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Road trip in Crete

Crete ● 06 December 2017

Crete is a beautiful large Greek island with numerous things to do and stunning beaches. Your best option to discover Crete is by car in order to have the opportunity to explore every corner of this interesting island and make fascinating routes. Take the boat or the aeroplane to Chania, rent a car and begin a great road trip in Crete that will show you everything you should definitely see in Crete.


Chania is a town with long history, and its archaeological and historical identity is visible in every corner of the city. The mosque, which dominates the scenery of Chania Old Town, the picturesque Venetian port, the Archaeological Museum and the local shops are only some of the reasons to visit Chania. Chania is one of the best-preserved Old Towns in Greece, which makes Chania a destination for all-seasons and not only summer. The best way to discover Chania and the wider region is to stay in a hotel in Chania for 3-4 days in order to have plenty of time for this important prefecture of Crete.

Balos Lagoon

From Chania, you can drive about an hour and reach the beach of Balos. Balos Lagoon amazes its visitors at first sight. White sand, turquoise waters and the feeling that you are swimming in a lagoon make this place an internationally awarded beach.



Next stop after Chania is the town of Rethymnon, about 1,5 hour eastern from Chania. Rethymnon is the other traditional Old Town of Crete, which will impress you with its Venetian Fortress, called Fortezza, the old churches, the elegant mansions and the stunning port. Rethymnon combines the aristocratic atmosphere with the modern aspect that captivates every visitor. Stay in a hotel in Rethymnon for another 2-3 days and explore the wider region and the atmosphere of the city.


From Rethymnon, drive half an hour and you will reach Preveli, one of the most beautiful and exotic beaches of Crete. A river flows into the sea, passes from many palm trees and forms a lake near the sand. The beach is unorganised and unspoiled, but there are water sports facilities to explore the lake and the river. The beauty of the landscape is just breathtaking.



Next stop after Rethymnon, is Heraklion, the capital of Crete and its largest city. In Heraklion, there are many well-preserved buildings and elements of traditional architecture, as well as restaurants, cafes, bars and hotels in Heraklion, where you can stay for a week as the prefecture has many interesting things. The most wonderful spot of the town is the Venetian Fortress of Koules, which is the symbol of Heraklion. It was constructed by the Venetians in the 13th century, and it stands at the entrance of the port as the trademark of the harbour.

The archaeological sites of Knossos and Faistos

The archaeological sites of Knossos and Faistos belong to the best things to do in Heraklion. In Knossos, you will visit the Palace of Knossos that is a magnificent testament of the Minoan civilisation. In Phaistos, there are ruins of a Minoan Palace, and the place is not as crowded as the Palace of Knossos. You can explore the central courtyard, the royal apartments and the location where the famous Phaistos Disc was uncovered in 1903.


Agios Nikolaos

Agios Nikolaos is located on the eastern side of the island and can be your last stop to stay for some days. The main attraction of the town is the Sea Lake, which is connected to the sea through a channel. It is a lovely spot since many fishing boats find a shelter to this lake creating a nice scenery. Generally speaking, Agios Nikolaos is a beautiful seaside town that has kept its character, although it is a developing touristic resort. Neoclassical houses combined harmonically with modern buildings make Agios Nikolaos a cosmopolitan port and an attractive town. Worth visiting is also the Archaeological Museum.

Minoan site of Lato

In a close distance to Agios Nikolaos, the archaeological site of Lato is the cradle of the Minoan civilisation. In the site, you can admire the ruins of an ancient temple, an open-air theatre with capacity of 350 persons and the prytaneion.

The palm tree forest of Vai

94 km from Agios Nikolaos, lies the beach of Vai, a beach you won't believe that it is in Greece. Surrounded by the largest palm tree forest in Europe, with 5,000 palm trees, Vai Beach is a beach that reminds of the exotic shores of Africa, Asia and Caribe. White sand, crystal waters and the warm sun make you believe that you have found the heaven on earth.


Where to Stay

Appartment in Agios Nikolaos, Greece The Traditional Homes of Crete
The Traditional Homes of Crete
Mavrikiano, 71202 Agios Nikolaos, Greece

Combining rustic and modern features, The Traditional Homes of Crete are situated in the peaceful village of Mavrikiano, just a 5-minute walk from the center of Elounda and from Elounda Beach. Nikos Kazantzakis International airport in Heraklion is at 70 km. The port in Agios Nikolaos town with a ferry connection to Piraeus, Athens is at 10 km.

Hotel in Heraklion, Greece Park Hotel
Park Hotel
19, Evrou Str., 71303 Heraklion, Greece

Park Hotel is located in Heraklion, close to Ammoudara Beach and only a 10-minute drive from the city centre. Heraklion Port is 4.8 km away and Heraklion International Airport is 7.7 km away.

Hotel in Rethymno, Greece Ammoudi
Lefkogia, Ammoudi, 74060 Rethymno, Greece

The family-run Ammoudi Hotel is located in a quiet area, only a 3-minute walk from beautiful, secluded Ammoudi Beach. The lively center of Rethymno town is at 30 km, while Chania International Airport "Ioannis Daskalogiannis" is 95 km away.