Trachoulas - the unexpected beauty!
South Heraklion District
The perfect day of a traveler!
Trachoulas, also written Trafoulas, is a beautiful gorge ending in a long beach area. The gorge of Trachoulas is located about 70 km south of Heraklion city and very close to the village Lentas, a famous traveler’s destination in the south of Heraklion District. To get there you must take the highway from Heraklion leading to the South. Follow the signs towards Agia Varvara, Plouti and then look out for the direction leading to Lentas. East from Lentas, there is a beach named Loutra, also worth visiting. However this is the way you want to pursuit to finally arrive at Trachoulas gorge and beach. On the top you will find a parking area and the entrance, which is a wooden stair railing leading down to the gorge. The walk towards the beach is simple but stunning since you walk right through the gorge. Usually there aren’t many people at this particular beach. The water is clear but deep, so you should always take care. Trachoula’s atmosphere is peaceful, let’s keep it that way!
SIDE INFO: COLLECT CRETAN HERBS
At Trachoulas you will be able to hike along the hills and mountains that form the gorge. As usual, these areas are untouched which is why you will find lots of wild herbs like Oregano. After collecting the herbs, make sure these wild greens are edible since mother nature offers also poisonous plants like Mandrake (Mandragora officinarum) which you will find at Trachoulas as well. Especially in the Mediterranean area Mandrake is found in large amounts. Because of its human-shaped like structure (plant including roots) and its poisonous substances of highly biologically active alkaloids, tropane alkaloids in particular, Mandragora officinarum was famous for its use at spiritual ceremonies, many years ago. Mandrake was seen as part of superstitious techniques due to its hallucinogenic and hypnotic effects caused by the alkaloids found in the roots and leaves. DO NOT eat this plant! It is poisonous!
Ask either locals or other people you know for clarity and your own safety!
Make it a day trip and stay as long as the sun sets! Make sure to have the best spot. You have to hike all the way back again (at parking area) so you reach the peak. The viewpoint from there towards Loutra beach is breathtaking!