Multi-day workshops on the shepherds’ craft of Akolyta Plateau

The shepherds’ school is a multi-day program introducing visitors to mountainous living taught by the nomadic shepherd families of Akolyta, South Psiloritis at 1700 m. Visitors learn traditional cheese making, overnight with the shepherds, explore the endemic flora and wild life of the area. The ridge of Psiloritis, the Kamaraiko cave in the homonymous forest and the astonishing geology of the mountain reinforce the experience.

Life on the mountains of Psiloritis Geopark

For five months of the year, the shepherds live with their flocks of sheep and goats on their traditional pastures at about 2.000 m above sea level. Very few things that have changed since the time of their great-grandparents. For the shepherds on Akolyta, tradition is not about preserving the ashes of the past, but about passing the fire on to future generations. The shephers way of life – close to the earth – is one that we can learn from.

Throughout the holiday you will experience:

  • A local community of 28 shepherd families with their flocks of sheep and goats
  • The mountainous way of life on Crete
  • Outdoor activities with the shepherds
  • A network of walking paths leading to various destinations, among which is the highest peak (Timios Stavros – 2456m)
  • The geologic features of Psiloritis (Mount Ida) and the Kamares cave
  • A wide range of shepherds’ cuisine, tsikoudia and wines
  • Stunning wild life, including a wide variety of endemic mountainous plants, big birds of prey colonies, insects, butterflies, reptiles and the (hiding) Cretan wildcat

trip duration

5 days

walking distance

depending on the group’s fitness

ascent / descent

depending on the group’s fitness


depending on the group’s fitness