The Samaria Gorge is the longest trekking gorge in Europe and also the most famous of all. Thousands of tourists flock here daily in the summer season to walk from the top to the bottom. For many visitors, it?is the sole purpose of their visit to Crete. The length of the gorge, which belongs to the European E4 path, reaches 18km and takes almost 4-7 hours to hike from Omalos to Agia Roumeli, depending on trekking speed.
Initially we descend from Xyloskalo to the riverbed of Samaria Gorge The gorge is locarted at the South of Chania Prefecture in the larger uninhabited area of Europe, where no roads even exist. It was created by a small river running between the White Mountains (Lefka Ori) and Mountain Volakias. There are many smaller gorges vertical to Samaria Gorge, most of which have never been crossed by humans and require canyoning equipment.
There are many fresh-water springs along the route. Water is potable While the gorge is officially 18km long, this distance actually refers to the hiking distance between the settlement of Omalos on the northern side of the plateau and the village of Agia Roumeli. In fact, the gorge is 16 km long, starting at an altitude of 1,250m at the northern entrance, and ending at the shores of the Libyan Sea in Agia Roumeli. The walk through Samaria National Park is 13 km long, but you have to walk three more kilometers to Agia Roumeli from the park exit, making the hike totally 16km.
Saint Nicholas chapel The most famous part of the gorge is the stretch known as the Iron Gates, where the sides of the gorge close in to a width of only four meters and soar up to a height of 500 m. The gorge became a national park in 1962, particularly as a refuge for the rare kri-kri (Cretan wildgoat), which is largely restricted to the park and the island Thodorou just off the shore of Agia Marina. There are several other endemic species in the gorge and surrounding area, as well as many other species of flowers and birds.
Cretan Ibex: the famous resident of the gorge The village of Samaria lies just inside the gorge, in the middle of nowhere. It was finally abandoned by the last remaining inhabitants in 1962 to make way for the park. The village and the gorge take their names from the village's ancient church, Osia Maria ("Saint Mary").
The abandoned village of Samaria A "must" for visitors to Crete is to complete the walk down the gorge from the Omalos plateau to Agia Roumeli on the Libyan Sea, at which point tourists sail to the nearby village of Hora Sfakion and catch a coach back to Chania. The walk takes 4-7 hours and can be strenuous, especially at the height of summer.
Operates May 1 - October 31, opens daily at 7:00
(Sometimes, due to bad weather the gorge remains closed, so its a good idea to call +30 2821067179 before coming)
BOTANICAL PARK & GARDENS OF CRETE
Nearly 20 hectares of land are waiting to welcome you, full of fruit trees from all over the world, herbs, medicinal and ornamental plants in a park different from others, where the land’s formation and the region’s microclimate make it a paradise for hundreds of plants and animals!
In the midst of this colorful and vivid landscape stands a burnt centennial olive tree, a memorial and a reference to the dismal fires of 2003, the park’s history and origin.
Twenty-tree of March to Noveber every day: Entrance is allowed starting at 9 am , all through the day , with the last entrance allowed no later than one hour before sunset.
Ages 6 to 12 -> 4 Euros,
Ages 6 and under are FREE with parents!
+30 6976860573, email@example.com
Enjoy a wonderful drive on the Chania- Rethymno highway that run along the north coast of Crete. Leaving Chania behind you will turn right towards Vrisses which is located 32 km’s before Rethymno. Being surrounded by the fascinating natural habitat that the island of Crete has to offer you will be lead to a stone building that has made the Dourakis family very proud of their own identity on the island. As if taken from a fairytale, a beautiful castle will lure you to discover the winery Dourakis.
The Dourakis family ethos and proud tradition is characterised by knowledge, skills and extensive experience in winemaking. The family winery prides itself in creating products of high quality using scientific care and respect of traditional methods.
In the last 28 years the winery has created a trusted reputation for developing quality wines and is proud to have a solid, increasingly growing, distribution network across Crete. The concentration on quality and care during the vinification process and the love of traditional Cretan grape varieties, as well as international grape varieties, in wine production has resulted in popularity and sales both at home and abroad.
The company activities are not restricted to the domestic market, with recent expansions in export to Europe and America. Dourakis Winery aims to expand its sales network in the forthcoming years both nationally and internationally.
We are synonomous with consistent concern for high quality wines and our exemplary marketing system and customer service.
Dourakis family winery endeavours to use the methods of technological progress and agricultural science in order to provide the highest quality to our customers. The winery is certified by I.S.O 22000, with our organic cultivation for the organic wines monitored by Δ.Η.Ω.
BOOK A TOUR
Winery Dourakis Andreas 73007, Alikampos Chania
+30 28250 51761, +30 28250 51761, +30 6945540696 & +30 6971892996
Karavitakis winery was created from Manolis Karavitakis who until today is the owner. The company was founded in 1998 when just two labels were the company's portfolio: Ampelonas White and Ampelonas Red. The winery started being built in 1999 in Pontikiana village located west from Chania city in Crete, and was completed the following year. Facilities at that point covered just the production purposes. In 2009 the winery is renovated, new machinery is incorporated and the surrounding area is developed so that visitors can be hosted.
The company has 30000 square meters of private vineyards close to the winery where most of the grapes needed are cultivated. Also many local vineyard owners have established a cooperation with the winery for selling their grapes to Karavitakis estate.
Within these years Karavitakis estate has created and continues to produce several high quality wines from native and international varieties with great success. Also a unique dessert wine from Romeiko variety was produced. This type of wine was never considered possible and gave a significant ''push'' to our local variety which was neglected.
Today Karavitakis estate produces between 85000 and 95000 thousand bottles per year with the potential of 300000 bottles top, based on the existing infrastructure. These wines are mainly sold in Greece and also in other countries. The company plans to buy and plant 20000 square meters of vineyards and also fund the construction of new building facilities for production reasons.
The estate's goal is to grow gradually the annual selling volumes in a way that quality is ensured and also expand it's distribution in more countries.
0030 28240 23381, 0030 6974 323852
The ancient city of Aptera was founded in the 8th century BC in a panoramic position that controlled Souda Bay and flourished in the Hellenistic period. It was abandoned in the Arab years, when it was destroyed by the pirates (or an earthquake).
The city ports were at Marathi and current Kalives. These great ports made Aptera one of the most important commercial centers of Crete, if not the greatest.
According to tradition, it got its name from the Sirens who lost their wings after losing in a musical contest against muses, so they stayed wingless (aptera in Greek). However, it apparently got its name from Aptera Artemis (wingless Artemis) that was worshiped in the area, as evidenced by the coins of the city.
The city was fortified with a strong wall, a large part of which(4km) survives till today. In Aptera we can see a sanctuary of the 5-4th century BC, huge Roman vaulted cisterns, a carved-in-ground theater, the “parliament” and a nearby necropolis. The various findings include vases, coins, figurines, inscriptions and sculptures.
Aptera was famous for its keen archers who fought as mercenaries in various areas outside Crete, bringing wealth to their homeland. The introduction of the valuable silver by the returning mercenaries gave the city the ability to mint its own coins. The coins were elaborate and usually depicted the goddess Artemis, on one side, and on the other the city's founder King Apteras. Other types depicted Apollo or Hera and torch, bee or bow.
* 23km from Lavender Villas