Our tour starts in Chania in Crete, one of the most beautiful cities in Greece. Crete is the most southerly and largest Greek Island and provides an inexhaustible array of vivid impressions.
A cradle of European civilisation, it has an unrivalled history and culture and is a paradise for the amateur archaeologists. The island was the seat of the great Minoan civilization, whose fascinating remains are one of the most impressive sights in the entire Mediterranean region.
Our walk passes through vineyards, orchards and olive groves and takes us to the superb White Mountains, jagged peaks which are sometimes snow-covered until early June. They epitomize the essence of Crete, which is virile, proud and fiercely independent, like the Cretans themselves.
We pass small isolated villages and follow the old footpaths created by shepherds and their animals. From the fertile valleys and isolated plains high in the mountains we have some spectacular views to the Libyan Sea.
On the southern side of the Omalos plateau, the Samaria National Park was established to protect the endemic flora and fauna of this fascinating region that encompasses Europe’s longest gorge and a number of smaller gorges. It is one of the two remaining habitats for the Cretan wild goat or Kri-Kri that lives in secluded hollows on the mountainside. The Kri-Kri are usually seen in the afternoon but their shyness makes it unlikely to glimpse one.
The 18km hike through the Samaria Gorge begins at Xyloskalo on the Omalos plateau at an altitude of 1200 metres. A well-maintained path drops down to the bottom of the gorge through a fragrant forest of pine and cypress trees.
Along the way, there are many species of flora, some of which are endemic to Crete and found only in this gorge. Wild herbs that grow profusely in the nooks and crannies of the cliffs, release their fragrance with only the slightest touch.
Our Hotels and Cuisine
In In Crete we stay in “the best of both worlds” - the dramatic mountain scenery and the charming coastal villages. Here we have chosen a variety of beautiful hotels, full of ambience and history.
Food in Greece - like its wine - is highly regional. Lots of salads, fresh seafood and the favourite meat is lamb.
The Greeks love their coffee and sweets and the streets are lined with small footpath cafes.
Walking Tour Combination
Departure dates have been arranged to allow both "Crete - Island of Zeus" and "Mediterranean Odyssey" walks to be combined.
Hi Graeme and Gabriela, we had a fabulous time in Crete and Santorini. Pascal was a wonderful guide, very helpful and knowledgeable. The walks were stunning and the time of year, just before the summer rush of holiday makers, perfect for exploring these wonderful islands. Thank you for a memorable trip. Denise & Rob, Wakehurst Parkway, NSW, Australia 
Our recent WGA in Crete and Santorini with Pascal was a very happy experience. The warmth with which Pascal was greeted everywhere on our trip was wonderful. He has obviously over the years developed such good connections... and we were the benefactors. We immediately felt welcome. This was a fun trip. The Cretan hospitality was everywhere… from the tiniest bar where freshly squeezed orange juice was a treat... the lunch taverna... our accommodation... the evening restaurant... everywhere. Our hosts always wanted us to have a good time... which we certainly did. It is obvious that food is central to their hospitality... and we were treated to the local traditional cuisines... always full of flavour. Often the fish had been caught by a family member that morning, or the greens gathered from their garden, sometimes wine produced from their vineyard. Our hosts would often bring out their own special treats for us... and Raki to toast with us (for those who wished to imbibe). The walks were great... some quite spectacular... giving us a good sense of the country. Then there was Santorini... wow! Settled in our accommodation with an amazing panorama in front of us, one group member said she thought she had died and gone to heaven. Absolutely stunning! Pascal was a wonderful guide… catering to our needs (and wants), ensuring our safety and organizing transport... often with small private boats... with great efficiency... probably only possible because of his amazing contacts in Crete and Santorini. His depth of knowledge of the history, flora and fauna, was greatly appreciated by all. Thank you Pascal and WGA... another great walking/eating experience. Ian & Sue, Rocklea, QLD, Australia