Zaros Village

In the Centre of Crete, Greece

Zaros Village - visit to Lake Votamos

Zaros Ζαρός village, in the foothills of the central mountain range of Crete, is a lovely village, with its lake and gorge nearby. It is a very relaxed, rural and leafy spot to stay awhile. This area is popular with locals who drive up for a volta

The village is 44 km from Heraklion in the very centre of the island, at the southern foothills of Mount Idi ~ Psiloritis. The locals produce olive oil, sultanas, vegetables and spring water. This is the Kenourghiou region of Kriti, part of the Heraklion region.

Near the village are traditional water mills which have been working since 16th century, archaeological sites, monasteries and, all around, of course, lots of fresh, clean mountain air.

Lake and Local Fish Farms...

One of the attractions of the area are the local fish farms with wonderful fresh trout and salmon.  One serves terrific local traditional food in a covered courtyard, just next to the jumping fish. I Limni – The Lake, is a good taverna and serves fresh trout. Fish from glyko nero fresh water, are a modern taste. The fish tasted delicious to me. The meal here was heartily enjoyed by all.

Lake Votomos

Just 1.5 km from the village is Lake Votomos is a lovely place to visit for a picnic or to eat at one of the cafés right on the water, especially good to cool off during summer heat.

A truly idyllic natural haven for relaxation.

Hiking and Walking...

Rouvas GorgeAgios Nikolaos Gorge in Rouvas Forest

E4 European Walking Path - Yellow and Black Marker

Rouvas Gorge is part of the Psiloritis mountain range and is on the hiking route known as the E4 European Walking Path. The entrance to the gorge starts about 2 km from the village, in the Rouvas Forest. The gorge is also known as Agios Nikolaos Gorge, and is a steep walk among kermes oaks, plane trees, pines and maples.  This section connects to or from Nida Plateau, depending on which way you are walking the route, is a tough walk of 12 km.

Hiking in the Psiloritis range (image by Konstantinos Mavroudis)

Local Spring Water...

You will feel you know Zaros as the major bottled water company in Crete labels all its bottles 'Zarós', of course it is bottled from the local spring, by Votomos SA, who open their plant to visitors.

Zarós Bottled Water, Crete Kriti

Mini Guide by We Love Crete...

Five Days in the West of Crete by Car or Motorcycle - ebook cover

Taking some time and a car will mean you can explore Ζαρός village and the ruggedly beautiful interior of the island of Crete.

Take a back roads journey through the island of Crete in Greece. The Five Days in the West of Crete helps you discover the real Crete — archaeological sites, wine tastings, organic tavernas, hidden valleys and other gems in the west of Crete.

This unique route includes Zaros and we encourage you to amend the journey to suit your needs, and to spend more time in this lovely village.

Exploring by car it is easy to visit other villages such as Kerasia, Dafnes, Agia Varvara or the town of Mires and ancient sites of Phaistos and Gortys.

Local Tips...

Vegera Taverna

Taverna Vegera in the village is where you will find authentic Cretan cooking and warm hospitality. See Vivi Kalaitzaki at the Taverna Vegera for fresh, delicious food made from local produce. Dishes lovingly prepared by Vivi and her mother Irini show the true Cretan hospitality and nutrition now becoming famous and recommended as one of the healthiest diets. In Crete, a simple dish such as yogurt and honey is touched by heaven.

Nana Apartments

Nana Apartments built in the authentic Cretan style, this small guesthouse is a relaxing place to stay in the foothills of Psiloritis.

Hotel Keramos

Hotel Keramos in central Zarós, at the heart of one of the prettiest villages in the mountains.

On the Map...

See the location of the village on the map of Crete below...

Zaros - Images

Below are more beautiful photos of Lake Votomos.

Lake Votomos and I Limni

Lake Votomos - taverna on the water

Lake Votamos, clear water and fish (image by Boky1)

Eat at Lake Votomos (pictured above) or try the taverna at Eleonas (pictured below) which serves traditional Cretan cuisine.

Getting to Crete

Crete Travel Guide
Travel to the Greek Islands
Travel to Athens

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Five Days in the West of Crete by Car or Motorcycle e-book

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Five Days in the East of Crete by Car or Motorcycle e-book

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Two e-book Bundle

56 pages in two books for car travel
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10 Days in the West of Crete by Bus e-book

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