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Towns & Villages in Crete

With towns & villages like Malia, Chania, Heraklion, Hersonissos, Rethymnon, Agios Nikolaos, Kastelli and Ierapetra it's easy to understand why the island of Crete is so popular with tourists.

Towns & Villages in Crete
Agios Nikolaos.

You cannot miss out on a visit to Agios Nikolaos while your in Crete, Agios Nikolaos is the capital of Lassithi and is situated to the east of Heraklion and is a beautiful, relaxed traditional town which is named after Saint Nicholas, the patron saint of all sailors of Greece. Agios Nikolaos is built around the biggest bay in Crete, the Merabello bay, the Archaeological Museum and the Folk Art Museum here are well worth visiting, as well as Voulismeni Lake, the Byzantine Chapel and Agios Nikolaos Marina.

Shopping is also a delight in this town as the products sold are mostly locally made, you can buy local herbs and spices as well as beautiful jewellery with traditional designs. Agios Nikolaos can be easily reached by car from Hiraklion Airport which is less than an hour's drive or you could catch one of the daily ferry services from Heraklion, if your planning to travel by bus then the KTEL bus service connects to nearby towns and villages.


Elafonissos or Elafonissi is located in the south western part of the island and is about 70 kilometres from Chania, Elafonissos is also known as the island of Deer's because of the red deer's in the area. Elafonissos is a small island with a total area of 19 sq kilometres and is connected to the main island of Crete by crystal clear water on a thin layer of sand that stretches for about 570 meters. In the 16th and 17th century the island was used by pirates as a base of operations, Elafonissos is a beautiful tourist place and sees maximum tourists during the summer months.


Malia is a costal town of Crete and is located 34 kilometres to the east of Herakloin, the town is known for it's ruins and of course, it's happening nightlife. The ruins in Malia, known as Malia Palace was built during the Bronze Age and was later rebuilt in the same age after being destroyed by an earthquake, the palace was first discovered in 1915 and the excavations are still going on today. Malia has plenty of Hotels, restaurants, bars and nightclubs and the nightlife here attracts plenty of young clubbers, if your looking to spend some quality time on the beach then you won't be disappointed as the sandy beach of Malia stretches to a long distance, making it an ideal place to spend the day.


Hersonissos is a beautiful tourist place in Crete and is located about 20 kilometres east of Iraklion, Hersonissos is also known for it's wild nightlife. While your in Hersonissos you can enjoy relaxing on the sandy beaches or go on a trip to the neighbouring villages. Bikes and cars are easily available for rent in Hersonissosh, those who love shopping can explore the market for jewellery, clothes, furs, etc. You could also visit the neighbouring Dia island from Hersonissos, daily cruises organized from Hersonissos take off to Dia island and other nearby beaches and islets, in short, Hersonissos is a perfect place for a vacation with friends or family.


Chania, also known as Hania or Xania, is a blend of Venetian and Turkish traditions, it is the capital of prefecture of Chania in Heraklion. The beautiful museums, historical sites, markets, beaches and restaurants make the place a favourite among tourists. The Vinitial Harbour and the Naval Museum are some of the interesting places to visit, the town is well connected to a number of towns and villages by the KTEL bus service in Crete.


Rethymnon, also known as Rethymno or Rethimno lies in central Crete, the University of Crete is in Rethymnon, which means that the town has a young and vibrant crowd, the town also has a lot of historical monuments and museums and the beaches here are beautiful to, these include Rethymnon Town Beach, Preveli Beach and Bali Beach. The nightlife in the town is vibrant and happening and there are a number of bars and restaurants that are open all night.


Heraklion, also spelt as Iraklion or Iraklio, is the capital of Crete and is located on the north coast of Crete, it has a busy port and an International Airport, Heraklion is also known as the Gateway to Crete. St. Mark's Basilica, Lion's Square, Loggia, the Fortress of Koules and the Archaeological Museum are some of the interesting places to see in Heraklion. Olympic Airlines, Aegean Airlines and Cyprus Airways fly regularly to Heraklion from Athens, for those who wish to take the sea route, you can catch ferries that are run by Minoan Lines, GA Ferries and ANEK that leave from Piraeus (Athens) early in the morning.


Ierapetra is located in the south coast of Crete and is the most southern town in Europe, Ierapetra is in the Lassithi region and faces the beautiful Libyan sea, Ierapetra is only 36 kilometres from Agios Nikolaos. The Museum of Ierapetra and the Venetian Fortress are famous tourist places in the town. About 8 miles from Ierapetra port is Chrissi Island, the island has clear turquoise waters and colourful volcanic rocks, the island is also known as the Gaidouronissi Island or Donkey Island, daily boats run from Ierapetra to the Chrissi Island.


Kastelli is a small village about 40 kilometres from Chania which is located in the north west part of Crete, along the Kissamos gulf. Kastelli is a perfect place to spend a vacation away from the hustle bustle of the towns. The beach here is beautiful and there a number of hotels, restaurants and taverns along the beach, enjoy a relaxed day in the village and spend the day exploring the village or sunbathing on the beach.


Sfakia or Hora Sfakion lies toward the south of Chania, Sfakia is built next to the sea on the slopes of the rocky cliffs. The beach in Sfakia is beautiful and has an amazing scenic beauty. The Sfakia is accessible by road and by sea, staying in Sfakia is not a problem as there are a number of hotels and restaurants that provide excellent food.


Paliohora or Paleochora is located in the south of Crete and is about 75 kilometres from Chania, Paliohora is located on a small peninsula, behind a Venetian Castle. Paliohora was earlier known as Selino Kastelli because of the castle, this Venetian castle is the main attraction of the village and was built in 1279 A.D, the castle is very popular with tourists and is not to be missed while your in Paliohora.


Krista is the largest village in Crete and is located in the foothills of the Kastella Mountain and is one of the main centres for folk art and crafts, the best place to buy crafts and traditional items in Crete. While your in Krista don't forget to visit the Church of Panagia Kera, which is a typical Greek church with frescos and dates back to the 15th century. There are bars and restaurant that serve a variety of food, the best food is the local food that is generally not mentioned on the menu. The people in Krista are warm, friendly and hospitable, those who wish to visit Krista can do so by car or better still, you can catch a bus from Agios Nikolaos, the Crete bus service KTEL connects Krista to Agios Nikolaos, Elounda, Ierapetra and Amoudara.

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