8 of the Best Things to Do in Crete, Greece

Crete is considered to be the “sweet spot” of Greece. It’s not as party-centric as Mykonos or Santorini, yet it carries an endless selection of remarkable attractions. Crete is also known for its incredible cliffs, rugged coastline, and tropical-style beaches. 


Explore Chania’s Old Town


Chania, Greece


The Old Town of Chania Crete is one of the most gorgeous cities in Greece. Chania consists of awe-inspiring Venetian buildings, and is full of cascading romantic alleys and unique shops. Located on the northwest area of the island, it’s rich in history, art, and culture. While in Chania’s Old Town, you must explore:


  • The Turkish District
  • Nautical Museum of Crete + Firka Fortress
  • Venetian District
  • Chania’s Public Gardens




Knossos Greece


Knossos is a picturesque, archaeological site in Crete that is often referred to as the “oldest city in Europe”. There’s tons of remarkable ancient landmarks here that shouldn’t be missed, like the Archaeological Site of Knossos and The Palace Of Knossos.


Enjoy the beaches



Crete is flooded with some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, from the popular Elafonissi to the secluded Zakros Beach. If you’re a fan of powdery golden sand and crystal clear waters, consider traveling to these top-rated beaches in Crete: 


  • Balos Beach – vividly colorful, lagoon-style waterfront
  • Elafonissi Beach – features whtie and pink sand, perfect for sunset views
  • Preveli – quiet beach with gorgeous golden stone as a backdrop
  • Vai Beach – packed with palm trees and royal blue waters
  • Plakias Beach – colorful crescent-shaped beach in a large bay
  • Seitan Limania – delicately situated in a gaping canyon
  • Matala – popular beach with caves


Wine tasting



There are several wineries and vineyards in Crete worth visiting. Crete’s wineries are allocated in the island’s intense scenic landscapes, and each establishment is complete with its own personality. Sip on authentic Cretan wine and local white varieties, including Vidiano, Vilana, and Thrapsathiri, or resort to one of Crete’s smooth reds such as Romeiko, Liatiko, and Mantilari. You can find wine tours here or on TripAdvisor. 


Go paddleboarding


sunset paddle boarding


There’s no better or more peaceful way to see the island of Crete than going on a paddleboarding adventure. You can easily find tours like SUP which occurs off the island’s coast in some of the most scenic areas, or you can rent your own paddleboard at a local rental. Pack up and take your paddleboard to one of Crete’s many beaches like Falasarna. Paddleboarding is also a great way to deviate from the crowds and experience a little peace in quiet. 


Taste Cretan food



When in Crete, you must make it a priority to taste the food. Dining in Crete isn’t just about the food, it’s about the entire experience. Venetian, French, European, all the vibes are there. At any of Crete’s local restaurants, you’ll see features like interior string lights, pottery, wall art, and patio seating. 


Best Restaurants in Crete:


  • Peskesi 
  • AVLI
  • Parasties
  • Salis 
  • Elia
  • Alekos
  • Dounias
  • Apostolis


Mirambello Bay



The charming town of Agios Nikolaos overlooks this glistening vista, where the sea of Crete meets on the city’s eastern shore. Mirambello Bay is the largest bay of the Greek islands and the fifth largest bay in the Mediterranean Sea. The rocky hills that escalate from Agios Nikolaos are what attract visitors, in addition to Mirambello’s tranquil energy. 


Samaria Gorge hiking


Samaria Gorge hiking


Another must-do activity in Crete is the Samaria Gorge hike. Lush greenery, high cliffs, and The White Mountains are all in store with this riveting trek. It’s about 9 miles in total, and is considered to be a moderately challenging route. Even if you don’t go the entire distance, however, you’re still in for an unforgettable journey. One of the most notable sights at Samaria Gorge are the “iron gates”, which are 13 ft wide by 900 ft tall cliffs on either side of narrow bridges. 

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