Chania (peripheral unit)

Chania (Peripheral Unit)

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Chania (peripheral unit)

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Description:
Chania () is one of the four peripheral units of Crete; it covers the westernmost quarter of the island. Its capital is the city of Chania. Chania borders only one other peripheral unit: that of Rethymno to the east. The western part of Crete is bounded to the north by the Cretan Sea, and to the west and south by the Mediterranean Sea. The peripheral unit also includes the southernmost island in Europe, Gavdos.

Geography

Chania peripheral unit, often informally termed 'Western Crete', is a beautiful and in many parts unspoilt part of the island. Districts include verdant Apokoronas, mountainous Sfakia, and Selino in the far South West corner. Some other notable towns in the Chania prefecture are: Hora Sfakion, Kastelli-Kissamos, Palaiochora, Maleme, Vryses, Vamos, Georgioupolis and Kalives.

The natural park of Samaria Gorge, a major tourist attraction and a refuge for the rare Cretan wild goat or kri kri, is in the South of the peripheral unit. The White Mountains or Lefka Ori, through which the Samaria, Aradena, Imbros and other gorges run, are the limestone peaks topped by snow until May that occupy much of Chania peripheral unit. They contain more than 40 peaks over 2,000 meters high. The highest peak in this area is Pachnes, at 2,453 meters above sea level.

Western Crete is popular with tourists for its spring flowers that linger on into early May in the mountains. Birdwatching is also popular, with the lammergeier and golden eagle especially sought for. As an...
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