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An update from Evaneos

Best places to visit in Crete

Crete is a real jewel, with its beautiful scenery, extraordinary cultural heritage and proud, warm population. A centre of European history, the island was coveted by numerous powers. For this reason, you can see bells and minarets, Greek, Ottoman and Venetian architecture combine harmoniously. The Cretans of today dedicate time to their way of life and love of music, while also knowing how to open up their home to a more or less orderly mass tourism. To be sure not to miss the main sights and to discover the places off the beaten track, follow the advice of the Evaneos travellers!

It all starts with the palace of the legendary king Minos of Knossos, a place which has seen 600 years of Minoan history, dating from the Bronze Age. A fantastic window onto the ancient world, Crete is home to the most significant collection of Minoan objects, kept at the Heraklion museum.

Towards the West, there's Rethymno, whose port and elegant houses in the Venetian style mixed with Turkish architecture are well worth seeing. If you have the time, visit the town on market day at the foot of the fort and soak in the incredible ambiance. Also, visit Chania (the duck), the island's former capital, with a beautiful Venetian port. Its little streets and cul-de-sacs lead out onto small squares where you'll find quaint hotels.

Crete also boasts magnificent beaches, particularly the Balos lagoon, a real jewel. Towards the South, after a seemingly endless winding road, discover Elafonissi, a paradise that's unfortunately a bit too well-known. There are no roads along the South coast, so there's immense opportunity for hiking through virgin countryside, for example taking a path that joins up with a pretty little cove in the port of Loutro.

Head to the classic village of Houdesti, completely off the beaten track, where every year, the Labyrinth festival takes place. Visit the Samaria gorges on the Olamos plateau and the windmills on the Lassithi plateau. Towards the East, stop off at Agios Nikolaos, the beautiful seaside resort, then push on towards Sitia and the Vaï palm grove. 

Balos (Greece)
Balos lagoon stretches into the Gramvousa peninsula, on Cape Tigani.
Peninsula in the south-west of the Chania region, a few dozen metres from the beach.
Located in a beautiful valley near Sougia, Agia Irini Gorge is 8km long and ideal for hiking.
A tiny village located at the very eastern edge of Crete.
Lovely fishing village on the coastal shore of Lassithi.
The Samaria gorge was listed as a national park in 1962 and contains the most beautiful scenery.
Agia Eirini proves that the best perfumes come in small bottles. It's a small monastery on the island of Crete.
Lovely coastal village in the south to discover during your trip to Crete !
Agios Nikolaos, the capital of the Lassithi region, is the Saint-Tropez of Crete!
This majestic monastery rises up in the south-east of the island of Crete, standard and symbol of the Greek resistance.
Chania (Greece)
Chania is a city in the northwest of Crete. With 55,000 inhabitants, it's the island's second largest city.
Heraklion is the largest city in Crete.
Imbros (Greece)
To the east of the region of Chania, on the road from Hora Sfakion.
The island of Spinalonga is an extension of the peninsula of the same name.
Lissos (Greece)
Lying close to Sougia, Lissos is a beautiful ancient city located on the shores of the Libyan Sea.
Loutro (Greece)
A sleepy fishing village on the south coast of the Chania region.
A lovely community famous for its traditional pottery.
A pretty coastal village lying on the opposite side of Crete to Heraklion.
Beautiful little village perched on the plateau of Omalos.
Preveli monastery sits on top of a hill and is actually two monasteries: Kato Preveli and Piso Preveli.
Village on the south coast of the Chania region.
Xerokampos is a small village to the east of Crete, in Greece.

Best time to visit Crete

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