5 reasons why Crete is love at first sight
Since the ancient Greek ages of war, drama, and art, the country has brought about modern getaways with enchanting perspectives found through unique island formations with whitewashed buildings or Venetian harbors, stunning mountain ranges and distinctive gorges. Medieval monasteries crown precipitous cliffs and Bronze Age frescoes decorate the preserved walls of magnificent palaces. Whether interested in exploring the ancient ruins and archeological sites aplenty or eager to bask in the flickering golden sands of sun-drenched beaches, Greece combines passions of ancient politics, cuisine, and culture with relaxation. The minority population speaks languages from neighboring countries, such as Bulgaria and Turkey or languages more common around central Europe, like Russian. The Minoan civilization dates back thousands of years to the Island of Crete, flourishing around the mid-4th century BC. Visitors from around the world arrive ready to see the birthplace of Western philosophy, drama, literature, democracy, and the Olympic games. Beyond the history stands the heritage associated with the magnificent islands and the picturesque beaches around the Aegean Sea.
Where to Eat in Rethymnon, Crete
Palace of Knossos Hominids settled in Crete at least , years ago. In the later Neolithic and Bronze Age periods, under the Minoans , Crete had a highly developed, literate civilization. After a brief period of autonomy — under a provisional Cretan government, it joined the Kingdom of Greece.
Greece, politics, history, leaders. Note: Greek names are listed (some with notes) using a modified Hellenic Organization for Standardization (ELOT) romanization system. Dates for Greek records before are given according to Old Style (Julian) calendar, and after according to New Style (Gregorian) calendar.
Home Cities Iraklion Heraklion or Herakleion is the largest urban centre in Crete, the capital of the region and the economic centre of the island. Hania or Chania is the second biggest town in Crete and is well known for its scenic old town and harbor. Rethymnon is built between the two other large cities of Crete. The town still maintains its old aristocratic appearance, with its buildings dating from the 16th century, arched doorways, fountains etc. Heraklion Heraklion is the largest city of Crete with a population of about Heraklion houses the public services and the major scientific centers of Crete, being the commercial center of the island with the main port and airport.
From a scenic city with unique traditional Venetian and Ottoman monuments in early s, as one of the most historical cities in the Mediterranean, Heraklion unfortunately turned into an ugly cement city, losing almost all of its aristocratic Chania Venice of the East” is regarded by many, and not unjustly, as the most beautiful city in Greece. The picturesque city of Chania is the second largest city of Crete, after Heraklion, with more than 60, residents.
8 Must-see Points of Interest in Greece
Cooking and Culture holidays in Crete. This little known haven of tranquillity lies west of Kophinas peak, commanding magnificent views over the Libyan sea and surrounded by mountain wilderness. This is why this Cretan cooking holiday is one of a kind. In the mornings you will sit down to a lavish breakfast before heading off to visit sites of cultural interest specifically chosen so that you can immerse yourself in local Cretan history and tradition.
Crete, for me, was the highlight of the trip, a land laced with history where remnants of so many civilizations — Minoan, Greek, Roman, Byzantine, Venetian, Turkish — can be found.
Located about two and half hours from Athens along the slopes of the awe-inspiring Mount Parnassus, Delphi was once revered by the ancient Greeks as the center of the earth. Dedicated to the god, Apollo, Delphi was an important oracle. In ancient times, people would come to this sacred spot to inquire of the priestess for advice on a wide range of topics from farming to relationships and politics.
Significant ruins and structures at Delphi include the Temple of Apollo, the Athenian Treasury, the theater and hippodrome that once hosted events of the ancient Pythian Games. What makes these cliffs even more inspiring are the historic monasteries perched along the summits. Dating back to the 14th and 16th centuries, the monasteries at Meteora were built by monks seeking spiritual isolation and freedom from religious persecution.
Crete Where to Stay The largest of the Greek islands, Crete is a spacious land of pleasing contrasts where landscapes range from stunning coastline to rugged mountains and rolling countryside dotted with olive trees. Bustling metropolitan cities spread beyond to quiet villages centered around outdoor coffee shops.
Steeped in history, Crete still bears archaeological traces of the many civilizations that inhabited it down through the centuries.
Tsiknopempti at the Acropolis Museum 2018
Crete Island are one of the most active areas of Greece. This section proposes information about the hot spots of the islands Greece has a great reputation concerning its lively nightlife. Some areas have a more active nightlife than some others.
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Also known as Finikodassos Palm Forest , this gently curving golden sand beach is backed by Europe’s largest natural palm grove — some densely clustered trees in an oasis fed by a stream — which have stood here for more than 3, years. According to spurious legend, the palms grew from date stones discarded by Saracen pirates and washed up by the sea. They are, in fact, a species of palm Phoenix theophrasti native to much of southern Greece and known to the ancients.
For an exotic Caribbean vibe this gently curving golden sand beach is a popular oasis Credit: Ruslan Gilmanshin – Fotolia Who goes? The palm grove was consequently proclaimed a conservation area and camping forbidden. Today, in high season July to August the beach is packed with predominantly north European tour groups from nearby resorts.
More laid-back, independent travellers roll up here from May to June and September to October.
Public Transportation — In the larger cities, public transportation is widely available. Athens has a fantastic subway system starting at 1. In smaller cities, like Thessaloniki, buses are the primary mode of transportation.
Greece is a sensation of ancient history, beautiful beaches, peaceful coves and gleaming white streets. Gently paced and welcoming beyond all expectations, this charmed country of rugged land and vast archipelagos is idyllic.
The first traces of human habitation in Greece appeared during the Paleolithic Age approx. During the Neolithic Age that followed approx. Buildings and cemeteries have been discovered in Thessaly Sesklo, Dimini , Macedonia, the Peloponnese, etc. The beginning of the Bronze Age approx. Flourishing settlements were found on Crete, Mainland Greece, the Cyclades and the Northeastern Aegean, regions where characteristic cultural patterns developed.
At the beginning of the 2nd Millennium B. The Minoans, with Knossos Palace as their epicenter, developed a communications network with races from the Eastern Mediterranean region, adopted certain elements and in turn decisively influenced cultures on the Greek mainland and the islands of the Aegean. On Mainland Greece, the Mycenean Greeks —taking advantage of the destruction caused on Crete by the volcanic eruption on Santorini around B.
The Mycenean acropolises citadels in Mycenae, Tiryns, Pylos, Thiva, Glas, Athens and Iolcus, then comprised the centers of the bureaucratically organized kingdoms. The extensive destruction of the Mycenean centers around B. After approximately two centuries of economic and cultural inactivity, which also became known as the Dark Years – B. This was the beginning of the Greek Renaissance Years.
This period was marked by the formation of the Greek City-States, the creation of the Greek alphabet and the composition of the Homeric epics end of the 8th Century B.
Expert guide to Crete
Bring fact-checked results to the top of your browser search. In winter the belt of low-pressure disturbances moving in from the North Atlantic Ocean shifts southward, bringing with it warm, moist, westerly winds. As the low-pressure areas enter the Aegean region, they may draw in cold air from those eastern regions of the Balkans that, sheltered by the Dinaric mountain system from western influences, are open to climatic extremes emanating from the heart of Eurasia. This icy wind is known as the boreas.
Zagori is a region of great natural beauty, with striking geology and two national parks, in northwestern Greece. It’s dense forests and rugged mountains are furrowed by powerful rivers and dotted with traditional villages, many featuring grand stone houses dating from the late eighteenth century.
During the Olympic Games, the city of Heraklion provided one of the venues for the football tournament. The first fortifications were built by the Arabs and were later reinforced by the Venetians 15th century. From the seven bastions, only the Martinengo bastion survives to this day; there visitors will find the tomb of the renowned writer N. Kazantzakis, overlooking the city. From the four gates to the city, only Chanioporta with the characteristic winged Lion of Saint Marc and the New Gate at the southern side survive today.
In the old Venetian port, next to the modern facilities, one can see the vaulted tarsanades where ships used to be built, while the western side is dominated by the Koule fortress 16th century. In the heart of the city there are many monuments dating to the Middle Ages, a period in which Heraklion witnessed great prosperity.
From the port, ascending 25 Avgoustou August street, one reaches a square where the church of Agios Titos is found built in at the site where a Byzantine church once stood , while next to it lies the Venetian Loggia 16th century , a magnificent, ornate arcaded Venetian building decorated with blazons, trophies, etc. A typical feature of Heraklion is its Venetian and Turkish fountains, scattered all around the city. Other noteworthy Venetian fountains are the Bembo fountain on Kornaros Square, the Sagredo fountain built in the northwestern corner of the Loggia, and Priuli fountain located near the port.
Among the churches of Heraklion the one that stands out is the imposing and sizeable Metropolis of Agios Minas on Agia Ekaterini Square , built between Adjacent to it, stands the chapel of Mikros Agios Minas and on the northeast is situated the church of Agia Ekaterini 16th century , which functionsas a museum housing exhibits from the Cretan Renaissance.
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Symi Symi Map When I started writing articles for this site, describing my experiences and giving advice to people like you, searching for the ideal Greek island to visit, it never occurred to me I’d get so. I mean, it’s only last year that I got to visit the last Greek island I’d never been at, thus completing the aim I’d set when I was still a young kid. While I was at it, I’d never thought I’d revisit many of these islands.
See, I see traveling as an exciting adventure, a task of always discovering something new. If you’ve been there before, it’s not a trip, it’s just holiday.
Just wondering if anyone has any experience of the singles hotel in Maleme, the Mistral? I’ve sent one email to the hotel and had a really helpful reply, but don’t want to keep bothering them!
If you want to travel alone but not be alone, join us to experience authentic Greece and Crete and we promise to make your singles holidays stay a memorable one. The Mistral Hotel is a small, friendly hotel with a wonderful holidays for singles atmosphere, excellent traditional home-cooked Cretan cuisine and great value for money. We are happy to welcome single travellers and small groups looking for a singles resort from all over the world.
We offer a vast range of excursions and activities and you can take part in as much or as little as you wish. Show More accommodation A single travellers paradise free of families and children The Mistral Hotel is located just 3 minutes walk from the beach in the historic village of Maleme, 16 kilometres west of Chania. The Mistral Hotel has a total of 35 rooms — 8 Standard and 27 Deluxe.
Best Greece Family Vacation 2018: Athens, Santorini, Crete
Visitors to Greece should consider getting a guide — in addition to helping with navigating the staggering number of archaeological sites, a guide can also share the stories and Greece has lots of them from a real, live source. No matter how you explore, here are some of the best sites to see on a trip to Greece. Samothrace For a taste of what ancient Greek life may have looked like, book a stay in Samothrace.
Not much has changed on this rugged Aegean island, which floats right near the Turkish border. Paradise is probably the first word that comes to mind:
Two of Crete’s most famous monasteries, Arkadi and Preveli are in the county. Rethymno county is a microcosm of Crete, it has everything, excellent beaches, popular resorts, undeveloped beaches, fortresses, gorges, rich vegetation, a scenic landscape. Rethymno town the capital, is a beautiful old town with little winding Venetian and Medieval streets and buildings, an imposing castle and a hors-shaped harbour filled with tavernas, bars and restaurants.
The old part of the town contains many Venetian palazzos, Turkish houses with wooden balconies and the Venetian citadel with a mosque spanned by a massive dome. There during the insurrection of the abbot Gabriel and estimated monks, women, children and villagers blew themselves up by firing powder magazines when confronted by the army of the Ottomans.
Getting There There are ferry connections to Piraeus and Santorini but these routes may vary every year. Via Chania or Heraklion ports. Via Chania or Heraklion airports.