Visit the picturesque city of Chania that is considered as one of the most beautiful cities of Greece and despite its fast development, it has managed to preserve its original color and historical character . The old city, with the nice buildings and the narrow streets, is very well maintained and has preserved the charm of the Venetian and Turkish periods. The old city leads at the harbour, there at the north-east point, is the fort "Firkas", that today houses the Maritime Museum and to the west side of Firkas is the Venetian church of San Salvatore that houses the Byzantine collection of Chania. Opposite the Firkas fort, is the lighthouse, built on the 16th century. Walk till the lighthouse and admire the city from that point. Many exhibitions take place at the 'Mediterranean Centre of Architecture' that is located also here and you will be lucky to visit one during your stay.
Rethymno is the third biggest city of the island, with a charming harbour and a massive Venetian fortress, which dominates the city and makes Rethymno very photogenic. The narrow streets of the old city, the graceful wood-balconied house, the ornate Venetian monuments, the minarets remind the history of the city. Here take place every summer a cultural festival and also "the renaissance festival " which transfers the city into a medieval Venetian town and hosts world-class renaissance musicians.
The horse riding lovers have the opportunity for exciting galloping along the Cretan sea in Georgioupoli and in the countryside as well. A horse riding Centre organises, early morning and evening rides at 3 different levels. You just need to make a reservation.
Village “Verekinthos” is an arts and crafts village that stands between Souda & Tsikalaria at the eastern gate of Chania and its aim is to revive and sustain the arts which have been always an integral part of Cretan life and culture. At this same place there were many workshops producing pots (tsikalia), giving thus the name to the town and in the very same place nowadays is run silversmith’s and goldsmith’s, as well workshops for ceramics, sculpture, glass making, hagiography, painting, masks, mosaic, leather, decorative objects and traditional Cretan knifes. Visiting hours 10.00-14.00 and 19.00-21.00 except Saturday afternoon and Sunday.
Swim. Almirida's twin beaches (5km) are sandy and good sheltered, but they can get a bit crowded during Summer; bars and restaurants line the waterfront between them, and there is a diving center. Kalyves (10km) is a larger village with a small bay at its heart and a long beach stretching west.
If you are looking for more quiet beaches, head west to Falassarna Beach, on the west edge of the island (49km) one of the best beaches in Crete. Or maybe you have heard about the lagoon of Ballos with the turquoise water. You can visit it either by ferry from Kasteli or by car. If you decide to come here by car, just have in mind that you can drive till a specific point, and then you must walk till the lagoon.
Explore the Akrotiri peninsula: Monastery of Agia Triada - Gouverneto Monastery - Eleftherios Venizelos Tombs (historical site) Drive towards the airport. Visit the Monastery of Agia Triada and then the Gouverneto Monastery. On your way back towards Chania stop at the Eleftherios Venizelos Tombs - a historical site with wonderful views to the old Venetian harbor of Chania.There you also will find a choice 3 coffee shops for you to enjoy. The Akrotiri peninsula also has good beaches (Stavros, Kalathas, Marathi and Loutraki).
Trek through the world-famous Samaria Gorge along (quite crowded) open May-Oct depending on weather conditions) or the Agia Irini gorge (fewer crowds and open all year), a full day’s hike catching a boat and a bus back. Imbros Gorge, next to Samaria gorge, is just 8 km long and you need just 2 hours to pass it. Aradena Gorge is also in that area, and maybe you would like to try the jump of your life ... buggy jumping.
Visit Aptera archaeological Site. The small archaeological site of Aptera (ancient town of the Minoan era) is well worth a visit. From here there are wonderful sea views to the port of Chania (Souda) and the Akrotiri peninsula. Continue on to visit Itzedin Castle - a Turkish castle, built in the 19th Century (also known as the Kalami fort). Visit the nearby Stilos Village to hike through classic Cretan countryside: oleander-lined paths lead into a narrow rocky defile.
Would you like more activities around Chania, please have a look here.
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