Explore-Share logo and link to home

Crete Island Grand Trail: Mount Ida, Samaria Gorge, Loutro

crete 1
crete 6 day hike
crete grand trail

Spend a week hiking in Crete with local, certified guide, Akis. Climb to the top of Mount Ida, visit Samaria Gorge, Loutro Bay, Sfakia, and more!


6 Days

May - Oct




* Discover some of the most amazing spots in Crete.

* Enjoy seaside and mountain trails.

* Spend a week enjoying the Mediterranean culture and cuisine.


Crete is a majestic island and the absolute Mediterranean destination, an ideal place to enjoy a hiking and cultural week. 

On this one-week adventure, you will have the chance to explore some of the most amazing spots on the island. High mountains, magnificent gorges and canyons, and the extended trail network close to the Mediterranean Sea make this a unique trekking destination. Furthermore, the culture, history, food, unique flora, and fauna will perfectly complement and enrich your trip.

The hiking itinerary we will follow runs the south coastline of the island, one of the purest, most unspoiled, and isolated areas of South Europe. Some of the landmarks we will visit include the Mount Ida summit, Samaria Gorge, and Loutro, among others. You can find a detailed itinerary below.

Keep in mind that we will spend around 5 hours hiking each day. Therefore,  you will need a good fitness level to join this adventure, however, you don’t need technical skills for this adventure.

So, are you ready to experience a unique 1-week trek in Crete? Then contact me today and let’s start planning your adventure. I look forward to guiding you!

Price includes

- Guiding fee

- Transport during the trip

- Mountain guide expenses

- Luggage transfer

Price details

National Park entrance fees included

Breakfasts included

Snacks during the hike included

Boat ticket during the hike is included

Transfers during the trip

Not included :

Meals and drinks


Day 1: Heraklion City - Ascent the Very Top of Crete 2.456m

Meeting with the guests in Heraklion city in the morning and travel towards the Cretan country side at the foot hills of Mount Ida – The birth place of Zeus. Starting from Mygeros Plateau at an altitude of 1550m, the well-marked trail runs the north west side of the mountain and gives access to an impressive summit crest towards the Peak 2456m.
The summit view is stunning in every direction… the Aegean Sea islands to the North and the African coast line to the South are the highlights of this magnificent ascent.

Duration: 5 – 6 hours
Vertical ascent: 1000m

Pick up the guests and travel towards Chania town where we will settle down in a hotel at the Old Venetian Harbor.
Briefing about the schedule – overnight.

Day 2: Hiking Samaria Gorge

Today we will hike one of the longest and most beautiful gorges in Europe: The famous Samaria Gorge.
A well-marked trail runs 16 km of unspoiled nature inside the gorge, and finally exits at the Mediterranean Sea.

Duration: 5 – 6 hours
Vertical drop: 1250m

The hike ends at the seafront village Agia Roumeli. Rest, relaxation, swimming in crystal clear waters, Mediterranean food, and overnight stay at the village.

Day 3: Agia Roumeli – White Mountains – St. John Village

Breakfast at the guest house and start hiking.
The sea side trail runs the coast line through pine forest, and faces the Mediterranean Sea. Then, a steep but magnificent trail climbs the mountain towards our final destination, the St. John mountain village, too far away from the civilization and almost lost in time…
During our hike we can swim at the crystal sea waters and then continue towards the village.

Duration: 5 – 6 hours
Vertical ascent: 900m

Settle down in a guest house – briefing about the next day’s schedule.
Overnight stay

Day 4: St. John – Aradaina Gorge – Loutro Bay

Breakfast at the guest house and transfer towards the entrance of Aradaina Gorge.
The trail runs the gorge through impressive rock formations, and during the hike we will experience the Cretan nature, smell the Mediterranean herbs and finally we will exit in a magnificent secret beach with crystal waters – The Marble Beach.

Duration: 4 hours
Relaxation & swimming
The same afternoon, transfer with a boat towards Loutro village, the most iconic and magnificent part of the south Crete. The small sea front village with magnificent Aegean architecture welcomes the hikers. Now, we are too far away from roads and vehicles, isolated at the very south end of Europe.
Settle down in a seafront hotel – overnight stay.

Day 5: Loutro Bay – Hiking the countryside round Loutro

After breakfast we will discover the unspoiled nature round Loutro Bay and the archeological site of the area. The Mediterranean Sea is always by our side and we will enjoy the crystal waters many times throughout the day. Early afternoon return to the village – overnight.
Duration: 5 hours

Day 6: Loutro Bay – Sfakia

Breakfast at the hotel and start hiking towards Sfakia.
We will cross the marvelous Sweet Waters beach and finally, we will access the historic Sfakia village, a place very tight connection with the 2nd WW history.

Duration: 3 hours

Short break at the picturesque Sfakia Bay and early afternoon transfer towards Heraklion city, where you will be dropped off.

End of trip


Equipment you will need to bring

Water bottle




What are some recommended accommodations near our adventure location?

We understand that finding the perfect place to stay is an essential part of your adventure experience. To help you with this, we’ve curated a list of three highly recommended hotels that offer comfort, convenience, and a touch of local charm. These accommodations are well-suited for adventurers looking to relax and rejuvenate after an exciting day of exploration
Hotel Santa Marina Perissa Greece
See rooms
Santo Miramare Resort Perivolos Greece
See rooms
Veggera Beach Hotel Perivolos Greece
See rooms

About the guide

Guide profile image




Mountain Guide

I come from Greece and always remember myself as a kid in the mountains…
Now, I am a Certified Mountain Guide HMGA, member of the Hellenic Mountain Guides Association (License number A.N 867/37, Nr 19 FEK (A)621-999/28-11-07) also a Mountaineering – Ski Mountaineering and Climbing Instructor, member of the Hellenic Federation of Mountaineering & Climbing (H.F.M.C).

My passion for the mountains led me on numerous hikes, ski tours, and rock and ice climbs in Greece, the Alps, France, Switzerland, Italy, and Bulgaria, with many new routes under my signature.

The beautiful valleys at the foot of Mount Olympus – Greece are my home, and the flanks above are the playground to follow my mountain love, may it be ice-climbing, ski touring, hiking, or alpine climbing. For me, it is the perfect terrain to train, play and guide.

I teach mountaineering, rock climbing, and ski mountaineering in various Climbing Schools & Mountaineering Associations, and I spend a lot of wintertime as a ski instructor. I love to share my passion with guests and guide hikers, mountaineers, climbers, and ski tourers all year round.

I am married to Mariza and we have a daughter and two sons together.
I speak Greek, English, and French.


Greek | French | English



Request more information

What people are saying about Akis



No intrigue but just too busy after this marvelous trip !!! And at last I take a few minutes to write. I enjoyed each step in this glorious mountain. Everything was carefully organized. Akis was a wonderful guide so careful, kind, serious and professional. I hope I will come back soon. Thank you very much. Catherine



Akis was an absolutely exceptional guide for our Mount Olympus ascent, which was one of my favourite memories from our Greece trip. I cannot recommend him highly enough! He is a local to the area, a certified guide, and his knowledge of the terrain is unparalleled which made all of us feel safe and capable of completing the whole journey right to the summit and back. This is a hike we would not have been able to do without the assistance from Akis, especially the last scramble up to the summit. I would would urge anyone considering this hike to book him as your guide. Thank you Akis!



Akis is a great guide and runs a wonderful trip. The mountain is beautiful. The recommended headlamp is only for the refuge and not for hiking, so not 100% necessary.



Both the guides were super. Akis was great with the group keeping us on track and Theo went above and beyond helping me personally. A memorable trip.


Professional, inspired safety and confidence, knowledgable of the mountain, nothing is too much trouble - meeting all our needs: as an adventurous couple the first time around and as a small family the second and third, well balanced between friendly and giving space, fully available, in short: exceptional and we would not hesitate to recommend him to all levels of mountaineers: from absolute beginners to the fully accomplished looking to stretch themselves that little bit more.

Join our newsletter!

Stay up-to-date on the best adventures.