Walking

Our walks take you on a pleasant exploration of the local countryside at the west end of Crete, where you will discover Ancient and Byzantine monuments, secluded valleys and groves, traditional cafes and tavernas, quaint hill-top villages and amazing green or rocky landscapes. Our walks are rich in archaeological, historical, botanical and artistic features.You will be rewarded with spectacular views over the bay of Kissamos, the Gramvousa peninsula, the Rodopos peninsula and the surrounding countryside. You can visit the small town of Kissamos and  discover  traditional shops selling honey, wine and Cretan delicacies.

Most of our walks are completely unknown except to the locals and leave only a green footprint as there is no need for transport. 

1. Nopigia – Panagia Myrtidiotisa – Agios Vasilios

Starting from the hotel we will walk past the open air theatre to the little chapel  of  Panagia Myrtidiotisa in Nopigia and then along a rough path over stones and rocks towards the little medieval chapel of Agios Vasilios on the Spatha peninsula. The blue sea is always beside us. We will encounter only a few sheep and goats and enjoy great views towards the  Gramvousa peninsula  across  Kissamos bay, with the Spatha mountain on our right. We walk along Nopigia beach back to our hotel.

2. Ancient Mythimna – Agios Georgios – Villa Trevizan

From the hotel we walk to ancient Mythimna’s archaeological site through the olive groves. We continue our walk through the olive groves in order to reach the medieval church of Agios Georgios which was built on the ruins of an ancient Roman temple, which can still be seen today. We walk further across the southern end of the village of Drapanias on soil tracks to the ruins of the famous 16th century Villa Trevisan, named after a Venetian feudal family governing the area. After a short break in the centre of Drapanias village we visit the Pnevmatikakis winery. We can choose to taste from more than 25 different wines and drinks made of local grapes. Our hotel is not far away.

walking rock gorge western Crete sea sun beach in active Crete painting yoga holidays

Explore Kissamos fishing port in active Crete walking painting yoga holidays

3. Platanaki-Korfalonas-Kissamos

From our hotel we walk to the sea and then along the beach to the Platanaki  and Korfalonas areas. We cross the little river of Korfalonas and continue further until we cross the little river of Kissamos and reach Kissamos town, where we can visit the local archaeological museum and local traditional shops selling honey, wine, tsikoudia, herbs etc. We return by the regular bus service.

4. Drapanias - Potamida

After a 20 minute walk from our hotel, we reach the village of  Drapanias which we skirt round. Going uphill we find an old track leading through the olive groves to the little chapel above us built into a cave... Michael the Archangel. We continue on this track over a small river bed and a magnificent mulberry tree until we reach a country road and more old tracks. At the sides of the path is a rare kind of mint and a lot of caper flowers amongst many other plants. Now coming downhill we reach another cave chapel ... another Michael the Archangel, nestling under the shade of a plane tree from which the old church bell is hanging. From here we take the road to Potamida in the valley and turn back towards the sea, passing on our right the famous natural clay marls which tower above the fields.

Explore western Crete sea sun beach in active Crete walking painting yoga holidays

Erkunden Sonne Meer Ferien Schlucht West Kreta im active Crete Wandern Malen Yoga Urlaub

5. Kotsiana-Rokka

Our  path leads us to Ano Drapanias where we walk past a medieval Venetian tower through the countryside over the hill to Kotsiana. Walking through the village we find the old track towards the giant rock which dominates the landscape. Just below its crown or dome as the locals call it is the picturesque village of Rokka. Above the 18th/19th century houses is the site of the remains of an ancient village, whose rooms, streets, steps and tombs were cut into the stone. From there the views are staggering: South across  the Rokka gorge and North to the blue sea in the distance. We return home down a kalderimi (old stone road) passing an ancient wall, peach, plum and mulberry trees amongst the olives.

6. Nopigia – Panagia Myrtidiotisa – Agios Vasilios - Ravdouhas

Starting from the hotel we will walk past the open air theater to the little chapel  of  Panagia Myrtidiotisa in Nopigia and then along a rough path over stones and rocks towards the little medieval chapel of Agios Vasilios on the Spatha peninsula. The blue sea is always beside us. We will encounter only a few sheep and goats and enjoy great views towards the  Gramvousa peninsula  across  Kissamos bay, with the Spatha mountain on our right. After our little break at the chapel of Agios Vasilios we walk further to the outskirts of Ravdouhas over the top of an abandoned iron mine, enjoying fantastic views of the village. We walk past amazing rock formations and  Nopigia beach  to our hotel. This is an extension of walk 1.

walking rock gorge western Crete sea sun beach in active Crete painting yoga holidays

Venetian western Crete sea sun in active Crete walking painting yoga holidays

7. Ancient Mythimna – Agios Georgios – Villa Trevizan – Platanaki -Korfalonas- City of Kissamos

From the hotel we walk to ancient Mythimna’s archaeological site. We continue our walk through the olive groves in order to reach the medieval church of Agios Georgios which was built on the ruins of an ancient roman temple, which can still be seen today. We walk further across the southern end of the village of Drapanias on soil tracks to the ruins of the famous 16th century Villa Trevisan, named after a Venetian feudal family governing the area. We walk further to the sea and then along the beach to the Platanaki  and Korfalonas areas. We cross the little river of Korfalonas and continue further until we cross the little river of Kissamos and reach Kissamos town, where we can visit the local archaeological museum, the old fishing port and local traditional shops selling honey, wine, tsikoudia, herbs etc. We return by the regular bus service. Walks 2 and 3 were merged to create this walk.

8. Drapanias – Cherethiana - Potamida – Kaloudiana

After a 20 minute walk from our hotel, we reach the village of  Drapanias which we skirt round. Going uphill we find an old track leading through the olive groves to the little chapel above us built into a cave... Michael the Archangel. We continue on this track over a small river bed and a magnificent mulberry tree until we reach a country road and more old tracks. At the sides of the path is a rare kind of mint and a lot of caper flowers amongst many other plants. We reach now Cherethiana which  is a small typical, picturesque Cretan Village at an altitude of 160 meters. We walk through the village and have a break for a coffee if the local Cafe is open. Now coming downhill we reach another cave chapel ... another Michael the Archangel, nestling under the shade of a plane tree from which the old church bell is hanging. From here we take the road to Potamida in the valley and turn back towards the sea, passing on our right the famous natural clay marls which tower above the fields. We will visit the mill museum where we will have a break and then we walk further through the village. On the return to our hotel we might have a break for a beer or food in the village Kaloudiana. This is an extension of walk 4.

walking rock gorge western Crete sea sun beach in active Crete painting yoga holidays

walking rock gorge coast botany herbs flowers western Crete sea sun beach active Crete painting yoga holidays

9. Koleni- Mesonisi-Rokka- Kotsiana

Our road leads us to the village of Koleni. Walking through the village we find the old soil road towards the beautiful old settlement of Mesonisi which faces the dramatic exit of the Rokka gorge. We wander through fields and goat tracks in order to reach the giant rock which dominates the landscape. Just below its crown or dome as the locals call it is the picturesque village of Rokka. Above the 18th/19th century houses is the site of the remains of an ancient village, whose rooms, streets, steps and tombs were cut into the stone. From there the views are staggering: South across  the Rokka gorge and North to the blue sea in the distance. We return home down a kalderimi (old stone road) passing an ancient wall, peach, plum and mulberry trees amongst the olives. We walk through the countryside to Kotsiana where we might have a break for a coffee in the traditional Kafenio of the village. Our path leads us to Ano Drapanias where we walk past a medieval Venetian tower and then through the village before we return to our hotel.

10. Kissamos - Polyrrhenia

We take the public bus and go to Kissamos (10 minutes ride) where we start our walk to Polyrrhenia. Our route takes us uphill to the village of Ano Kounoupitsa. Walking through typical Cretan landscape of olive groves and  hills,  we come to modern  Polyrrhenia which integrates parts of the ancient city. Ancient Polyrrhenia was one of the most important cities of Crete during the Hellenistic and the Roman period. The city flourished in antiquity. On the hill top there are remains of the ancient Acropolis and a Byzantine fort. Parts of the fortification walls with towers have been preserved. The city is characterized by rock-cut houses with built facades. Only the rock cut parts have survived and are still visible throughout the area. The supply of water was assured by a system of rock-cut cisterns still to be found in the archaeological site. However, the main source of water was the rock-cut aqueduct – an important public construction and a technological achievement – at the entrance of the city. The aqueduct consists of rock-cut tunnels which collected and distributed water into the city using the natural fall of ground. The ancient water supply system is still functioning and parts of its tunnels are still visible. The ancient necropolis (cemetery) is situated on the north of the modern settlement and lay outside the city walls in  accordance with Hellenistic practice of the time. We walk back to Kissamos and take the public bus to go to our Hotel.

walking rock gorge western Crete sea sun beach in active Crete painting yoga holidays

11. Kolymbari - Astratigos - Afrata

From the centre of Kolymbari we walk uphill to the west on the Rodopos peninsula in order to find the picturesque village of Astratigos: a very small village at an altitude of 900 metres without any shops but with beautiful views to Chania bay. We walk further to the north of the peninsula and arrive in Afrata, another small village with a tavern and a traditional Café. Time for a coffee break. From here on, during our whole way to the Gonia Monastery the views to the Chania bay are spectacular. The city of Chania and the island of Ag. Theodoroi are visible. Our next stop is at the famous Gonia Monastery which was built between 1618 and 1634 in its present location, with Venetian influences in its architectural design and adornment. It was originally situated at Menies on the ruins of the ancient temple of Artemis Britomartis (Diktynna). The distinctive fountain in front of the monastery's entrance was built in 1708 and the belfry in 1849. The monastery was heavily damaged by Ottoman bombardments on many occasions throughout its history, including in 1645, 1652, 1822, 1841, and finally in 1867 during the Great Cretan Revolution (1866–1869) against the Ottoman Empire, evidence of which can be seen today by the remaining cannonball lodged in the monastery wall. The monastery contains numerous Byzantine artifacts from the 15th and 17th century including Cretan icons by painters of the famous Cretan school of icon painting (which shaped El Greco). It also has numerous relics and other rare religious treasures from the Byzantine period and ancient inscriptions on the walls.