"Meet & Eat in Crete": this magnificent small guide book about Dine and Wine, was my best travel companion throughout Crete!
This small sized guide book (less than 70 pages), is distributed FREE OF CHARGE, in all the major Cretan cities and villages, major travel agencies, tourist offices, restaurants, cafes and hotels.It contains vital and essential well written information, about where to dine in Crete and which wines to choose, to accompany your dinner, without forgetting to mention some useful general tourist information.
A special emphasis is given to restaurants that serve good, traditional Cretan cuisine, as well as to gourmet restaurants.
A real must!
If you want to meet the locals and NOT tourists, the name is: SARPIDONOS Street!
A street, at the western side of the Old Venetian Harbour that does not "sleep", day and night!More than 15 cafes and bars are there, giving a special colour to that steet.
It is the meeting point of all the local young and less young people, as well as of students or other people that come to Chania.
If you want to take a "glimpse" of the local night life, try to be there!
Once you have tried GERANI Soft Drinks, it is about time to try the second "institution" in soft drinks from Chania: the TEMENIA ones!Some people claim that they taste even better!
The good thing about TEMENIA soft drinks is that they started as a family business and their factory is 63 kms away from Chania, in Selino district, in a height of 850 metres!The water comes from the famous TEMENIA Springs.
Crete is famous for its olive oil, one of the best in the world!
In Chania the ABEA industry, except its excellent production of pure olive oil, makes also a range of high quality soaps made of olive oil and honey.
Once in Chania, you should ask for them!
Altough Coca-Cola and to a lesser extend, PEPSI, are unbeatable in the domain of soft drinks, there are many (yes, many!), Greek soft drinks industries that not only are real "best-sellers" in their respective local markets, but they manage to export their soft drinks to Athens and other big Greek cities and sometimes, make their way to abroad!
This is the case of GERANI (pronounced: YERANI), a major soft drink producer from Chania.You can enjoy their: Orange, Lemon, Lime. Beeral, Gazoza and Soda drinks, everywhere in Chania, Crete and maybe, in the rest of Greece.
GERANI is a kind of a local institution, a reason for pride for Chania!
By visiting Crete one immediately realises the importance of wine and raki (raki is a very strong distillate usually being drank in snap shots) in everyday life. It is quite rare to see the locals sitting at the table of a café or a restaurant without drinking a glass of wine or raki wishing each other "good health" (the expression in Greek is "ghia mas!"). In the spirit of great hospitality which characterises Greeks, offering a glass of a wine or raki to the visitor, who is always being treated as "the guest", is considered as a duty in order to get the spirits high and create a nice atmosphere. Until today the long history and love of wine and raki production is something shared only between the locals and the visitors of the island without ever producing it in bigger quantities and commercializing it.
People in Crete are very friendly and hospitable in a great extreme. You might find yourself in a situation (especially in small villages and towns) where they will even invite you to their homes for lunch, or offer you a drink as soon as they meet you. It's part of their culture I guess. If you don't want to accept the invitation do it very kindly or they might be offended.