Hiking in Crete

Kotsyfos
Gorge

Rethymnon

Kotsyfos Gorge and Boutsinas Fall
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The gorge of Kotsyfos starts at Kannevos village and ends at Plakias. The starting point is very narrow with a width of about 10m, which gradually increases and reaches 600m. The total length is 1800m, and the almost vertical sides that reach a height of 600m. Inside the gorge there is a small temple built inside a rocky cavity dedicated to Saint Nicholas.

Hiking in the upper part of the gorge (Kanevos - Bridge of Sellia)

Starting from the village Kanevos we can start hiking on the riverbed and reach the bridge that connects villages Selia and Myrthios (after about one hour of course). Along the way there are large boulders that block the passage, but with a little attention we can overcome them. At one point the side-gorge of Boutsinas meets Kotsyfos with an impressive waterfall of 20 meters. In summer the riverbed is dry.

Course in the upper part of the gorge (Bridge of Sellia - Plakias)

At the location of the bridge that heads to Selia, the canyon gradually turns into a wide valley. We can continue our course in the bottom of the gorge, along the riverbed. After meeting a modern temple, after 3-4 minutes we meet a dirt road that heads backwards (opposite the flow of the river). If we follow this road in a few minutes we will meet the springs of Kotsifos where a pond is formed (surrounding villages get water from here). From here onwards, the river has water flow throughout the year emptying on the beach of Plakias.

We can go back and continue our journey. Alternatively if you want something more extreme, you can follow the route of water to Plakias while playing in the river, but the oleanders and osiers are very dense and hinder trekking.

After returning and walking at the side of the bed, we soon meet the Mill of the French, a stunning old water mill which has been converted to house by a French guy. After short time we find the equally impressive mill of Vavourides, an old stone bridge and just opposite the cavernous church of St. Onoufrios. A few meter later there's another watermill. The course to Plakias from there is easy.

Fall Boutsinas

Boutsinas is a very small and short canyon in southern Rethymnon, crossing of which requires ropes and canyoning equipment. This is a purely technical canyon and needs only a 5 minute walk to its entrance. Throughout the remainder it forms successive rappels until the last and most impressive waterfall of 27 meters, one of the most impressive in Crete.

It has enough water during most of the time and only during the summer, when it is dry, crossing is easier. It is the main tributary of the river Kotsifos. The entrance of the gorge is found through a path that starts from the neighborhood of Kanevos. The exit is located in the canyon of Kotsifos where the high waterfall falls. Perhaps there is no other waterfall in Crete so easily accessible as the high waterfall of Boutsinas.\

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Additional Info

  • Location: Rethymnon Prefecture
  • Type: Hiking gorge
  • Water: Water till spring
  • Length (km): 2
  • Altitude difference (m): 200
  • Difficulty (0-10): 3
  • Hiking Hours: 2
  • Accessibility: Paved road
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