Nature/Flora in Chania

The nature found on Crete is both striking in its beauty and its sheer abundance. Springtime is an especially beautiful time of the year as the island is bursting with blooming flowers, plants and trees. Categorized by botanists as Mediterranean forest, woodlands and scrub, the Cretan flora is divided into what grows at low, mid, and high elevations. The Natura 2000 program in Crete has found 55 unique ecotopes and of approximately 1600 species more than 150 are native to the island itself.


Botanists and nature enthusiasts have been visiting Crete for years to have a chance to observe the illustrious flora of the island. Many of the herbs found are used for medicinal purposes or in cooking such as thyme, chamomile, oregano and sage. Visitors will also become familiar with the Cretan Mountain tea (ironwort) which is very popular with the Cretans and usually prepared with fresh lemon and honey.

Just a hint of the incredible flora found on the island includes the Vai Palm (famous from the Palm beach of Vai on the east of the island), Oleander, Myrtle, Carob, Almond, Maple, and Chestnut trees as well as the infamous Masticha plant from which many Cretan products (including ice-cream, liquors and gum) are made. Herbs found on the island include oregano, thyme, chamomile, and sage.

Situated on almost 20 hectares of land in the village of Fournes (also famous for its stunning orange groves) is this gorgeous park. The park showcases over 150 different varietals of plants, trees and herbs where visitors can spend a couple hours winding their way through the gardens.
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Belonging to the Technical University of Crete this park was built to provide a protected habitat where native Cretan flora and fauna could thrive away from any human intervention.
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