Discover the Lefka Ori (White Mountains), the wild, remote, high limestone range that dominates the spine of West Central Crete. Discover also the canyons and idyllic coastal routes between villages, some only accessible on foot or by sea. Wild Crete offers great hiking, sometimes strenuous, sometimes on exposed rugged trails but always rewarding. The tour will include the exploration of deep, narrow gorges, walking high trails with stupendous views of imposing summits. Much of the tour follows the E4 (European Walking Route 4) path; particularly on the coastal stretches.
On the second day of the tour, from the initial base in Paleohóra, sail by ferry to Sougia from where you follow the E4, via the archeological site of Lissos, back to Paleohora. After a second night there, transfer by coach to the mountain village of Omalos and its adjacent plateau for a day’s walking in the Western Lefka Ori. Ascend the Koukoule feature with stunning views of Gingilos and Volakias. On the way down visit the iconic Kallergi Hut with wonderful views of the entrance to the Samaria Gorge. Overnight in a traditional taverna in Omalos, a village situated inland on the mountain plain.
From Omalos, descend into the Samaria Gorge National Park for the 13 mile walk to the village of Agia Roumeli on the coast of the Libyan Sea 1300m below. The gorge boasts diverse and spectacular scenery, the abandoned village of Samaria and a number of remote shrines. . Overnight in of Agia Roumeli then head East on the coastal E4 past the shrine of Agios Pavlos, the secluded beach at Marmara Bay to the village of Loutro. The next day, from Loutro, we retrace our steps somewhat in order to ascend the Aradhena Gorge. It’s not quite on the same scale as the Samaria Gorge but challenging nonetheless and with great scenery. After a second night in Loutro there is another, shorter, hike on the E4 to Hora Sfakia and a coach transfer to Chania for the final night of the tour.
Please note: Some of the walks in this programme are weather dependant. If the weather does not permit the group from walking an alternative will be offered where possible. Some walks on this holiday involve some minor, easy scrambling.
Due to the remoteness of Southern Crete, with only small villages dotted along the coast, accommodation is limited and while the properties we have chosen may offer simple (but comfortable) facilities, we have chosen hotels best suited for their location and access to the walks and restaurants.