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Walking in Crete - the country for hiking, trekking, mountain climbing and tramping is beautiful all over this large island.
Being 260 long by 60 km wide, at its widest point, the island has three mountain ranges, and is full of diverse ecosystems, with high peaks, rugged gorges, plateaux, bare rocky hillsides and thickly wooded coastal forests as well as fertile agricultural lands, rolling hills and olive groves. Crete is a wonderworld for walkers.
Below we share some of the major walks on the island in the following areas as well as the E4 European Path in Crete:
See also our page about the mountains and gorges of Crete.
Walking in Crete - in the west of the island, as well as numerous beaches and lowlands, rolling hills and gorges, are The White Mountains known as the Lefka Ori.
These mountains are bare above the snow line (pictured above and below) and from a distance glow white, even in summer, due to the colour of the limestone, which is naked and reflects in the summer sun. These mountains are very high, with the highest peak being Pachnes at 2453 m. It is best to take a guided walk in this difficult terrain.
Portions of these mountains are included in the E4 European Walking path.
Take a guided tour in these mountains with Ann Deckel of Aori Walks. An organised walk with an experienced guide of 1 or 2 days or up to 7 days is a delight to explore these rugged landscapes.
Popular walks in this region include:
Walking in Crete - take a walking tour of the old town of Rethymnon, view churches, mosques, markets and fountains, and visit the Venetian Fortezza. This tour is only 4 hours and includes local wine and food tasting.
Or join the Happy Walkers for a daily walk any day of the week or head off to any of the gorges, mountains and valleys in this lush as well as rugged region of Crete.
Interesting walks in this region include:
Below you will see a video compiled by some Dutch hikers who love Crete climbing Mt Ida with magnificent views.
Below you will see the annual walk to the peak of Psiloritis (the tall one) which takes place on the first Sunday after August 15 every year from the village of Livadia to the chapel of Timios Stavros on the peak .
Walking in Crete - in the centre of Crete your attention will turn to Knossos Archaeological site as well as the sites of Phaistos, Gortyna and Agia Triada.
When you have seen the ancient wonders, turning your head towards some of the dramatic mountain and gorge scenery you will not be lost for places to explore:
Walking in Crete - walks around the eastern part of Crete include:
Walking in Crete - the E4 European walking path in Crete starts in Kissamos in the west and ends in Kato Zakros at the eastern tip of the island, covering rugged and scenic country all over the island for 320 km.
If you decide to do all or some of the E4 path, this is the guidebook for up to date descriptions, maps, GPS data and information on all sections of the path. Written by a walker with climbing and hiking experience all over the world, Luca Gionotti, whose passion for paths shows through in his tireless work and interpretation of the E4 route.
The Cretan Way is the only guidebook you will need for this trail in Crete, with perhaps some maps, available below.
Sunflower guides are really great general guides to Crete with
good maps and the Anavasi hiking maps can be used for different walks around the island.
Map Western Crete
Map Eastern Crete
Loutro is a small fishing village on the south coast of Chania in the west of Crete, which today is still a tiny hamlet around a tight picturesque cove, with azure and turquoise waters, surrounded by natural beaches. The only way to access the village is by walking in or taking a boat. We share three walks into the beach below.
Take and 8 day walking, foraging and food tour in Castello and surrounding countryside with Vasillis and learn all about the Cretan diet, first hand. Eat sumptous fresh local food and join a small group for walks in the west of Crete. Pick your own vegetables and learn about wild herbs in little known corners of the countryside, with multilingual guides.