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Crete
Nature & adventure

Nature & adventure

Our most recommended Crete Nature & adventure

From Kissamos Port: Boat Cruise to Balos Lagoon & Gramvousa

1. From Kissamos Port: Boat Cruise to Balos Lagoon & Gramvousa

Take a day trip from Kissamos port to the uninhabited island of Gramvousa and Balos Lagoon on a round-trip cruise. Glide past cliffs, stop at pristine golden beaches, swim in crystal-clear waters, and visit Gramvousa Fortress—a castle that offers incredible panoramic views. Depart from Kissamos Port and sail for about an hour in the bay. Approach the island of Gramvousa and then the lagoon of Balos or vice versa, depending on the itinerary route. Cruise against a stunning backdrop of steep cliffs and rocks, incredible secluded beaches, and infinite blue. Have the chance to see a large cave, which is thought to be an ancient shipyard. At the end of the bay, sail between Gramvousa Island and Cape Vouxa. Soak in the scenic landscape against the backdrop of Valenti, Pontikonisi, Balos Lagoon, and Imeri Gramvousa. Arrive in the small port of Gramvousa and enjoy the magical environment created by Cretan nature, the legends, and the area's turbulent history. See the beach is adorned by a lonely shipwreck. See the famous castle of Gramvousa, the highest point on the island that sits atop a steep rock. Enjoy a swim in the area next to the Church of Agioi Apostoloi. After a stop at Gramvousa, get back on the boat to head to the Balos Lagoon. Listed as one of the world's best beaches, this exotic beach lagoon is situated between the Gramvousa Peninsula and Cape Tigani. Choose to swim in the turquoise blue waters, relax on the pink sandy beach, or admire the natural beauty, the rocks, and the cliffs rising above you during your rest at the beach before heading back.

Heraklion: Dia Island Sailboat Cruise with Swimming and Meal

2. Heraklion: Dia Island Sailboat Cruise with Swimming and Meal

Sail to the exotic Dia island on our modern and large sailing yachts! Explore the magnificent bay of the island and spend 6 hours of pure relaxation and joy. Sailing to Dia takes approximately 1 hour so after anchoring at the bay there will be 4 hours to spend swimming, enjoying our delicious menu freshly prepared from the crew on board and trying our endless water activities before setting sails to return to Heraklion to enjoy 1 more hour of relaxing sailing. While on anchor in the bay our crew will be happy to offer you any piece of equipment for our water activities and serve you plentiful drinks so please don't hesitate to request it from them. You can choose between the morning or the afternoon cruise with the sunset view. Below we give you the timetables of the 2 trips. Morning Sailing Trip: 9:00 AM : Departure from the Port of Heraklion. As we sail you can enjoy the sun, the wind or have some drinks or even learn how to sail and be the captain yourself! 10:15 AM : We arrive to the exotic Dia island. Time for swimming, exploring and trying our water activities. 12:00 AM : Time for a break to enjoy our delicious menu. 12:30 PM : More time to spend swimming, sunbathing, relaxing or trying our water activities. 1:45 PM : Time to say goodbye to the beautiful scenery and the crystal waters and set sails once again to head back to Heraklion full of joy and great memories! 3:00 PM : We arrive to the Port of Heraklion and we wish you farewell hoping to see you again in one of our trips! Afternoon Sailing Trip: 3:00 PM : Departure from the Port of Heraklion. As we sail you can enjoy the sun, the wind or have some drinks or even learn how to sail and be the captain yourself! 4:15 PM : We arrive to the exotic Dia island. Time for swimming, exploring and trying our water activities. 6:00 PM : Time for a break to enjoy our delicious menu. 6:30 PM : More time to spend swimming, sunbathing, relaxing or trying our water activities. 7:45 PM : Time to say goodbye to the beautiful scenery and the crystal waters and set sails once again to head back to Heraklion admiring the magnificent sunset, full of joy and great memories! 9:00 PM : We arrive to the Port of Heraklion and we wish you farewell hoping to see you again in one of our trips! We look forward to welcome you on board for an unforgettable day!

From Chania: Full-Day Samaria Gorge Trek Excursion

3. From Chania: Full-Day Samaria Gorge Trek Excursion

Embark on a full-day guided trip to the Samaria Gorge from Chania. Arrive in Omalos in the heart of the White Mountains, and enjoy breakfast before trekking along the longest gorge in Europe — 4,000 feet above sea level.  After breakfast, enter the Samaria Gorge. Walk at your own pace with your English speaking guide at the end of the group to help out if you need them. Hike over rocks and stones, through a forest of thousand-year-old trees and along a river, passing by fresh-water springs along the way. Enjoy views of Crete’s most beautiful mountain range and see mountain goats roaming in the wild. Feel the exhilaration of challenging yourself with a long hike. At the end of the trek, visit the village of Agia Roumeli, where you’ll find a number of taverns, bars, and shops. Enjoy some free time to take a swim or have some lunch. A meeting point will be arranged so you can collect your ferry tickets from your guide. Late in the afternoon you’ll board a boat that will take you from Agia Roumeli to Sougia, where the bus will be waiting to transfer you back to the starting point about 730 PM.

Agios Nikolaos: Boat Trip to Spinalonga with Swim Stop

4. Agios Nikolaos: Boat Trip to Spinalonga with Swim Stop

Spinalonga is a magnificent island with fortresses dating from the Venetian period. It is an island of legends, a triumph to survival in the early 20th century from the scourge of leprosy, now a place of great archaeological and historical significance. On Spinalonga island, enjoy the opportunity to visit the Interpretive Centre there and discover the settlements of the victims and survivors of this former illness. Explore the Venetian fortifications and learn all about the long and fascinating history of the island. Take time to walk around the island and see the views of the bay and the fortifications. Later the cruise continues, passing along other points of interest in the Bay of Mirabello such as the cave of the legendary Pirate Barbarosa, the sunken ancient city of Olous, and the island where the endemic and hardy Cretan Kri Kri goats live. Have time to relax and swim in the exquisite turquoise waters of Kolokitha Bay. The 40 m boat features two bars, a lounge, and a restaurant serving Greek and international cuisine at reasonable prices with high-quality service from the crew.

Crete: Palace of Knossos Entry Ticket & Optional Audio Guide

5. Crete: Palace of Knossos Entry Ticket & Optional Audio Guide

Benefit from access to the Palace of Knossos avoiding the ticket booth lines. Once inside, you are free to explore this Minoan archaeological site at your own pace, including the Grand Palace which dates back to the year 2000 B.C. Choose between just an entry ticket or an entry ticket and audio guide. As you wander through the site, discover what remains of living quarters, workspaces, and storerooms that have stood for centuries. Learn more about the city which is thought to have been the capital and political center of Minoan civilization and culture. Get a sense of what the building was like originally from the extensive restorations that have taken place throughout the 20th and 21st centuries. See colorful restored murals, which were typical of the time, and the throne room of the legendary King Minos, which is still intact.

Crete: Knossos & Museum E-Tickets with Optional Audio Tours

6. Crete: Knossos & Museum E-Tickets with Optional Audio Tours

Experience Ancient Crete at your own pace with a combined e-ticket for the island's top two archaeological attractions, the Palace of Knossos and the Heraklion Archaeological Museum. Receive your ticket in a separate email from the activity provider. Then travel back in time to experience the grandeur of Crete from the Minoan period to Roman times. Discover the Palace of Knossos and its monumental Palace of Minos. Explore the exquisite artifacts exhibited in the Heraklion Archaeological Museum and its unique collection of Minoan artistic masterpieces.

Heraklion Area: CRETAquarium Admission Ticket

7. Heraklion Area: CRETAquarium Admission Ticket

Venture into the ocean’s depth with a 1-day admission ticket to the CRETAquarium. One of Europe’s largest aquariums, over 2,000 sea creatures lice the CRETAquarium's 60 diverse habitats. Delve into the caves and crevices of the Mediterranean, where stingrays and rock-like scorpionfish slither about. Pop out into the open ocean, where menacing sharks circle, waiting to be fed. Get up close and personal with jellyfish and schools of vibrant tropical clownfish through shallow, open-topped tanks, which allow a new viewing perspective of well known species.  Above all, gain a new appreciation for the unending diversity of the world’s most mystifying environment. When you’ve had your fill of looking at the ocean’s residents, why not pop in for a dip? The CRETAquarium is, fittingly, right on the beach.

From Chania: Day Trip to Elafonisi Island

8. From Chania: Day Trip to Elafonisi Island

Travel to the southwest corner of Crete on a guided day trip from Chania to Elafonisi Island, with hotel transfers included. Spend a relaxing day swimming in the clear blue waters, relaxing on the pink sand beach, and soaking in the unique landscape of Elafonisi. Start with a hotel pick up and take in the lush green landscape en route to the island as you travel through the impressive Topolia Gorge and pass many traditional villages. Stop to purchase coffee and breakfast in the village of Elos, known for its chestnut trees. After arriving at Elafonisi, enjoy 4 hours of relaxing on the beach and swimming in the crystal-clear waters. Afterward, enjoy lunch at a local tavern (not included). Situated just off the island of Crete, Elafonisi is easily reached by walking through the shallow waters. Both the beach and island are protected wildlife areas of rare beauty.

From Crete: Santorini Island Guided Tour

9. From Crete: Santorini Island Guided Tour

Enjoy a roundtrip tour to Santorini. Travel comfortably on a modern boat and in air-conditioned buses while learning about this island's history and mythology. Capture pictures of Santorini's famous Aegean architecture and narrow, winding streets.  Travel to Heraklion port where you will depart on a high-speed boat for Santorini. Enjoy ocean views on the 2.5-hour cruise to the island and pickup a snack from the bar onboard.  Arrive at Port Athinios and hop aboard the bus for the guided tour. Travel 40 minutes to Oia, where you will admire the blue and white houses built over the cliffs. Learn about the city before enjoying free time to admire the volcanic caldera at your own pace. Next, travel 30 minutes to Fira, the main town of Santorini, built on the edge of a 300-meter cliff. Check out its narrow streets, white vaulted houses, and bright blue domes. Have the option to take a cruise from Fira in a wooden boat to the volcano and hot springs (for an additional charge) or spend more time exploring the city. Return to Port Athinios where your guide will help you board the return ferry.  Take in the late-afternoon views on the boat before arriving at Heraklion port.

Crete: Palace of Knossos E-Ticket and Optional Audio Guide

10. Crete: Palace of Knossos E-Ticket and Optional Audio Guide

Enjoy an exciting visit to Knossos Palace, Crete’s most famous historical attraction, with a pre-booked e-ticket, including a compelling audio tour downloadable on your phone and a detailed map of the site. Lose yourself in the audio tour's storytelling and immerse yourself in history as you walk around this iconic site. Visit the grand capital of Minoan Crete, located just south of Heraklion, and see the evocative setting, complete with impressive ruins and brightly-colored frescoes, come alive through an engaging narrative that sheds light on various elements of Minoan culture. The cupbearers and procession frescoes at the South Propylaeum, which depicts scenes from everyday life and the ceremonial activities in Minoan Crete, provide a great insight into the aesthetic ideals of the time. Follow the evolution of Minoan fashion, learn about the popular hairstyles of the people, and discover the beauty products locals used to touch up their looks. At the West Magazines, where the storage facilities of the palace are located, gain an understanding of the well-organized bureaucracy that supported the palace organization, the earliest forms of linear writing, as well as the Minoan economy and trade networks. Discover the copy of the “Prince of the Lilies” at the South Entrance Corridor and gaze out on Mount Juktas, perfectly framed by the eroded walls of the palace. Visit the Queen’s Megaron, embellished with famous blue dolphins fresco and equipped with a bathroom and a toilet room, where you can find out everything about the bath habits in the Minoan era.

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What people are saying about Crete

Overall rating

4.5 / 5

based on 4,099 reviews

Angela and I came to Crete for our thanksgiving break looking for fun activities to do and we found scuba diving. We’ve never done it before and we’re both pretty nervous to do it, but our instructor Ioannis Almpantakis was the best. He gave us all the information we needed for our first time and was very patient with us. This was by far one of the best experiences of our lives. He is a great leader and you can tell he was very passionate about his job. If you get the chance to scuba dive definitely do it!

The lake is cool, but perhaps not as beautiful as it is depicted in photographs (that being said I did see it on quite an overcast day). However, the towns were absolutely lovely and I really enjoyed just strolling through and exploring a different side of Crete! Really loved the guide as well!

great and thorough guide, incredible scenery, you feel like you've really accomplished something at the end, but isn't for the faint hearted, it is a tough but rewarding day, make sure the rest up the day after!

Everything was perfect from the beginning! Our friendly guide Kostas, the trip, the goats, the Minoan route, the food (very tasty), the cheese, zeuz's cave, etc. 100! Recommended

Very nice trip. They picked me up in a van very close to my hotel because the streets were very narrow. Recommended!