Selakano forest

The forest Selakano is located 35km north of Ierapetra, in the southeastern part of the Dikti massif, surrounded by the four highest peaks (Lazaros 2085 m, Spathi 2148 m, Afendis Christos 2141 m, Psari Madara 2090 m).

The area can be accessed via asphalted road that runs through a magical route till the village Selakano and starts either in Ierapetra or Kalamafka. In the forest there is a large network of forest roads for strolling around. In Selakano village you can visit the church of Agia Paraskevi.

Selakano forest is one of the most beautiful and most important surviving ecosystems of the island, under the Natura 2000 program, and a major pine forest for the entire Mediterranean Sea. The pine forest constitutes the most productive apiculture spot in Crete while in the past wood and resin was harvested. Indeed, special attention is required during the flowering period of the pines (July-September), when the forest is full of bees and you might have some unpleasant surprises (especially in the area of Melissokipos)...

As already mentioned, Selakano is covered mainly by pine trees, which belong to the drought-tolerant species of Pinus brutia. Pinus brutia is a species that can withstand six-month droughts and grow in various rocks and soils. There are also kermes oaks, planes, Cretan maples, cypresses and several other plant species.

The visitor of Selakano is immediately captivated by the wild beauty of the landscape. Magnificent gorges (it is worth visiting the magnificent gorge Sarakina exiting in Myrtos), gurgling water springs and steep slopes, where birds of prey such as hawks and golden eagles. In the basin, where the settlements of Selakano and Mathokastana are located, there are many walnut and pear trees, vineyards and, patches of fields where vegetables are cultivated.

The forest has faced extensive fires in the recent years and a large part of it has been afforested. Unfortunately, in many places that are not fenced, shephards continue leaving their grazing goats, which eat everything and do not allow new trees to sprout.