Crete Goddess Pilgrimage and Ancestral Priestess Path tour – 9th June to 20th 2021 – with Katinka Soetens
The Late Neolithic and Bronze Age Ariadnean civilisation of Crete was the last pre – patriarchal culture in Europe, honouring life, beauty, women and men and living in the ways of Goddess.
This fertile land still holds the mysteries and offers a wonderful way to connect back into the Ways of the Priestess through the reclaimed libation rituals, sacred dance and symbolic movement, oracle tradition and deep underworld journey of the labyrinth.
The Cretan civilisation was abundant, amazingly advanced in arts and science, medicine and craft, agriculture and sea faring. The Ariadnean Goddess culture of Crete at this time was gift economy based, free trading and peaceful for over a 1000 years.
The beautiful landscape of Crete holds memory and allows easy access to the resonance of these ancestral times, temples and culture.
We will follow the memory of ancestral Goddess loving people and Her priestesses, as well as the signs of the Goddess, in the sacred landscape of Crete.
Staying in simple shared accommodation in 4 different places, we will visit and explore:
Matala, Phaistos Temple palace, Agia Triados, Kommos, Knossos Temple palace and Heraklion archeological museum, Myrtos, Kate Syme and the Temple of Aphrodite and Hermes, Zakros Temple Palace, sacred spring and gorge of the dead,, Sitea Archeological museum, Mochlos priestess graves and island settlement, Malia temple palace, Phournia priestess graves, Archanes, Gournia sacred site and settlement, Agias Nickolias archeological museum, and Skotino original labyrinth cave.
On this journey we will dance and create rituals in Her ancient temples, we will open to Her voice in magical Cretan nature, visit sacred caves and labyrinth, find beaches to relax into Her presence and connect deeply to the ancient Goddess Priestesses in priestess graves. We will explore Ariadnean temples, sites, musea and art as well as enjoy sunshine, beautiful sea and delicious food.
Throughout our tour, we will connect to our ancient heritage: of love between men and women, of priestesses and empowerment, of wisdom, sacredness of the body, sacredness of all life, and wisdom of the Goddess.
Come celebrate life together, with elemental ceremony and deep connection to the Ancestors and Goddess of this sacred land.
Programme 9th to 20th June 2021
(subject to change as organiser sees fit)
Flights to Heraklion need to be co-ordinated arrival and departure times to fit with the pilgrimage schedule or alternative transport to and from we are staying becomes the responsibility/arrangement and cost of the individual.
We will arrive in Heraklion airport on the North coast of Crete and travel straight to magical Matala on the South coast to settle in, perhaps have a swim in the sea or pool and share our first evening group meal together overlooking the bay.
Peaceful and colourful Matala, hippy heaven of the 60’s, becomes our base for the first 4 days of our pilgrimage. Breakfast is included in our simple twin room accommodation with aircon, in quiet setting with swimming pool.
From our base here we will enjoy the beauty of the beach and the pleasant bustle of the shops in town.
You can visit the famous caves where the first Neolithic settlers of this Isle lived, have time and ceremony on the secluded Red Beach, which is Paradise.
I will lead you in a Linear A inspired Ariadnean Libation Invocation to The Great Goddess, which you are invited to offer ceremonially at various times during our tour, and visit nearby sacred sites of Phaistos palace.
Aligned to the sacred twin peaked breast mountain of the Goddess Ida, this is where the famous and recently deciphered Phaistos disk (an invocation to the Ariadnean Mother Goddess) was found. We will have time for ceremony in Agia Triados ‘villa’ and view Kommos, Ariadnean port, right on a turtle beach where we will have time for a swim and share.
From here we will go to visit the wonderful newly re-opend Heraklion museum, where room after room of Ariadnean Goddess treasure will take your breath away. There is good souvenir and Goddess statue shopping right around the museum.
In the later afternoon, after the heat of the day and the crush of the tour busses has gone, we will explore Knossos, great temple palace, where we will be able to see the magical little known aspects of this world famous site, like the water sanctuary temple and the priestess houses (if it is open to the public), and experience walking on Ariadne’s dance floor, step onto the sacred road, find the yonic altar stone and priestess house of this famous sacred site, as well as having time to explore the temple grounds before looking around the shops outside the ancient site.
From here we will drive to Myrtos and stay for one night in this traditional and charming little seaside town at the foot of the Dikti mountains, I air-conditioned twin accommodation with breakfast under the plantain tree.
From here we will explore the remote site of Kato Syme: Temple of Aphrodite and Hermes, high up on the bee buzzing mountain. (for those allergic to, or afraid of, large number of bees, we suggest a morning relaxing on the beach and in the town instead, or staying in the tavern at the start of the mountain trail).
On this excursion, you can expect to see griffin vultures and eagles in the stunning green mountain, on the way up to this ancient votive shrine site, where the sacred spring has been worshiped in various forms since the Neolithic, and the later Temple to the Goddess and God was famous in the ancient world.
From here we will travel over the mountain roads of South East Crete, all the way to Zakros, secluded little piece of Greek heaven, and site of not only the 4th largest (little visited)Temple Palace, but also the Gorge of the dead, and necropolis of our Ariadnean ancestors.
Set in an idyllic bay with a few little taverns, we will stay for 2 nights in simple 4 person apartments, where our kind hosts will provide local honey, yogurt, bread, coffee etc for our breakfasts. The water here is the purest spring water in the whole of Crete and is said to have healing properties, which i can well belief, and which the ancient sacred pool and Temple springs attest to.
We will have a full day to enjoy the beautiful beach, visit the Temple Palace and, if wanted, walk the gorge (best done early in the morning as it gets very hot here during the day), as well as watch the sun set in the wine dark sea from a taverna on the beach.
Though none of us will want to leave, we will continue our circular route round Crete and visit Sitea archeological museum, where you can see the priestess jewelry box found in her grave at Mochlos, as well as many fabulous regional treasures, en route to delightful fishing village: Mochlos.
Mochlos island is a beautifully and little visited Minoan town and cemetery. Some of the finest stone work we will have seen in the museums is from here, and it had a thriving pottery and perfume industry, as well as small sanctuary. We will connect to a specific priestess ancestor here and walk in the footsteps of our priestess self. We will go to the island by little boat, as the currents can be dangerous for swimming across, and arrange this on our arrival while enjoying lunch in the harbour.
In the evening we will arrive at our hotel in Malia, with sea front and swimming pool, where we will stay in simple twin room accommodation that have a small kitchinette. Breakfast is not included here, but the pool bar does lovely snack food and breakfast or you can get ingredients in the local shop to prep food in your rooms. Malia will be our base on the north coast for the last 4 days of our pilgrimage.
Here we will visit Maila temple palace complex with it’s great court, oracle stone, unique offering altars and remains of the great artisan city, which most belief to have been destroyed by the tsunami caused by the Thera eruption, and have time on Malia beach, near to where the famous Golden Bee broach was found. We can visit the Bee Broach site and eat wonderful Greek homemade food on the beach while watching the sun set.
We will make a pilgrimage to Phouria and the deeply moving Ariadnean Priestess graves which were discovered undisturbed in the cemetery field there. Here we will make ceremony and pick the aromatic sage, sacred plant medicine of Crete, which we will make offerings with, as well as see the grave gifts of our priestess ancestors from Archanes. We will visit a wonderful little shop where one of the women who actually makes the Goddess statues and museum reproductions will welcome us with great Cretan warmth and friendliness.
We will undertake a transformational journey into the dark of the sacred Skoteino cave, meeting the Minotaur and descent for a deep co-created ritual in the womb of the Mother Goddess from which we will be reborn anew. This is a core sacred place for the people of this island for thousands of years, from the Neolithic to right into the present, and is the original Labyrinth.
The last full day of our tour, we will have the option to stay on the beach and relax or leave early (ish) to we drive to Agios Nickolaos for a look around the small archeological museum, housing a phallic betyl stone and the ‘Goddess of Myrtos’ libation vessel, from the oldest known home shrine in the settlement above Myrtos, priestess sistrums, as well as other local treasures. (the museum was closer this year 2020, but hopefully will have reopened in time for our tour next year)
From there we will go on to visit magical Gournia.
Here we will walk the streets of this ancient Ariadnean town and temple, enter the houses of potters, metal workers, smiths and wine makers, and find (and sit on) the sacred stone (betyl) on which priestesses would trance journey and oracle. The perfect place for personal reflection and gratitude offerings, as well as spontaneous ceremony to end our pilgrimage with.
Our last day has free time to dream on the beach of Malia, to swim and rest or to walk around before our evening flights back from Heraklion.
We will not want to leave this magic Goddess land resonating with the love for life of our ancestors, from which arose modern European civilisation and Priestess embodiment spiritual traditions, which sings in our remembered love for the ways of Goddess.
This will be an unforgettable journey of relaxation and connection, a time touched by the Goddess!
LIMITED PLACES – BOOK EARLY!!!
English spoken tour, reasonable mobility essential.
Walking shoes (essential in the cave) and sun cream use advised.
Cost £865 / € equivalent
Price includes: travel in Crete, English guiding to and on sacred sites, shared accommodation, 8 days breakfast, ceremonies, and program of sacred site visits.
- Flights to and from Heraklion. *
- Historical/sacred site and museum entrance, food, travel/personal insurance including cancelation insurance and spending money.
Non Refundable Deposit of £365 secures your place, payable as soon as possible by paypal or bank transfer, referencing your name and ‘CRETE21’
Full payment by 7th April 2021
full cancelation fee payable after 7th April 2021.
all individuals are responsible for their own wellbeing and possessions. Tour organiser is not liable for personal injury, loss or damages.
Flights arrival and departures need to be coordinated times, to fit with the pilgrimage schedule. Otherwise, alternative transport to and from we are staying becomes the responsibility/arrangement and cost of the individual.
Changes to the tour programme subject to change as organiser sees fit or local circumstances dictate.