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“Beautiful hike” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Samaria Gorge National Park

Samaria Gorge National Park
Lefka Ori (White Mountains), Sfakia, Crete, Greece
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Top Rated
$68*
and up
Full Day Tour to Samaria Gorge
Ranked #2 of 6 Attractions in Sfakia
4.5 of 5 stars 796 Reviews
Type: Canyons, National Parks, Outdoors
Activities: Hiking
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Attraction details
Owner description: Believed to be one of the most scenic national parks in Europe, this gorge stretches more than 10 miles to the south coastal region and offers many hiking trails.
Alta Loma, California
Top Contributor
191 reviews 191 reviews
105 attraction reviews
Reviews in 55 cities Reviews in 55 cities
123 helpful votes 123 helpful votes
“Beautiful hike”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 7, 2014

This was a nice hike. I drove my own car to the top and walked down.. Which wasn't all that easy as you are walking down a steep rocky path and using some muscles that you don't regularly use. After about 8km down I realized that I had to go all the way back up 8km so I turned around and went back. And that was I workout ! (And I run 3 to 6 miles 4 days a week) my suggestion is to go on a excursion that drops you off at the top and the you take a boat to a pick up point. That's the best way to see the gorge!!

Visited July 2014
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Northamptonshire, United Kingdom
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“you should try this”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 6, 2014

we did this walk in 8 hrs - both ways!! yes it is possible... we hired a car and parked at omolos paid the 5 euro entrance fee at 7.00 am ( gorge opens at 6.00) and walked down the gorge with no one else in sight - the whole way...a great time to start and avoids the mass tourists arriving by coach around 10.00 am - it took just 3 1/2 hrs to go down.. we then turned around and started our walk up the gorge taking our time and really enjoying the sights ( the gorge is actually much prettier going up and far more impressive ) by the time we reached the deserted village of samaria most of the visitors were having lunch so again we managed to avoid the crowds.
don't get me wrong - this is still a very hard and difficult walk both ways and the ascent was in full 34 degree sun. we took 4ltr of water and plenty of food..also the drinking water available at the gorge is absolutely fine to top up your water bottles with - no ill side affects. the wc's however are not too desirable and only use if you are absolutely desperate ( hole in the ground job).
most visitors take the organised tour coach being dropped off at the top - ferry from the beach and collected by coach to go back to your hotel....but if you have a hire car and are very fit as the whole walk is 32 kilometres ...it is a fantastic way to visit the gorge...beware of the final 2km as it is really steep!!

Visited June 2014
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Isle of Wight, United Kingdom
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14 reviews 14 reviews
5 attraction reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
“A review for the fat or wobbly or unfit amongst us...”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 6, 2014

I will start by saying my fit husband thought this was the best trip ever and if you get the chance, you really should go. Now this gorge is beautiful, truly stunning, but if you're not very fit or have any health issues or leg problems, here's my view (and I'm just trying to help you make a decision on the trip).

The first 2-3K is a steep descent on loose rocks. The rocks that aren't loose have been walked so often that they shine. Views stunning. From here on it is less steep, though still downhill on loose rocks. There are plenty of toilets and water points throughout. If you are not a great walker, by the 5K point, your thighs will be screaming from walking downhill for so long. I have an ankle problem so was quite uncomfortable by then. (Views still great). The rest of the trail is also downhill, sometimes with hand rails, sometimes not. There are stepping stones through streams. There are wobbly wooden crossings for deeper streams. By the 10K point, trying not to cry! Lovely man from Belgium let me borrow one of his Nordic walking poles. (Much easier - highly recommended - views still stunning). Occasional signs warned to walk quickly as there was a possibility of falling rocks. By 12K, was hoping to get hit by one. Such a sense of achievement when you reach the end though - like passing your driving test!

On the coach we were told that if anyone had any health problems like heart conditions or diabetes, they should not enter the gorge, as once you're in, it will be very difficult to get help. Also if anyone had any hip, knee or ankle problems, they should probably give it a miss.

Our resort rep didn't mention any of this and in fact told us that it was only downhill for the first 2K, which is why I thought I'd be OK.

In conclusion, I'm really glad I went. If you go, wear decent walking boots, preferably with ankle support, and if you're not used to this kind of walking, take a walking pole - it really makes a difference. Enjoy! x

Visited June 2014
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Zurich
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
“overcrowded natural beauty”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 6, 2014

We started from Chora Sfakion by boat and walked up about halfway from Agia Roumeli and back. It was a good alternative to going down from the top, since we could access more easily (from sfakia) and we were able to enjoy the nature with a little less people in the beginning.

Although the place itself is very nice, we would definitely not define it as a must-do experience, also because we suspect there are other canyons around that may be a little less impressive, but probably more enjoyable because less touristic.

Clearly the main problem of the place is that you have to share the fantastic gorge with loads of others.

Visited October 2013
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Switzerland
Top Contributor
378 reviews 378 reviews
97 attraction reviews
Reviews in 121 cities Reviews in 121 cities
218 helpful votes 218 helpful votes
“Enjoyable”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 4, 2014

Impressive and very enjoyable walk. Bring good shoes to hike and back pack to carry lots of water. Absolutely recommended.

Visited June 2014
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