E4 accommodation Share and discuss the many routes and paths in the mountains, along the coast, and on the plains of Sfakia. Post your walk description, add photos, and discuss safety. Use information at your own risk.

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Joined: 01 Nov 2016, 01:20

E4 accommodation

by crete17 » 02 Nov 2016, 00:09

We plan to hike the E4 in SW Crete for about a fortnight next June. Would we need to brin sleeping bags or would we bbe able to find accommodation each night with bedding? We are coming from New Zealand so space in our packs is an issue.
Also are we likely to find somewhere to leave a larger bag so we can hike with the minimum, or a service like a taxi, which would transport the larger bag to the end of our hike? We would welcome any suggestions and advice. Thanks.

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Re: E4 accommodation

by langsten » 02 Nov 2016, 10:28


Give us more details about exactly what part of the E4 you're going to walk.

Where do you plan to start? Where will you end up?

What do you plan to do along the way?


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Re: E4 accommodation

by mike » 03 Nov 2016, 10:43

Not easy to answer .. 'yes' to everything you ask? Part of the difficulty is that the E4 covers only a small part of the hiking possibilities in the SW area. Most, if not all, of the season 'regulars' do not give much attention to the E4 designation as such.

Because of the possibilities, you can plan your trip any way you want, if you pick the appropriate combination of routes/itineraries. If you want to limit yourself to a bed and roof every night, then this is possible. Even the question regarding taxi/luggage transfer depends totally on the route you want to follow. You can do without, or if desired, such as for overnight bivouac through high mountains, then you plan around dealing with a heavy bag.

Rather than a straight-through walk, another planning option is to work from 2-3 bases, hiking from one to the next, and then do a series of day hikes from each base. Sometimes bag transport can be arranged from one base to the next. Easiest along coast, done for hiking groups all the time, although I've never arranged this myself. If you're fit enough, you could carry everything yourself on the one day to a base, then hike light on the day excursions.

Anyway, lots of possibilities. Better to plan the rough itinerary first, and ask questions about logistics afterwards.

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Re: E4 accommodation

by Betsy » 05 Nov 2016, 14:15

I can see why you want some advice Jane, as you might want to plan your route around your accommodation.......rather than the other way round!
Firstly I would say that June will be hot for walking. - So I wouod suggest that you carry as little as possible with you if you intend to walk all day. You will need plenty of water and some refreshments, so don't want to be carrying bedding etc if possible.
Secondy, there is plenty of accommodation available along the E4 (or just off it) in June. There are also taxi's available to transport your belongings for you.
I would take Mike's advice and give us an 'outline' of your possible route. We can then suggest accommodation/taxi services to help you finalise your plans. To answer your question though......yes you can find accommodation and taxis, so do not need to bring sleeping bags etc from NZ.

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Re: E4 accommodation

by jan » 06 Nov 2016, 11:29

If you haven't already done so I suggest you get hold of the Anavasi maps covering SW Crete and also a walking guidebook which covers the area: our own favourite is Loraine Wilson's The High Mountains of Crete published by Cicerone Press. Armed with those you should be able to put together a possible route. I suggest you build in a couple of rest days to enjoy your surroundings and also to cope with any unexpected eventualities.

June should indeed be hot down on the coast but at altitude any weather is possible and likely!

Mike's suggestion of using two or three accommodation centres and doing day walks from there would cut down the amount of load bearing you have to do but you may well need to carry full packs on occasion. And if you intend to get into the heart of the mountains you should plan on coping with an unexpected overnight if the weather closes in.

Hope that helps.

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Re: E4 accommodation

by crete17 » 10 Mar 2017, 00:13

Thanks to everyone who has responded. Your posts are really helpful.
We were thinking of arriving in Chania then getting a bus to Omalos and starting walking from there. But we could begin any where.

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Joined: 16 Nov 2015, 17:58

Re: E4 accommodation

by rambler » 11 Mar 2017, 23:05

Just written a long description for you but its dissapeared. So a much shorter version based on E4 Coast route from Elafonissi to Sfakia.
Bus Hania to 1st base at Paleochora.
Walk 1 - Bus to Elafonissi. walk E4 back to Paleochora.
Walk 2 - Ferry to Sougia , walk E4 back to Paleochora.
With packs on ferry to 2nd base at Sougia.
Walk 3 Bus to omalos, walk E4 mountain section to Sougia. Needs further forum advice to avoid vertiginous section.
Walk 4 Taxi boat to Tripiti, walk E4 coastal section to Sougia.
Walk 5 (Not part of E4) Bus to Omalos, walk gorge down to Agia Roumeli & 1730 ferry back to Sougia.
Walk 6 (Not part of E4) Bus to Agia Irini walk gorge back to Sougia.
Walk 7 Arrange accomodation in 3rd base at Agia Roumeli to pick your packs off the morning ferry from Sougia.
You again take Taxi boat to Tripiti, this time walk east to Agia Roumeli.
Walk 8 Arrange accomodation in Loutro to pick your packs off the morning ferry from Agia Roumeli.
You walk east to 4th base at Loutro.
Walk 9 (Not part of E4) Walk to Marmara beach & up Aradena gorge to old Aradena bridge. Thence to Anopoli & long descent to Loutro.
Walk 10 Walkon E4 to Sfakia & ferry back to loutro.
With packs on ferry to Sfakia.
Other contributers will help with more advice.
Good Luck Dave

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Re: E4 accommodation

by langsten » 25 Apr 2017, 14:22


Dave has provided a doable itinerary. I personally wouldn't choose that itinerary - too many buses and boats. So, here is an alternative.

I don't know much about Crete west of Domata Gorge. But, there is a nice walk from Sougia that can be done in a day from Chania.


Check the June bus schedule.

The rest of the itinerary is based on the assumption that you can carry everything you will need for 1-2 weeks down the Samaria Gorge. You don't need sleeping bags, or any camping equipment. You'll be based in villages every night.

So, bus to Omalos. Walk down the Samaria Gorge.

Stay at Aghia Roumeli for 2-3 nights. From Roumeli: a) day walk to Domata Beach and back; b) day walk up past the two western forts and as far up on Papoura as you are inclined to go. The views from there are spectacular: http://www.panoramio.com/photo/12389566 - http://www.panoramio.com/photo/12389540 ; c) day walk up the Eligas (Elighia) Gorge - at least up to the saddle above Flyskouias, possibly with a side trip up to the two eastern forts - http://www.panoramio.com/photo/3255630 ; d) stay an extra night and do the walk up to the eastern forts on a day separate from the walk up to the Eligas saddle.

Walk to Loutro on the A4 - packs on the ferry. Stay 2-3 nights. From Loutro: a) day walk up the Aradhena Gorge - at least to the kalderimi past the bridge - perhaps higher up. Back through Anopolis; b) day walk through Livaniana, to the Aghios Athanasios Church, across the Aradhena gorge, up to Aghios Ioannis, down to the coast, and back on the A4; c) day walk up to Anopolis, down the ravine to Chora Sfakion, back to Loutro on the A4.

Walk to Chora Sfakion - packs on the ferry. Stay 2-3 nights. From Chora Sfakion: a) day trip, bus up to Imbros, walk down the gorge and back to Chora Sfakion; ; b) day walk up the Illingas Gorge, up the east side to Mouri, back through Kavros and down to Chora Sfakion; c) day walk up the Sfakiano Gorge to Kali Laki, back either via Imbros or Mouri / Kavros.

NOTE: Some of these walks are long and strenuous. You will probably want to add in some nights at each stop to have some rest days. Or, of course, you can just skip some of the walks. These are just ideas.


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Re: E4 accommodation

by Anna » 23 May 2017, 07:10

I would recommend you to get the book "The cretan way" by Luca Gianotti. You can look at this website https://e4crete.wordpress.com

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