The logistics of getting to and from the gorge were time-consuming as expected, but quite simple and straight-forward so we made it there and back with no glitches. As it was almost all down hill, my knees took a beating. Fortunately this morning they no longer hurt, and only my muscles are feeling it (which is good, because I haven't exercised since I've been here). At 18km, it's supposedly the longest gorge in Europe, although I've heard that fact disputed. It starts high up in the mountains and gradually descends to the Libyan Sea. The first part of the hike is mostly in the shade, but the latter part becomes quite hot and sunny and you definitely want sunscreen and a hat. Here are some photos with brief descriptions:
My friend Betti from London.
One of the many old, old trees in the park. Some date back 5 or more centuries.
A view near the top.
One of the many springs along the way where you can freshen up or refill your water. One of the things I love about Crete is that it's safe to drink the water and it actually tastes really good.
Some old ruins. Stuff like this can be found all over the island, as the history here goes back quite some time and is quite colorful. The island has been ruled by Minoans, Greeks, Arabs, Turks and Venetians at various times.
The ancient Kri-Kri, a species of mountain goat that has been roaming the gorge for something like a trillion years (or maybe just a long time).
Water under the bridge.
The narrowest part of the gorge. This was one of the many places where they have signs signaling "Walk Quickly, Extreme Danger" with a picture of falling rocks. Happy to report that there were no crushed skulls yesterday, at least to my knowledge.
A cat...imagine that!! This guy was chillin' at a refreshment stop near the bottom, and was kind enough to let me pet him without first trying to procure food from me.
We're out of the gorge now, and on our way into the town of Agia Roumeli to buy our ferry tickets.
Pretty pebble beach.
My feet and the Libyan Sea.
On our way home.