Vasilikos is the famous plant that decorates all the Cretan gardens and keeps the mosquitoes away from bedroom during the night. Vasilikos is also called the mountain west of Heraklion between Rodia and Fodele villages. The Rodia village is famous for the spectacular views and is also also called “ the balcony of Heraklion”, Fodele is one of the most famous villages of Heraklion, not only for the excellent quality oranges but also because it is the birthplace of the famous Cretan painter El Greco.
Olive trees, orange trees, arbutus bushes, aladanos and fragrant herbs decorate this beautiful scenery that impresses with its spectacular view that reaches up to Psiloritis the highest mountain of Crete.
The Highlight of the route, the downhill to Fodele village through a fast but loose road that starts from the 567 meters just below the peak of Vasilikos which is trying to regenerate from the last fire. The descent is not dangerous but be careful, the road is wide and call us to ride fast but the bud turns and the unstable surface is easy to get us off the road.
Of the three ascents of the route, the first up to Ahlada is the most difficult as it has the greatest gradient The last uphill, the asphalt section to Vasilikos, is mild gradient and a good opportunity for a strong sprint training.
When you return back to Fodele you deserve to drink a freshly squeezed orange juice or eat delicious cretan meze in one of the taverns. Platanos a family tavern in the basement of a traditional house, at the village entrance, is a proposal that will be unforgettable whether you go in winter and sit by the fireplace or in summer in the lovely backyard by the river.