Gavdos

Gavdos is a beautiful island on the South of Crete and has less than 100 residents. It is 22 nautical miles from Chora Sfakion and 31 nautical miles from Paleochora. It is covers an area of 37 square kilometers. The island has 6 districts: The coastal Sarakiniko and Karave, Korfo that are on the eastern side, Kastri that is inland (almost at the center of the island), Ambelos to the northwest and coastal Vatsiana to the southwest.

Gavdos is the most southern point in Europe. The cape of Tripiti is considered the most southern tip of the European continent. Many think that this is the island of Ogigia – the island of Kalypso – where, according to Homer, Ulysses spent 7 years imprisoned by the nymph Kalypso.

Gavdos with its pristine, golden, untarnished beaches and crystal turquoise waters is well worth a visit. Even though Gavdos has become a very popular destination in the past years it maintains its tranquility and its isolation thus attracting nature lovers. In the evening when the last visitors depart Gavdos recaptures its tranquility and its romance.

The cape of Tripiti is a natural monument with three "sculpted" arches that have been carved into the rocks by the wind and the sea is worth visiting.

Gavdos is also ideal for walking: The ground is flat and distances between districts are small. They are about 3,5 kilometers from each other.

There are three festivals on the island: One on the 10th of February celebrating Saint Charalambos and two early in the summer celebrating Agii Pantes in Ambelos and the Holy Trinity in Kastri.

You can enjoy food at small tavernas and coffee shops.

Access is possible by boat from Chora Sfakion, Paleochora or Agia Roumeli.

Kournas

Kournas is 45 kilometers from Chania and is a village with 500 residents. It is built amphitheatrically on the eastern foothill of the Lefka Ori mountain range from where the visitor can enjoy the magical view of the lake, the largest natural lake on the island.

If you are in area you should defiantly visit the lake and enjoy the unique flora and fauna. Swimming is permitted and you can also take a tour of the lake on small boats. There are some tavernas surrounding the lake that serve fresh fish from the lake.

About 2 kilometers south of the lake, before you reach the village, is the cave of Kournas and approximately 10 kilometers to the south is the village of Kastellos with a breathtaking Oak tree forest and a magical landscape with natural shade, ideal for tranquility and refreshment.

There are two festivals held in the village. One on the 29th of August celebrating Saint John Theologos and one on the 5th of May dedicated to Saint Erini. Also on the 6th of August there is a large festival in the village Patima to celebrate the Transfiguration of Christ our Savior.

Several cultural events are organized during the summer at Kournas Lake.

The village does not offer accommodation. You can however enjoy the exquisite local cuisine at the coffee shops and restaurants in the village along with the spectacular view, especially in the winter when the weather does not permit the restaurants by the lake to operate.

Chora Sfakion

Chora Sfakion is 72 kilometers southeast of Chania and is a small village with 278 residents. The village is famous for the villagers intense yearning for freedom and the many battles that they had with the all the invaders of the island. It is considered one the most traditional villages in Crete and the elders still wear traditional costumes and preserve the customs of honor, friendship, hospitality but also the "Vendeta". Naturally the increase in tourism and public transportation has somewhat softened the strict customs of the past, however Sfakia are still known for its honest, stable and noble men.

The old village is built on a hill side that ascends from the coast. This is where the boats drop off the hikers that walked through the gorge to take the bus back to Chania. The byzantine churches of the Virgin Mary Thimiani and Saint Apostles are worth visiting. What will mesmerize you however is the wild landscape.

The cave of Daskalogianni is also worth a visit. Daskalogiannis was one of the greatest Cretan heroes of the Cretan revolutions. Access to the cave is only feasible by boat. The villages Komitades and Loutro (the latter can only be accessed by sea) are interesting mainly due to their views of the vast Libyan sea, their famous traditional delicacies and their picturesque landscape. You can also drive the difficult road from Chora Sfaklion to Anopoli that is worth it to enjoy the impressive landscape.

Several different cultural events are organized in the summer. The last Sunday of May the Festival dedicated to the Virgin Mary takes place.

There are tavernas and traditional coffee shops for food and drinks.

There are boats that connect Chora Sfakion to Paleochora, Sougia, Agia Roumeli, Elafonissos and Gavdos.

Agia Roumeli

Agia Roumeli is a small village of 120 residents on the south coast of Crete, at the exit of the Samaria Gorge and is built on the location of ancient city of Tara.

The village is relatively quiet most of the time except for late in spring and, of course, during the summer months when it is very busy mainly due to the amount of people who cross the gorge. But, when the last boat leaves the small harbor with the last visitors the village returns to its quiet, peaceful ways.

First of all you must visit the ruins of the ancient Doric city of Tara that thrived during the Roman era. Here you can see the ruins of a temple that was most likely dedicated to the God Apollo and the Goddess Diana.

The church of the Virgin Mary is also worth visiting and is built on the ruins of the ancient temple dedicated to Apollo and Diana as well as the ruins of a medieval castle on the hill close to the village.
The byzantine monastery of Saint Paul is within walking distance as is the beach with the same name (Agios Pavlos).

There are some tavernas and coffee shops with good food and drinks in Agia Roumeli.

Access to the village is only feasible with boats from Chora Sfakion, Paleochora, Sougia and Loutro. You can also reach the village by foot through the Samaria Gorge starting at the Omalos plateau. Every year thousands of visitors choose this relatively difficult but also very popular path to reach Agia Roumeli. If you are fit enough then you can reach the village from Chora Sfakion or Paleochora following the European trail E4.

More About Rea Hotel

Rea Resort Hotel in
Chania, Crete, Greece


Stavros, Akrotiri, Chania
Tel:  +30 28210 39001-4
Fax: +30 28210 97504
E-mail: info@rearesorthotel.gr

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