Must-see villages in Crete
When you hear about the island of Crete, your mind goes straight to the local raki distillate, golden beaches and impressive gorges, which have made the island famous all over the world. Most visitors start by exploring the big cities such as Heraklion and Rethymnon, only to continue with the exotic beaches of Balos and Elafonissi and taste some adventure in Vai and the Samaria Gorge. The historical treasures of the island such as the Palace of Knossos and the Minoan Palace of Phaistos are here to seal the deal. Truth is, Crete has so much more to offer around the year, such as magical routes in valleys and rivers, waterfalls, traditional settlements with blooming trees and wildflowers shaping up a unique canvas. It is no coincidence that this is one of the most beautiful islands in the Mediterranean and a popular destination for Greek and foreign tourists. This spring, book your tickets and discover the alternative Crete. Step foot on land that looks and feels like Tuscany and experience the Cretan tradition with its fine cuisine, in full bloom. Tickets to Crete by ferry can be found at Let’s Ferry.
The Cretan villages that bloom in spring
Locals may not know this, but the village has received worldwide recognition.
Ranked by Lonely Planet as one of the 50 secret places to see in Europe, it
has also been featured in the London Times magazine, that has named it as one
of the 30 best places in Greece to live after the pandemic lockdown. It is
located in the mountainous part of Chania, in
Kissamos, and is 55 km from the port. Access is only made by car, which you leave
outside the settlement. The whole village has been turned into an ecological,
traditional hostel. From here you have a unique view of hazelnut forests and
Traditional stone house in the village of Milia, Crete
Palms, tall trees and stone houses await you just 22 km from the
port of Chania. Overlooking the White Mountains, here you will get to know the Cretan
countryside and you will visit well-preserved buildings from the 18th century.
The cobblestoned alleys of the village are something you should not miss, as
well as a visit to the olive mill with the 12 shields. There you can take part
in a Cretan cooking class and learn Cretan recipes like a local! The village
is the capital of Apokoronas, an area with a high quality of life which has
stayed away from mass tourism. Discover the neighboring villages of
Gavalochori, Sellia and the seaside Georgioupolis.
The traditional village of Vamos hidden in Cretan nature
Upper and Lower Asites
If you dream of a quiet, romantic place to taste local delicacies such as
snails, these two villages in Heraklion are ideal.
Local delicacies such as snails
They are located at the foot of Psiloritis and the Ano Asites have rich
archaeological finds: From Roman baths to the ruins of an entire city. Here
you will also find the centuries-old Oak, a rare tree in the Kouvdi spot. If
you like strange caves, visit the Bat Cave, which is 100 meters deep, has
water and hosts, what else, bats! Take a walk to the Women's Cooperative of
the village to try unique flavors such as rusks and ouzo biscuits. One of the
highlights is the wine tasting in the local wineries where you will admire the
green vineyards up close. Tuscany what?
Traditional street in the village of Ano Asites
In the area around Psiloritis, there are a few places that only experienced
travelers will discover. One of them is Zaros, a rural town that belongs to
the prefecture of Heraklion and is almost 50 km away from the port. Here you
will find a vast valley reminiscent of a painting and water coming down from
the mountain. You will surely pass by the most famous attraction of Zaros, the
artificial lake that evokes a Swiss landscape. The locals suggest you try
trout, directly from the lake farm. If you want a natural lake, you will go to
Lake Faneromeni, another green spot made in heaven. Although Zaros is poor in
inhabitants, as it only has 2000, the nature around it is rich. Explore the
Rouva Gorge which is surrounded by a beautiful forest.
The artificial lake of Zaros
Once again, our reference point is Psiloritis, this time however we visit the
mountain from the side of Rethymnon. 35 km from the port you will find the
valley of Amari. Here you will witness a rich palette with every shade of
green, since this is one of the spots with the most rainfall in Crete. The
valley is also home to many rare species of wildflowers which offer their
unique colors to the landscape, when in bloom. The lake of Rivers is one of
the largest in Crete and one of the most important habitats of the
southeastern Mediterranean. The area is known for its dairy products such as
the gruyere of Crete (PDO), the goat milk tyrozouli and the xinomyzithra of
Church in Amari village
This Rethymnian village is built at the foot of Mount Vorizi. In the
impressive settlement you will see Kefalovrisi, which consists of 25 fountains
in a row shaped like lion's heads. In spring, however, what will give you a
sight for sore eyes is the Yous Kampos Plateau with its countless crimson
tulips. This endemic, protected species, is called Tulipa Doerfleri. Here is
also home to many rare species of orchids, firs and plane trees.
Spili village in Crete
Whichever village you choose as your favorite, you will see unspoiled landscapes and you will experience Cretan hospitality at its best. A raki and a meze will welcome you to any destination. Re-introduce yourself to the Megalonisos (big island), by choosing to visit it in the spring. Just book your trip with a few clicks here, at Let’s Ferry.