Related Crete Island Favorites Tips

  • An abandoned house in Rethymno
    An abandoned house in Rethymno
    by BlueLlama
  • At the Fortezza, Rethymno
    At the Fortezza, Rethymno
    by BlueLlama
  • Queue for the ferry
    Queue for the ferry
    by iandsmith

Most Viewed Favorites in Crete Island

  • BlueLlama's Profile Photo

    The cats of Crete

    by BlueLlama Updated Oct 16, 2014

    Fondest memory: You can't go to Crete and fail to notice them... the cats of the island, which come in every colour, but generally only one size. Skinnyish. As a cat lover, I find them charming and infinitely photogenic although I'd really rather not see cats living stray on the streets.

    Having said that, I don't remember seeing a cat that didn't have a healthy coat, quite unlike strays I've seen elsewhere. Are they being spoilt with restaurant leftovers from locals and tourists? Or are they just great hunters? One cat I saw was stalking the harbour area inches away from the water, where shoals of fish were swimming just below the surface...

    Cats are a popular theme for souvenirs in Crete, and you can find bookmarks and postcards featuring local felines, as well as ceramic cat decorations and more. Plenty of gifts for those that love cats.

    On the tops of walls, stretching in the sun, living in an abandoned house... sitting on an old motorbike. They're everywhere!

    An abandoned house in Rethymno At the Fortezza, Rethymno Easy Rider, Chania In Chania By the harbour, Rethymno

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  • iandsmith's Profile Photo

    Let the music play

    by iandsmith Updated May 7, 2014

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: There was anticipation in the air; we had gathered not only for the feast (Cretan), but for the music (Cretan). As the last of the baklava hastened to the stomach the two musicians started to play. The organ man was merely background; it was the bouzouki player who commanded your attention as he fretted his way up and down the strings. I’d never thought of bouzouki as special but this man threaded his way through my brain and pulled the strands tight and reeled me in.
    In time a singing lira player joined them and the show was even better, so we thought. That was before the dancers appeared, resplendent in classic traditional Cretan outfits. The ladies’ white skirts with sash around the waist and embroidered aprons over peasant blouses and a vest were beguiling to say the least.
    By comparison the men were almost bland. The older one, clearly enjoying himself immensely with an engaging smile, hardly attracted any attention as the younger man had a magnetic face. In my entire life I can’t remember being glued to a male countenance as much and Lorraine could but agree.
    The ladies danced in sweet swirls and gentle steps but the men, obviously out to show their manliness, boldly pranced the floor and then leapt skyward whilst clicking their heels and then stamped loudly on the floor with their substantial leather boots. Their piece de resistance was when the older man forced the younger one aloft with an upward thrust from his hand to the younger one’s arm. Inside the small space they had to work in, it was dramatic to say the least.
    It was riveting stuff; hadn’t enjoyed any dancing as much since I last saw flamenco. Then the ladies approached the audience and gently grasped hands, enticing patrons onto the floor. Happily we joined them and though my dodgy knee wasn’t really up to this sort of thing, how could you refuse. We executed a chain dance in a ring that soon became a sideways crocodile through the whole auditorium.
    At last we all rested and half of the audience dispersed; Lorraine thought it might be a good idea also but I pleaded with her just to stay a little longer – how many chances in your life will you get to see this again I queried. Thus we tarried, and in a short time the band and dancers returned, albeit in different outfits.

    Fondest memory: When “Zorba the Greek” was played Lorraine was glad she’d acceded to my wishes and all too soon we were on the dance floor yet again, entreated by the dancers to join.
    A coarse hand from behind grasped mine and I turned to see a black lady in bright orange top smiling back; behind her another black lady, obviously Muslim from her headdress, moved into line in front of two enthusiastic children from somewhere in Europe. An older man from Germany whose feet couldn’t stop moving showed his joy while an English couple were all smiles as they moved into the ring and a young negro girl from America in stylish blue top and black dress jumped to join us. Then the couple arose as well and all the nationalities were smiling and harmony was in the air.
    Oh that it could be ever thus, imagine that. J.L. was right, he’s not the only one.
    (The above all happened at the Village Heights Resort near Hersonissos)

    Stepping out on Cretan night That's one giant leap for man ...and, loving it The band Lovely outfits
    Related to:
    • Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
    • Family Travel
    • Luxury Travel

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  • Maurizioago's Profile Photo

    Three small villages...

    by Maurizioago Updated Feb 23, 2014

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: I booked a room in Hersonissos for a week, but I didn' t like much that town. One evening, after having walked a bit uphill, I discovered three small villages not far from Hersonissos. Their names are; Koutoloufari, Piskopiano and Old Hersonissos. They are really nice places to spend some hours.

    koutoloufari. Koutoloufari. Old Hersonissos. Old Hersonissos.
    Related to:
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  • Western Crete

    by lynnejones12345 Updated Jun 27, 2011

    Favorite thing: Hello

    It does get hot, later in september is better for walking around. I would recommend Western Crete, Rethymon to Tavrontis area on the north coast, better to fly to Chania than Heraklion/Iraklio. Chania is a cosmopolitan area, venitian architecture, expensive to eat out and stay there. Rethymno can be quiet lively but if you stay in the surrounding areas you can travel into the town in the evenings to eat. (Avoid the area at the top harbour - you get hassled and can't get passed the fish restaurants, which are overpriced and not at all nice.) You should definatley get a car - there is much to see and do and although the bus is very cheap, you can pretty much cover everything with a car and a good map. Take care with place names, generally use the prefecture name after the place you want - there are many placed called the same name but in totally different areas. I recommend a bike ride, you can hire a bike and you get a guide who drives you to a designated area and then rides back with you which the mini bus follows behind. You get some wonderful aromas and sights and get to stop for refreshments. 18-30s go to Malia and the surrounding areas. A must for the beach is Balos/Gramvousa. (Google images for pictures) You go as an excursion, but you gat the tickets yourself drive to Kissamos port (great sights along the road to Kissamos)There is even a church carved into the rock! You get a boat to Gramvoussa. There is a fortress ruin there if you can face the climb up the steps! then the boat takes you to Balos for a few hours. Beware there is nothing there only a beach a shallow pool of water but it is heavenly. The water only reaches your waist for miles and the sea is as clear and blue as a swimming pool. Falasarna is great for a beach, this is also an ancient sea port (now inland due to continental shift) and archilogical site. Paleochora to the south is a lovely village with a few shops, an outdoor cinema and a couple of beaches. The north coast can be pebbly in places. The gorges at Samaria and Imbros (the latter - the smaller) are gorgeous (pardon the pun) bear in mind if you visit these - on an excursion the bus drops you off and waits at the other end! The food is delicious and all of it is organically grown on the island, I recommend spanikopita (spinach pie), saganaki (fried cheese, dakos (rye bread rusks, covered in tomato, feta onion and olive oil) and anything else! Beware of free raki/tispourio/tiskoudia when driving, you get it always free with your meal and it is VERY strong! We have visited quite a few different island and found Crete to be the best.

    Fondest memory: Balos by boat. Wildlife. Culture. Traditional Music. Driving round the Island exploring villages. . Saganaki, Cretan Rye Bread Rusks, Raki, Boureki, Dakos, The Locals who are extremly generous and very friendly! The true Cretan spirit. Olive oil - delicious, Ancient Sites, Swimming in the wonderful crystal clear ocean. The sights and smells as you travel. The goats with their bells. The wonderful churches. There are some awesome sights including the White (pink) mountains. The Sunshine. The cats. The markets. The boats. The fish. The Sounds. The most I miss about Crete is EVERYTHING!

    Related to:
    • Archeology
    • Festivals
    • Historical Travel

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  • ealgisi's Profile Photo

    Useful phone numbers

    by ealgisi Updated Jan 5, 2010

    Favorite thing: The most common European emergency number 112 (following Directive 2002/22/EC: Universal Service Directive) and also standard on GSM mobile phones. 112 is used in Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Republic of Macedonia, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Ukraine and the United Kingdom in addition to their other emergency numbers.

    Here are some useful phone numbers that you might need while in Greece:

    Police: 100
    Ambulance: 166
    Fire: 199
    Forest fire: 191
    Coast guard emergency intervention: 108
    Counter- narcotics immediate intervention: 109

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  • MikeBird's Profile Photo

    Meltemi - the summer northern wind

    by MikeBird Written Aug 17, 2009

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: During the month of August it seems to be common for the northern wind called the Meltemi to blow. This is a cooling wind but it can be quite strong at times. It certainly churned up the waves around Mochlos from where this photo was taken.
    The wind did help to bring a fresher air to the region so it was welcome but if you're trying to go sailing or snorkelling it could affect your plans.
    You'll not be able to do anything about it but just be prepared .

    Meltemi affected waves at Mochlos

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  • oriettaIT's Profile Photo

    Driving to Balos beach

    by oriettaIT Updated Aug 5, 2008

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: In 2005 I drove the rough road through the Gramvoussa peninsula. It start a bit after Kastelli Kissamos, you have to follow the "Balos beach Hotel" road sign and than follow the path.. it was quite uneven, with hole and stones but driving very slowly and carefully it have been possible with a normal car in about one hour. Off road vehicle would be better even because the rental company's insurance never cover the bottom of the car.
    You will get to a park area up in the last part of the peninsula and you will have to walk down a path for maybe 30 minutes to reach the beach... the view from up there is breath taking..

    Please This place is a corner of paradise... make sure to bring with you ALL your rubbish when you leave!!!

    Picture from the web

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  • alectrevor's Profile Photo

    Crete Rethymnon

    by alectrevor Updated May 22, 2007

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: A good long walk is from near main bus station, on the sea road past the Politechniou,round the headland called ring road under the Fortress to the Venetian Harbour,on to the Waterfront pass the Marina to the beaches. Returning just turn into the town streets, back at the harbour. On the map the bus station is bottom left and the Beach bottom right


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  • CharmaineG's Profile Photo

    Gorgeous Island

    by CharmaineG Written May 12, 2007

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: Easy to get around , trips were great and locals pretty friendly

    Fondest memory: Being my first time abroad i found the locals pretty friendly , was my Daughters 13 th while we were there and a local restaurent we frequented kindly made her a birthday cake and sang happy birthday , was lovely

    A harbour , just not sure which !! lol choppy sea while on cattamaran trip
    Related to:
    • Family Travel
    • Budget Travel

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    by Sheefy Updated Jun 17, 2006

    2 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: Not the biggest revelation - but do strap yourself in when getting into a taxi. Many a driver seemed to want to prove how fast they can get from A to B, and your protestations will fall on deaf ears.

    Also drivers will stop and pick up other tourists on route and try and charge same fare- happened to us once and were too tired to complain.

    Also be wary of taxi drivers giving you their travel tips, but make sure you can laugh when necessary in a thank you i will take this on board rather then oh my god did you just say that
    "Santtorini is good for romance and f**king' as he slowed down to honk at some scantily dressed ladies
    "June and July is good for lots and lots of good time girls" - not so bad but i am sure he used stronger language

    Related to:
    • Budget Travel
    • Backpacking
    • Road Trip

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  • Adelianos Kampos - Resort nr Rethymnon

    by Sheefy Updated Jun 17, 2006

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: Very little on this resort on the web.
    Picked it because it was cheap deal but close to Rethymnon to escape as and when things got too bad. Resort is geared towards the all inclusive package holiday resort person. Built with no intention to retain any Greek character, and unfortunately as is the way in many resorts the hotels have cleaned up and dominate the beaches - so very few of the bars/restaurants look out on to the beaches which is for me paramount if am by the beach - why do i want to eat looking out on to a road when you can hear and smell the sea - different strokes for different folks i guess. Bars and restaurants on the one main road, lack any soul, and proliferation of eateries featuring Brit and German food staples alongside Greek cuisine says it all really (and there is an Indian as well!). Found one niceish bar Mojito - some of hotels might be hiding a few bars. Saying that basic staples of Greek food is easy to come by ie mezdes, mousakas and stifado. Beach is a bit patchy/unloved in some sections, but in front of posher hotels sand improves greatly and have nice beach cafes attached so need to do a bit of exploring - and can be made bearable. Resort is handy to make as a base and if not expecting to spend every waking hour there, then the above faults will not spoil the holiday. If cheap food, booze, all inclusive hotels is your thing then this is probably heaven.

    When i went mid June it did feel very low key and many places are near on empty at night, leaned towards more middle aged holiday makers, though July and August gets very very swamped and been told more testosterone crowd.

    Downfalls of resort are glaringly obvious when head into Rethymnon cheap 10-15 min taxi ride away - harbour whilst is also geared to tourists it oozes character, few stylish bars and the Venetian back streets perfect for al fresco dining.

    Related to:
    • Budget Travel

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  • Important Phone numbers when u r in Sitia

    by NatassaPL Written May 24, 2006

    3 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: Police 0030-2843022259
    Hospital 0030-2843024311
    Informations 0030-2843024955
    Townhall 0030-2843022271
    Busses 0030-2843022272
    Port authority 0030-2843022310
    Post office 0030-2843022283
    Airport 0030-2843024666

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  • Calling abroad

    by NatassaPL Written May 24, 2006

    3 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: If you are in Greece and want to call abroad to get the external line is 00 and then you add the country code you want to call.
    001 United states
    0044 England
    0033 France
    0049 Germany
    0039 Italy
    0034 Spain

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  •'s Profile Photo

    When it rains in Crete...

    by Updated Dec 12, 2005

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: Several times I watched rain in Crete and it was a unique experience. As you can see in this picture, rain comes from one or two small clouds and it looks like a shower - there is no rain around.

    Related to:
    • Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
    • Budget Travel

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  • nickandchris's Profile Photo

    Sunsets in the South....

    by nickandchris Written Nov 29, 2005

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: We have stayed in a few locations on the south of Crete and the sunsets are memorable. I am a real sucker for photoing and video-ing sunsets and my family get rather bored as I stand for hours filming. Later, they are even more bored when they are forced to watch the action replay on video!!!

    Fondest memory: Sitting in the balmy October evening enjoying an ouzo or two and watching the sun sink into the Libyan sea. Amazing.

    Chor Sfakion From Plakias, Crete From Arvi, Crete Plakias evening sun Arvi, Crete
    Related to:
    • Adventure Travel
    • Wine Tasting
    • Beaches

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