Tour

from365

Holidays in Crete (Group)

Departure Date

05 Jul - 25 Oct

Duration

7 Days

7 Days – Departures:

  • 05, 19 July 2020

  • 02, 13, 30 August 2020

  • 13, 27 September 2020

  • 11, 25 October 2020

CRETE

Crete is the largest and most populous island in Greece, the fifth largest in the Mediterranean beyond Sicily, Sardinia, Cyprus and Corsica. Crete is one of the most southern parts of Europe, located south of many North African cities such as Tunis and Algiers! The first human settlements on the island, dating back to the Pre-Neolithic Age, ancient Knossos was at first a Neolithic settlement. Crete was the center of the 1st developed civilization of Europe, the Minoan with over 300 days of sunshine each year it has the record for Europe. The island is divided into four administrative districts, known as the Prefecture of Chania in the West, Rethymnon and Heraklion in the center of Crete and the Prefecture of Lasithi in the East. The majestic landscape of Crete is quite mountainous with large canyons, caves and four mountain ranges. There are endless opportunities to go on foot for hiking in the mountains, most of which are covered by a variety of trees and shrubs, in lush plains and plateaus with great views. Cretan flora and fauna is known for its vast variety. The great changes in climate and geology for millions of years have had a profound effect on the plants and animals of the island and as a result of this, there are now many varieties that can only be found on the island of Crete. The visitor is attracted by the image of the Mediterranean Sea, the view of the endless blue of the sea and the majestic green silver color of the olive tree. Crete attracts many people who are interested in plants and come to see the rich variety of flowers, herbs and trees. Crete is an island for every age, for every wallet, for all tastes and preferences. If you want to find yourself in a luxury resort where you will be able to serve your every wish and offer you unique comfort and services, then choose the luxury hotels in Elounda. If you like the traffic and the liveliness of the city but at the same time you want a romantic atmosphere and strolls in scenic narrow streets of another era, then you will be thrilled with Chania and Rethymno. If you want intense nightlife, cheap drinks and loud music, then dozens of bars in Hersonissos, Malia and Platanias await you to keep you awake every night of your holiday. Whatever you want, Crete can offer you, because Crete is great, it is beautiful and always cares its guests in the best way.

SCHEDULE

1st Day

PIRAEUS – HERAKLION

Morning departure by ship from Piraeus and arrival in Heraklion in the afternoon. Immediate hotel accommodation and then a walk for a first acquaintance with the city. The history of the city is reflected in the changes of its name. The geographer Strabo refers to a port in Knossos called Heraklion. In 824, when the Arabs occupied Crete, they fortified the old settlement. From the Arabic word Handaq came the name Chandax and in the 13th century, during Venetian rule, the name Candia. Heraklion was officially named in 1922. During World War II, half of the city was destroyed by bombings. Today Heraklion is a modern city, commercial, industrial and tourist center of Crete. The ”within the walls” city moves people with its Venetian monuments, the neoclassical buildings and the picturesque pedestrian streets.

2nd Day

HERAKLION – ELOUNDA – SPINALONGA – AGIOS NIKOLAOS – LASITHI – HERAKLION

As soon as we see Elounda, we will be fascinated by its unadulterated traditional color but also by the modern settlement that today is a very popular tourist resort. Next we will pass to Spinalonga, an island at the entrance of Spinalonga bay in the western part of Mirabello bay. It is crowned by a fortress built by the Venetians in 1579 on the ruins of an ancient fortification. The building of the public baths of the 4th AD stands out. It has been for many years a place for lepers to be isolated. Built at the northwestern end of the picturesque bay of Mirabello, Agios Nikolaos holds the place of the ancient city of Latous. Today's city has a strong cosmopolitan character. We will continue with the plateau of Lassithi (Tzermiado), a paradisiacal area at an altitude of 817 – 850 m., at the northwestern end of Dikti with apple trees, pears, cherries, almonds and vegetables. The area has been inhabited since the Neolithic years. Refugee families from the Peloponnese settled here in the 16th century. It was a center and hideout of the revolutionaries during the Turkish occupation. Return to Heraklion. Overnight.

3rd Day

KNOSSOS – KERAS KARDIOTISSAS MONASTERY – APANOSIFI – VENERATO – PALIANI MONASTERY – AROLITHOS – HERAKLION

Today we will visit Knossos, the center of Minoan civilization during the period 2000–1400 BC. We will tour the famous ancient city with the palaces, we will admire the «prince of the Lilies», the pool of purifications, the small palace, the royal mansion, the royal tomb etc. In a verdant area of the North Tower is the Keras Kardiotissas Monastery. It is a historical monastery, 50 km southeast of Heraklion, from which the settlements of Kera and Ano Kera are named. The Holy Monastery of Agios Georgios of Apanosifis or Epanosifis, is located in the center of the prefecture of Heraklion and Crete in general. It is the largest monastery since its founding in Crete in number of monks, not only registered but also inhabitants. We will continue to Venerato, one of the most beautiful villages in the hinterland of the prefecture of Heraklion, a place of astonishing beauty and tranquility, unique for its picturesqueness and wonderful colors. The Paliani Monastery is considered one of the oldest monasteries in Crete and dominates the area. We will head to Arolithos, a complex that represents a traditional Cretan village created out of love for the Cretan tradition. It is located just 11 km outside of Heraklion, on the slope of a mountain. We will admire the folklore collection in the museum of agricultural history & folk art and we will walk in the stone-built alleys where we will experience a unique traditional environment. Through a wonderful mountain route we will reach Anogia. Thanks to the respect and love that the people of Anogia give to their cultural heritage, customs and traditions, Anogia is considered the center of modern Cretan culture.

4th Day

HERAKLION – FODELE – ARKADI – RETHYMNO – LAKE KOURNAS – CHANIA

After our breakfast we depart from our hotel in Heraklion. Our first stop is Fodele located in the middle of a valley, overgrown with orange groves. In fact, it is famous for its particularly delicious oranges. The village was associated with the great painter Domenikos Theotokopoulos. The preservation of the surname Theotokakis in the village led to the conclusion that El Greco came from there. The next stop of our tour today is the Holy Monastery of Arkadi, which was founded, according to tradition, by the emperor Heraclius and was rebuilt in the 5th century by the Byzantine emperor Arcadius, whose name it bears. Arkadi is the most historic monastery in Crete, which was to become the holiest symbol of the Cretan struggle for Freedom, as it was here that the tragic holocaust of 1866 paved the way for the liberation of the island in 1898. In fact, UNESCO has designated Arkadi as a “European Monument of Freedom”. We are going to love Rethymno with its Psiloritis and its deep blue sea as they say: “Rethymno is not a place you go to, but but a place where you return to”. We will walk in the Venetian port with the impressive Fortetsa fortress and the old town, one of the most well-preserved cities of the Renaissance. A stop at the beautiful lake Kournas. The natural beauty of Lake Kournas will fascinate us as it is the only natural lake in Crete. In ancient times it was called Korisia. The lake is fed by the waters that descend the neighboring mountains and hills. The rocks of the area interrupt their underground flow and do not allow them to continue their course up to the sea. Arrival in the city of Chania. Accommodation at the hotel. Overnight.

5th Day

CHANIA – SFAKIA – FRANGOKASTELLO – DROSOULITES – CHANIA

Breakfast at our hotel and we depart for Sfakia Town. It is located in a very inaccessible and rugged area surrounded by the steep slopes of the White Mountains and the numerous gorges that form in them. The village is built almost at the end of the Imbros gorge, one of the gorges of the area, of which passes the road that connects the settlement with Chania. Stop and free time in the famous Sfakia with the beautiful beaches in the Libyan Sea. We continue to Frangokastello and Drosoulites: The metaphysical phenomenon that haunts Crete. Every year at the end of May and the beginning of June, just before sunrise, the Drosoulites appear at the place Thyme Kambos in the province of Sfakia. An army of dead warriors with glittering armor is advancing towards the sea over Frangokastello. They say that it is Hatzimichalis Dalianis with his soldiers who defended the castle from the Ottomans. Our people call this phenomenon with the shadows of the fighters «Drosoulites» because they appear for about 8 minutes with the coolness of the dawn. Myth; Probably, but those who have seen it advise that if you are in the plain and not on the hills, you can see it. Return to our hotel in Chania. Free afternoon in Chania. Overnight.

6th Day

CHANIA – AKROTIRI – VENIZELOS GRAVES – AGIA TRIADA MONASTERY – SOUDA HARBOR – PIREAUS

Breakfast at the hotel. It is no coincidence that Chania attracts visitors from all over the world. The city combines incredible natural beauty with rich cultural tradition as well as excellent tourist infrastructure. We will walk to the old town, the market and the Venetian port and we will head to Akrotiri, where the Venizelos graves are located. On our return to Chania we will visit Agia Triada Monastery of Tzagarolos, Venetian monastery, which is today one of the most important monasteries in Crete with a huge impact on the education of the island. It was built by the Cretan monks Jeremiah and Lavrentios, by the Venetian Orthodox family of the Tzagarolos. Free afternoon in the picturesque port of Chania. Transfer to the Port of Souda and board the ship at 20:00. Departure for Piraeus having spent a wonderful 6 days in beautiful Crete.

7th Day

CHANIA – PIRAEUS

Arrival at 06:30 in the morning at the port of Piraeus and end of the trip.

RATES

Price per person:

 

7 days:
05, 19 July 2020
02, 13, 30 August 2020
13, 27 September 2020
11, 25 October 2020

Double

Single

Child*

Heraklion
CASTELLO CITY HOTEL 4*

(or similar)

365 €
(price for all
2 hotels)
530 €
(price for all
2 hotels)

2 until 11 years old: 295 €
12 until 15 years old: 330 €
(price for all
2 hotels)

Chania
ARKADI HOTEL 3*

(or similar)

*Child’s price is based on one child΄s stay, in the same room with two (2) adults in an extra bed.

INCLUDED

  • Ferry tickets economy class Piraeus – Heraklion and Chania – Piraeus.
  • Accommodation in central 4* hotels.
  • Breakfast daily.
  • Half board.
  • Transportation by luxury air–conditioned bus.
  • Guided tours as mentioned in the program.
  • Leader – Escort of our office.
  • VAT.

NOT INCLUDED

  • Entrances to museums, attractions, archeological sites, etc.
  • The boat to and from Spinalonga.
  • Everything that is not explicitly mentioned in the program or referred to as optional or proposed.

NOTES

  • According to article 53 of Law 4389/2016, from January 1, 2018 all hotels and other tourist accommodation are required to charge tax in favor of the State, under the name “Residence tax”. This tax is not included in the prices of our pricelists or excursions, as it should be paid by the customer directly to the hotel with a separate Deed / receipt upon arrival or departure. The tax per room / per night is: Hotel 3* 1,50 € / Hotel 4* 3,00 € / Hotel 5* 4,00 €.

Information and Reservations:

Customer service

210 89 86 157    and    210 89 86 158

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