Hiking Karfi Mountain
About The Place
Nestled in the heart of Crete, Greece, the Lassithi Plateau stands as a testament to the rich tapestry of history, captivating landscapes, and vibrant culture that characterizes this Mediterranean island. This elevated plain, situated approximately 800 meters above sea level, is a captivating mosaic of nature’s wonders and human endeavors.
History: The history of the Lassithi Plateau is deeply intertwined with the broader historical narrative of Crete. Archaeological evidence suggests that the plateau has been inhabited since Minoan times, with remnants of ancient settlements and agricultural activities. It has been a witness to the rise and fall of various civilizations, from the Minoans to the Byzantines and the Venetians.
Landscape: The plateau unfolds like a vast canvas, surrounded by towering mountains that create a natural amphitheater. The fertile soil, fed by the waters of the Melissani River, supports a lush and diverse ecosystem. Olive groves, orchards, and fields of vibrant wildflowers paint the landscape, creating a stunning contrast against the rugged mountains that cradle the plateau.
Geological Formations: The geological formations of Lassithi are as intriguing as they are picturesque. The plateau is dotted with the famous windmills of Lassithi, which were historically used to irrigate the fields. These white structures stand against the backdrop of the Dikti mountain range, creating a postcard-perfect scene. The cave of Dikteon, associated with Greek mythology as the birthplace of Zeus, adds a mythical touch to the geological wonders of the region.
Fauna: The fauna of Lassithi is diverse, with the plateau providing a habitat for various bird species, including eagles and vultures. The region is also home to small mammals, reptiles, and a variety of insect life. The harmony between the natural environment and the agricultural activities has allowed for a balanced coexistence of flora and fauna.
Culture: The cultural richness of Lassithi is evident in the traditional villages that dot the plateau. These villages, such as Psychro and Tzermiado, offer a glimpse into the authentic Cretan way of life. Visitors can explore charming squares, centuries-old churches, and engage with the warm hospitality of the locals. Traditional Cretan cuisine, with its emphasis on olive oil, fresh produce, and dairy, is a culinary delight for those exploring the region.
Villages and Mountains: Each village in Lassithi has its unique character and charm. Psychro, in particular, is famous for the Cave of Zeus and the Dikteon Antron. Tzermiado, the largest village, serves as a hub for those exploring the plateau. As for the mountains, the Dikti range dominates the southern skyline, providing a dramatic backdrop to the plateau.
In conclusion, the Lassithi Plateau is a captivating destination that weaves together the threads of history, nature, and culture into a rich tapestry. Whether exploring ancient caves, wandering through traditional villages, or marveling at the breathtaking landscapes, visitors to Lassithi are immersed in the timeless beauty of Crete.
The view of the island and the Aposelemi dam.
Walking Distance: 7km
- Trekking 3 Hours
- Total Tour Duration 5 Hours
Experience an exhilarating hiking expedition to Mount Karfi, nestled within the captivating Lassithi plateau, located approximately 70km west of Heraklion. The Lassithi plateau is renowned for its idyllic windmills, which played a vital role in the region’s history. During the 1950s and 1960s, this area stood as one of Europe’s pioneering wind farms, boasting an impressive array of 10-13 thousand windmills.
These windmills harnessed the power to pump underground water, providing essential irrigation for local farmers and their bountiful crops. Additionally, Lassithi holds a significant place in Greek mythology as the birthplace of Zeus, the revered King of the gods.
Embarking on our hike from the charming village of Tzermiado, nestled within the heart of Lassithi plateau, we ascend along an uphill cement road, leading us to the breathtaking Nissimos plateau. It is from this picturesque plateau that our trail to the summit of Karfi commences. Reaching the summit, we discover the captivating remnants of an ancient Minoan settlement, offering a glimpse into the region’s rich history.
From this vantage point, a panoramic view unfolds, showcasing the stunning north coast, the majestic Selena and Dikti mountain ranges, and the magnificent Aposelemi dam. As our journey continues, we descend back to Tzermiado via an alternate path, following the footsteps of an old rocky mule path.
- Personal expenses, including coffees and alcoholic drinks
- Anything not mentioned in the “includes” list
What to Bring
Hat – Sunglasses
Experienced Trekking Guide
Free transport from/to your hotel with our vans. (as long as you are within the predefined pick-up area)
Lunch pack (water,energy bar, fruits, juice box)
Trekking equipment (trekking poles, backpack) uppon request
- Minimum of 3 participants
- Starting time 08:00
- Ending time 13:00
Cancellation Policy - Flexible
- Whenever you cancel 4 days or earlier than the confirmed activity starting date, your fee will be refunded for the entire activity charge.
- In case of cancellation within 48 and 96 hours before the scheduled activity starting date, you'll get 50% reimbursed.
- Those who cancel 48 hours or beyond are considered last-minute cancellations. There will be no refunds