Walking in Greece - Greece can be a walker's paradise and particularly when the weather has cooled down at the end of the summer when there is also the added advantage of off-season hotel rates! Walking is a good way to view the beautiful, varied landscape of Greece, explore various mountain trails and ancient paths and also to spot the wonderful animals and plants. The best time to visit is either the spring or autumn, and October is a good time of year to visit for a walking holiday when the typical temperatures can be a still warm at about 15 degrees Celsius. There are ample areas to pursue on a walking break anywhere in Greece with many well signposted walks, wherever you decide to walk.
Walking in Greece and the Greek Islands
Among the finest walks is the Corfu Trail. It's an extended footpath of some 220km which runs the length of the island from the region of Arkoudillas within the south to Cape Agia Ekaterini inside the north. It takes about 10 days to walk the entire distance and there are ample hotels within the walking route to stay in and reenergise. Established in 2001, it is a common attraction used by many walkers to discover a landscape, untouched by commercial tourism. The walk takes in many terrains, due to this; you will never cover the same landscape for more than around one hour. It covers beaches and juniper dunes inside the island's south whilst covering olive groves inside central part to rugged gorges in the north. The best route to follow is with yellow signs bearing the letters CT plus a directional arrow.
The island of Kea, in the Cyclades has numerous routes that illustrate to a walker a changing landscape with remote ruins, watermills and springs. Kea is a 75 minute ferry boat ride from Lavrion. It's unique because it is the only island in the Cyclades that has oak forests and the rare Valonia Oak can be found here. Kea is probably one of the few islands where ancient paths are still intact. It is possible to walk from one end of the island to the other. There are pretty villages, and an attractive capital Chora featuring its stone lion, that's carved from rock and dates from prehistoric ages. Kea offers great beaches and peace to unwind after a long day walking and exploring.
The Greek island of Crete offers walkers the famous Samaria Gorge to discover. This is a National Park, which is a designated World Biosphere Reserve. It is the longest gorge in Europe as well as the second favourite attraction within the island. Situated near Chania in the south west the walk is 16 km. The widely used area of the walk is known as the ‘Iron Gates' where the sides in the Gorge narrow have a width of just 4 metres and soar majestically up to about 1,100 metres. The remarkable Gorge became a national wildlife reserve in 1962 for the rare kri-kri (Cretan goat). The deserted village of Samaria lies just inside Gorge where its residents left in 1962 to allocate for the Park. The most spectacular part of the walk is from the Omalos Plateau to Agia Roumeli on the Libyan sea. Here walkers can sail to Hora Sfakion and catch a regular bus back to Chania. The entire walk inside Samaria Gorge takes 4 - 7 hrs and is not recommended during the hot summer months because the walk can be hot and tiring. (Please note the Gorge closes at the end of October).
Walking in Greece holidays are not only a great way to see this beautiful country, but also a great way to stay fit and healthy.