The experiences of blissful moments I call 'zen' - it is a special, utterly enjoyable, fleeting but beautiful moment that provides an inspiration and revelation. Pefki - a village in South-East Crete turned out to be a 'zen' place inspiring with its stunning view, amalgam of colours, marvellous nature and delicious food.
Choosing Pefki as a destination for a day trip will give you plenty of opportunities for adventure and nature exploration. History records that Pefki acquired electricity only in 70. That should be quite telling to understand how the pulse of the village beats. The impressive rock called Stavromenos with tiny chapel seated on it and perching high above Pefki village offers this panoramic view over the village, South-East coast of Crete and Libyan sea.
The stroll through the alleys and pathways of Pefki village is like exploring an open-air museum - a mix of traditional building styles with the colours, schemes and design elements created by villagers.
If you are wondering were to find a lush, green hideaway and natural underground water swimming pool for a meditative solitude and contemplation in Crete than here it is - in Pefki gorge, South Crete. Fresh water spring and pool amidst all the summer heat. A magic place. Having walked quite few gorges in Crete I would compare Pefki gorge with a nature park - it is an easy, utterly enjoyable and beautiful walking path. The walk down the gorge is along a pretty and picturesque route through the pine wood. You will also see plane trees and other common Cretan vegetation, such as thyme and sage bushes. On the south side of the gorge is a spring of fresh drinking water, so it’s a good idea to fill a bottle with cold mountain water to take with you. It takes about 3.5 hours to walk the gorge that is clearly signposted.
Fresh, home-made, delicious food in not an exception but rather a rule in Crete. Still the element of surprise is always there when finding beautiful, hospitable place with delicious local food just by sheer chance. There seem to be several eateries in Pefki but "Piperia" (that means 'under the pepper tree') is the most beautifully located in the middle of the upper village - traditional tables under the light green dense pepper tree with a scenic view. It is emblemic of the traditional tavern in a best and most friendliest sense - cute, cozy and tasty.
Pefki village in South-East Crete is about 5 km away from nearby Makrigialos or half an hour drive from Ierapetra.
How to make day walking tour around Pefki?Download Pefki Round Walk PDF
Having traveled for over 30 years, since 6 years now, I have found the whole world in one of the most fascinating and unique places on earth – Crete. It is a diverse, rich and inspiring island which even after so many years does not stop surprising me - its rich history and unique traditions, its people, the delicacies of Cretan cuisine, its landspace and its stunning nature. Here I reveal some of its secrets.
I see Crete through turquoise - pink glasses.
Skip the group tours, leave your rental car at your hotel and ask Joseph to accompany you on a private tour to these great spots on Crete. We did "Mystic & Rustic Crete" and "Birth of Europe". If you are a first-time visitor he will suggest an itinerary and if you have special requests he will include those. Without Joseph we would not have known about the local culture or the history of the area nor would we have met and chatted with the local people... Read more
"A great tour and experience"We spent a full day with Joseph visiting Chania, Rethymnon and an olive oil farm and we had a great time. Crete is huge so you have to make choices unless you spend a week there. We arranged this tour with Joseph discussing our options and time. Joseph was very flexible with the itinerary allowing us to customize our tour and experience the highlights of some very nice towns. Joseph was very knowledgeable and answered every question. We would definitely use Joseph again to visit the other parts of Crete that we could not get to in this visit.
"Crete showed by Joseph is unique"The experience with Joseph showing us around Crete was absolutely unique. He is Greek and speak very good Hebrew. I don't think we would had seen and experienced half of what we did with him if we'd be on our own. He told us a lot of interesting stories about the Lassithi plateau and the area. His effortless ability to chat up with locals and involve us into conversation (with some translation, of course) was amazing. Funny enough these encounters led to further invitations (for a coffee and local drink - raki). Later on, he took us to an absolutely authentic tavern in a mountain village...
"The secrets never die" Das erste Mal haben wir Joseph Batis mit einer kleinen Gruppe in Chania in einer Fischtaverne kennengelernt. Er sprach Deutsch, Hebräisch, Englisch, Griechisch und soweit ich es richtig vernommen habe auch Spanisch. Ich habe die Gelegenheit genutzt ihn über unsere Ausflugsziele zu befragen. Seine Hinweise und seine Kenntnis haben uns in die Welt von Kreta innerhalb kurzer Zeit eingewiesen. Wir haben Joseph für einen Tag engagieren können um uns zu begleiten. Joseph hat über 30 Jahre in Deutschland gelebt. Seit Jahren führt er private Reisetouren auf Kreta...
יוסי מסיורים בכרתים ויוון, הוא מדריך.... מקצוען, בעל יידע נרחב איש לבבי וסימפטי, טיילנו בשנה שעברה... היה פשוט מדהים כיף... כיף... כיף... ממליץ בחום למי שמגיע לכרתים ויוון להשתמש בשרותיו המעולים. תודה יוסי על הסיורים ,האוכל, הטברנות, היה תענוג גדול ! ! ! מאתנו: אורי אילש, אלי גנט, יגאל גרינשטיין, נטלי גרינשטיין, אור גרינשטיין
כל מי שעתיד לנסוע לכרתים או ליוון, אני חייב להמליץ על חבר יקר, מדריך מעולה, אדם חביב ונעים הליכות שידריך אתכם בכרתים בעברית, אנגלית וגרמנית, מה שתבחרו.... ל- Joseph Batis אתר בו תוכלו להציץ במה שיש לו להציע לכם כולל תכנון הטיול ומלונות וכו' הציון שנתנו לו 10+ שווה מאוד... ביקרנו במקומות שבחיים לא הגענו אליהם בכרתים ! לחצו על השם וכנסו לאתר ! בהצלחה.