Photo by Fabricio Macedo FGMsp from Pixabay
Flowers are blooming, birds are chirping, days are longer and there’s something in the air: all the telltale signs are there. Spring has finally sprung! And in Crete, this means clear blue, sunny skies above; and a carpet of green dotted with red, yellow and blue wildflowers, below.
With average April highs hovering around 20oC you can now enjoy the great outdoors without getting a heat stroke.
Tourist traffic in the shoulder season is also significantly lower, which is a considerable added bonus.
Make yourselves at home at the Adeste Chania luxury villas in Apokoronas — which looks especially fetching at this time of year — and start savouring the many delights of spring in Chania.
Extending for some 200 square kilometres, from the foothills of the White Mountains to the beaches on Chania’s north, Apokoronas is Crete’s evergreen province, with olive groves, vineyards, orange, lemon and avocado trees, and even forests with cypresses and oaks.
From the sweeping views over Souda Bay to the sound of sheep and goats roaming through winding country roads, and from sleepy mountain villages to the crystalline waters of the northern coast, Apokoronas’ varied scenery is best discovered on a bicycle. Options abound and cater to all levels of physical condition and aptitude. Riders with an average fitness level and an active interest in both history and nature can start from the Malaxa plateau; head to Aptera – a remarkable archaeological site with ruins from Minoan through to Hellenistic, Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman times; cycle amid charming country roads strewn with ancient monuments and antique monasteries to reach the village of Stylos and its natural water-springs; and then ride towards the north coast of Chania and Kalives village for a relaxing session on the beach or even a refreshing dip in the aquamarine sea, for those brave enough to attempt it.
Samaria, aka “Europe’s Grand Canyon’, is undoubtedly the star among Crete’s gorges. But it is not the only one. Apokoronas is home to some of the island’s most fascinating ravines – Kaliakoudes and Dikatmos are both supremely beautiful with lush vegetation and in the case of the former even waterfalls until late spring. They are, though, quite demanding – especially if you’re travelling with small children. If so, it’s best to give Imbros Gorge in Sfakia (no more than an hour’s drive from your Adeste Villa) a go. 8 km long with its narrowest point being only 1,60 m, Imbros boasts beautiful scenery and is quite easy to cross – for kids too. The hike should take you about 3,5 hours from start to finish and you’ll just need sturdy shoes and an upbeat mood.
If on the other hand, you are looking to spend an even more relaxed day with the family in Apokoronas, a great suggestion is to walk on the old paths of Roupakias connecting Kefalas with Xirosterni and Souri villages. Passing through oak and cypress forests, and old cisterns with stone troughs, the paths have been recently cleaned and signposted thanks to the initiatives of the @WeTakeCareOfApokoronasVillage team.
But the above is just an indication of the delights of spring in Chania for nature and hiking lovers. Get in touch with our seasoned tour guide and let them walk you through the area’s history and beauty at your own pace, with a tailor-designed itinerary.
Want to up the ante a notch? Spring in Chania is also the best time to embark on an exciting canoeing adventure. Kιliaris River in Apokoronas starts near the village of Stylos and ends on the beach of Kyani Akti near Kalives. At a length of 5km, it is the second largest river in water flow in Crete with dense vegetation along its banks. A veritable paradise rich in flora and fauna, with plane trees, reeds and aquatic plants, as well as birds, turtles, amphibians, eels and crabs and willows, Kyliaris – whose name translates to the rolling river – is supplied with the waters of Varsamou and Mavri peaks in the White Mountains (1389m and 2069m respectively). Kyliaris has four tributaries with an overall network length of 36km – Keramiotis (dry on summer), Anavreti (dry on summer), Mylavlakas and Mantamas (perenial streams). With calm waters, Kyliaris is suitable for rafting and canoeing for the whole family and for people of all ages. Make sure to pack a waterproof camera to capture all the surrounding beauty for posterity.
Is your appetite whetted? Immerse yourselves in a thrilling spring adventure with the help of our concierge team: They are 24/7 at your disposal, to help you customise the escapade that matches your style, needs, party size and composition.
Did you like this post? Stay tuned to our blog for the 2nd part of spring in Chania, as well as for more insights, tips and advice on what to see, shop, pack and do in Chania and the island of Crete!