Anopoli - Breathtaking landscape ideal for hiking
The White Mountains of Crete (Lefka Ori)
The rugged landscape and breathtaking vistas around Anopoli in Sfakia region are simply amazing, and ideal for walking, hiking and (mountain-) biking. At the nearby Aradena gorge (fantastic to walk through) you can even do bungy-jumping.
You’ll find quite a bit more about this topic on the page Prepare your Journey.
Keep your bearings
Radio coverage for mobile phones is quite good in Sfakia, so Google Maps can be a great help. If you’re walking the secondary gravel roads you’ll hardly need it. The hiking trails are normally quite well marked by frequent daubs of paint, normally red, sometimes blue, mostly quite adequate but sometimes you’ll need to cast around for the next marker. Occasionally, e.g. in gorges or on the way to dragon cave, you’ll be led by a succession of stone piles remindful of cairns, zen stones or buddhist chortens, giving one a mild feeling of being on a spiritual pilgrimage.
Rocks and red earth
A really surprising feature is the richness of the soil. A deep red, very rich-looking loam that you would never expect in such a sparse and rocky landscape. Yet there it is, mostly hiding between and underneath the surface rocks.
A delight for eyes AND nose
The flora of Crete is simply amazing. The landscape is strewn with wild herbs such as oregano, thyme and labdanum, giving the air a pleasant aromatic tinge. Common and amazingly hardy are the Sea Squills, large bulbs embedded in the rocky soil which you could swear must be dead – except that many of them push up large stalks crowned with white blossoms. Another amazing species is the Sea Daffodil, which grows in the sandy dunes behind some beaches. You’ll find pictures of both, and many more, on the intocrete website.