STUNNING SCENERY & BEACHES
Luxury hotels and Greek hospitality at its best.
Crete is the largest island in Greece, and the fifth largest in the Mediterranean Sea. You can experience fabulous beaches, stunning mountain and valley areas, walk steep gorges and explore the remnants of many past civilisations.
Historic and Archaeological Interest
The birthplace of Minoan Civilisation, Crete is a must for those that love culture, archaeology and history. From Neolithic time to Minoan through to Roman and Byzantine and Turkish rule there is so much to explore.
But a real must is a visit to Knossos, where the Minoan palace was built in the valley of the river Kairatos. The Minoan Palace of Phaistos is one of the most important archaeological site in Crete and should surely appear on your itinerary. There is so much of historical interest in Crete we do not have space here to do it justice. Or a visit to Rethymnon – Dominated by a huge fort, old Rethymnon is a picture perfect combination of Venetian and Turkish architecture. This is evident in the narrow cobbled streets lined with boutiques.
Things to do in Crete
Activities for visitors are many and varied, but the superb coastline and the wide range of water-sports available from many beaches or offered by most hotels will be popular. Water-skiing, parasailing, banana rides, ringos or pedalos are available as are windsurfing, sailing, fishing and kayaking to name a few water based activities.
Other than exploring the fascinating history already mentioned hiking and walking in Crete is very rewarding. The Samaria Gorge is a truly beautiful walk, 11 miles long. Locally it is referred to as the “Great Gorge” recognition of its beauty and to differentiate it from the many other, smaller gorges on the island. Explore the Lassithi plain at 2700 feet above sea level it is one of the few areas of the Mediterranean with people living above 800ft, originally known for its white sailed windmills now more modern means of irrigation are being used but there are plans to restore some of these icons. The villages here are very traditional and early morning or late afternoon provide great photographic opportunities.
For something different take a day cruise to Santorini – reputedly the lost city of Atlantis.
The island boasts an 18 hole par 71 golf course at Hersonissos. It naturally offers a covered driving range, practice green and a golf academy. Many of our hotels offer reduced rates at this course and can pre-book tee times for you.
Local best buys Include beautifully made jewellery, some based on designs found at Knossos, wine, leather goods and onyx.
Peak summer months in Crete can be extremely hot with temperatures well in to the 30’s, even the 40’s. May and June, with September and October are beautifully warm, generally between 24-28ºC.
Our selected hotels all offer an excellent choice of restaurants with high levels of service and excellent quality of cuisine. To stay on a gorgeous Greek island and not explore the delights of dinner in a taverna would be a shame. Our local ambassador, Julie Malone, will happily guide you through the choices locally so you can enjoy a meze or a freshly prepared octopus appetizer. Try Stifado, a beef stew with onion and tomatoes or a kleftiko, meat, potatoes and vegetables cooked in a clay pot – delicious.
A car would be very useful to explore this interesting island and gives you the independence to go as you please when you please. Do ask us for information about hiring a car or see our local representative if you decide to wait until you get there.