Agia Roumeli is a coastal village in southwestern Crete near the southern end of the Samaria Gorge.
Typically hikers travel from Chania to Omalos via coach and then hike the gorge. From Agia Roumeli typically they leave by ferry, usually to Hora Sfakia and then get a coach back to Chania.
The village is not accessible by road, and can only be accessed by foot or by boat.
Walking along the coast from Sfakia or down through the Samariá Gorge from Omalos. Get in Sfakia or Omalos by bus from Chania.
Ferries to Agia Roumeli leave from Sfakia, Sougia and Paleochora. Boat timetable can be found here.
The village is not big, so everything is within walking distance.
- 1 Samariá Gorge (National Park). A 14 km gorge that descends 1,250 m to sea level through some of Europe's most spectacular natural scenery. The walk up the gorge from south to north is pleasant for the main part, but the last 3km, up the Xyloskala ('wooden staircase'), is extremely tiring. Sensible shoes are essential. Most people take an organised tour or approach the top of the gorge by public bus from Chania and begin their walk from there, but there are also buses from nearer towns and ferries from the mouth of the gorge. Some people walk from the southern entrance just as far as the narrowest part of the gorge - the Iron Gates - then return to the sea. There is an entrance fee of €5, payable at either end of the gorge, with tickets checked on on exit to ensure that no one remains in the park overnight.
- 2 Castle Agia Roumeli. Castle ruins on top of a hill.
- 3 Mashali Beach. A public beach with very clear waters, and usually nearly empty in the morning hours. There are public showers and foot baths on the beach. Note that the beach chairs are owned by COCKTAIL BEACH BAR and cost money to rent, or come complementary with an overpriced drink. Free access; €5 to rent beach chair.
- 4 Zeromouri Beach. A public pebble beach that also features a natural cave. Usually empty. Free access.
Note that all restaurants and shops are closed from November to March.
- 1 Faragi (Φαράγγι). A Greek Taverna serving traditional Greek dishes, freshly caught fish and ice-cold beer. Excellent service by friendly staff who will recommend menu items to you, which are served almost immediately. Bread and several shots of Rakia (served with apricot) are complementary with every meal. Cheap rooms are also available for rent. €3-9 per course.
There is a small 'wild camping' area (no facilities) by the riverside on the coast of Agia Roumeli village. Every public building in the town (all restaurants and even the supermarkets) also rents rooms.