion-Chania by bus, lunch in the old harbor of Chania. Later in the afternoon, bus to Paleochora on the south-west coast of Crete. Your hotel is close to a sandy beach, and there is plenty of time for our first swim in the Libyan Sea.
3rd day: Paleochora - Sougia
You leave Paleochora and walk along the coast to Sougia. The path ascends and descends, until you reach the ancient site of Lissos where you can spend some time looking at the ruins. It will take you one more hour to reach Sougia where, as before, you will end your day by the sea. Walking time 5-6 hours. + 500 meters / - 500 meters.
4th day: Sougia - Agia Irini - Omalos
You leave Sougia and the sea and walk up through the Agia Irini Gorge along a well-made path. The scenery is beautiful and quite different from that of the previous days. At the top of the gorge you can stop for lunch, and afterwards take the minibus to Omalos, in the White Mountains. Walking time 4 hours, + 700 meters.
5th day: Samaria Gorge
Samaria Gorge: You begin at Xyloskalo (1200 m).Today you take a downward path. The first part of the walk is the steepest, but the trail well maintained and soon (after 1 hour) you reach the bottom of the gorge and begin to follow the river-bed. You can have your packed lunch by the river if you like. After a 6 hour walk, you arrive at the village of Agia Roumeli. There is plenty of time for swimming or resting on the beach. Later in the afternoon, ferry to Loutro where you will spend the night. Walking time 5-6 hours, - 1000 meters.
6th day: Loutro - loop
Your route today both begins and ends at Loutro. At first, you walk through old terraced fields to the hamlet of Livaniana, at about 320 metres above sea-level; the view is fantastic. Then you begin the descent into the Aradena Gorge, and after reaching its bottom follow a dry river-bed. You can stop for lunch at Marmara beach; you can spend more time there, because afterwards it is only a 1-hour walk to Loutro. Walking time 3,3 hours, + 300 meters / - 300 meters
7th day: Loutro - Sfakia
Today you take the impressive-looking path that climbs above Loutro to Sfakia; it is actually not as steep as it looks. You can stop at the Sweet Water beach to swim and then walk to Sfakia, an old village against the backdrop of the tall peaks of the White Mountains. From there, bus will bring you to Heraklion. Walking time 3 hours.
Transfer to the airport for the flight home.
• Daypack (approx. 20 l)
• Trekking shoes
• Waterproof jacket
• Water bottle
• Sun cream
• Sun glasses
• Swimming suit