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10 places in Crete that you have to see

Now that it's colder again, I often find myself thinking back to past vacations and the beautiful hours of sunshine that I was allowed to spend there. This year I like to think of my summer vacation on the beautiful Greek island of Crete. What I particularly liked there, I would like to reveal to you in this post and have therefore put together 10 tips for very special (and sustainable) activities on the beautiful summer island.

In the northeast of Crete:

Heraklion in the evening

1 Experience Heraklion by night

Towards evening the capital of the island of Crete empties and fills with locals. Watching the goings-on is great fun and that is best done while eating “bougatsa” at the lion fountain.

The former fishing village of Agios Nikolaos

2 Pay a visit to the beautiful fishing town of Agios Nikolaos

Agios Nikolaos is a relaxed fishing town in the northeast of Crete. Here it is great fun to drift through the alleys, to relax on one of the beaches and to stroll from café to café and tavern to tavern to eat and drink well.

3 Take a tour of an olive oil farm

In the vicinity of Agios Nikolaos there is the "Cretan Olive Oil Farm". Exciting tours of olive cultivation are offered here, and there are pottery and cooking courses. You can then stock up on high-quality olive oil and other delicacies in the shop afterwards.

Take a hike through the Lasithi plateau

4 Discover the Lasithi plateau on hiking trails

The breathtaking mountain world of the Lasithi plateau is best discovered on one of the numerous hiking trails. Before or after it is best to strengthen yourself in the "Kares tavern“With very friendly staff.

In the south of Crete:

The hippie town of Matala

5 Visit the hippy town of Matala

Matala is a former hippy town that is always worth a visit, even if it is in (almost) every travel guide today. There are rock caves right on the beach where hippies used to live. After the tour you can admire the breathtaking sunset on the beach with a cool drink in hand.

Browse in the herb and tea shop Botano

6 Try Greek mountain tea from biodynamic cultivation

On the way to Matala, it is worth stopping at the family business "Botano". There you can try and buy biodynamic teas, which are ideal as souvenirs.

7 Buy pretty, home-made ceramics from a family business

In the village of Sivas, near the “Botano” herb and tea shop, there is a small, family-run ceramics shop that sells pretty, home-made products. The cups, bowls and plates are also great souvenirs to take home. There is no website, but the ceramics shop cannot be overlooked and is located in the center of the village.

The archaeological site of Phaistos is not as crowded as Knossos

8 Explore a historical, archaeological city

Besides Knossos there are also less visited archaeological cities like the Palace of Malia and Phaistoswhich are a good (and less visited) alternative to Knossos.

In the (south) east of Crete

After the gorge, we stop for a break in the mountain village of Pefki

9 Hike through a gorge followed by a stop at a mountain village tavern

Don't miss out on a hike through the impressive Pefki Gorge. Then you can have a wonderful meal in one of the original taverns in the mountain village of the same name.

Staousa is one of numerous secluded beaches in south-east Crete

10 Sunbathing and relaxing on a secluded beach

There are still numerous secluded beaches in the south-east of Crete. The beach "Staousa" (Kalo Nero), where you have the crystal clear water all to yourself, is recommended. Afterwards, a visit to the tavern "Oasis" with very warm staff, which is located directly on the coast and offers a great view, is worthwhile. There is no website, but the tavern cannot be overlooked.

Recommended accommodations for the stay:

Villa Zoe, Koutouloufari, Crete

  • Recommended length of stay: from 5 days / 4 nights
    • First day - arrival and Heraklion by night (tip 1)
    • Second day - visit to Agios Nikolaos and the olive oil farm (tip 2 to 3)
    • Third day - hike in the Lasithi plateau (tip 4)
    • Fourth day - visit to Matala, “Botano” tea and herb shop, ceramics shop and visit to Phaistos (tip 5 to 8)
    • Fifth day - departure
  • Suite from 165, - Euro per night including breakfast.
  • More information

Aspros Potamos, Makrygialos, Crete

  • Recommended length of stay: from 4 days / 3 nights
    • First day - arrival
    • Second day - Hike to the Pefki Gorge and visit to the mountain village of the same name (tip 9)
    • Third day - beach day at Staousa (Kalo Nero) (tip 10)
    • Fourth day - departure
  • Cottage from 40 euros per night.
  • More information

By the way: Both accommodations can also be wonderfully combined, then all places on Crete can be visited. Then at least 8 days / 7 nights should be planned. If you want to take it easy, you can of course extend your stay. Because more time can always be spent on Crete. Especially in the fishing town of Agios Nikolaos you can stay longer. If you want a few more relaxed days on the beach, you should plan more time in the southeast of the island (and in Aspros Potamos).

Lisa helped set up the Good Travel Blog and will write for us as a freelance author in the future. She is passionate about traveling and dancing around the world with a small ecological footprint.


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