Thanks for your trip report, it's very interesting and it will be very helpful for organizing our trek to balos next week. However I need further informations:
- How long does it take to reach Balos?
- Where do you pitch your tent(on the beach)? And do you know if it's allowed to camp there?
Hi Christelle. It took us about 6-7 hours to get to Balos from Piperiana. As far as I know officially it is forbidden to tent, but we had no problems. Then again we were there at the beginning of March and the place was deserted. There were some huts on the beach and I am sure there is some traffic during the season. You shouldn't have any problems, just find a good stop behind the bushes as it can get really windy. If you have other questions let me know. I still have to finish my reports on the rest of the hike (Paleochora to Sougia). For a much more detailed trip report on Balos go to the page that inspired us to make the hike: http://www.summitpost.org/pirates-in-the-mediterranean-a-rocky-scramble-in-crete-s-wild-west/310132
Photos from the hike: http://plasmation.smugmug.com/Hiking/Crete/
Thank you very much for these additional information. On your website I saw pictures on which you seemed to be climbing\walking on steep cliffs. Are there (many) dangerous or difficult passage along the hike for a less experienced person? Did you use any special climbing equipments (rope...)? Is the path always properly delineated? Again, thanks for your time and appreciated advice.
Any track can be dangerous if you are not careful ;). We are amateurs, but we found the track to be easily passable. No need for any hiking equipment, just tough shoes. Oh and hiking sticks were really useful. There is just a bit of scrambling at 2 points, but definitely no vertical walls or something like that. I have no idea what your skills/shape are, but if you feel reasonably fit then by all means make this hike as it is brilliant. The view is one of a kind. The whole track is well marked with blue dots (provided you go from Fallasarna to Balos, not the other way round). Sometimes it would take us a couple of minutes to spot the next marker. What we did before going to Crete was upload gps track logs from others just in case. We did not find any for the Balos track, but it was helpful a couple of times for the Sougia - Agia Roumeli hike. You can find the gpx file on the top of this page, but again, for this hike it is not necessary. Finally let me say again if I already mentioned it, this was definitely my favorite hike on Crete, my kind of thing, total peace, no one in sight just nature, the sea on one side, mountains on the other. Do it and let me know how it went! :]