Canyoneering is not very popular in Greece. On the island of Crete there are a lot of canyons to decend - most of them isolated, wild and less crowdy. But the canyon of "Ha" was one of the first canyons that were opened in the '80s as it looks very scary and impressive...
There are still myths and stories about it telling that it is not accesable and that people died there or that the turks have hidden there huge amounts of gold coins...
Me has allways attracted his image. It looks so mysterious and spectacular especialy when it it is raining and the flying drops produces a big cloud over it... I was as a child allways wondering if i will ever make it to "get there
"Ha" canyon is in "Sitia" or "Orno" mountains in the east part of Crete aprox. 20 km from Aghios Nikolaos
- capitol city of the region Lassithi
. It creates a huge slot that cut this mountains in two pieces and can be seen from far away.
There in no possibility to organise this trip by bus or another transfer. You need two cars minimum. You can start from Aghios Nikolaos or Heraklion - the capitolcity of Crete here also is the international airport.
One car stays at the bottom of the canyon near the village of "Monastiraki
". Monastiraki has just one habidant and it is between Aghios Nikolaos and Ierapetra. With the other car you must drive the old road up to the village of "Thrypiti
" (18km.). 2 km. before the village there is a stone-sign that shows you the direction to the chappel of "Ag. Anna"
(left). Drive the next 2 km. untill the chappel and let your car there. Then on foot scrable down to the bottom of the canyon or make an descend from a tree (there are a lot of pine trees there).
The whole canyon is full of old and new bolt screws for your ropes. You need at least 2x60m. long ropes and 1x30m. long rope.
There are 24 descends to be made. A lot of small (5-15meters high) and the highest is 34m high. So you will need about 4-6 hours to get through.
You need a full canyoneering gear and harness.
There is not possible to call from a cell phone in the canyon (no network). Only in the last 3 descends is this possible.
Please dont attemp a descend of this canyon when there is a possibility of rain. Falling stones
There is NOT a possibility to get out of the canyon in case of an accident
. Once you are in there you will have to go all the way untill the end !!! This slot is not for beginners; canyoneering techniques must be practiced before going on this trip.
There are no campsites there and generally is camping in Greece not allowed. But anyone does it... So you will not have problems if you camp away of villages and by protecting the environment (no garbages) !!
When to climb
All the year around. But the best season is the winter and in the beginn of spring as almost all of the descends are unter water...! During the end of spring and in the summer there is no water there and the small lakes are full of a dirty black soup...
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weather infos about Crete
weather infos about Crete
You dont have to pay any permits to get there.