Tour in Lassithi
Hiking enthusiasts choose the prefecture of Lassithi and the Dikti mountain range to enjoy walks and climbing. Fertile valleys with olive groves, dense plateaus, imposing mountains, aromas of herbs and plants, serenity and unspoiled nature compose the ideal setting to get to know southeastern Crete through walking routes. One path very close to the residence is the 40 m long stone path built by French students to connect Myrtos with the Minoan village of Pyrgos, facilitating access to it. Another interesting path starts just before the church of Agios Georgios Psichros, at an altitude of 460 meters up to 800 m. And the area of Schinokapsala, from where the view to the Libyan Sea, Gaidouronissi and Koufonissi, will take your breath away.
The Cretan landscape offers beautiful hiking trails with gentle requirements, suitable even for amateur climbers. Among the top choices are the hiking gorges of Sarakina, Richti [an oasis with waterfalls and a cool lake], Ha [considered the most beautiful technical gorge of Crete with several descents], and Havgas, which is part of the European Path E4. A must destination is the pine forest of Selakanos, which you can visit either individually or following the 6-hour route defined by the Path E4 [Agios Georgios-Limnakaro-Varsami -Selakano] and is considered a unique hiking experience, crossing the fantastic landscape Network. Also, at a distance of 59 km from Sarakinas Residences, it is worth exploring Dikteon Cave, one of the most impressive caves in Crete, at an altitude of 1,020 m., where according to mythology, Rhea, persecuted by Saturn, fled to give birth to Zeus. Inside the cave, visitors make a route of 250 m., admiring huge stalactite and stalagmite formations in two separate chambers, the Upper and the Lower Cave, where there is a picturesque lake.
Mountain hiking on a mountain path is more demanding than simple hiking, but it offers stunning views. The climbers in the area aim at the 3 highest mountain peaks of the prefecture. East of Sitia, Spathi is a popular destination for climbers, who, after climbing for about 2 hours reach an altitude of 2,148 m., to enjoy incredible views of the South Cretan Sea, Agios Nikolaos, Sitia and Pachia Ammos. The second highest peak after Spathi of the Lassithi Mountains is the Lord Christ (2,141 m.). The homonymous chapel at the top is the church of the Transfiguration of the Savior, which celebrates August 6 and gathers many pilgrims. The third is the peak of Lazaros (2,085 m.), which requires a walk of at least 7 hours. All three peaks belong to a Special Protection Zone as recognized rare habitats that host many Cretan endemic plants and protected predators.
In the village of Myrtos, where the complex of luxury residences Sarakinas Residences is located, flows the river that crosses the 1.5 km long gorge of Sarakina, which is characterized as one of the most beautiful walking gorges of Crete. According to the legend, its creation is attributed to the giant Sarantapichos, son of Zeus, who, crouching thirsty to drink water, tore the mountain with his beard and created this natural wonder. Seize the opportunity to get to know this imposing gorge, 6 km from the Residence, following a beautiful route lasting 1.5-2.5 hours [depending on your walking speed], through plane trees, springs, natural bridges, natural stone domes and rocks that reach 150 m. height. You must have solid shoes and a hat and water to be able to cross it safely. The route is relatively safe, but you will encounter streams and ponds with water, so you should be prepared to get wet and have a second pair of shoes and socks with you.