Palaiochora is one of the most well-known southern Crete holiday destinations. Only 77 km from Chania to the north, this small peninsula with a coastline that stretches for about 11 km, is renowned for its stunning beaches and rugged mountain views creating a unique contrast. When following an east direction on the E4 trail, the path continues towards the ancient city of Lissos and its beautiful beach with turquoise colored waters. From Lissos the path carries on until Sougia.
The whole southern coastline of Crete (which belongs to the Chania regional unit) can actually be explored on foot. Starting on the western edge at the chapel of Agios Ioannis and passing through Palaiochora, Sougia, Agia Roumeli, Loutro, and Chora Sfakion successively. This is one of the most remote and inaccessible parts of the island, characterized by the antithesis of the mountain cliffs and expansive views over the Libyan Sea. The ruins of ancient cities, picturesque bays, and stunning gorges are just a few of the things visitors can look forward to.
The E4 route from Palaiochora to Lissos
From Paleochora (1), we follow the coastal road until we pass the cemetery. Here we cross a paved road through an olive grove and 1 km after we reach the Camping “Paleochora” (2), by the sea. We continue for a while, until the entrance to the gorge of the river Alogirianos, where we see a dirt road on our right, which crosses the river and then splits into two directions. We follow the right branch of this road, the one that runs parallel to the sea, for about 3 km, until the outlet of the Anidriotiko gorge (3) and its beautiful pebble beach.
We then follow the distinct path by the sea, for about 3 km. After passing the small Cape Plakes (4), we begin to go up the slope for another kilometre, to the Arkales saddle (5). We keep the main Vardies massif on our left, and the massif of Cape Flómos on our right. From Arkales, we follow a cart track for about 1,3 km and then we come to a main unsurfaced road (6) which we cross and continue straight towards the east, on a clear downhill path. After another 2 km approximately, we reach ancient Lissos (7).
|Path Length||11.5 km|
|Hiking Duration||3 hour|
|When to hike||Spring, Autumn, Summer|