Today we will visit the Richtis Gorge with the waterfall of the same name, show their location on the map, as well as tell them how to get to them by car. The gorges of Crete are some of the island’s most interesting sights. There are a lot of them: some of them you can go by car or bicycle, some you can walk without difficulty. And there are some wich can not be accessed without experience and climbing equipment. Everyone can find a gorge to their liking. Each of them is individually, extraordinarily beautiful and interesting.
One of the gorges we visited is in the east of Crete, 56 km from Agios Nikolaos and 16 km from Sitia. The gorge is called Richtis. One of the most unusual and beautiful gorges of Crete.
The gorges of Crete mostly begin high in the mountains, and end on the coast. The Richtis Gorge begins just behind the village of Exo Mouliana and ends with the eponymous Richtis beach on the north coast. Its length is 3-4 km.
Somewhere in the middle of the road (2 km) you will find a waterfall. Many people do not pass the gorge entirely, and reach only the waterfall, and then return back to the car. We did so, the walk turned out to be very impressive and not at all exhausting.
How to get to Richtis Gorge
You can get to the Richtis Gorge by rented car, moped or taxi. As far as I know, the bus does not stop at this place, even in the village of Exo Mouliana. The sign posted to the gorge is 200-300 meters after the village of Exo Mouliana, if you go from the side of Agios Nikolaos. There is a small parking lot, a stand with information and a map of the gorge.
Some tourists leave the car here and then go on foot, but before the entrance to the gorge from here you need to walk at least a kilometer and a half downhill. And if it is not difficult at the beginning of the way, it will be difficult to climb back. On the same road you can safely drive a car to the entrance to the gorge, especially as the road is paved. The trail starts from the Lohanas Bridge, there are lot of places to park the car. When we pulled up to the bridge, there were already 4 or 5 cars, but we easily found a place for our car even in the shadow.
Tips for visiting the Richtis Gorge
To ensure that nothing spoils the mood from your walk, small tips on visiting the gorge:
- Be sure to bring drink water with you
- Comfortable shoes (sneakers are enough), the trail is not everywhere smooth – somewhere you need to climb on the rocks and in sandals or flip flops there is an opportunity to get injured.
- Do not go into the gorge after the rain, the rocks will be slippery and part of the trail may be in the water.
- You can bring some food and have a small picnic at the waterfall, there is cozy table and benches.
- Don’t forget the camera, the gorge is very beautiful!
We didn’t take hat and sun protection with us, because the gorge is mostly in the shade of trees.
We visited the Richtis Gorge at the end of September, the weather was dry and hot, but the gorge was a pleasant shadow.
At the beginning of the gorge are vegetable gardens where oranges, tangerines, lemons, pomegranates and, of course, walnuts grow.
In general, the gorges of Crete are mostly rocky, but this gorge amazes with the amount of vegetation: there are many trees, including figs and nut trees, a lot of greenery, flowers. Trees are skewed by vines hanging from the branches of huge trees. There is life here, birds are singing, the roots of trees are curly between the stones, as if you are in the jungle. It’s not like dry Crete at all. On the bottom of the gorge flows a river, beginning with the size of a small stream, which as the route increases, in some places formed dams, and only a patient traveler will get a reward – a beautiful waterfall.
Richtis Gorge. The beginning of the journey.
At the beginning of our journey we had to wade through the mud, but do not be alarmed, such a stretch is only one, the further the path is dry and the stream can be bypassed.
In the Richtis Gorge, there are pointers in the form of arrows everywhere,
or in the form of blue dots on trees and stones that indicate a safer and easier path, so you just have to look around.
And of course there are pyramids of pebbles built by tourists who say that you go right way.
As I said in the gorge growing a lot of walnuts, so we slowed down to collect nuts.
This is my catch!
Then we saw a huge vine hanging from a tree right in the middle of the path, well, how not to ride?
And here are the trees braided with vines and veins, and giant stones framed by roots. A real jungle!
There are also a couple of ruins, apparently once and here lived people.
The Easy Way
In general, the gorge to go is not terrible, periodically to meet tourists – mostly Europeans, and all very friendly say hello and smile – nice! Among our compatriots the gorges of Crete are not yet so popular. But in general, there are not a lot of tourists, and there is no need to push in the crowd.
We met about 10 people in the gorge. Some of them were with children. The path is not difficult, but somewhere still have to climb the rocks, but it only make it more interesting.
But while you climb over it, you can have a rest!
Richtis Gorge Reservoirs
The further you go along the route, the wider and more powerful the stream becomes. Some where it forms picturesque dams. The water is clear and even attracts swimming.
Closer to the waterfall, in a place where it is difficult to climb the stones, there is an iron staircase.
Well, here we are almost above the waterfall, left to go down! And here is the sun in the clearing between the trees blessing you.
Waterfall in Richtis Gorge
To go down to the waterfall you need to be very carefully. A wooden old staircase leads down, quite long. But for those who doubt whether to go down or not, I advise you to go down, the waterfall will not disappoint you.
So here we are. Pleasant coolness, clean water falling down from the sheer cliff. It’s beautiful!
Next to the waterfall there is a table with benches. Which we did not fail to take advantage of and arranged a small picnic. We spent about forty minutes here, and then went on the way back.
In the gorge we spent 3 or 4 hours, not because the path was difficult, but because we constantly stopped, admired the beauty of nature, constantly photographing. So, that emotions and great impressions remained a lot.
I hope you enjoyed the trip and you will discover with pleasure the beauty of the Richtis Gorge.