The gorge o
f Richtis is located in Lasithi Prefecture, on the north side of Crete, between the cities Agios Nikolaos and Sitia around 1 hour drive from Natura cottages. The trail starts just outside the village Exo Mouliana and ends on the Richtis beach, east of the village Kalavros. The total length of the route is approximately 3 kilometers and the elevation difference between the starting point and the beach is about 350 meters. The gorge, even in summer, has enough water, which is used for local crops. The gorge collects the water from the peak Drymias (918m) of Orno range through the streams of Lachanas and Mesa Mouliana which merge near the starting point.
Hiking to the beach takes approximately three to four hours, depending on the hiking pace. The route starts from the stone-arched bridge of Lachanas (19th century) where, during the exchange of populations between Greece and Turkey, it is said that the Christians killed the Turks of the region, who were trying to reach Sitia and get the ship to Turkey.
The route continues in a lush landscape along the river, within an amazing scenery of East Crete. Platans, oleander and sage are everywhere and the smells of fresh herbs change constantly. Impressive also - footprint of the past - is the old water mills that the visitors meet in the path.
The highlight of the gorge is, however, the beautiful waterfall Richtis with a height exceeding 20 meters and the smal pond formed below it (richtis means waterfall in the Cretan dialect). The waterfall has water even in summer and is a great place to have a refreshing dive. The path ends in the beautiful pebbly beach of Richtis. The beach has a small park with tamarisk trees, with stone seats and tables around and water fountain with potable water.
Attention: Please avoid using sunscreen protection if you swim in rivers, as it destroys the fragile flora and fauna of the stream.
Tip: Most visitors leave their car in the central road at Exo Mouliana and walk down the paved road to meet the bridge Lahanas. You can gain around 30' minutes of walk if you drive and park next to the bridge of Lahanas; from there reaching the waterfall takes around 1.5-2 hours. However, for less able-bodied people or people with young children, the shortest way to reach the waterfall is to drive in the narrow paved road to the beach of Richtis and walk for around 30' in the opposite direction of the river.