With a variety of soaring mountains, lunging gorges and scenic sea trails, hiking in the Greek Islands is a ‘pick your own adventure’ affair. The best time to visit is during the spring and autumn when the weather is pleasantly warm but the beaches are less crowded.
Climb Mount Pantokrator on Corfu for spectacular views over the sea and mountains or walk the long-distance Corfu Trail for a journey through traditional villages and forests.
The island of Naxos is one of the largest islands in the Cyclades and as such, it offers a great variety of hiking trails. These are dotted with picturesque villages and offer an awe-inspiring natural setting and rich historical background.
These trails can be accessed from many villages on the island such as Filoti, Melanes, Apiranthos, Chalki, Koronos, Potamia, Halki and Apollonas. Most of them are loop-back hikes and all are accessible by bus.
Another popular hiking trail is the Danakos – Fotodoti Monastery trail that begins at the village of Danakos and winds up to the monastery of Christos Photodotis, a unique monument with impressive towers. It also has numerous inscriptions and ruins that will fascinate history buffs.
In addition to the beautiful mountain scenery, hiking trails on Naxos are also lined with fruit orchards, olive groves and forests filled with oak and plane trees. It is also possible to visit the island’s emery mines, which feature old facilities and equipment.
The best times for hiking on Naxos are spring and autumn, as these are the shoulder seasons for the island and the weather is usually nice. Hiking on the Greek islands is a rewarding activity that can be enjoyed by people of all ages. With the right preparation, it can also be a fun family experience.
Although Samothrace is not as big as other Greek islands, the mountainous landscape of this mystical island is still quite impressive. The rugged craggy rocks of Mount Saos give way to verdant slopes of oddly shaped plane trees and oak woodlands where myrtles and chestnuts flourish alongside rare and endemic species. The scenery is reminiscent of a fairytale, and you may be tempted to look for mythological creatures like nymphs and goat-like gods among the flora.
The island also offers a number of hiking trails that lead to enchanting natural landscapes, including the picturesque waterfalls and rock pools called vathres. The more challenging hikes on Samothrace can be quite demanding for even experienced hikers, so it is advisable to consult with a local guide before trying them. The more easy-to-follow trails, such as the Tzaneria Beach Loop trail, are ideal for families with kids and those starting out on their Greece hiking adventure.
Whether you’re interested in canyon trekking, wild nature or simply relaxing on one of Samothrace’s scenic beaches, this map will help you get the most out of your visit. It’s the first ever Samothrace GIS / GPS map to be created with data collected 100% through field survey and includes details on every beach, down to the tiniest cove. The Polyart material it’s printed on makes it totally waterproof and rip-proof, so you can fold it a hundred times or dunk it in the sea without worrying about it getting damaged!
Located in the Ionian Islands, Kefalonia offers incredible hiking trails. Its mountainous peaks, gorges, natural springs and pristine forests are a hiker’s dream come true. These hiking routes are best experienced during the low season, when you can enjoy the flora and fauna without the crowds.
The most famous trail on the island is Samaria Gorge, a gorge that’s around 16 kilometers long and takes you through Byzantine ruins, mystical waterfalls, and a small river. You’ll be treated to some of the most spectacular scenery in Greece, including a cliff-top castle.
Another great hiking path on the island is the Agios Georgios – Mt. Devas trail, a moderate walk that’s around four and a half hours long. This trail starts from a church and ends with a stunning view of the lake. You’ll also be able to see the remains of a fortification built by leftist forces during the Greek Civil War.
Throughout Kefalonia, you’ll find old mule tracks that have been converted to asphalt, but many pockets of land still hold interesting trails. One such spot is the wetlands of Gira, which is filled with wild duck, moorhens, flamingos and pelicans. The wetlands are part of the Natura 2000 protected area and can be visited on a bike ride or on foot. Alternatively, you can take a boat trip to see the bird-filled habitats.
Crete is the largest island of the Greek archipelago and it’s home to a wide range of hiking trails. From vast gorges to huge plateaus, this landscape offers something for every walker.
The White Mountains, or Lefka Ori, are a highlight of the hikes on Crete. With rocky caves, ruined monasteries and views of the sea, this is a landscape that needs to be seen to be believed. On the other end of the spectrum are Crete’s desert-like gorges like Samaria Gorge, which is both a UNESCO World Heritage site and one of the most famous hikes in Europe.
This epic trail stretches 16 kilometers through Samaria Gorge National Park and is open from May to October. The walk is known as an exhilarating experience, despite its length. The hike is also a rite of passage for many Greeks and is deeply symbolic of freedom.
Less crowded than the Samaria Gorge trek, the Imbros to Komitades hike is a scenic and exciting route with cliffs and narrow paths. This route is suitable for all hikers and can be done in summer or winter.