Steeped in Homeric history and culture, scented by wild fennel and basil, Crete welcomes and overwhelms visitors with its wealth of myths, legends and history, a blessed and dramatic landscape, an extraordinary fusion of past and present, and an abundance of choices and experiences.
Its stunning mountains ranges are dotted with caves and sliced by dramatic gorges, and its rugged interior is interspersed with fertile plains and hillsides blanketed in olive groves, wild flowers and aromatic herbs. Breathtaking drives along the rugged south coast lead to a sun drenched paradise of long sandy beaches and isolated coves.
The best times to visit Crete are late spring to early summer and autumn, when the tourist infrastructure has geared up but you won’t have to contend with the crowds of summer tourists. The weather is usually pleasantly warm during this time, but not too hot, and swimming is possible.
Samaria Gorge – Many travelers spend a day trekking though the stupendous 18km (11mi) Samaria Gorge to get to Agia Roumeli on the southwest coast. Apart from its beauty, the gorge is teeming with wildlife and wildflowers.
Hania – is the largest city in Western Crete. It’s swamped with beautiful Venetian and Turkish buildings and this, along with its harbourside setting, white onion-domed churches, and winding paved lane ways make it ideal camera-bait.
Iraklio – Iraklio’s two main squares are Plateia Venizelou and Plateia Eleftherias. Plateia Venizelou is the heart of the city and the city’s major intersection is south of here.
Knossos – is located in a beautiful site just southeast of Iraklio, is the most magnificent, intricate and evocative of Crete’s Minoan sites. To give visitors an idea of what the palace looked like, its discoverer, Sir Arthur Evans, had parts of it reconstructed.
Crete is a veritable paradise for trekking , provided you don’t come during the hot summer. Crete’s mountainous terrain isn’t ideal for cycling but traveling on two wheels through the escarpment villages and valleys of the north coast, the Mesara Plain of the south and on and down from the plateaus, is popular.
Apart from swimming, parasailing, water-skiing, jet-skiing, canoeing, yachting and windsurfing are available at most of the major beaches. The often crystal-clear waters, particularly in the south, make snorkeling and diving here a real pleasure.
The old town of Chania, with footprints of 3 thousand years of history around every corner.Â The small fishing village of Zakros, 20 km south of Vai, on the eastern shore, for stunning natural beauty, all the good vibes anyone may need in one lifetime, and charming isolation.