Heraklion Island tours

Our most recommended Heraklion Island tours

Crete: Day Trip to Agios Nikolaos and Spinalonga Island

1. Crete: Day Trip to Agios Nikolaos and Spinalonga Island

Embark on a full-day guided trip to northeastern Crete and take a boat trip to Spinalonga Island. Visit Agios Nikolaos with its famous lake, and explore the picturesque village of Elounda. Begin the day with the visit to Agios Nikolaos, and see the shore of Mirabello Bay. Explore the town, famous for the lake at its center and its shopping and cafes. Take your time for a walk to enjoy the views, enjoy some shopping or have a drink in one of the numerous cafes around the lake. Explore an open-air market on Wednesdays. Move on to see Elounda village, a former fishing village on the northern coast of the island. Depart from Elounda for the cruise to Spinalonga Island. Learn about the island's vibrant history, from a home for the Venetians and Turks to a place of isolation for those suffering from leprosy. Experience the island, more popular after the 2005 historical novel “The Island” about how lepers lived in Spinalonga. Join the hundreds of people who come to the island every day to visit and learn its history.

From Crete: Santorini Full-Day Tour by Boat

2. From Crete: Santorini Full-Day Tour by Boat

Visit Santorini on this full day-trip from the island of Crete. After pick-up from your hotel, head to the harbor and begin your sightseeing boat tour on the Cretan Sea. Upon arrival, see the white houses of Fira that lie high above the edge of the crater, and decide whether you would like to spend more time on this volcanic island. Wander the small town of Fira or visit the picturesque town of Oia. Enjoy the leisurely Greek lifestyle and visit a taverna or two. Relax on the beach, enjoy the day by the sea, and simply leave your cares behind.

Black Rose Pirate Boat: 5-Hour Trip from Heraklion

3. Black Rose Pirate Boat: 5-Hour Trip from Heraklion

Embark on a multi-stop cruise from Heraklion to St. Georges Bay, Sissi, Stalis, and more. Hop on board the Black Rose pirate boat and enjoy a pirate-themed experience with face painting, music, dancing, and a BBQ meal. The Black Rose sails daily from the Port of Hersonissos through the clear waters of the Cretan Sea. The first stop on the trip is St. Georges Bay. You’ll have around 2 hours to swim and snorkel and explore the area. By the time you’re back on the boat, the pirate crew will have prepared a delicious BBQ meal for you to enjoy. Later, head for the coast of Malia and Stalis for the second swimming stop.

Heraklion: Balos and Gramvousa Day Trip

4. Heraklion: Balos and Gramvousa Day Trip

Travel by air-conditioned bus to the west of Crete. Enjoy a cup of coffee or breakfast at the small village of Skaleta and then continue to Kissamos to board a boat and start your cruise. Admire a vast cave that was most likely an ancient shipyard. See sea turtles and dolphins playing in the water. Disembark on the island of Gramvousa, also known as "Pirates' Island". Here, you can encounter over 100 bird and 400 plant species. Enjoy plenty of free time to swim at a gorgeous beach. Alternatively, feast from an (optional) lunch on board.  Continue your cruise to the lagoon of Balos and discover one of the loveliest sites in Greece. Get a breathtaking view of the lagoon, before the return journey to the meeting point. 

Heraklion: Private Sailing Boat Trip to Dia Island

5. Heraklion: Private Sailing Boat Trip to Dia Island

Charter a sailing vessel privately and escape to the seas. From Heraklion, sail to unique and beautiful Dia Island, where you will have plenty of free time to swim, fish, and snorkel. Several hours later, continue on to another bay, where you will swim in crystal blue waters or take some time to relax in the shade. If you're lucky, you might even spot some dolphins and sea turtles. Relax and spend the day enjoying life while setting sail on the Sea of Crete.

From Heraklion: Elounda and Spinalonga Full-Day Tour

6. From Heraklion: Elounda and Spinalonga Full-Day Tour

Journey back in time and explore the ancient civilizations of Crete on a private full-day tour to Spinalonga. Drive along the north coast of the island and get an amazing view of the Selinari gorge on the way to the small fishing village of Elounda, known for its gorgeous beach. Board a boat to the small island of Spinalonga, and learn the local history dating back to Ancient Greece. Take a guided tour of the island to explore how it served as a natural defense for the ancient city of Olous and was later used by the Saracens as a hide-out for their pirates. Discover the remains of the Venetian fortifications and learn more about the period of Ottoman rule. Proceed to the sandy Bay of Kolokitha where the boat will be anchored. Enjoy some free time to swim in the crystal clear waters and feast from a BBQ lunch. Return to Elounda to take the bus to the pretty town of Agios Nikolaos, where you can browse the shops and visit the bottomless lake.

Crete: Zaros and Trypiti Beach Off-Road Tour w/ Lunch & Wine

7. Crete: Zaros and Trypiti Beach Off-Road Tour w/ Lunch & Wine

A special excursion to the South of the island, what else but Lake Zaros and the gorge of Trypiti. Explore the village of Zaros with its lake and the extremely natural beauty. We stop at the park for a breath of fresh air at the local cafes by the lake. We continue to the gorge of Trypiti through the biggest valley of Crete, this of Messara where our descent inside the gorge and through huge vertical rocks ends at the well hidden and exotic beach of Trypiti. Landscape of incomparable natural beauty rich in flora and fauna. Arrival at the beach and time for swim in its crystal clear waters. Quiet beach for moments of relaxation just before our lunch with authentic Cretan food in the center of the wild olive tree forest in the canyon of St. Savvas. Satisfying experiences and good traditional food, we return to your hotel with the best memories !

From Athens: 10-Day Tour to Mykonos, Santorini & Crete

8. From Athens: 10-Day Tour to Mykonos, Santorini & Crete

Experience the best of Greece on a 10-day trip from Athens. Spend nights in Mykonos, Santorini, and Crete, while enjoying private transfers and tours. Visit the Palace of Knossos, see the Acropolis of Athens, and discover local nightlife and shopping. Day 1: Arrival dayYour driver will meet you at the Athens airport to transfer you to your hotel in Athens. Spend the night in Athens. Day 2: Private guided tour in Athens and Plaka Meet your driver and guide at your hotel to begin your day with a panoramic tour of the city. Then, get dropped off at the Acropolis to continue the tour with your guide and explore the Acropolis and the Acropolis Museum. Stroll through the picturesque streets of Plaka and Monastiraki to admire the Greek architecture and taste the famous Greek souvlaki (meat skewers). Spend the night in Athens. Day 3: Athens to Mykonos Depart from your hotel and head to Piraeus Port to take the ferry to Mykonos. Get driven to your hotel and spend some time relaxing before heading out to enjoy the amazing nightlife of Mykonos. Spend the night in Mykonos. Day 4: Mykonos Mykonos, the most famous island in the world, is well known for its nightlife, sandy beaches, and the impressive Delos, the sacred Island of Apollo and Artemis. Enjoy time shopping, then spend the rest of your night in Mykonos at your hotel. Day 5: Mykonos to Santorini Get picked up from your hotel and head to Mykonos Port to board the boat for Santorini. In Santorini, meet your driver and spend some free time for drinks or dinner at one of the many restaurants and bars located just on the rocks above the sea. Spend the night in Santorini. Day 6: Santorini Discover the beauty and Cycladic culture of Santorini, soak up the sun, and swim at a black beach in a volcanic pool. Feel like you’re at the spa at this pool created by the volcanic eruptions that plagued the island. Spend the night in Santorini. Day 7: Santorini to Crete Head to the Santorini Port to take the ferry departing to Heraklion. Upon arriving there, get transferred to your hotel. Spend the night in Heraklion. Day 8: Crete Enjoy a free day to explore the town. Spend the night in Heraklion. Day 9: Crete to Athens Get picked up from your hotel to visit the Palace of Knossos and the Archaeological Museum of Heraklion (entry costs not included). At the end of the tour, your driver will transfer you to the Heraklion Airport to take your return flight to Athens. Your private driver will wait for you at Athens airport and transfer you to your hotel. Spend the night in Athens. Day 10: Departure day Your driver will take you to the Athens Airport according to your flight details.

From Athens: Crete, Santorini, Mykonos 4-Day Tour

9. From Athens: Crete, Santorini, Mykonos 4-Day Tour

Take a break from mainland Greece and tour its most popular islands in 4 jam-packed days. Wander the ancient streets of Crete, admire the scenic coast of Santorini, and let loose on the lively beaches of Mykonos. Local drivers will transfer you between each location, giving you more time to unwind. Get picked up in Athens to reach your flight to Crete. Your driver will then bring you for a private tour of the Minoan Palace of Knossos, the Archeological Museum of Heraklion, and a walking tour through the old city and market of Heraklion. Learn all about the city’s ancient heritage and myths. Spend the night in a Heraklion hotel and enjoy breakfast in the morning. Your driver will bring you to Heraklion port to take the ferry to Santorini. Get dropped at your hotel and use your free time to explore the unique beaches and jagged cliff sides, shaped long ago by volcanic activity. On the third day of the tour, be transported to the ferry for Mykonos, and then to your hotel. Spend some time strolling by the crystal waters or through the bright streets. Be sure to experience Mykonos’ wild nightlife before turning in. On your final day, take some time to soak up that last bit of Mediterranean sun until the driver brings you to Mykonos port for the ferry back to Athens. Another driver will meet you at Piraeus port and transfer you to your chosen address.

Heraklion: Palace of Minoa & Spinaloga/Elounda Village Tour

10. Heraklion: Palace of Minoa & Spinaloga/Elounda Village Tour

Experience a private day tour in the Heraklion area and visit the third-largest Minoan Palace in Crete, stop at the Island of Spinalonga, and explore Agios Nikolaos and Elounda. Learn more about the history and culture of the Heraklion area on this private tour. Start the tour with pickup from your designated pickup point, and first go to the Archaeological site of Malia, dating back to the Middle Bronze Age. See this majestic site, the third-largest Minoan Palace in all of Crete, built close to a beautiful beach. Move on to Kritsa Village, one of the oldest and most picturesque villages in the area, built atmospherically on a rocky hill called Kastellos, and surrounded by olive groves. Explore the local village with narrow winding lanes, renowned for the skill of its weavers, and see their craftsmanship Visit the Church of Panagia Kera, one of the most important monuments in Crete because of its well-preserved wall paintings representing various periods of Byzantine Art. See the original church, dedicated to the Dormition of Theotokos, built in the middle of the thirteenth century. Make a stop in Agios Nikolaos, one of the first cities in Crete where tourist development began. Admire the picturesque harbor and see two of the sweet water lakes of Crete. Pass by the fishing village of Elounda on the northern coast, and enjoy the traditional and idyllic scenery. Reach the marina of Plaka and from there travel to the Island of Spinalonga, famous as it was a former Venetian Fortress and Leper Colony. Learn more about the site's history and its significance as it left an unfading mark on Crete's history.

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Frequently asked questions about Heraklion

What are the best day trips and excursions from Heraklion?

The best day trips and excursions from Heraklion are:

Chania

Other Sightseeing Options in Heraklion

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What people are saying about Heraklion

Overall rating

4.1 / 5

based on 244 reviews

This tour was an absolute dream! We were picked up by bus, since we were one of the first, we had quite the longest ride. After everyone was on the bus, our tour guide told us a bit about the area where we were. Very interesting. Our first stop was in Agios Nikolaos, a great town especially the small streets. The time of about 1.5 hours was enough for us. Then it was on to Elounda. Here, too, we had about 1.5 hours to eat. So it was a bit tight, but it was enough to see a little bit of the place beforehand. Then I took the boat to the island of Spinalonga. Again, our tour guide informed us about the islands. We were able to explore the island ourselves (entrance was the only thing not included). On the way back we stopped by the sea and were able to jump into the sea. That was one of the best things I've done in my life! Absolute heartfelt recommendation!

Great day out! Michael, our tour guide, was brilliant and knew a lot about the local areas. As it was the national Independence Day of Greece , we had our schedule moved around a little so we were able to experience the parades that were happening - a really lovely consideration for the team to have made! Our pick up was very smooth and the bus journey was a beautiful route that allowed us to see the Cretan scenery. Elounda and Agios Nikolaos are stunning places and definitely worth a visit!! We had a good amount of free time in each place - the best part, jumping off our boat into the sea on our way back from Spinalonga Island! Bucket list check! Highly recommend this day out to everyone!

Great day. Very well organised by Altino travel. Very efficient with booking, pick up etc. Elena was friendly and efficient, a good guide throughout the day. Even drove us personally back to our hotel as we were travelling from Cretan Village. Loved Spinalonga…. So much history there( especially if you’ve read The Island!). Only thing to improve… maybe give the history and info of Spinalonga on the coach before boat trip as we couldn’t hear what Elena was saying above the wind and the noise of the boat. But overall, a great day and would highly recommend this company!!!

Belle excursion à Agios Nikolaos, le car nous a amené récupéré à l’heure à un lieu de rendez vous proche de notre hôtel. A l’arrivée nous avons eu 2h pour visiter Agios Nikolaos et ensuite nous avons mangé un repas sur le bateau (poulet, salade et fruit). Nous avons eu 30 minutes pour nager à côté du bateau et ensuite arrivée a spinalonga ou un guide nous a expliqué l’histoire et ensuite nous a laissé temps libre pendant une heure.

Brilliant day out, lots to see and enough of time to explore each stop.