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Crete National parks

Our most recommended Crete National parks

From Chania: Full-Day Samaria Gorge Trek Excursion

1. From Chania: Full-Day Samaria Gorge Trek Excursion

Embark on a full-day guided trip to the Samaria Gorge from Chania. Arrive in Omalos in the heart of the White Mountains, and enjoy breakfast before trekking along the longest gorge in Europe — 4,000 feet above sea level.  After breakfast, enter the Samaria Gorge. Walk at your own pace with your English speaking guide at the end of the group to help out if you need them. Hike over rocks and stones, through a forest of thousand-year-old trees and along a river, passing by fresh-water springs along the way. Enjoy views of Crete’s most beautiful mountain range and see mountain goats roaming in the wild. Feel the exhilaration of challenging yourself with a long hike. At the end of the trek, visit the village of Agia Roumeli, where you’ll find a number of taverns, bars, and shops. Enjoy some free time to take a swim or have some lunch. A meeting point will be arranged so you can collect your ferry tickets from your guide. Late in the afternoon you’ll board a boat that will take you from Agia Roumeli to Sougia, where the bus will be waiting to transfer you back to the starting point about 730 PM.

From Rethymno: Samaria Gorge Full-Day Trek with Pickup

2. From Rethymno: Samaria Gorge Full-Day Trek with Pickup

Take a day trip from Rethymno to set out on an outdoor adventure into Samaria Gorge National Park. Hike at your own pace with a guide over rocks and stones, through a forest of thousand-year-old trees, along a river, and by fresh-water springs. Keep an eye out for mountain goats roaming in the wild. Begin your full-day excursion to Samaria Gorge with pickup and a drive to Omalos, in the heart of the White Mountains, where you can enjoy breakfast before you start the hike. Challenge yourself with 17 kilometers of walking over rocky terrain. Be accompanied by a mountain escort who speaks English, German and French. Get briefed about your hike and get your tickets for the entrance and ferry boat from your escort. These fees have to be paid to the guide upon arrival. After breakfast, enter the Samaria Gorge. Walk at your own pace as your guide will be at the end of the group to help out if you need them. At the end of the trek, visit the village of Agia Roumeli, where you’ll find a number of taverns, bars, and shops. Enjoy some free time to take a swim or have some lunch. A meeting point will be arranged so you can collect your ferry tickets from your guide. Late in the afternoon, board a boat to go from Agia Roumeli to Sfakia, where the bus will be waiting to transfer you back to the pickup point.

From Georgioupolis: Roundtrip Transfer to Samaria Gorge

3. From Georgioupolis: Roundtrip Transfer to Samaria Gorge

Explore the famous Samaria Gorge on a trip along the northern coastline of Crete and through the White Mountains up to the Omalos Plateau. Samaria Gorge became a National Park in 1962 and today, it is the last natural refuge for the Cretan goat species known as Kri-Kri. Depart early in the morning and board a coach which will pick you up from your hotel. After a comfortable drive, arrive at the plateau of Omalos for a small break before heading to the entrance of the gorge. The start of the hiking trail through the gorge is at a height of 1200m. On the route, pass by rich vegetation and through the tall rock walls known as the "Iron Gates". Fill up your water bottle at one of the springs in the gorge. At the end of the 17km walk, reach the Libyan Sea. There, at the beach of Ayia Roumeli, enjoy a refreshing swim or sit at one of the taverns until a ferry takes the group to Chora Sfakion where the bus will be waiting for you to return you back to your hotel. 

From Malia: Preveli Beach, Damnoni Beach & Rethymno Day Tour

4. From Malia: Preveli Beach, Damnoni Beach & Rethymno Day Tour

Morning Pick up: We will start collecting participants from pick-up points in the morning. Depending on the place of your hotel/apartment the bus drive will differ. Bus Drive: 2 hour 30 minutes 1st stop: Damnioni Beach Arrive by bus at the beach of Damnioni and embark the boat which will take you to the unique Palm Forest of Preveli. Boat Trip: 30 minutes 2nd stop: Preveli Palm Beach – 1 hours 30 minutes Arrival at the famous beach of Preveli. Our participants will have plenty of free time to enjoy swimming, explore a unique mix of sandy beach and green river flanked by palm forests and rocky surroundings. Boat Trip: 30 minutes 3rd stop: Damnioni Beach – 1 hour Arrival at Damnioni, free time for 1 hour to enjoy lunch at a local tavern. Bus Drive: 20minutes 4th stop: Kourtaliotiko Gorge – 10 minutes Experience the wild natural landscapes of Kourtaliotiko Gorge. Our participants will have 10 minutes of free time in order to admire the view of the Cretan Nature and take some pictures! Bus Drive: 30minutes 5th stop: Rethymnon Town – 1 hour 20 minutes Visit the picturesque old town of Rethymno. Enjoy your free time to walk along the old port, its iconic small streets with local cafes, and its beautiful beach road. End of the tour – Arrival to resorts: Embarkation in the buses and drive back to the hotels where we gathered participants in the morning. Bus Drive: 1 hour 30 minutes

Crete: Hiking Tour in Samaria Gorge

5. Crete: Hiking Tour in Samaria Gorge

Experience the Samaria Gorge and descend from the Omalos Plateau. Descend into the gorge, measuring 18 kilometers long, 4 by 150 meters wide, and up to 700 meters deep. The exploration will take from 4 to 6 hours.   Hike through the longest gorge in Europe and admire the beauty and diversity of nature. The smallest section of the gorge is only approximately 4 meters wide and the cliffs reach heights of 350 meters — enjoy this incredible sight. At midday, stop in the fishing village of Agia Roumeli on the Libyan Sea and relax in the taverns or take a dip in the crystal clear blue waters. In the late afternoon, take a 1-hour boat tour from Agia Roumeli, past the mighty rocks of the south coast of Crete to Hora Sfakion. A bus will be waiting there to take you back to your accommodation.

Samaria Gorge: Day Trip from Agia Pelagia, Heraklion & Malia

6. Samaria Gorge: Day Trip from Agia Pelagia, Heraklion & Malia

Stop to purchase a hearty breakfast in Rethymno on this full-day Samaria Gorge excursion. Begin your trek at Xiloskalo, where you'll enter the vast, 18-kilometer canyon. Hike along a path that follows the route of the ancient Taras River. Admire the caves that formed a natural shelter for the Cretans in war times and now are home to wild goats. See the abandoned village of Samaria before reaching the Iron Gates, 3 kilometers before the end of the gorge. Rest and enjoy lunch (at your own expense) at the small fishing village of Agia Roumeli. Cool off with a refreshing swim in the Libyan Sea before boarding the ship that takes you back to the village of Sfakia.

From Chania or Rethymno: Samariá Gorge Guided Hike

7. From Chania or Rethymno: Samariá Gorge Guided Hike

Embark on a guided hike in the Samariá Gorge on a day trip from Rethymno or Chania. Get your daily dose of exercise, enjoy the panoramic views and take a swim.  Discover the longest gorge in Europe, an area of stunning natural beauty. See its many flowers and herbs and the crystal-clear spring waters that flow from the mountains. Following an early morning pickup from the nearest point to your accommodation in Rethymno or Chania, travel through the mountains passing the plateau of Omalos. Arrive at some wooden stairs at the start of Samariá Gorge. You can opt to start the walk straight away or get some breakfast at the taverna before you begin. Hike for approximately 6-7 hours and experience the magnificent landscape on a 16-kilometer walk. Once you have finished the hike, there will be ample time for a swim and lunch at a taverna in Agia Roumeli.

From Rethymno/Chania: Imbros Gorge Hike

8. From Rethymno/Chania: Imbros Gorge Hike

Discover the Imbros Gorge, which runs parallel to the more famous Samaria Gorge. Although the Imbros Gorge is smaller, many people prefer to cross here because it offers a very different hiking experience than the Samaria Gorge. Hike 8.5 kilometers and discover the exquisite beauty of nature in this narrow passage and learn about the stunning rock formations. Hear about the legend of the two Greek brothers that the town of Imbros is named after. For many years, the Imbros Gorge served as part of the trail that connected the city of Chania to the Hora Sfakion village. Stroll through a piece of World War II history, as walk in the Gorge where thousands of British soldiers passed through after the Battle of Crete order to get to Egypt. After the hike, take a swim in the stunning refreshing Libyan sea. Eat lunch with the locals in the taverns. 

Samariá Gorge Hike: Day Excursion from Chania

9. Samariá Gorge Hike: Day Excursion from Chania

From its jaw-dropping villages to its healthy Mediterranean cuisine, Crete is a feast for the senses. The stunning beauty of Samariá Gorge National Park is an important part of the island’s attraction. On this full-day excursion you’ll be picked up in Chania and travel by comfortable bus to the park. Get ready to be wowed by the gorge, as high limestone cliffs and quaint village create the background for a great hike. The walking tour from one end of Samaria gorge to the other is a challenging 18 kilometers. The terrain in the gorge is rough, rocky, and uneven and the hike is not suitable for anyone who has heart problems or is unfit, or for pregnant women. There are a number of stopping points along the route, where you’ll find toilets and drinking water. At some points the gorge is only 3 meters wide and you may have to climb over boulders. You’ll reach the end of the gorge at Agia Roumeli, and stop for a break and a bite to eat (the price of the food is not included). You’ll return by boat to Sougia where you’ll be picked up by the coach.

Samaria Gorge: Day Trip from Agia Pelagia, Heraklion & Malia

10. Samaria Gorge: Day Trip from Agia Pelagia, Heraklion & Malia

Your full-day excursion to Samaria Gorge begins with pickup in Heraklion and a drive to Omalos, in the heart of the White Mountains. Enjoy breakfast before setting out on your challenging 10-mile (17 kilometer) hike. The trek will take you over rocks and stones, through a forest of thousand-year-old trees and along a river by fresh-water springs. Along the way, you’ll have spectacular views of Crete’s most beautiful mountain range, and you are also likely to see mountain goats roaming in the wild. You will be accompanied by a professional mountain escort who speaks English, German and Greek. Your escort will be there to explain all the necessary information about your hike and provide you with the tickets for the entrance and ferry. After your breakfast you will enter the Samaria Gorge, where you can walk at your own pace as your guide waits at the end of the group to help you out if you need them. At the end of the trek you’ll visit the village of Agia Roumeli, where you’ll find a number of taverns, bars, and shops. You can enjoy some free time to take a swim or have some lunch. Late in the afternoon you’ll board a boat that will take you from Agia Roumeli to Sfakia, where your bus will be waiting to transfer you back to the starting point.

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What people are saying about Crete

Overall rating

4.3 / 5

based on 308 reviews

Wow this trek will forever stay in our memories! This is a very challenging hike (saying this as 27/30 year old couple who regularly go to the gym) with a very early wake up call (4:30am), quite a long bus journey there and back to the hotel, then 70% of the hike is just going down rather than on a flat surface so you'll feel your knees and ankles will be swollen. You need lots of snacks, sandwiches and water (though there are water fountains on the way). I wouldn't recommend this to anyone with little fitness or little children, also the heat gets to you (in September 31 degrees). You need to keep up with the pace, the guide tells everyone what time they should reach each station (don't expect any cafes etc) as you also want to dip in the water (a must!!) before getting on a ferry back. The guide was very nice and made sure everyone was okay though you loose track of him if you don't keep up with the pace. I wouldn't do it again but it's a great lifetime experience!

great and thorough guide, incredible scenery, you feel like you've really accomplished something at the end, but isn't for the faint hearted, it is a tough but rewarding day, make sure the rest up the day after!

Went in october, temp perfect for walking, be prepared for a long day, our guide Kostos was brilliant, lovely taverna at the end of the walk, transfers and pickups were spot on.

Maritsa was just an amazing guide, thank you so much!! The whole experience was amazing, Samaria Gorge just just gorge-ous (pun intended)!!

Make sure you are up for this!!! needs fitness..it'll hurt the next day..