The Cretan Mountains include stunning mountain ranges and gorges. The mountainous island of Crete is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Greece. And it’s no wonder, as the island is home to some of the most beautiful mountains in the country. The White Mountains, or Lefka Ori, dominate the landscape of central Crete. These snow-capped peaks are a sight to behold, and they offer visitors the opportunity to enjoy a variety of winter sports. Further south, Mount Ida is the tallest mountain on the island and is considered sacred by many Greeks. This mystical mountain is home to the legendary cave where Zeus was born, and it offers hikers stunning views of the surrounding countryside. Whether you’re looking for a challenging hike or a relaxing day in nature, Crete’s mountains are sure to please.
The White Mountains are a popular destination for hikers and climbers
Mount Ida is the highest mountain on the island
Ida, also known as Psiloritis or Mount Ida, is a mountain located on the island of Crete. Its highest peak, Timios Stavros, is the highest point in all of Crete. The Ida mountains are located in the prefecture of Rethymnon. On its slopes lies the cave Idaion Andron, in which, according to legend, Zeus was born. Today, Mount Ida is a popular tourist destination, offering visitors stunning views of the surrounding countryside. hikers and climbers can also enjoy its many trails and pathways. Whether you’re looking for a challenge or just a place to relax and take in the scenery, Mount Ida is sure to please.
Dikti Mountains are the most dominant mountain range in the prefecture of Lassithi.
The Dikti mountain range is the largest and most dominant mountain range in the prefecture of Lassithi. Its highest peaks, Mt Spathi, Mt Afentis Christos, and Mt Lazaros, soar to over 2,000 meters above sea level. The range dominates the Lassithi plateau, which at 850 meters above sea level is the largest plateau on the island of Crete.
The Dikti mountains are home to several gorges, including the Havgas at Katharo and Kalamafka gorges, as well as numerous other canyons such as Sarakina, Adrianos, Ambelos, Roza, and Kritsa. The mountains are also a major source of freshwater for the plateau, with several rivers and streams originating in the range. In addition to its natural beauty, the Dikti mountain range is an important part of the local economy, with tourism being a major industry in the area.
Asterousia Mountains - the most southern range in Crete
The Asterousia Mountains are the most southern range in Crete and even of Greece. They run parallel to the south coast of Heraklion Prefecture, forming a natural wall between the Libyan Sea and the Mesara plain. The highest peak in the Asterousia Mountains is Mt Kofinas (1231 m.) which was during Minoan time an important peak sanctuary. The average altitude is very high, but access is quite tough because the terrain is very rugged, with many gorges and canyons. Asterousia’s main features are warm temperatures, rare rainfalls and very low vegetation. The bare mountains with sharp rocks and steep cliffs give a very special character to this region!
These mountains get their name from the local king Asterion, who married Princess Europa at the command of her lover, Zeus. Because of its unique geography and history, the Asterousia Mountains are a popular destination for hikers and outdoor enthusiasts from all over the world.
Despite its difficult accessibility, the Asterousia Mountains are definitely worth visiting -whether for their natural beauty, their historical significance or simply for the unique experience of being in one of Greece’s most remote and unspoiled locations.
Thripti Mountains are covered in beautiful pine forests
Thripti Range is the fifth highest mountain range of Crete, also called Aori. The Thripti Mountain Range is located in the Lassithi prefecture in East Crete. The range stretches for approximately 25 kilometres, with the highest peak, Stavromenos, reaching a height of 1476 meters. The mountains are covered in beautiful pine forests and are known for some very wild and inaccessible gorges, such as the gorge of Ha and Mesonas Gorge.
In the Kavousi village, visitors can find the huge olive tree of Azorias, as well as some interesting Minoan excavations. Many beautiful ancient donkey trails wind through the mountains, providing stunning views of the landscape. Whether you’re looking to explore prehistoric ruins or simply take in the natural beauty of Crete, the Thripti Mountain Range is sure to impress.
Go ski mountaineering in the Cretan Mountains in the winter months
Ski mountaineering in Crete is a popular activity among locals and tourists alike. The massif of Psiloritis, with its higher peak Timios Stavros (2456m) is situated in the centre of Crete between the prefectures of Rethymnon and Heraklion, offers a variety of ski trails to suit all levels of experience, and the stunning scenery is an added bonus. The best time to go ski mountaineering in Crete is from mid-January to mid-April when the snow conditions are at their best. There are a number of refuges dotted around the mountain, which provide shelter for those undertaking multi-day routes. With its diverse landscape and abundance of snow, Crete is the perfect place to enjoy this exhilarating sport.
Summits of Crete higher than 2000 meters
The island of Crete is home to some of the most beautiful mountains in Greece and is a popular destination for hikers and climbers from all over the world. With so many amazing trails to choose from, it’s hard to know where to start. So, we want to know – what is your favourite hiking trail? Let us know in the comments below!