Forests & Ecosystems of Rethymno

The Prefecture of Rethymno, with the Psiloritis massif at its heart and the matchless beaches of the south coast, conceals ecosystems where rare endemic species of flora and fauna lurk.


The area of Preveli is without doubt one of the most striking in Crete: it combines the impressive geomorphology of the Kourtalioti gorge with an ecosystem of significance and a beach of rare beauty.

  • Region Preveli Monastery, Aghios Vasilios, Rethymno
  • protected area -
  • type Wetland, Lake, River, Palm Forest

Defined by the peaks at Skinaka to the east and Mavro Kouro to the west, Psakofaraggo is essentially a fissure in the ground that, after crossing through the Rouvas forest as a river, becomes transformed into a proper gorge – that of Aghios Nikolaos Zaros, the most important one on the Psiloritis massif and in central Crete. It takes its name from the Byzantine church at its southern end.

  • Region Psiloritis, Phaistos, Heraklio
  • protected area Natura 2000
  • type Forest, Gorge

The forest of Trigiodo-Vroulidia is an important ecosystem centred on an oak forest, this occupies the inner valley of a mountain massif at Anogeia, which borders the Zominthos area. The trees growing here have attained a great age: the trunk diameters are more than a metre wide, and they grow to 15 m high. They grow so tall that they form a proper bio-system of a forest with many shrubby types to fill out the ranks of vegetation. 

  • Region Zominthos (Psiloritis), Anogia, Rethymno
  • protected area Natura 2000
  • type Forest

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