Crete Day 6 — Aradena Gorge

Our final hike in Crete proved to be my personal favorite.  From Chora Sfakion (known locally as Sfakia), we caught a taxi to the head of the gorge, hiked all the way down through the mouth, and arrived at Marmara Beach and the Libyan Sea.  Highlights of the hike for us included crossing over and under the iron Aradena Bridge, exploring the abandoned village of Aradena, carefully hiking down the 1st Kalderimi, seeing the colorful and narrow canyon (and plentiful Cretan wild goats doing stunts), checking out the old rockfall ladder and newer bypass, arriving at the Libyan Sea and enjoying a cold beer, and hiking along the sea cliffs to Loutro.  As you can see, there will be a lot to talk about in my report.  I’m including one bonus picture of Loutro, which turned out to be my favorite village in Crete and the place where the hike ended.  The next day, we spent the day relaxing at Elafonisi Beach in Crete and then continued on in our trip by visiting Ephesus, Turkey.

Steve at the 1st Kalerimi above Aradena Gorge
Steve at the 1st Kalderimi above Aradena Gorge
Looking up at the famous Aradena Bridge
Looking up at the famous Aradena Bridge spanning the gorge
Looking back into the mouth of the gorge from Marmara Beach
Looking back into the mouth of the gorge from Marmara Beach
Our hike ended in the small village of Loutro after an extra hour of hiking
Our hike ended in the scenic village of Loutro after an extra hour of hiking