Crete! Crete Island is stunning, located in the Mediterranean Sea it is the largest island in Greece. The colors, food, and beauty make Crete a must visit. Here are five reasons why you should make Crete your next Mediterranean destination.
Greek food is delicious, but to eat it in Greece is an incredible experience. My step dad's side is Greek, so Sunday's spent growing up we would make a big greek meal. Most learned from family tradition and cookbooks I have to say we had some things wrong. For one, Greek salad, in Greece it is much simpler and often served with one large chunk of feta. After dinner on the island of Crete all restaurants serve Raki a Turkish alcohol. The first time I had it I was not aware of how strong it was and proceed to drink the full bottle my server left me all to myself. It resembles vodka and sells in flavors like plain, honey, and almond. Honey became my favorite as it cooled the intensity of the alcohol. Aside from the Raki, the seafood on the island of Crete is incredible. I had dinner at Kertos the stuffed calamari here, was my favorite. It was so tender and cooked to such precision that it practically melted in your mouth. During the day for lunch, I visited a vegetarian restaurant To Stachi my friend and I were the only other people there and the chef Stalios took great pride in letting us try everything he had created that day. He even went the extra step to explain why he used the ingredients that he did. Most ingredients were native to Crete which made the meal all the more memorable.
It's Easy To Get Around
While I was visiting Greece with little money compared to most, it was still relatively inexpensive to get around on the island of Crete. I flew into Heraklion as it is the capital of crete and flights are less expensive. upon arrival I took a taxi to my hotel. As i was traveling alone it didn't make sense to rent a car I ended up taking a bus across the island to Chania. Timetables for the bus schedule can be found online. if you're like me, they didn't make much sense, So I asked a taxi driver to take me to the main bus station and let the ticket window know where I was going. then I was on my way. It took roughly two hours to get from Heraklion to Chania. The drive is beautiful as you wind above the ocean along a DESERT road. When I arrived in Chania I walked everywhere. The Old Port town is busy and everyone walks, so I was very happy to have not rented a car.
Most European destinations are rock beaches only, but on the island of Crete you can get a mix of both. Who doesn't want to come home with a tan, aimmright? If you head a little bit outside of Chania you'll find some beautiful seaside towns with empty beaches for your taking. I spent a lot of time in Akrotiri on the beaches there. The trees have goats climbing up and down them and the beaches are beautiful. Heraklion also had a long beach it was full of tourists though and I was more peaceful in Akrotiri.
Although diving in greece is not famous its it still a must do. now it isn't without saying that there used to be a lot more fish to see in the waters around crete, however through fishing and using dynamite to do that, they have lost a massive amount of fish. this isn't to say you won't see any fish, however the fish are not the main reason to dive here. wreck diving is big here, there are 2 wrecks that can be dove off of dia island. There are also caves here, Elephants cave, god's cave, and seal's cave are near chania. a two tank day trip will run you roughly 90-120 euros and although you to dive up to two of these caves in a day.
If nothing else you should visit greece to see chania. the old port town is located on the north end of crete island. chania was heavily bombed during the second world war and the harbour got the brunt of it, even so the city is still in tact and it has added an unspoken character backbone. the VENETIAN portion of chania is so beautiful i spent two days just wandering through it. i hadn't even realized there was a modern PoRTION of it until the third day. hello zara!
All in all Crete Island is beautiful and it should not be missed!