Discovering the land of Zeus (hiking West Crete)
According to Greek mythology, Crete is the legendary birthplace of Zeus, the greatest of the Olympian Gods of ancient Greece. Two caves at the peaks of Cretan mountains argue being the places Zeus was born: Dikteon Cave close to Rethymnon and Ideon Andron on Ida or Psiloritis mountain. Crete is also home of the Minoan civilization (Bronze Age era) that flourished from 2700 BC to 1450 BC being widely accepted as the first advanced civilization in the world having left behind massive building complexes, tools, stunning artwork, writing systems and a massive network of trade. Being Crete a paradise on earth, this journey provides spectrum of beauties: from mountain peaks to an endless deep blue, mysterious caves and gorges, impressive Minoan, Roman, Ottoman and Byzantine remains and monuments, historic and picturesque villages, spectacular beaches, wonderful cuisine as well as the renown Cretan hospitality. Let us take you aboard this iconic journey and be part of experiences that you will never forget. Crete has it all!!!
Day : 1 - Heraklion (arrival)
Pickup from Heraklion airport or port and transfer to the hotel, time at leisure, dinner and overnight.
Day : 2 - Heraklion – Chanea – Palaiochora
After breakfast departure to the most important city of western Crete, Chania (150 km). Among others you see the old Venetian port built on the 13th AD and the Egyptian Lighthouse. In early afternoon you reach Palaiochora (70km) where you will have the opportunity to enjoy the sandy beach and the crystal clear waters. Dinner, overnight.
Day : 3 - Palaiochora - hiking - Lissos - Sougia
Today's hiking along the coast, enroute stop to see the archaeological site of Lissos, being port of the Doric city Elyros that has flourished during the Hellenistic, Roman and First Byzantine times and was destroyed by Saracens invaded from Spain. Arrival to Sougia and time at leisure by the sea (course 5-6 hours, alt ± 500m).
Day : 4 - Sougia - hiking - Omalos
After Sougia, today’s hiking through a beautiful path across the gorge of Agia Irini, you arrive to Omalos plateau. Lunch at the top of the plateau, check-in and time at leisure to enjoy the breath-taking view to the White Mountains. (course 4 hours, alt. +700m).
Day : 5 - Omalos - hiking - Samaria gorge - Loutro
Let’s discover today the renowned wonderful Samaria gorge, being National Park of Greece and World's Biosphere Reserve. From Xyloskalo (1200m) you start descending till the basement of the gorge. Then a 15km long hiking along the footpath by the riversides takes you to Agia Roumeli, in Lybian Sea. There you will be relaxing and swimming in the beautiful waters. In late afternoon you get to Loutro by ship. Check-in and time at leisure and chatting about today’s experience. (course 6 hours, alt. -1000m).
Day : 6 - Loutro - hiking – Sfakia - Heraklion
Today through an impressive path above Loutro, you hiking towards the legendary Sfakia considered to be one of few places in Greece that has never been enslaved by conquerors. The locals are famous for their hospitality and generosity towards guests, while Sfakia is connected with a legend and unexplained phenomenon describes a procession of visions (Drosoulites) seen in the nearby village Frangokastello as troops that died in the war of independence against the Turks. Time at leisure. Then transfer to Heraklion, check-in and overnight. (course 3 hours).
Day : 7 - Heraklion (Knossos-Archaeological Museum)
Get ready to uncover the mysteries of Heraklion. You explore the magnificent Knossos Palace, home to King Minos and legends of the Minotaur, remnants of courtyards, shrines, great halls, and royal apartments adorned with frescoes. You also visit the Archaeological Museum featuring artifacts collection of Minoan civilization dating back to 5000 BC. Your tour ends to the old Venetian walls.
Day : 8 - Heraklion (departure)
Day at leisure until 12h00. Transfer to the port or airport. End of the programme
- In-depth visits and local transports as per detailed itinerary
- 7 nights accommodation with breakfast
- 7 main meals
- Admission fees as per programme
- Geo Routes tour escort
- Geo Routes material
- Liability insurance
- *** excluded: transportation to/from Heraklion, Crete - personal expenses – tips – gratuities and anything else not explicitly stated above
Cultural themes & activities
- Mandatory: Mountaineering boots with hard soles / Hiking socks / Mountain sticks / Backpack with wide shoulder straps / Jacket or windbreaker / Fleece / Comfortable long pants / Sunglasses / Lens with spare batteries / Sun cream / Liposan / Bottle of water 2LT / Accident Insurance
- Optional : Second pair of sport shoes / gloves / cap / towel / insulated clothing / 2-3 cotton t-shirts / litter bags / Chocolate, Raisins, Candy, Sandwich / Nuts (not salted) / windbreaker pants / whistle / knife / thermometer / lighter / pharmacy / compass / GPS / map / camera
8 days cultural-walking journey
Heraklion (1), Palaiochora (1), Sougia (1), Omalos (1), Loutro (1), Heraklion (2)
Tour code: AR001
- Every Saturday on request (May-October)
- Βookings close 21 days prior to departure
- Heraklion, Crete
- Samaria gorge
- Heraklion Archaeological Museum
For more details:Contact Us!