Though it still belongs to the Greek archipelago, Crete has a distinct character all its own (and the size to prove it). Explore the island's western Chania region on this 9-day itinerary from its craggy gorges to bright blue lakes and seafront. You'll also visit historic villages, learn about olive oil production, relax on Mediterranean beaches, ride horses, and sample fresh food along the way as you see what sets Crete apart from the pack.
You'll start in the town of Omalos, where you'll get to know your hiking guide and learn a bit more about this UNESCO site over an optional coffee or breakfast. Then, start your trek at the Omalos Plateau at over 4,000 feet (1,250 meters). After following the river bed, you'll end at the village of Agia Roumeli. You're welcome to walk ahead at your own pace, as the guide will stick to the back.
Because you start at a high elevation, you can relish the steep views of the surrounding mountains and hills in the distance. As you hike down the comfortable and well-maintained route, you'll enjoy various scenic vistas, landscapes, and environments. At the Iron Gates, you'll stand between the narrow 1,600-foot walls (500-m) at just 13 feet (4 m). You'll cross the river over bridges and follow along the bottom of the gorge on a boardwalk.
Eventually, you'll reach the shores of the Libyan Sea at Agia Roumeli. Enjoy some free time to take a swim or have lunch. To return to Chania, you'll ride the ferry to Sougia or Sfakia, where your return transfer awaits.
Read more about unique and interesting activities on Crete and active experiences in Greece.
Itineraries with Samaria Gorge Hike on Crete
Do much more than lounge on the beach with this Greek itinerary. You'll start in Athens, then head out to the islands to hike through rocky villages, bike past idyllic beach scenes, and trek the Samaria Gorge. Top it off with a culinary tour before you return to Athens for a sunset celebration.
This three-week adventure will have you hiking, biking, and diving your way around the Greek islands and mainland. You'll explore the Athenian Riviera by bicycle and learn to fish the traditional Greek way, before heading to the Cyclades for a surfing lesson and trekking in Tinos, and some scuba diving and horseback riding around Naxos. Then you'll travel to Crete to hike the gorgeous Samaria Gorge before returning to the mainland for kayaking in coastal Nafplio.