Samaria National Park
Samaria is a two days sea kayak trip that takes place within the Samaria national park in an absolutely stunning sea kayaking environment. No previous experience is required. You need to be in good fit and not more than 105kg (that is the limit on weight in the hull of our boats regarding stability).
During the trip, we will paddle towards Loutro and Agia Roumeli villages (not accessible by roads). We will pass some of the most famous beaches of Crete; Glyka nera (sweet water beach), Marmara, Agios Pavlos and optional the Domata beach. All those areas are within the range of Samaria national park.
Samaria National Park is located on the west part of the island and was declared as a national park in 1962. It is a muli-designated area and specifically a National Park, Landscape of Outstanding Beauty, Natura 2000 site and Biosphere Reserve in the framework of the “Man and Biosphere” Programme of UNESCO. It has been awarded the European Diploma of Protected Areas of the Council of Europe. Also a hotspot for biodiversity and a place with a strong and important anthropogenic environment (history, special songs, traditions, etc.).
It contains one of the largest gorges in Europe, Samaria Gorge, with a total length of 13 km while nine main gorges are located within the area of the White Mountains. Those that they wish to walk the gorge, it will be possible in the morning of the 2nd day.
These specific landscape configuration schemes sustain unique abiotic and biotic environmental characteristics, most of them unknown, because of the site’s wilderness and difficultness for direct scientific filed work. The specificity of the area can be easily identified in numbers: altitude ranging from 0-2.453m, 48 summits higher than 2000 meters, 14 different types of habitats, approximately 40% of the entire extent of the county of Chania. The National Park is characterized by rich biodiversity, a high degree of endemism in fauna and flora, distinctive geological configurations and specific landscape features. Distinctive species of fauna found in the area are: the Cretan wild goat (Capra aegagrus cretica), the largest mammal of the island, the Cretan wildcat (Felis sylvestris cretensis) and a species of mouse (Acomys minous) which is considered to be rare. The rich avifauna of the area includes 69 species, with Gypaetus barbatus among others. The area houses 172 endemic species and subspecies, while 97 of them are endemic to Crete and 24 are specifically endemic (steno-endemic) to smaller areas. Some of the most distinctive species are: Cephalanthera cucullata, Nepeta sphaciotica, Bupleurum kakiskalae and Zelkova abelicea.
The whole trip is about 40-50km. This equates to about 25km/day in 2 days.
For Samaria trip you need to be fit enough to paddle 20-25km per day.
Paddlers without previous experience are welcome to join but they will enjoy it much more if they do an introduction course at least a day before (extra cost 80€ per person).
WHAT IS INCLUDED
The trip fee includes all of the equipment including jackets if you join during the winter months and a local guide.
The price does not include accommodation, flights, food & drinks.
If you prefer to camp and you don't have a tent you can rent for the whole duration of the trip for an extra 30€ including a mattress.
Enjoy-Crete has the best kayaking equipment in Greece and one of the best in Europe.
Tandem kayaks are also available for those that they prefer to paddle them.
CAMPING/ACCOMMODATION & FOOD
The overnight can be either in tents or in small apartments based on double occupancy. The cost of the apartment is between 35-50€ per night (for 2 persons).
In a walking distance from the apartments, there is a free camping spot for those that prefer to overnight in tents.
Tent & matress can be rent for an extra 30€.
There are several tavernas in Agia Roumeli (the name of the village where we will overnight) to have dinner. We can also stop for lunch during the paddle in a taverna or you can pack your lunch if you prefer.
All you need is some snacks for the day and of course water. There is no need for more than 2lt of water as we will be able to refill during the day if necessary.
ARRIVAL & DEPARTURE DATES
We will meet in our base at Ilingas beach 10 am. There is plenty of secure parking (free) if you are traveling with your car. You should arrive in Chania or Heraklion city the day before.
The closest airport with bus connection is from Chania town.
There is a bus every day during the summer months that arrives just before 10 am in Chora Sfakion; that village is just 2 minutes away by car.
If you don't have a car you can just give us a call and we will be happy to pick you up.
On the last day of the trip we will return back to Ilingas beach early evening; that will give you enough time to get the bus back to Chania (departs near 7 pm) or of course overnight near by and depart the next day in the morning.