Guided Hiking Central Crete
Guided / Trekking / Multi Day / Crete /
  • Activity level Easy/Moderate
  • Group size 4 - 10 participants
  • Duration 8 days
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Crete, the largest and most mountainous of the Greek islands, is the cradle of Europe’s earliest civilization and the land where ancient myth and modern reality blend seamlessly against a backdrop of outstanding natural beauty.

Our guided 8-day exploration focuses on the central region of this fascinating island, and takes you from the pottery village of Margarites and the Akropolis of Ancient Eleftherna, to Mt. Karfi and Zeus birthplace and into the solitary wilderness of Crete's highest mountain, Mt. Psiloritis.

Starting from Heraklion, the island's bustling capital, you will drive West to the area of Rethimnon and the beautiful ecotourism hotel of Enagron. You'll trek from the acropolis of ancient Eleftherna to the pottery village of Margarites and continue to ascent Crete's highest summit (2456m) for spectacular views to Aegean and Mediterranean Seas, the surrounding islands and all the mountain ranges of Crete.

Enjoy a relaxing and refreshing day in the azure blue waters of Elounda and Mirabello gulf, before "pay homage" to Zeus birthplace in Lassithi plateau and continue to climb Mt. Karfi (1140m) accompanied by a pair of eagles.

Returning back to Heraklion you may visit the world-renowned Knossos, the magnificent archaeological area holding remains of a Minoan city that thrived 3500 years ago and the famous palace of the legendary King Minos.



DAY 1: Arrive in Heraklion

Arrive in Heraklion and transfer to your hotel at Cretan countryside In the evening we will have a brief presentation of the whole trip and will continue with a dinner at a traditional tavern. Welcome to the gastronomic reality of the authentic Cretan cuisine!

Driving: 45klm./1 hour
Overnight in Axos

DAY 2: The ancient city and the pottery village

Starting from the ancient city of Eleftherna, built between 970 – 820 B.C. you will have many things to admire such as the Byzantine tower at city’s entrance, the Roman reservoirs and the Hellenistic bridge. Continuing through the beautiful countryside you end up at the pottery village of Margarites where you will have the chance to visit the ceramic workshops and be introduced to the traditional art of pottery.

Driving: 57klm. / 1.15 hour
Walking: 7 klm. / 3 hours
Overnight in Axos

DAY 3: Ascend Mt. Psiloritis, the highest peak of Crete

Starting early in the morning, you will drive at the foot of the highest mountain of Crete. Following a well maintained rocky path, you will reach the very top (2456m) in approximately 3-31/2 hours. From the highest summit you can enjoy a panoramic view, at both Kritiko Pelagos (Aegean Sea) to the north and Liviko Pelagos (Mediterranean Sea) to the south, all the islands that surround Crete and of course all the mountain ranges of the island. We descend by the same path.

Driving: 38klm. / 1 hour
Walking: 6klm. / 6 hours
Overnight in Axos

DAY 4: Drive to Elounda and visit Spinalonga island

Today you will drive to the coastal village of Elounda located in Mirabello gulf on the east side of the island. From Elounda you can embark the boat to visit the historic island of Spinalonga that was originally a Fortress built by the Venetians to protect the bay of Mirabelo. In the early 1900’s, became a Leper colony and remained so until the 1950’s. 

Driving: 110klm. / 2 hours
Overnight in Elounda

DAY 5: Hike Aforesmenos Cape

Starting from Mirabello’s rough countryside you will hike around “Aforesmenos” cape to Plaka village. Walking on dirt roads and coastal paths will pass from an abandoned lighthouse and crystal clear beaches to end up at Plaka village. Passing from Agios Ioannis chapel you will admire the spectacular view to the bay of Elounda and the island of Spinalonga.

Driving: 16klm. / 30 minutes
Walking: 11klm. / 5 hours
Overnight in Elounda

DAY 6: The secret Minoan settlement

In the morning you will drive to Lassithi plateau and the village of Tzermiado, the starting point of today’s hike. You will pass through the small and beautiful “Nissimos” valley to reach the sacred summit of Karfi, which offers a Minoan settlement and panoramic - breathtaking view to the north coast, and the mountains of Selena and Dikti. From the summit you will descend back to Tzermiado from a different path by following an old rocky-build mule path – Kalterimi.   At Lassithi plateau, you will have the chance to experience a small journey through mythology by visiting Zeus birthplace - the cave of Dicteon Andro.

Driving: 115klm. / 2.20 hours
Walking: 3.5klm. / 3 hours
Overnight in Elounda

DAY 7: Visit Knossos & Archaeological museum

Today we drive back to Heraklion, and will visit Knossos, to enjoy the magnificent archaeological area holding remains of a Minoan city that thrived 3500 years ago and the famous palace dated 170-1450 B.C., excavated by Sir Arthur Evans at the beginning of this century.

In the afternoon we are free to explore the city of Heraklion or to continue our culture excursion by visiting the very interesting archaeological museum, with exhibits from the Minoan period. 

Driving: 70klm. / 1 hour
Overnight in Heraklion

DAY 8: Departure

This is the end of our trip. You will have free time in Heraklion before we transfer you to Heraklion airport at a convenient time.

End of Services


  • All accommodation with breakfast
  • Services of the tour leader - guide
  • All land transfers as described in the itinerary
  • 1 Group transfer from/to Heraklion airport
  • Entrance fees in places of interest that are described in the itinerary
  • Third party insurance
  • VA Tax

Not Included

  • Transport to and from Crete
  • All meals (lunches & dinners)
  • Overnight stay tax
  • Entrance fees in Museums and other sites of interest (i.e. monasteries, caves, etc) that are not mentioned in the itinerary
  • Personal expenses and drinks
  • Everything not clearly listed above


Everyone participating in any of Cretan Adventures events/activities is covered by third party insurance through Ethniki Asfalistiki.

Participants need to be covered by their own personal insurance (Health/accident insurance) for the chosen activities.

If clients wish to be covered for personal insurance (Health/accident insurance) by A.I.G Europe Limited s/he must notify in paper the above to Cretan Adventures and pay the additional cost.

Cretan Adventures is not responsible for any accidents or mishaps directly or indirectly related to the tour.


We travel by our own rented car or mini-van depending on the size of the group.


Hotels in the main cities, local inns and village pensions throughout the trip (all with private facilities). The trip prices are based on double occupancy.

Activity Level

The hikes offer a moderate trek with a maximum of 6 hours walk on rocky footpaths. Sometimes you cross-streams in the gorges and on the coast you walk on sand and shingles for short distances. Participants should be in good physical condition with a little of experience.


  • Daypack ( approx.25-35lt. )
  • Trekking shoes
  • Mountain clothing (waterproof wind jacket, polar fleece sweater etc.)
  • Walking sticks
  • Water bottle
  • Hat
  • Sun cream
  • Sun glasses
  • Swimming suit
  • Casual clothing

Note on Itineraries

Please bear in mind that the itinerary can be altered for numerous reasons beyond our control (e.g. harsh weather, trail conditions) to ensure the safety and the well-being of the group. The final hiking selection is left up to Cretan Adventures.