8 days

Stay in the traditional village of Vamos with its cobbled alleys

Experience life in the traditional fishing village of Loutro, only accessible by boat or on foot

Hiking in the world-famous Samaria Gorge

Walk one of Europe’s most impressive coastal paths along idyllic secluded beaches

Get to know the friendly locals and taste the delicious Cretan food in local taverns

Hiking in Crete’s “Wild West”

Discover the “unspoilt Crete” while following hiking paths through wild flowers, lush valleys and plunging gorges.

The mountains and villages of northwest Crete

This tour will take you from the fertile green farmlands of Apokoronas, via the White Mountains, to the astonishing gorges and secluded beaches of the south coast. You start in Vamos, a traditional village east of Chania. Meet the locals of this village in the “kafeneion” and drink a “raki” with them. Stay in a beautiful old restored house and enjoy stunning views of the White Mountains whilst enjoying a hearty breakfast in the morning sunshine.

Hiking the gorges and coastal trails of the south coast

On the south coast you will explore two impressive gorges: the Aradena Gorge and the Samaria Gorge. You will also discover idyllic deserted beaches as you follow quiet walking trails along the rocky south coast. You will stay in 3 different coastal villages, including the villages Loutro and Agia Roumeli which are only accessible by boat!

8 DAYS / 7 NIGHTS €599 per person sharing*

*Discounts available for groups of 3 or more. Please enquire for prices.
*A supplement charge will apply to solo walkers.

AVAILABILITY You can start on any day of the week, subject to availability, from April-October. In case of heavy rainfall in early spring and late October the Samaria Gorge may be closed. Last minute adjustment to your program may be necessary in that case.

Please note that the Samaria Gorge is not open during the month of April. For April bookings, you will travel by ferry from Agia Roumeli to Sougia on day 6 and do an alternative walk in the Irini Gorge on day 7.

ACCOMMODATION 7 nights accommodation on a bed and breakfast basis. The accommodations we have chosen are optimum choices having in mind the atmosphere, comfort and hospitality. All rooms have private facilities and almost always a balcony or terrace.

The standard hotels of this trip are listed below. If a hotel is fully booked, we book a similar alternative for you and inform you about the alternative booked.

MEALS The overnights are on bed & breakfast basis. Items for lunch are available in the local shops. In the evening you have a wide choice taverns at all locations. In Omalos there is a limited choice, but the restaurant of the hotel itself offers good, local dishes
7 nights accommodation with en suite facilities
7 Breakfasts
All luggage transfers between accommodations
Taxi transfers on days 1, 2 and 3 as per the itinerary
Booklet ‘Discover Vamos… on foot’
Detailed walking notes &  maps
GPS tracks
Pre-departure information pack
24/7 telephone support
Flights & travel insurance
Lunches & dinners
Taxi transfers or public transport not mentioned above
Admissions & entrance fees of any kind
Anything else not mentioned in the “included” section
Airport transfers
Additional nights before, during or after the walk
Single Room Supplement(s)
DIFFICULTY / TERRAIN This trip is graded moderate overall. Moderate day walks are interspersed with more strenuous excursions, 4-6 hours per day (excluding breaks) on hilly to mountainous areas using well kept, sometimes stony paths. The walks are on mostly unsurfaced tracks; footpaths and mountain trails.

Day 1: Arrival in Vamos

Arrival in Vamos by taxi (it can be arranged in advance) or by public transport from Chania or Heraklion Airport. Depending on your arrival time you can make a stroll in the picturesque village of Vamos or make the 4-hour walk through the charming local villages.

This approx.12 km walk brings you from Vamos to the villages of Gavalochori and Douliana and back to Vamos. There is plenty to see in this stretch so as churches and of course great views to Souda Bay and Drapanos Mountain. While walking you’ll get a good impression of village life in the agricultural area of Apokoronas. You can also make an optional loop to the beach of Almyrida (4km extra). If you want to shorten the route you can take a shortcut in the village of Douliana and walk back to Vamos.

It is also possible to do this walk in the morning on Day 3.

Overnight: Vamos Traditional Village


Day 2: Loop walk from Nippos

Distance: 14 km | Ascent: 400 m | Descent: 400 m | Walking time: 4 hrs approx.

Today’s walk is a circular route from the village of Nippos, embedded in the lush green area of Apokoronas. Cypresses & olive groves cover this hilly area. In the background the Lefka Ori, covered with snow in winter and spring, make you feel like walking in a painting. After the walk you will travel back to Vamos by taxi.

Overnight: Vamos Traditional Village


Day 3: Travel to Chora Sfakion

Distance: 12 km | Ascent: 100 m | Descent: 325 m | Walking time: 4 hrs approx.

A short taxi transfer will take you to the nearby village Vrysses, from where you travel by public transport to Chora Sfakion. The bus usually goes in the afternoon, allowing time for the Vamos roundwalk via Gavalochori & Douliana or to take a shorter walk around Vamos. (Booklet with short walks in and around Vamos is provided.)

Overnight: Livikon Hotel, Chora Sfakion


Day 4: Walk from Chora Sfakion to Loutro

Distance: 6.6/10 km | Ascent: 180/600 m | Descent: 240/670 m | Walking time: 4½ hrs approx.

From Chora Sfakion you climb through the Ilinga gorge to the traditional village of Anopolis. Here you meet locals in the kafeneion and you will have the chance to try one of the excellent Sfakiana pittas: a sort of pancake with cream cheese and honey. This will give you energy for the rest of the walk. You will descend along a scenic path to the village of Loutro, hidden in a tiny, secluded bay. Loutro is only accessible by ferry or on foot and there are no cars. Throughout the walk you will have splendid views of the brilliant white buildings of Loutro contrasted with the deep blue of the Libyan Sea. You will spend the last 2 nights of this tour in Loutro. In case you prefer a less strenuous walk, you can take the coastal walking route to Loutro, with the option to go for a swim at the lovely Fresh Water Beach.

Overnight: Hotel Kyma, Loutro


Day 5: Loutro loop walk

Distance: 9/16 km | Ascent: 460/840 m | Descent: 460/840 m | Walking time: 4 hrs approx.

Via a steep zig-zag path you climb up to the village Anopolis. From here you continue on to ancient Aradena, located on the edge of the impressive Aradena Gorge. A spectacular path takes you down into the gorge, which you follow all the way to the coast. During the last part of today´s walk you will follow a path along the coast back to Loutro.  It is possible to make a shorter walk of 4 hrs. today via Livaniana (a tiny village) and then descend via the Aradena Gorge to the sea.

Overnight: Hotel Kyma, Loutro


Day 6: From Loutro to Agia Roumeli

Distance: 14.7 km | Ascent: 275 m | Descent: 275 m | Walking time: 5½ hrs approx.

Today’s beautiful coastal walk offers a wide variety of landscapes. You walk first to Marmara beach, where you may have an early morning swim and a coffee before continuing west along the coast. The views of the mountains and into the gorges are overwhelming. You walk through aromatic pine forest and come to the picturesque Byzantine church Agios Pavlos, located on an isolated beach of the same name. Continuing along the beach with great views over the sea, you reach todays destination: the small village of Agia Roumeli, located at the foot of the Samaria Gorge.

Note: In April when the Samaria gorge is NOT open, you will travel on the late afternoon ferry from Agia Roumeli to Sougia and stay overnight in Sougia.

Overnight: Pension Pachnes Agia Roumeli or similar in Souiga


Day 7: Through the Samaria Gorge

Distance: 16 km | Ascent: 1200 m | Descent: 50 m | Walking time: 6 hrs approx.

The climb through the Samaria gorge is definitely the hardest walk of this tour, but also the most impressive one. Whilst most tourists walk through the gorge from top to bottom, you walk against the current and avoid the crowds! We recommend starting early today. By the time that you reach the upper end of the gorge, the temperature there will be considerably lower than at sea level; up to 10 degrees cooler, in fact. The last few kilometres are steep and demanding; mostly you will walk in the shade through dense forest until you reach Xyloskala. Here, the hotelier from Omalos will pick you up and take you to his hotel.

Note: in April you will walk through the Irini Gorge from Sougia to the Omalos plain. A beautiful and strenuous walk, similar to the Samaria gorge.

Overnight: Hotel Neos Omalos


Day 8: Departure

Your hiking trip in Greece comes to an end after breakfast this morning. From Omalos plain you can take the public bus or book an optional taxi to Chania or Heraklion.  In case you are departing on a morning flight, you may need to book an additional night in Chania or Heraklion. Let us know and we can arrange this for you.

Getting to Vamos

  The nearest airport is Chania (CHQ). which is about 30 km from Vamos. It is possible to travel to Vamos by public bus, but is is not a good connection. You are advised to take a taxi from the airport to Vamos. We can also prebook a taxi from Chania to Vamos for an additional fee. Please enquire at the time of booking.

Heraklion airport (HER) also has direct connections with many European airports. From the bus station in Heraklion city (6 km from the airport, accessible by bus or taxi) there are direct buses to Chania (2 hours). The bus also stops in the village Vrysses, near Vamos, and we can arrange a transfer for you from Vrysses to Vamos.

You may travel via Athens Airport (ATH) and take the night ferry from Piraeus to Chania, leaving daily around 9 pm and arriving in Chania at 6 am the next morning. There are cabins with comfortable berths on board and all cabins are en-suite.

Getting from Omalos

  From the last overnight location, Omalos, you travel by public bus or (prebooked) taxi to Chania or Heraklion. The duration of the trip is 1½ hrs approx. In case your flight departs in the morning you may need to either book an extra night in Chania or Heraklion after the arrangement or travel to a hotel in Chania or Heraklion on day 7. In that case you will have to travel by taxi because there is no evening public bus from Omalos to Chania or Heraklion.
You can also take the daily overnight ferry from Chania back to Piraeus
Hiking in Crete
The old town of Chania with view to the mountains of Western Crete behind
Vamos traditional village, Crete
Taverna in Vamos, Crete
Spring hiking in Crete with view to the snow-capped Lefka Ori Mountains
Spring flowers in Crete
Lefka Ori mountains, Crete
Crete hiking signposts
Georgioupolis, on Crete's north coast
Crete, south coast. Photo: Lex van den Bosch
View over Loutro fishing village
The small fishing village of Loutro on the south coast of Crete
Seaside taverna in Loutro, Crete
Boat in Loutro harbour, Crete
Boat taxi, Crete
View of the Samaria Gorge from the sea on the south coast of Crete
Aradena Gorge, photo: GNTO: Y. Skoulas
Footbridge in the Aradena Gorge, Crete
Sweet Water Beach, Crete
Agios Pavlos Church, Agia Roumeli
Souiga Beach, photo Y. Skoulas
Hiking in the Samaria Gorge, Crete
Crossing a wooden bridge in the Samaria Gorge, Crete
Walking trail in the Samaria Gorge
The Samaria Gorge, Crete

Tour Reviews

5.00 based on 2 reviews

Friendly people, stunning scenery and flawless, discrete organisation. The hotels were perfect and all the luggage transfers, bus and taxi links worked flawlessly. Relatively easy walking around Vamos and a bit more challenging along the south coast but the sea views and stunning gorges make the effort worthwhile. Walking up the Samaria Gorge is definitely the way to go as you’ll do the really narrow, super-spectacular sections virtually on your own. Just be prepared for a steady uphill hour or so at the end. There’s no chance of becoming lost; the navigational Ap is excellent. We did the trip in mid June and the flowers looked fantastic and the sea was pleasant for swimming.
I’d be very confident to use Wild Rover and S-Cape again.


Vi følte os godt betjent af Wild Rover Travel. Turen levede op til det lovede og forventede. Spændende vandreture gennem afvekslende landskaber. Der var tid til og rige muligheder for at bade på sydkysten. Detaljeret turbeskrivelse med vandrekort, som gjorde det muligt hele tiden at vide, hvor man var henne. Det anbefales, at man giver sig tid til at læse beskrivelsen og orientere sig grundigt på kort og i landskabet. Gode og nogle steder også hyggelige overnatningssteder med imødekommende værter, som havde styr på baggagetransporten. Det lokale busselskabs hjemmeside var desværre ikke opdateret, så vi fik Wild Rover Travel til at sende en køreplan (to sider), som vi havde meget glæde af til turplanlægningen.

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