The Sirikari gorge, situated 55km west of Chania and 17km south of Kissamos, is nestled in a verdant area filled with canyons and streams. The paved road leading to Sirikari weaves through lush vegetation, offering a glimpse of the area’s beauty from the get-go. The gorge splits into two parallel paths here – Tsichliano to the west and Kioliano or Sirikariano to the east, both culminating at the Polirinia settlement, the site of the ancient town of Polirinia. The town’s ancient walls, still in a decent state of preservation, stand tall in its citadel, atop a hill with a panoramic view of the Kissamos bay.
Close to Sirikari, an enchanting forest unfolds, home to towering chestnut trees, quaint waterfalls, and babbling brooks. Although it isn’t the only chestnut forest in the Chania prefecture, with several others dotting the slopes of the White Mountains, its beauty and vastness set it apart.
Adjacent to Sirikari, in Sineniana, stand two well-preserved old watermills. A visit to the Church of the Assumption is also recommended, particularly on August 15th, when a traditional feast is held. The church, nestled in the chestnut grove, is surrounded by other trees like holm oaks, cypresses, and plane trees. A little further along, you can explore an abandoned village set amidst a stunning oak wood. Additionally, the Sirikari village houses the 15th-century Byzantine church of the Holy Apostles (Agii Apostoli), which is definitely worth a visit.
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