Heraklion Meet the locals

Our most recommended Heraklion Meet the locals

Crete: Land Rover Safari on Minoan Route

1. Crete: Land Rover Safari on Minoan Route

Explore Crete by Land Rover on a full-day adventure along the Minoan Path, and experience a blend of ancient myths, spectacular landscapes, and a barbecue lunch on the Lassithi Plateau. Following a pick-up from your hotel, drive through spectacular mountains en route to the Aposelemis Basin Reservoir, and see an ancient aqueduct of the Roman Empire. Continue to the village of Kastamonitsa in the foothills of the Afendi Mountains. Stop for a Cretan-style breakfast and raki tasting. Next, brace yourself for the dirt tracks of the Minoan Path. Drive through a stunning mountain landscape to see wildlife and the unbelievable scenery. Learn the myths and legends of Crete on the way to a shepherd's mitato (mountain shelter). Feed the animals as you watch the shepherds produce cheese according to traditional methods. Taste some of the fresh, rich cheese. Enjoy a bird’s-eye view of the Lassithi Plateau and north coast. Continue to Dikteon Cave to marvel at the birthplace of Zeus. Work up an appetite before your lunch at a local taverna. Try a selection of traditional dishes (vegetarian option available) and a glass or two of wine. Then, go to Lassinthos Eco Park to admire traditional handicrafts. Back on the Lassithi Plateau, experience a wilderness and farming land where time has stood still. See donkeys put to work to help farm the land. Then, go to Seli to take photos of the unique scenery. Drive to the village of Krassi, famous for its 2,000-year-old tree and natural spring water source. Continue down the mountain roads, passing ancient olive groves before you reach the spectacular coastline and deep blue sea.

Heraklion: Ecobike Sightseeing Tour with Greek Meze

2. Heraklion: Ecobike Sightseeing Tour with Greek Meze

Head to the meeting point and get kitted out with the necessary bike gear while listening to a safety briefing. When you’re ready, hit the road with your local guide and set off on your sightseeing adventure. Glide alongside the city’s imposing Venetian Walls as you make your way to Koules Fortress. Hop off your bike to take some photos of this impressive landmark and learn about its history. From here, ride into the Old Town district to see monuments of the Second World War as well as some of the city’s more modern sights. Pass by the city’s Orthodox church and mosque next, and learn about the influence of religion in Heraklion. You’ll also get a better insight into the city’s history with the Ottoman Empire. Later, cycle thorough the narrow streets of Iakkos and soak up views of this picturesque neighborhood. Once you've worked up a bit of an appetite, enjoy some delicious Greek meze and learn about traditional cuisine. Finally, stop at one of the city’s ancient markets before heading back to the meeting point where the tour ends.

From Chania: Private Local Highlights & Knossos Palace Tour

3. From Chania: Private Local Highlights & Knossos Palace Tour

We have designed this unforgettable trip to submerge you into an authentic way of life in one of the island's most beautiful regions while gaining a deeper understanding of the relationship between history, stunning escapes, gastronomy, and the authentic Cretan local lifestyle. You will also visit the world-famous Palace of Knossos, where your expert guide will ensure skip-the-line access to all archaeological areas, key pieces of information, and extra-personalized attention. Then, from the history and cultural experience, you will be immersed in another time wandering the unspoiled Cretan landscape along with authentic layers of flavors, wines, and village life of the island of Crete. Enjoy personal pick-up and drop-off with a premium vehicle at your full-day disposal, like a true VIP

Heraklion: Private Knossos & Wine Tasting Tour with Lunch

4. Heraklion: Private Knossos & Wine Tasting Tour with Lunch

Begin your journey of Knossos by meeting your guide at your hotel in Heraklion, where you will be greeted by your guide who will take care of you throughout the day.  Head straight to Knossos, where you will visit the ancient Minoan Palace, an important city in antiquity that supported continuous life from the Neolithic era to the 5th century. According to tradition, Knossos was the seat of the wise king Minos. Learn about the archeological site's fascinating myths, including the famous labyrinth and the minotaur legend, and that of Daedalus and Icarus. Next, head into the Heraklion mainland, which is known for its vilana, kostifali, and vidiano indigenous Cretan grapes. Crete's winemaking tradition dates all the way back to antiquity, and Cretan winemakers have consistently produced outstanding, award-winning wines. Taste some of these flavorful wines at a family-owned organic winery, where you'll enjoy six different wines along with local nibbles. Next, tuck into a delicious local lunch in a cozy, traditional, family-owned tavern that serves home-grown and freshly made delicacies from farm to table. This is your chance to sample truly authentic Cretan cuisine. Then, explore a typical village in Archanes as you wander its narrow lanes, and discover a world concealed from time. Here, savor the local liqueur called raki before heading back to your accommodation in Heraklion.

From Elounda: Knossos Palace & West Crete Private Tour

5. From Elounda: Knossos Palace & West Crete Private Tour

We have designed this unforgettable trip to submerge you into an authentic way of life in one of the island's most beautiful regions while gaining a deeper understanding of the relationship between history, stunning escapes, gastronomy, and the authentic Cretan local lifestyle. You will also visit the world-famous Palace of Knossos, where your expert guide will ensure skip-the-line access to all archaeological areas, key pieces of information, and extra-personalized attention. Then, from the history and cultural experience, you will be immersed in another time wandering the unspoiled Cretan landscape along with authentic layers of flavors, wines, and village life of the island of Crete. Enjoy personal pick-up and drop-off with a premium vehicle at your full-day disposal, like a true VIP

Crete: Land Rover Safari Nida Plateau Route

6. Crete: Land Rover Safari Nida Plateau Route

Get picked up from your hotel in Gazi and head straight off-road along the river bed to the picturesque village of Pendamodi. Here, enjoy a quick stop to see the picturesque church and natural springs. Journey through the vineyards of the largest wine producing area on the island to the village of Krousonas and sample some local produce such as olive oil and raki. Enjoy some free time here to get a coffee and take in the stunning views. Continue towards Livadi Plateau with views of the many apple orchards in the area and meet some friendly local goats. Next, stop at the Nida Plateau, the highest point of the day, and enjoy spectacular views of Crete's highest snowcapped mountain ‘Psiloritis’. Listen to tales of the resistance and Crete’s chequered history, visit a very unusual monument and a traditional Shepherds ‘mitato’, and experience the traditional Cretian method of cheese making. Next, visit the Ideon Andron cave, where mythology states that Zeus took refuge and escaped death. Head to the famous village of Anogeia for a delicious BBQ lunch with unlimited wine (vegetarian option available) with views of the highest plateau on the island. Once refreshed, go for a short walk to the center of Anogeia (optional). Finally, slowly head back off-road to the home of El Greco, the village of Fodele, and take some time to relax before beginning your journey back to the hotel.

Private Wine Pairing for Brunch

7. Private Wine Pairing for Brunch

Escape on the most intimate and exclusive Cretan brunch journey with your loved one or a group of friends. Explore a vineyard, cellar and the production facilities with the winemaker before you dive into a homemade Cretan brunch. The setup is designed to please the eyes! The food is prepared by a local taverna and is based only on local and traditional products, and will be accompanied by 5 wines. All pots and plates are handmade with care by a local ceramist from natural clay. Your private sommelier will teach you how to taste wines like an expert, and introduce you to the secrets of food and wine pairing; After this delicious experience, and if the weather allows it, visit and discover the nearby and hidden gem known as Patsos Gorge, inside of which are numerous walkways and hidden altars.

Heraklion: Ecobike Tour with Food tasting

8. Heraklion: Ecobike Tour with Food tasting

Enjoy an e-bike tour with Cretan food tasting in Heraklion, Crete with a guide. Discover Heraklion's highlights as well as lesser-known corners as you learn about the characters who have shaped the city that you see today. Visit some locally loved hangouts where regional food and drinks await. Head to the meeting point and get kitted out with the necessary bike gear while listening to a safety briefing. When you’re ready, hit the road with your local guide and set off on your sightseeing adventure. Start the day with a traditional Greek coffee after meeting with a local food guide in the square of Pancretan stadium. Then, ride towards the city of Heraklion, stopping at an ideal spot for photos, followed by a sample of local mezes (small dishes) in a traditional tavern. Tuck into a midday meal at a tavern while enjoying sea views. Try the sweetest Loukoumades (fried dough dessert). Experience both the Mediterranean and Cretan sides of Greek cuisine. Meet locals, from the tavern owners to local farmers. Once you've worked up a bit of an appetite, savor some delicious Greek meze and learn about traditional cuisine. Finally, stop at one of the city’s ancient markets before heading back to the meeting point where the tour ends.

Heraklion: Food Walking Tour

9. Heraklion: Food Walking Tour

Discover the delicious offerings of Crete with this Heraklion for foodies tour. As you stroll the streets of Heraklion with your licensed guide, hear about the history and tradition behind some of the island's most beloved dishes. Enjoy a wealth of tastings such as 'bougatsa' (custard cream pie), 'kalitsounia' (sweet mizithra cheese and honey pies), 'dolmades' (rice wrapped in vine leaf with herbs), Cretan olives, 'dakos' (rusk bread with tomato and grated feta) cheeses, honey, seafood dishes and more. Visit artisanal delis and food shops that have been run by dedicated families for generations and taste the products they so lovingly create—a truly decadent discovery of Crete’s indulgent foodie scene. Be sure to come hungry.

Heraklion: History & Culture Walking Tour with Food Tasting

10. Heraklion: History & Culture Walking Tour with Food Tasting

Explore the historical city center of Heraklion. Visit, along with your expert tour guide, Heraklion’s major monuments; travel through time and its rich history. Discover the past and the present of a city that combines old with new. The 7th labor of Hercules was performed here, the birthplace of El Greco and Nikos Kazantzakis. On this tour hear stories about Heraklion's turbulent past and visit its legendary churches, fountains, and monuments. On this tour you will also get to enjoy local products finger food and wine amidst Venetian monumental buildings. Stroll through off-the-beaten-path areas in the city, learn about the Mediterranean diet. On this 2-hour tour feed your body and mind.

  • Guided tours
  • Private tours
  • Adventures
22 activities found
Sort by:
Page 1 of 2

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

Want to discover all there is to do in Heraklion? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Heraklion

Overall rating

4.7 / 5

based on 28 reviews

Had an excellent day out. Chris our driver and guide for the day was a pleasure to be with. Chris kept us entertained throughout the day with stories and explanations, plus continuous pointers of things to look out for. The views were amazing even on the rather cloudy day that we went. The only thing that we could not do was go into the ‘Zeus’s cave’ as the que was to long at the caves to get in within the time we had there. All in all though, a fantastic day out and would definitely recommend.

staff were lovely- the stable is owned by a father and daughter who are both very hospitable they can speak many languages including English, greek, german transportation wasn't included but they specifically came to pick us up as it was pretty far for us to go by bus/expensive by taxi they also provide orange juice and watermelon up in the mountains there is always a group of staff walking up with you if your horses start acting up or you need help- it's about 4 horses with 1 staff member

Great scenery and great hosts. The horses are very gentle and well behaved so it was a lovely gentle ride up and down the mountains. We took our 5 year old and he loved it. The guide was with him the whole time so he was completely at ease.

This was amazing! These guys know their horses and the mountains! Always felt safe because they walked close by and understood each horse and how to tell us to react to them! Highly recommend!

Very welcoming, well trained horses and amazing food at the end!