Chora Sfakion, Sfakia, CHANIA
Chora Sfakion is a village in the historical area of Sfakia in the southern prefecture of Chania. It is the seat of the Municipality of Sfakia which is the most sparsely populated in all of Greece with an area of 468sq km. Nestled where the Imbros Gorge ends, Chora Sfakion is surrounded by the White Mountains. The southernmost islands of Europe–Gavdos and Gavdopoula are in full view on a clear day
Anopoli is a mountain village on a plateau and located in the province of Sfakia, just 13km northwest of Chora Sfakion. In ancient times, its port was Katopoli, where Loutro is today. Anopoli is accessed via a windy mountain road through Chora Sfakion. The plateau is bordered by the wild Gorge of Aradena and there are paths that ascend to the Alpine zone. This scenic landscape awes all visitors
Aradena Bridge, Sfakia
Aradena has the highest bridge in all of Greece and the second in Europe. The bridge spans 84m (275 ft) and crosses a deep gorge at the height of 138m. It links the edges of a wild canyon and allows access to the abandoned village of Aradena. The Aradena Gorge, also known as "Faraggas," is 15m in length and is a stunning sight
Agios Ioannis, Sfakia
This village is located west of Aradena at a distance of 5km and at an altitude of 800m. The road from Aradena to Agios Ioannis passes through a beautiful pine forest and offers a magnificent view of the Libyan Sea and the White Mountains. Agios Ioannis is one of the smallest villages of Sfakia. As the road to Agios Ioannis ends, the beautiful landscape appears. Two Byzantine churches of the 13th century are located in the area with frescoes dedicated to Agios Ioannis (Saint John) and Panagia (Virgin Mary).
Located between Anopoli and Imbros is Mouri—one of the most mountainous villages of Sfakia. This is the best entry point for the Gorge of Iliga or Kavi, located west of Chora Sfakion. It is accessed by a dirt road that starts from Anopoli and is 14km away. Mouri is uninhabited and has the districts Kavros, Litini, Alonia, Kathiana, Koiti and Tsimali. The peaks of the White Mountains as well as the Mediterranean Sea offer a breathtaking sight.
Livaniana village is located at an altitude of 250m from the sea, northwest of Finika Bay and is 10km from Anopoli. It is accessed from the Anopolis-Aradena road, at the junction on the left, before the bridge of Aradena. The village is situated on the southern slopes of the White Mountains. There are two neighborhoods—Panochori and Katochori. This abandoned village now has recently renovated homes. South of Mouri, visitors can reach the shores of Lykos and Finikas.
Lykos Beach, Sfakia
The picturesque port of Lykos is located about 7km west of Chora Sfakion, along the coastal path E4 that connects Loutro and Agia Roumeli. The village can be reached by a dirt road that starts from the village of Aradena. Lykos Bay is a pebbled beach with deep waters and boulders at the bottom making for an explorative experience! On the path to Loutro, visitors will find centuries-old olive trees as well as Koules Fortress—a designated protected monument that was built in the 19th century.
Finikas Beach, Sfakia
The name comes from the ancient city of Finikas and its ruins can be found just outside of Loutro. The beach of Finikas is located in front of the homonymous settlement just 900 meters immediately after the village of Loutro Sfakion and 83 km south of Chania. The coast of Finikas has large pebbles and is suitable for quiet holidays, as there is basic infrastructure nearby. Next to Finikas there is the settlement, and the beach of Lykos is at a distance of only 200 m.
Kolokasia is a settlement built at an altitude of 245m, west of Frangokastello, at the exit of Asfendiotikos gorge, and near the village of Agios Nektarios. The village is an example of the old, simple architectural construction of homes with the characteristic arch of Sfakian houses. The village is hidden in old olive groves and visitors can view the magnificent panoramic plain of Agios Nektarios and Frangokastello.
Located at the northern entrance of the municipality of Sfakia is the historic mountain village of Kallikratis. Kallikratis lies on a picturesque plateau of the White mountains at an altitude of 750 m. It is dotted by charming homes, old ruins, pretty vineyards, and remnants of terrace farming. Small cafes offer visitors a taste of the traditional Sfakian cuisine. In the neighborhood of Pano Rouga stands the tall two-aisled church of Panagia (Virgin Mary) and Michael Archangelos, built in the 19th century. The church has a stone-carved bell tower dated from 1893 and the model of a sundial on its outer wall. The village is accessible by an asphalt winding road that starts north of the plain of Frangokastello, from the village of Kapsodasos. The enchanting Gorge of Kallikratis starts from the south end of the village and ends in Patsianos, Frangokastello.
Asfendou has an altitude of 770m and is located on the road from Kallikratis to Imbros. In this village lies the famous cave of Asfendos—on a steep slope, in the place Skordolakia, with ancient rock paintings dating back to the Neolithic era 8,000 BC! This is the oldest trace of habitation in the island of Crete.
Imbros is a small yet historic mountain village built at the foot of the White Mountains at an altitude of 780m. It is located en route from Askifou to Chora Sfakion. The village is divided into four districts—Dasos, Lempidiana, Nio Village and Halara. The Gorge of Imbros is 7km long, one of the most narrow in Crete, and is accessible to visitors from the plateau of Imbros village.
The populated village of Askifou lies on a broad plateau at an altitude of 730m. It is located on the road that connects Chania with Chora Sfakion passing the plateau of Krapi. It consists of five small settlements–Petre, Ammoudari, Stravorachi, Goni and Kares. Tourists can visit the War Museum as well as ruins from centuries past. The impressive hills and mountains surround the village and the scenery astounds all visitors. Many scholars even believe that the Askifou plateau was a large lake many thousands of years ago!
Lakki Beach, Sfakia
Lakki is located very close to Frangokastello, just 2km east, near the village of Skaloti. A road that starts from Skaloti leads to Lakki. To the west of Lakki flows a river that passes through the Sphinx. In Lakki there are many small creeks separated by very rocky peninsulas. The area is very peaceful and picturesque.
Agia Marina, Sfakia
Agia Marina is a crystal clear beach located between Frangokastello and Rodakino, 2 km south of Argoules village. A steady stream flows at the end of the beach bringing waters from the Argoules and Perdikari Gorges. Located nearby is the church of Agia Marina which is surrounded by large carob trees. This area has become a popular camping ground in the past few decades. A rocky dirt road from Lakki is the only route to this gorgeous beach.
Myriokefala, Lappa, RETHYMNO
Myriokefala is a village located 36km from Rethymno and is accessed from Kallikratis on the road to Rethymno. It is known for the famous 10th century frescoes inside the church of Panagia Myriokefalitissa. According to legend, a spring was made by the hand of Ioannis Erimitis, who touched the ground and water began to flow from five points (his fingers).
Argyroupoli is full of traces from ancient and modern civilizations. In and around the village lie excavation sites from ancient Rome, a necropolis, medieval Byzantine churches, and Venetian buildings with magnificent characteristic doors. The area is famous for its brilliant and plentiful water springs.
Plakias, Finikas, RETHYMNO
Plakias is a popular resort town located 38km from the city of Rethymno and 26km from Frangokastello. It is surrounded by mountains to the north and the Libyan Sea to the south. Nearby Plakias are the mountain villages of Myrthios, Sellia and Asomatos. Also, closeby—the famous beach of Preveli, beautiful monasteries and hiking in Kotsifos and Kourtaliotis Gorges. A major tourist attraction is the Old Mill which is 1.5km from the village on the River Kotsifos.
Spili, Agios Vasilios, RETHYMNO
Spili is a traditional mountain village at a distance of 44km from Frangokastelo. It is built amphitheatrically in the center of the prefecture near the western slope of Mount Kedros—a southwestern extension of Mount Psiloritis. The village square contains tall age-old plane trees for an inspiring view as well as a fountain with 25 lion-heads from which water flows.
Preveli, Agios Vasilios
The area of Preveli is 35km south of Rethymnon and 10km east of Plakias. The beach of Preveli, also known as Lake Preveli or Foinikas, is located at the exit of the Mega River which carries the waters of the imposing Kourtaliotiko and Fratianos Gorges. It is one of the most famous beaches of southern Crete. The second largest palm forest of Crete is formed on the banks of the Great River, after the palm forest in Vai, which hosts the endemic Cretan palm tree of Theophrastus. The river forms a small lake 500m long at its exit to the sea with water all year round.