Crete, the cradle and playground of many of the gods of Greek mythology, is the largest and most populous island in Greece. With its rich history, natural beauty, and archeological attractions, this mountainous gem in the Mediterranean Sea never fails to capture the imagination of those who have yet to visit it. It has also charmed the hearts of those who have already experienced its bounties and relaxing luxury villas.
Most of the island’s visitors head straight to Crete’s capital city, Heraklion. This fine coastal town features structures that date back to the Byzantine, Venetian, and Ottoman ages. While here, you can visit the Heraklion Archaeological Museum to see more of the city’s prehistoric, Bronze Age, Roman, and Hellenic artifacts. For those who want to see archeological ruins, simply head out of the city and visit Knossos. Completely abandoned in 1450 BC, this residential complex is believed to have been the palace of King Minos. Rethymnon, a charming town midway between Chania and Heraklion, also features historical buildings that have been converted into lovely boutique hotels, shops, and taverns.
With a coastline that spans more than 1,000 kilometers (621.371 miles), Crete boasts many beautiful beaches and luxury spa resorts that cater to a wide variety of tastes. Spend a day out in the sun by heading to Palm Beach on the island’s isolated east coast. If you want to be surrounded by city comforts and natural wonders, head straight to Áyios Nikólaos and visit the Diktean Cave or sip a cup of coffee near the city’s saltwater lake. But if you’re more inclined to conquer challenging terrain, Samaria National Park has an 18-kilometer gorge that’s perfect for hiking trips. Currently on the UNESCO World Heritage Site's tentative list, this expansive region offers a perfect day trip for athletic adventurers.
Start planning your trip to Crete today. Villaway offers choice villa rentals and luxury vacation homes that can serve as a comfortable base for you and your companions during your dream Greek holiday.
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