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Samaria Gorge

Kent, United Kingdom
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236 posts
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Samaria Gorge

Hi there.

We are holidaying in Crete at Almyrida. My partner, son and daughter and friend all want to walk the Smaria Gorge. I have done this many years ago and being slightly more heavier, older and unfitter have decided to give it a miss. We will be hiring a car and I am wondering how easy it would be for me to drop them at Omalos and then meet them when they come off the ferry. Is the journey quite straight forward or would it be best to book an excursion for them all. Also what time does the gorge open?

Any help and ideas would be great.

London, United...
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1. Re: Samaria Gorge

It's a good idea, as long as that's how you'd like to spend a day, and as long as you're happy driving on winding though perfectly safe mountain roads.

I would do it gladly, and enjoy the drive to Omalos and the drives to and from Chora Sfakion.

Chania Town, Greece
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2. Re: Samaria Gorge

It depends how much you like driving, really! Almyrida to Omalos is not a particularly difficult drive, there are some hairpins getting towards the top but it's a decent road. Then you'd need to drive back of course, then across the island to Sfakia or Paleochora & back; quite a bit of driving for 1 day. As an alternate option, you could drive them into Hania in the morning for the bus to Omalos - I think the buses start at around 6am, but that will depend on whether it's high season. You'll be able to see the ktel bus timetable nearer the time. & perhaps they could get the bus from Sfakia back (again, depending on times) & you could meet them on reaching Vrisses, only a short drive from Almyrida.

You can book the day-trips in Almyrida or Kalyves, there are several agents there.

Chania, Greece
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3. Re: Samaria Gorge

No need to drive to Hora Sfakion: drop them off at Omalos, drive down to Sougia (it takes a leisurely 45 minutes), spend the day at the beach and pick them up when they come back by ferry in the evening.

The gorge of Samaria opens at day light...whatever time that is.

London, United...
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4. Re: Samaria Gorge

Duh. How come didn't I think of that? ;-)

Yes: if you want to do it, that's the way to do it. It will be nicer for your family/friends, too. The coast between Agia Roumeli and Sougia is the most spectacular stretch of a magnificent coastline.

Edited: 31 March 2014, 16:22
Chania Town, Greece
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5. Re: Samaria Gorge

Yes, it's the least driving way, but only good if you don't mind spending 5 hours or so on your own in Sougia. Would certainly be much cheaper than paying for the organised tour for them all.

Chania, Greece
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6. Re: Samaria Gorge

I think that it is more likely to be 10 hours (drop them off early morning and pick them up when the ferry gets to Sougia which is around 18.00) but I could think of worse things to do than spend a day in Sougia. And if you can't sit still you could always walk over to Lissos http://www.sougia.info/walk-lissos.htm

London, United...
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7. Re: Samaria Gorge

>And if you can't sit still you could always walk over to Lissos<

Alternatively you could leave your car at Agia Irini, and have your own gorge walk down the Agia Irini gorge - much shorter than Samaria, but almost as beautiful - and ring for a taxi from the taverna at the end of the gorge to take you back to your car. The walk takes 3-4 hours, so you'd still have plenty of time for a snooze on Sougia's beautiful beach and a swim.

But a quiet day in Sougia would be a day well spent too.

Kent, United Kingdom
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236 posts
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8. Re: Samaria Gorge

Thanks for that everyone. Would a Sat Nav be best or are the signs quite clear. Don't want to panic about getting lost. I am quite happy to just sit at Sougia, is that where the ferry comes in then? We are going in August!!!!!! Not my idea and hence why I dont want to walk it. I walked it in late September and that was hot enough. So Im thinking drop them off as early as possible so that they can do the majority of the walk while it isnt so hot!.

Chania, Greece
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9. Re: Samaria Gorge

The signs are quite clear but a map of Crete will help. I don't use sat nav so can't comment on this.

Sougia is one of the destinations for the ferries that come from Agia Roumeli. It got mentioned here because it's the most logical place for what you want to do.

Kent, United Kingdom
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236 posts
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10. Re: Samaria Gorge

Thanks Jean. I'll probably use a map then unless the car is fitted with SatNav! What time do they open the gorge, do you know?