Where To Stay In Crete.
When we went, we stayed in Platanes, just outside Rethymno on the north coast. Although we thoroughly enjoyed where we stayed and liked how we were quite central, if we were to return then we'd definitely stay in Chania (west of Rethymno) as it's one of the nicest cities I've ever visited and most of the places we fell in love with were that side of the island. The north of the island has a main road running right along which makes getting about a lot easier and quicker. The roads on the south of the island leave a lot to be desired! Many of the ones we ended up on were rubble which made journeys take a lot longer but don't let that put you off, it's less touristy and the beaches on the south are quieter and there's gorgeous deserted coves too.
|Dipping my toes in the sea :)|
We travelled as far east as Malia (around 1 hour 15 mins away) - out of curiosity really - and unless it's soley nightlife you're looking for, I wouldn't recommend. We travelled as far west (south-west) as Elafonisi lagoon (just over 2 hours away) which is the most beautiful place I've ever seen in my life.
Top 5 things to do in Crete.
Elafonisi beach lagoon
As I mentioned, this is the most beautiful place I've ever seen. I'm not sure the pictures do it justice, it was just bliss. The sand is pinky white and the water is clear blue and in many parts very shallow, we were able to go out so far and it never got any higher than my knees. It was well worth the 2 hour drive each way but as I said, I'd stay closer if I were to return. We were told about 2 lagoons, this one was the best of the 2 but I've decided to do a comparison post where I'll really go into it as they're very different.
We really enjoyed visiting Chania, it's a city so there's plenty to see and do but what sold it for us was the promenade/port area. There's a lot of places to eat and drink right by the water, we really enjoyed chilling out with drinks and the sound of the water gently lapping the wall but we ate dinner in the old part of the town. We found a pretty little 'old Cretian style' restaurant with outside seating in a little courtyard. It was really difficult to choose where to eat as there were so many great little places.
South of the island
We only saw a small part of the south island as it look over an hour to get there and the roads weren't great. We visited Preveli beach which looked gorgeous online but unfortuntely we were disappointed. It was over crowded and dirty. We headed along to the Agios Pavlos area, in the middle of nothing really. We had the whole place to ourselves and caught the sunset, it was so lovely. On our way to the south of the island, we stopped to stretch our legs and both experienced something we'd never experienced before. We got off the quad, looked at the view then realised we could literally hear nothing. No wind, no traffic, no birds.. Absolute silence, with a gorgeous view. It was just amazing.
Hire a quad
For the first week of the holiday we hired a car to get around, then we swapped it for a quad for the last few days which was awesome. There's something far more exciting and exhilarating about jumping on a quad bike to get about rather than a car. We'll definitely be opting for a quad over a car for future holidays, I do recommend getting one with a box on the back to put your handbag/suncream/map though - although it's not safe to leave unattended.
Try a gyro
Our flight to Crete was an evening one but by the time we'd got off the transfer coach - which seemed to take forever - it was around 11pm. We dropped our cases in our hotel room and wandered down the road in search of food! The only place still serving food was a fast food shop with a restaurant on the side.. This was our first taste of gyros, they're a must if visiting Crete. They're kind of a kebab, it has the kebab meat but it also has chips and a gorgeous Tzatziki sauce in there, boy it was good. The sauce was so good, we've been making it ourselves since, although it's not quite as good as the real thing! Unfortunately I never got a picture of this (what?!) but I can assure you it was yummy!
|don't worry, my eyebrows are way better now ;)|
Are you thinking of visiting Crete? Or have you been before? I'd love to know where you stayed/where your favourite places were! xxx