- Hiring a car is highly recommended, for daily excursions along the island.
- Relax at this unique atmosphere Villa Mantilari offers you by the pool reading a book .... or "dreaming".
- Pottery workshop. A chance to disconnect and get in touch with your artistic side. Located in a distance of 8 km from Villa Mantilari – Thrapsano village is the biggest pottery center in Crete. In the village’s workshops you can even find large jars identical to the ones produced in Minoan Times. The village is full of images reminiscent of times way before the industrial revolution. The villagers of Thrapsano were touring the whole island having a master potter in charge, constructing kilns from one place to another in order to fire and afterward sell their pottery that was essential for every household. Get the chance to learn directly from a master potter at Villa Mantilari. Have fun getting your hands dirty and make something for you to remember or to offer as a gift to your loved ones.
- Raw food and Yoga retreat at Villa Mantilari. This a 7-day program. A chance to disconnect and get in touch with pure island nature, cleanse the body with a week of delicious raw food made from organic locally grown produce. Detox your spirit with yoga, meditation, and immersion in the Crete lifestyle. Come back home lighter (literally and figuratively) with your sense of taste and your focus sharpened, energy renewed, desire for taking life on re-ignited! Please ask us for more details.
- You could have and enjoy a "customized culinary experience" at Villa Mantilari. Since we know how important it is to have some help in the kitchen during your stay when you just want to relax and enjoy the sunshine. That’s why our service can help you arrange any type of catering level you are going for. From a local cook to an experienced chef who can help every day or just a few times during your holiday, to a one-off special meal cooked for you, we can accommodate all requests. And it’s not only the cooking and cleaning process we can help with. We can also help organize fridge-stocking, just send us the list and we’ll take care of the rest, so that you have the essentials for your first dinner and breakfast, and we even have a meal delivery service sorted out for you, when required. That’s breakfast, lunch, and dinner… sorted! Please ask us for more details.
- But Villa Mantilari is a great base to explore as well. Eleni the owner is quite familiar with the region and he will show you the best places to visit. The area around Villa Mantilari is ideal for walking through the old trails that drive to the nearby churches and monasteries.
- In 25 min maybe less you are at the archeological site of Knossos which lies some 5 km south of Heraklion on a low, largely artificial hill. By far the largest of the Minoan palaces, it thrived over 3500 years ago at the heart of a highly sophisticated island-wide civilization.
- The visit of Knossos can also be combined with a visit to the Village of Archanes which has won the 2nd "best-restored village in Europe". There are four archaeological sites here - one in the village (a fenced excavation) and three close by, at Anemospilia, at Fourni (on the edge of the village - a Minoan graveyard) and the fourth one, Vathypetro, on the way to Houdetsi is worthwhile not only for the finds but also some of the most magnificent views of Crete which you can see from the site - a unique vantage point.
- On the same day you could visit and one of the most important collections of Minoan art and artifacts anywhere in the world at Heraklion's Archeological Museum. The Museum, as Knossos as well, is almost always crowded (at least in Summer) therefore try to see it early or late for during everyone else's lunch break.
- Or maybe you would like to drive down south to Gortyna, Phaestos, Zaros or the south coast lapping on the shore at Lentas or the cave-surrounded beach of Matala. The scenic drive via time-worn villages, to Amari, is also within reach.
- Explore the nearby (1.5km) canyon of Karteros. A small canyon is quite easily accessible for all ages with rich vegetation, many traditions, and fascinating history.
- Visit the nearby (5.9km) Monastery of Agarathos. Τhe Abbey Agarathou is dedicated to the Dormition of the Virgin Mary. It celebrates on the 15th of August. The temple is diklitos. The other klitos is dedicated to the Saint Minas. Don't miss celebrating orthodox Easter if you are lucky to be in Crete during this period.
- For wine lovers, we propose the Paterianakis Bio Winery at Melesses Village.
- Visit the Museum of Nikos Kazantzakis (4km) at Mirtia (or Varvaroi) the important intellectual, author, thinker, philosopher, politician, and traveler.
- Visit nearby Astritsi Villas. The Astritsi is a small village in the hinterland of Heraklion. Located in an area of great natural beauty and richness of Cretan chloridas.It is known for its lush ravine of Lower Faucet with tinkling gurgling springs and thousands of trees.The idea of creating a summer cafe was born in this place which is called “Kafeneion of Kato Vrisi” which serves as a tavern where genuine Cretan cuisine is served in a magical setting with ponds and springs.“Come and admire the small gorge of Astritsi, the place where God sleeps every night”. The folk Cretan couplet of Giorgos Chronakis welcomes the small visitors and prepares them to enjoy the grandeur of nature. The gorge of Kato Vrisi is a narrow and forested valley between mountains.In the area, there are many natural springs that help people water their crop.Two large caves were in the area,the one collapsed and today is a square while the other one has undergone many morphological changes.The second one is called Neraidospilios and is connected directly with the myths of the area. Some years ago, many residents from the Lasithi plateau had found shelter in those caves as they were searching for more fertile places to live. The local cultural association has put barbecues in that area and so the visitor can prepare his/her own meal. Many different cultural festivities are held there every year.
- What do you think about horse riding in a gorge or even better on the beach? A horse riding center is situated in Karteros and organizes ridings in the area or a bit further at Avdou Village (34km).
- Lassithi Plateau is ideal for those who love cycling. Enjoy the 18km ride that goes through almost all the little villages. This ride is especially nice.
- Visit the Cretaquarium (13km), and exploring the amazing world of the Mediterranean sea, hundreds of species, and thousands of living organisms.
- Do you enjoy golf playing? The Crete Golf Club (29km) is a championship course, the only 18-hole golf course on the island of Crete and one of the most impressive courses of the Mediterranean, which holds a unique challenge and a pleasant experience for both golf players and visitors all year round.
- Kazani - see how the Cretans brew their Schnapps "raki". Almost like moon shining - you will spend an evening at a small distillery in a nearby village. Food, wine and lots of raki. You can participate in this special event only during October.
- The nearest beaches are those of the north coast: Amoudara at 20 km or Ligaria close to Agia Pelagia at 30 km. The most lovely southern beaches are almost 40 km away: Matala, Kalamaki, Kommos, Lentas, and Agios Pavlos and the beaches of a more wild character: Agiofarago, Vathi, and Marsalo. Ask Babis for more information and directions.
- More exciting activities on Activities in Heraklion region.
- Check-in: 15.00 pm
- Check out: 12.00 pm
- Minimum Stay: 2-3 nights, depending on the season
- Payment Policy: Please check here
- Cancellation Policy: Please check here
How To Get There
Villa Mantilari is located in a rural environment where beauty dominates the view, at 20 km far from Heraklion, Crete. Eleni, the charming hostess is looking forward to offering you a warm welcome matching the high quality of the place.
- By Air
From May through mid-October there are direct charter flights to Heraklion Airport (20km) or Chania Aiport (164km). Tickets can be bought in advance for almost all flights via our partner website.
- By Sea
The journey is the thing". A superb way of enjoying the journey to Crete is to fly to Athens and take the ferry from Piraeus (Pireas) - the port serving Athens. A still-romantic way to travel by the overnight ferry from Piraeus to Heraklion Port (22km) or even Chania-Souda Port (162km). Tickets can be bought in advance for all ferries via our partner website.
- By Car
If you want to explore the region while you're here, we recommend that you rent a car, other means of transport are limited and/or infrequent. We suggest our sister website Crete-Car-Rental.com, which offers competitive prices and you can collect your car at either airport.
- By Taxi
Book your taxi transfer online easily and safely from the airport or port to any location via our partner website.
Detailed directions will be sent to you when you book through CreteTravel.com
- Dining: Self-catering residence. Breakfast can be served upon request at Villa Mantilari. You could have and enjoy a "customized culinary experience" at Villa Mantilari too.
- Internet Access: Free WiFi throughout
- Swimming Pools: two outdoors
- Wellness facilities: Yoga classes, Massages, Fitness center
- Disabled Access: Suitable (please ask us for more details)
- Pets: Pets are allowed on request. No extra charges
- Languages Spoken: Greek, English, German
- Parking: Private parking area