GUIDED WALKING HOLIDAYS IN THE WEST OF IRELAND

Walking in Crete 2018

 

We are delighted to add Crete to our list of European Walks for 2018.

 

 

Saturday 28 April

Depart Dublin Airport for Chania 14:20 - Arrive Chania 20:40. Flight time is 4 hours and 20 minutes approx. Crete is + 2 hours ahead of GMT.

 

Arrival

Coach transfer to The Royal Sun hotel, some 15 minutes from the airport situated on a hill overlooking Chanai city and the bay, you will appreciate the view in the morning and the hotel pool. We plan on making use of the hotel shuttle to the old city for a welcome meal at the port. The last return shuttle from the old town is at midnight so stragglers will have to get a taxi back to the hotel.

 

Sunday April 29

Sunday morning we depart south from Chania for Paleochora at 11 am, a 74  km journey, this will take 90 minutes approx, part of which is a mountainous road. We check into the ARIS hotel overlooking the sea and we will arrange lunch ( Included ) prior to a two hour walk around the town and the Kastelle  (Venetian fort ) with its turbulent history. Paleochora town is situated on a peninsula extending into the Libyan sea and is endowed with a great variety of restaurants, shops and several attractive beaches.

Dinner tonight in a local restaurant at your own expense. On average a two course meal with a half litre of wine will cost €25.00 approx.

 

Monday April 30th

Elafonissi - Vroulias Bay - Cape Krios

Distance 14kms   Height Gain 300m   Time 5 hours +

 

Depending on the day we will depart for Elafonissi, a famous protected nature reserve and beach, either by Ferry or by Bus. Both take more or less the same time, just over an hour.

 

This walk on the E4 hiking route is part of the European “Long distance Path” and has a variety of terrains beginning with molten lava type rock for the first twenty minutes, followed by sandy beach and juniper trees at Kedrodasos. Later when we leave the coast and head inland we will walk on a narrow goat track. This whole area is an EU designated protected zone.

 

The walk itself is spectacular with the sea as our constant companion. Beautiful deserted beaches beckon and we have chosen a really lovely spot for lunch and a swim before and after, so pack the swimming gear. We will linger at this really lovely place for an hour. After lunch we will head inland up a narrow gorge. Our efforts will be rewarded with fabulous views over the Libyan sea and archaeological sites like Viena, which was once a Hellenistic and Roman sanctuary dating from 323-67 BC.

 

Returning to our walk, the track meanders from shore to inland before finally reaching Agios Ioannis Church (John the Baptist) the beach and a Taverna at Krios. We will relax here before our bus arrives to pick us up.

Dinner tonight in a local restaurant at your own expense.

 

 

Tuesday May 1

Paleochora- Azogires - Anidri - Ianniscari Beach.

Distance 15k   Height Gain 500m    Time 5 to 6 hours

 

Lunch arranged in the Old School House Anidri. Bring swimming togs and towel.

 

This walk has a variety of scenery including olive groves, a quiet hill top village with a Byzantine church and popular Taverna, mini gorge, tranquil beaches and a coastal return stretch back into town.

 

Leaving the hotel we head east along the beach and after approx 3 km we begin our climb on a narrow, old rocky goat track which widens to a proper trail before reaching a tarred road. We cross the road and climb again through olive groves and tomato growing sheds before making a sharp turn onto a narrow path climbing to Azogires where you can visit the cave of the 99 saints. After a break we retrace our steps on the path rejoining the old road into the village of Anidri for lunch in the old School house Taverna ( included )

 

After lunch we descend a mini gorge to the beach at Glaliskari for a swim before taking the coastal road back to our hotel.

 

 

Wednesday May 2

Free day, option for a boat trip to be arranged.

Dinner tonight is at your own expense.

 

 

Thursday May 3

Paleochora- Lissos - Sougia

Distance 14k    Height Gain 400m   Time 6 hours approx.

 

We depart our hotel and walk through the town where we pick up a dirt trail for 45 minutes to the beach at Glaliskari. Leaving the beach the trail narrows and becomes a rocky track that rises and falls as we make our way above the sea. We will stop for a swim at a lovely beach that we have renamed Tra Beag. After our refreshing dip the track becomes increasingly steeper as we make our way to a very distinctive col in the distance.

As we exit the other side the views of Aghios Kiriakos Bay come into view and the famous, now deserted village of Lissos which was the religious centre of the cities in South West Crete. It flourished during the Hellenistic and Roman periods. A cool spring well here gives us the opportunity to top up on water.

We have a final upward climb of about 150 m before finally descending to Sougia via a gorge and its beach. After a relaxing drink and a swim we will board our  ferry for Paleochora. The ferry departs at 18:00 and arrives back at 19:00. A 10 minute walk will have us back at our hotel. Dinner tonight in a local restaurant at your own expense.

 

Friday May 4

Samaria gorge.

Descending some 16kms. Bring drinking water, (there are refill springs along the way) lunch and swimming gear.

 

The National Park of Samaria, 4,850 ha was established in 1962. The gorge entrance is at Omalos requiring a bus transfer from Paleochora – approx 90 min. There is an entrance fee to the park ( included )

 

We begin the gorge walk at 1,230 m above sea level and walk some 16 km to the sea at Agia Roumelli on the southern coast of Crete on the Libyan sea. We return by ferry to Paleochora.

 

The National park offers many opportunities for learning, scientific research, mountaineering and in general, high quality recreation. The walk attracts large numbers of visitors every day and is managed by National park wardens who patrol the gorge using pack animals.

Return by ferry to Paleochora. The ferry departs at 17:30 and arrives at 19:00.

Dinner tonight is included but not wine.

 

Saturday May 5

Depart Paleochora at 10.30am for Chania.

 

Option to leave bags at Royal Sun hotel. We will have lunch on the rooftop restaurant as they are letting us avail of the left luggage storage room. You will have plenty of time for shopping in the old town and souk type marketplace, ideal for leather goods and gifts. Return by 6 pm to pick up bags and travel to airport for return flight at 21.20

 

What’s included:

  • 7 night’s accommodation with breakfast.
  • 2 days sit down lunch on Sun and Tues.
  • Dinner on evening on departure. ( wine not included )
  • 3 days packed lunch – Monday, Thursday & Friday
  • 4 and a half days' days guided walking.
  • All transfers to and  from the airport and ferry / bus transfers as outlined in schedule.
  • Entry Fee to the Samaria Gorge.
  • Charming guides with impeccable standards, good humoured and convivial company.

 

Not Included:

  • Return Air Fare Dublin to Chania.
  • 6 dinners.
  • Free day activities.
  • All drinks

 

Additional Information:

  • Aris Hotel has hairdryers, tea, coffee making facilities, mini fridge and a safe. Please note they do not have TV.
  • Swimming will be a feature of this trip so pack swimming gear, towel and flip flops as some beaches are stony.
  • Sun Hat, insect repellent, factor 50, sun glasses, walking poles etc.
  • There are a couple of pharmacies in town and also a health center so make sure you have a current European Health Insurance Card.
  • Price: €650 per person sharing. Single supplement €100.

(Click photo to enlarge)

Croagh Patrick Walking Tours, Belclare, Westport, County Mayo, Ireland

Telephone +353 98 26090 Mobile +353 87 2333 295 E-mail gerry@walkingguideireland.com