mountain biking crete (near rethymno)
I'll be in crete in august and I'm hoping to do some mountain biking. I will probably rent from Olympic Bike, and I have some questions about the area.
1. I will be in rethymno. Are there any maps online showing routes you can mountain bike on in that area?
2. Where is the best riding located? I'm an intermediate rider and I don't want to go too far from Rethymno.
3. Is it worth it?
I went to Creta 2 years ago but I didn't rode there so I don't know where the hot spots are or where to find online maps...
But for sure, you'll have fun riding there ! The landscape & panoramas are always amazing (mountains on one side, blue see on the other side !). Local people are very welcoming (but if you go to the south side, they often speak only greek so it may be more difficult to communicate...).
Don't forget to bring some water 'cause in august, it will be very very hot !
Don't know how many times you will be there but if you have enough time, I advice you to rent a car & drive a little to find good places. But beware, cretan people have a very personal way to drive ! Just learn to drive like them & it'll be OK !
If you can rent a car, try to go to Lassithi plateau. It's 1000m high & in the middle of the mountains. Great place, I'm sure you'll find some nice spots to ride there...
& if you have time, here are a few places to see (& for sure some good trails around these places) :
- Knossos palace, near Heraklion : a 4000 years old archeologic site not to miss, where the palace of King Minos might be.
- Matala, on the south side : a charming seaside town that was invaded by hippies in the 60's (it's told that Bob Dylan & Janis Joplin if I remember right came there). There are some cliffs where caves wheres dug at the roman age I think... You have to take a drink in the Hakuna Matata bar ! A great place for relaxing !
- Lassithi plateau : a green plateau in the middle of the moutains. There you could see the famous windmills of Lassithi & the cave where Zeus was born !
- Agios Nikolaos : the port is to be seen : a volcano has collapsed there a long time ago. Atypical place...
- Vaļ, at the far east : the biggest european palm grove. A place full of tourists but when you have the feet in the warn water with palmtrees everywhere, it doesn't matter anymore !
- The south coast : it's far less touristical than the north coast so the nature is wilder & maybe it's a better place to ride...
Well, I wrote a lot but I wasn't able to tell you one place to ride ! To summarize, I'm sure Lassithi & the south coast are both great places for MTB. But just take your bike, ride a little & it won't take much time to find a good place...
One last advice : never ride on the road, it's really too dangerous for a bike on these roads, stay on the trails & have fun !
Have a good stay in Creta & don't forget to bring us back some pics !
Last edited by Agent Koala; 07-01-2011 at 11:39 PM.
You know the poor skills of french people for foreign languages so please be indulgent with me !