Anopolis/Aradena/Marmara then Loutro 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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Re: Anopolis/Aradena/Marmara then Loutro

by Jean » 18 Jun 2016, 00:04

If you have never walked down the gorge before, it might be a good idea to go with someone else. It is such a beautiful hike, but you need to be careful at some points.

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Re: Anopolis/Aradena/Marmara then Loutro

by Mihalis » 21 Aug 2016, 12:56

I walked the Aradena Gorge during my trip, a day after a very bad stomach bug that had me vomitting all day. It was very hot, and the gorge was certainly tricky and somewhat difficult at moments, but it wasn't horrible. I took a taxi boat back to Hora Sfakion because I was still too sick from the day before, but my cousin who walked the gorge with me, walked back to Aradena to pick up our car! The only thing I didn't like is that the green markers were not always very visible.

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Re: Anopolis/Aradena/Marmara then Loutro

by Noah » 04 Aug 2022, 17:45

Returning to this thread because plenty of good advice here, seems sensible to keep it together :

Planning to take daughter(s) down Aradena Gorge this August; I have walked the full gorge starting from Loutro, and shared video with the girls, so they have an idea of the challenge. Probably need to take the bus from Chora Sfakion to Aredena as they are not as enthusiastic about the heat as me - I was bred into it but epigenetics have not come in to effect, it seems.

I understand bus leaves Chora Sfakion at 0900 hrs - is this still the schedule?

One daughter is not very happy with heights, so we may need to take the route avoiding the ladders; she is sensible and will advise if she feels up to it, but I have not taken the steps route that goes around the challenging section, if I understand correctly. I did note a set of steps going up the right side of the gorge as one approaches the ladder section - is this the bypass route? Where does it return to the gorge?

The girls are reasonably fit and used to outdoor life - we walked up Snowdon last summer - and we have been visiting Crete for decade+, descended Imbros Gorge several times, so my main caution is the heat, and the ladder section. Thanks.

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Re: Anopolis/Aradena/Marmara then Loutro

by Micki » 05 Aug 2022, 11:44

I am not confident that avoiding the ladders really helps. Three years ago, when I was last there, the steps route was more a slope of loose stones, and the handrail was hardly holding itself. And you have an unspoiled view to the bottom of the gorge which is about 30-40 m below. In my opinion, the ladders are the better choice.

So you should try to get some information whether the way has been improved since - the people from Anopoli Rooms will certainly know.

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Re: Anopolis/Aradena/Marmara then Loutro

by langsten » 07 Aug 2022, 11:26


I agree with Micki.

I don't believe that the ladder bypass (what I call the "steps") is a good alternative for someone who is unhappy with heights.

The steps are narrow and go up to a considerable height above the gorge. At some points the best view from the steps is a long way down to the bottom of the gorge.

If you're coming from the Aradhena bridge and walking down the gorge, one alternative is to leave the gorge just before the ladder / steps area, walking up the path to Aghios Athanasios and toward Livaniana, then descending back into the gorge on the path immediately behind (to the west of) Livaniana.

Try the ladder and/or the steps. If neither works for your daughter, try the alternative I've suggested.


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Re: Anopolis/Aradena/Marmara then Loutro

by Noah » 08 Aug 2022, 07:25

Thanks Micki and Ray; useful information and advice. I have walked the route from Livaniana so should be able to find that alternative if necessary.

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Re: Anopolis/Aradena/Marmara then Loutro

by jan » 08 Aug 2022, 11:48

We've walked this route a number of times, both up and down. My husband isn't fond of heights but having descended the 'new' steps route as well as the ladders said he'd choose the ladders any day.

Your daughter might prefer to ascend the gorge from Marmara beach (boat from Loutro) rather than descend. It's slightly tricky to get onto the ladder from above but no problem at all of course from the bottom. Either way, as long as you keep your eyes in front of you rather than looking down there shouldn't be any concern about vertigo.

If you do walk up, start out on the tarmac road towards Anopolis and once you're past the road turn to Livania keep an eye open on the right for the shepherds' track (not surfaced) which is red-dot marked and is a shortcut to Anopolis 'centre', It brings you out at Ag Dimitrios church where you turn right on the tarmac.


kokkinos vrachos
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Re: Anopolis/Aradena/Marmara then Loutro

by kokkinos vrachos » 09 Aug 2022, 07:56

# 11

Kalimera Noah, I would take the normal path (the bypass).

As has already been written, there is a bit of rubble and the wooden railing is in bad condition.

Both routes then meet again.

The bigger problem is the heat in August. It feels like 35-40C in the gorge. Only a few days ago, 2 tourists had to be rescued from the gorge. ... %81%ce%ac/

I would not recommend the hike if it is very hot.

Aradena Gorge: ... dena-gorge ... dena-gorge

Many greetings from Hamburg, kv
"I hope nothing, I fear nothing, I am free."
Nikos Kazantzakis

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Re: Anopolis/Aradena/Marmara then Loutro

by langsten » 05 Sep 2022, 13:41

In the past couple of weeks I have walked the Aradena Gorge both up (from Marmara to the bridge) and down (from the bridge to Marmara). When going up the gorge I walked the path that bypasses the ladders. When going down the gorge I went down the ladders.

A few comments on the ladders / by-pass area.

First, an apology. It is NOT possible, as I said in previous post, to avoid the ladders / by-pass by going up to the Agios Athanasios Church. I was misremembering the order of things.

So, if you're going to walk the length of the gorge, you have to pick - either the ladders or the by-pass path. I have a couple of suggestions. Please, if anyone has any contact with the authorities who might be able to do something about these issues, pass these suggestions on to them.

Others have mentioned that the railing on the by-pass path is, in places, in terrible shape. (Pieces of it are laying in the bottom of the gorge.) Even when the railing is in apparently decent shape I would not want to trust my life to it by putting any serious weight on it. I've also walked between Loutro and Chora Sfakion a number of times in the past couple of weeks. In areas both before and after Sweetwater Beach there are a number of places where a cable has been bolted into the rock along the path. This cable provides help in getting in getting up some difficult bits, and also feels a great deal more secure than the decaying railings in the Aradena Gorge.

Could cable of this sort be added to the by-pass in the Aradena Gorge?

Finally, many people mention the ladders. I don't have a problem with the ladders. But I do have a problem with the bit where one has to climb up a rock using a rope. I had no problem getting DOWN that bit. But, I'm old. I'm no longer confident that I have the upper-body strength to pull myself UP that rock. Perhaps a short ladder could be placed there. Or, if a rope is necessary, perhaps some extra stakes for footholds could be added.


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