The Imbros Gorge, Crete Island

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Sfakia

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    imbros gorge
    by lup
  • The Imbros Gorge
    by Lochlainn
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    Imbros Gorge

    by lup Written Jun 29, 2004

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    imbros gorge

    This gorge is less famous than the Samaria gorge, but it is just as beautiful and far less busy. While the Samaria gorge is know for its endless stream of tourists (up to 5000 a day in the summer), the Imbros gorge is quiet, you can walk for hours without seeing anyone and only hear birds sing.

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    • Hiking and Walking

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  • Lochlainn's Profile Photo

    The Imbros Gorge

    by Lochlainn Written Sep 11, 2002

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    I know I'm waxing lyrical about gorges a bit much here but this one deserves a special mention of its own. It's a very different experience to the Samarian Gorge in that it has yet to become a touristy area, and so is an ideal opportunity for visitors to get a feel for the pace of life and stunning scenery that seduced me and many others over the years into returning to this island. Up to the late 1960s this gorge was the only way overland to access the southern Sfakian coast, so it features in Crete's history over millennia. Even in the second world war the pass was used in the evacuation (and hiding) of allied troops, for which the local villages paid a high and bloody price at the hands of the invading German armies. The best way to go about this walk is to hitch or bus it to Kalikratis or Asfendou - both so high up in the White Mountains that they are often snow covered well into the year. From there hike down to the village of Imbros itself, and if possible stay overnight there in preparation for the main hike - the gorge literally begins at the end of the main street! It has a gentle slope so is quite a pleasant walk. Watch out for the Venetian reservoir some way in - the last time I was there some enterprising locals were selling refeshments there (one can't halt progress!). Towards the end of the ravine one has a choice of veering right on the path to the village of Komitades (highly recommended) or continuing on to the seashore itself, where the gorge terminates amongst fascinating seacaves which good swimmers will enjoy exploring. I rented a boat (and driver!) from Komitades to Frangokastello for a small fee and even got in some fishing on the way. As I said before, the best way to do this is to have your main bags forwarded or escorted in advance by road, it makes the journey so much more pleasant, especially as one reaches sea level and the heat kicks in.

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