Author's tour to the Crete island

Author’s tour programs:

• Chora Sfakion – Anopolis and Vardinoyannis Bridge – Frangokastello

• Chania – Phaistos and Knossos palaces – Matala beach

• Santorini – Rethymno – Samaria Gorge

 

  • 14 nights
  • No visa needed
  • English
  • 4 270 € per two
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An expert of the Crete island will consult you and help organize your trip

What is wating for you?

The largest Greek island hides many secrets, it is full of interesting sights and unusual opportunities for recreation.
The ancient city of Heraklion
Beautiful temple of Preveli of the 16th century, towering on a hill
Rethymno - the most picturesque city in Greece, created by the Venetians
The Vulismeni freshwater spring is round in shape and tens of meters deep
Learn more

Our expert will consult you and organize your trip

Rethymno
  • Crete

Grecotel Caramel Boutique Resort 5* 

Boutique hotel with green cozy grounds recreates the easy atmosphere of an island village with the sophisticated elegance and amenities of a modern resort. Rooms are individually designed with designer fabrics, carved furniture and whimsical touches and accessories. The complex is well located on the seashore, just 9 km from Rethymno.

 

Route 1
  • Chora Sfakion - Anopolis and Vardinoyannis Bridge - Frangokastello

Chora Sfakion 

A small fishing village located in the south of Crete, in a secluded place on the coast of the Libyan Sea. The population of Chora Sfakion is only 400 people and the locals are famous for their conservatism and peculiar character. This is a very unusual village with its own history, traditions, cuisine and, of course, its own charm. True Cretans live here.

Local taverns offer traditional Cretan and Sfakian dishes. Only here can be prepared real Sfakian pies stuffed with local cheese, Sfakian lamb or Sfakian salad. You can always taste freshly caught fish from the Libyan Sea in any tavern of Chora Sfakion.

What should be remembered when visiting this city?

• be extremely careful not to provoke conflicts. The locals are very hot-tempered.

• be very careful on the road, the main part of the road is a mountain serpentine.

From the city of Chora Sfakion, you can also go to Anopolis and Francostello, if you have time.

 

Anopolis and Vardinoyannis Bridge 

Anopolis is a village located west of Chora Sfakion on a plateau with impressive views of the White Mountains. The plateau is located at an altitude of about 600 meters above sea level. In 1986, at the expense of a wealthy family, the Vardinoyannis automobile bridge was built across the Aradena gorge, which connected the most remote villages of Agios Ioanis and Aradena with neighboring Anopolis and Chora Sfakion. The bridge offers breathtaking views of the gorge and the surrounding area.

Frangocastello 

Venetian fortress and village in Greece in the south of Crete. The fortress is a square castle with four towers at the corners, the best preserved in Crete. The castle was built by the Venetians in 1371-1374 to protect against pirates and to restore order in the Sfakia region. The Venetians named the fortress – the Castle of St. Nikita, after the name of a nearby church (the ruins of this church can be seen not far from the castle). However, the locals called the castle Frangokastelo, which literally means “castle of the Franks” (foreigners).

There is a beautiful sandy beach with not deep sea right in front of the castle.

Route 2
  • Chania

The heavenly corner of Greece, the city of Chania, is located in the western part of Crete – the greenest area on the map of the island. The magnificence of views and the diversity of landscapes, cozy parks, original architecture and the magical flavor of the past – you can list for a long time, but it’s better to see it all with your own eyes at least once. The former capital and second largest city of Crete attracts tourists from all over the world with its unique mixture of Venetian, Ottoman, Byzantine and Greek cultures.

Balos beach 

One of the most inaccessible beaches in Crete. What is unique about the beach? Firstly, the fact that here you can count dozens of water shades, and secondly, the fact that three seas meet right in this place: the Ionian, Aegean and Libyan. The number of shades of blue and the purity of the water are simply amazing.

Usually Balos beach is visited in a complex with the pirate island of Gramvousa, on top of which the remains of the Venetian fort have been preserved.

The fortress of Gramvousa has been preserved in very good condition to these days, and it can be visited by sailing on pleasure boats that run daily to Gramvousa and Balos from the port of Kissamos. A fascinating journey to the island of Imeri Gramvousa lasts about an hour.

Elafonissi beach 

An elongated peninsula, which is washed by water from two sides and gives the impression of a separate island and is a protected area. Endangered Careta Careta turtles and several rare bird species nest on the island. Exotic beaches with pink and white sand, and turquoise water, forming on both sides of the peninsula, are reminiscent of the waters of the Caribbean.

In conclusion, it would be good to note that 5 km. north of Elafonissi, there is the monastery of Chrysoskalitissa. This monastery was built on a high rock, resembling a fortress. According to legend, the last step of the staircase leading to the Golden Monastery can be seen only by those who truly believe in God.

Route 3
  • Phaistos and Knossos palaces, Matala beach

The first stop along the route is the Palace of Knossos, one of the most impressive monuments of Cretan architecture. It is it’s image that adorns Crete guidebooks, postcards and souvenirs. Often, it is the Palace of Knossos that is considered as the very labyrinth where a terrible creature with a human body and a bull’s head lived, devouring people and instilling fear in the Greeks. According to the myth, when Theseus went to the labyrinth to look for a monster, the king’s daughter Ariadne gave the hero a magic ball. After killing the Minotaur, Theseus was able to get out, finding his way along the thread that marked his path along the road.

Phaistos Palace 

One of the four most significant palaces of Crete. The history of the city of Festus begins in the Neolithic era. Scientists are surprised to find ancient artifacts, even entire houses from this period. Not without reason, many of them believe that the famous sunken Atlantis was located in this part of Greece, and the Minoan civilization is the civilization of the Atlanteans.

Excavations of the palace began in 1900, the famous archaeologist Federico Halberra worked here. There were found amazing antiquities under his leadership. The most famous archaeological find of Phaistos is the Phaistos disc, a small object in the form of a coin with hieroglyphic inscriptions twisted into a spiral. The age of this sacred object is approximately 3700 years. The meaning and purpose of the inscription has not been determined so far, but it has been reliably established that it was not cut out on the disk, but printed on it in a typographical way. Now on the place of the Phaistos Palace there is an archaeological site where you can see everything that has been preserved with your own eyes.

Matala beach

One of the most popular places in Crete. In the Minoan era, according to scientists, Matala was the port of the city of Festus – one of the main centers of the Minoan civilization.

Matala is located at the exit of a small valley, where has formed a large closed bay overlooking the islands of Paximadia. In front of the bay there is a beautiful 300m long sandy beach with fine gravel and clear water. Due to the frequent westerly wind, there are stone slabs and waves placed at the bottom. In addition, on the northern side of the beach there is a large cave, from the top of which the very brave ones jump into the water.

The most characteristic feature of the area is lots of caves, carved into the soft white limestone thousands of years ago, which are located in the northwestern part of the beach. There are many underwater caves also. It is believed that the caves at Matala were Roman and Christian era tombs. However, many of them have rooms, stairs, windows, and beds, suggesting that prehistorically they functioned as homes.

In Matala and in these caves, hippies found their paradise in the 60s and 70s when they gathered in thousands to express their freedom, their opinions and enjoy love

Route 4
  • Santorini - Rethymno - Samaria Gorge

Variants of routes without a car 

Ferry ride to Santorini 

Tickets can be bought either at the port of the city of Rethymno, or from the guide of the host company at the hotel. Usually, departure is early in the morning, return in the evening.

It is better to buy tickets the day before the planned trip, since the weather is a very important factor when traveling

The old town of Rethymno 

Incredibly colorful and lively city, which attracts with its taverns on the seashore. At the reception you can always ask for recommendations on relevant restaurants/taverns.

Just ask for the taverns where the Greeks go themselves, not the tourist ones.

Farm Agreco 

The Greek hotel chain Grecotel has its own farm, located 7 km from the hotel. you can go there as part of a group (also ask at the reception what days there are trips) and spend the whole day on a traditional Cretan farm, take part in harvesting, shearing sheep and so on.

Samaria Gorge 

Samaria Gorge – is the largest in Europe, stretches for 18 kilometers. Samaria is also a national park with interesting flora and fauna. Up to 450 plant species are found here. Nothing can be taken out of the gorge, not a single petal. The trekking route takes about 6-8 hours, you need to go only as part of a group (check with the Fenix ​​guide on the spot).

 

The cost of the program includes:
  • Flight Kyiv-Naples-Kyiv (with a small bag and a large hand luggage up to 10 kg);
  • Transfer airport-hotel-airport;
  • Guide services;
  • Transport during the whole program;
  • The entire excursion program along the route with transfers (optional);
  • Accommodation in the chosen hotel;
  • Medical insurance.
On request
14 nights
No visa needed
4 270 € per two people
    Notes:
  • *The host has the right to change the hotels indicated in the program to other hotels of the same category.
  • *The host party reserves the right to change the order of excursions subject to the tour program.
  • * Prices may be changed, the final cost of the tour will be indicated when confirming all services and checking the cost of flights on the date of booking the tour
  • *The host party is not responsible for breakfasts missed in hotels when checking out early in the morning in case of an early flight or excursion
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