Holidays to Crete

It's been said by visitors and Greeks alike, that Crete is a country unto itself. The country's largest island also has the longest season, stretching from mid May to late October when beaches are less crowded, and hiking trails less busy but tavernas and bars no less welcoming. Crete's landscape is varied and invigorating with secluded coves, rolling hills, sandy beaches, and Europe's longest gorge to name but a few destinations. You can even visit the cave where Zeus was born. For those interested in history, Crete doesn't disappoint. This is the birthplace of the Minoans after all, with ancient ruins dating as far back as 4000 years ago, making a visit to the Palace of Knossos and Heraklion Archaeological Museum a must. There are also medieval towns dotted about the countryside, and Ottoman and Byzantine relics to be pored over in the sun.

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Travel Information

There are regular direct flights from major UK airports to Heraklion and Chania.

  • Currency: Euro
  • Time difference: (GMT+3)
  • Flight from UK: 4 hours
  • Visa: not required for UK passport holders
  • Language: Greek
  • National drink: Greek Wine, Greek Beer, Retsina, Ouzo
  • National dish: Moussaka, Greek Salad
The choice of airport will depend on the location of your hotel.
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Crete Activities

As Greece’s biggest island there are plenty of things to keep you busy. Whether sunning yourself on the pristine beaches, to getting out on the sea by banana boat or kayak the water plays a big part in the island’s activities. Back on land the island reportedly boasts Europe’s longest canyon – Samaria Gorge – which offers keen walkers a beautiful setting of cliffs, mountains and pine forests. Take some time to visit the island’s wineries in the Cretan mountain villages for an authentic taste of Crete!

Crete Food & Drink

Cretan cuisine is well known throughout Greece for unique ingredients and flavours. Almost every Cretan village has its own signature cheese so try as many as you can. One of the traditional dishes koukouvagia mixes a creamy cheese with fresh tomatoes atop barley rusks soaked in oil – a flavour sensation and not to be missed. Another key ingredient is honey and you will see hives dotted amongst the thyme covered hillsides and roadside sellers that offer the most authentic selection. All of this is topped off with the traditional Cretan brandy raki.

Crete Attractions

Over thousands of years Crete has had varied influences from different ruling powers and many remains can be seen: the most famous Minoan remains of Knossos must not be missed and the Venetian castles such as the one on the island of Spinalonga are also worth a trip. The Archaeological Museum in Heraklion will also give a good overview of the various historical influences on the island. The pretty towns of Agios Nikolaos, Chania or Elounda are great options for a laidback day out.

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