Area

Generally the area of Karteros, is the most interesting region in terms of natural environment. Divided into four zones, a sandy beach, a rocky coast to the west, an interior and a riparian on the river Karteros. The sandy beach is 1 km long and 100 m wide with a higher altitude of 3 meters. The vegetation has almost disappeared due to the concentration of bathers during the summer months. The rocky beach at the west of the area has higher elevation of 100 m. The upper limit is the east runway of the airport of Heraklion . The vegetation as well as the sandy beach is almost non-existent. The inner zone extending 100 m, is bordered to the south of sandy beach and north of the existing road Iraklion - Agios Nikolaos, the diversity of vegetation (garrigue and maquis) is maintained at relatively good levels, despite grazing.
Southeast of the administrative boundaries of the City concludes the Karteros Gorge, which runs through three municipalities and is characterized by lush vegetation and important cultural and historical elements.

Area

Generally the area of Karteros, is the most interesting region in terms of natural environment. Divided into four zones, a sandy beach, a rocky coast to the west, an interior and a riparian on the river Karteros. The sandy beach is 1 km long and 100 m wide with a higher altitude of 3 meters. The vegetation has almost disappeared due to the concentration of bathers during the summer months. The rocky beach at the west of the area has higher elevation of 100 m. The upper limit is the east runway of the airport of Heraklion . The vegetation as well as the sandy beach is almost non-existent. The inner zone extending 100 m, is bordered to the south of sandy beach and north of the existing road Iraklion - Agios Nikolaos, the diversity of vegetation (garrigue and maquis) is maintained at relatively good levels, despite grazing. Southeast of the administrative boundaries of the City concludes the Karteros Gorge, which runs through three municipalities and is characterized by lush vegetation and important cultural and historical elements.

Knossos

Knossos  also known as Labyrinth, or Knossos Palace, is the largest Bronze Age archaeological site on Crete and probably the ceremonial and political centre of the Minoan civilization and culture. The palace appears as a maze of workrooms, living spaces, and store rooms close to a central square. Detailed images of Cretan life in the late Bronze Age are provided by images on the walls of this palace. It is also a tourist destination today, as it is near the main city of Heraklion and has been substantially restored by archaeologist Arthur Evans.

The city of Knossos remained important through the Classical and Roman periods, but its population shifted to the new town of Handaq (modern Heraklion) during the 9th century AD. By the 13th century, it was called Makryteikhos 'Long Wall'; the bishops of Gortyn continued to call themselves Bishops of Knossos until the 19th century.[1] Today, the name is used only for the archaeological site situated in the suburbs of Heraklion.
The ruins at Knossos were discovered in 1878 by Minos Kalokairinos, a Cretan merchant and antiquarian. He conducted the first excavations at Kephala Hill, which brought to light part of the storage magazines in the west wing and a section of the west facade. After Kalokairinos, several people attempted to continue the work, and Heinrich Schliemann had previously showed an interestbut it was not until March 16, 1900 that archaeologist Sir Arthur Evans, an English gentleman of independent means, was able to purchase the entire site and conduct massive excavations. The excavation and restoration of Knossos, and the discovery of the culture he labeled Minoan, is inseparable from the individual Evans. Nowadays archaeology is a field of academic teamwork and scientific prestige, but a century ago a project could be driven by one wealthy and self-taught person. Assisted by Dr. Duncan Mackenzie, who had already distinguished himself by his excavations on the island of Melos, and Mr. Fyfe, the British School at Athens architect, Evans employed a large staff of local labourers as excavators and within a few months had uncovered a substantial portion of what he named the Palace of Minos. The term 'palace' may be misleading: in modern English, it usually refers to an elegant building used to house a head of state or similar. Knossos was an intricate collection of over 1000 interlocking rooms, some of which served as artisans' workrooms and food processing centres (e.g. wine presses). It served as a central storage point, and a religious and administrative centre. The throne room was repainted by a father-and-son team of artists, both named Émile Gilléron, at Arthur Evans' command. While Evans claimed to be basing the recreations on archaeological evidence, many of the best-known frescoes from the throne room are almost complete inventions of the Gillérons. The reconstructions at Knossos have been highly criticized for the fact that they have irrevocably damaged the original remains and have provided a 'reinvented' culture of the original inhabitants of Crete. In fact, very little of the visible site is original and much of the modern reconstruction is indistinguishable from the original remains.
The site has had a very long history of human habitation, beginning with the founding of the first Neolithic settlement circa 7000 BC. Over time and during several different phases that had their own social dynamic, Knossos grew until, by the 19th to 16th centuries BC (during the 'Old Palace' and the succeeding 'Neo-palatial' periods), the settlement possessed not only a monumental administrative and religious center (i.e., the Palace), but also a surrounding population of 5,000-8,000 people.
Contact details:
Tel. +30 2810 231940
-Fax. +30 2810 241515

e-mail: protocol@kgepka.culture.gr
Website: protocol@kgepka.culture.gr

Beaches

Florida Beach
With this name it is known the western part - and closer to Heraklion - of the some kilometres long and wide beach within the bay of Heraklion, eastern to the city and the airport. It is a sandy beach, situated some 7 kilometres far from Heraklion at the East, open to the North and thus affected by the northern winds. Due to the vicinity with the airport, it is somehow noisy, which results to be less crowded.

Very well organised beach, close to Heraklion, it offers full accommodation facilities in many hotels of any kind and category, food and drink in several fish taverns, restaurants, bars and cafes. Facilities for swimming and sunbathing (sunbeds, umbrellas, showers), safety (lifeguards) and sea sports are also available on the beach.
 
Karteros Beach
Successive to Florida at the East it is found the wide sandy beach of Karteros; this too is part of the some kilometres long and wide beach within the bay of Heraklion. The beach is situated at a distance of 8 kilometres far from Heraklion in front of the homonymous village. Open to the North it is affected by the northern winds.
Very well organised beach, close to Heraklion, it offers full accommodation facilities in many hotels of any kind and category, food and drink in several fish taverns, restaurants, bars and cafes. Facilities for swimming and sunbathing (sunbeds, umbrellas, showers), safety (lifeguards) and sea sports are also available on the beach.
EOT Beach
With this name it is known the part of the some kilometres long and wide beach within the bay of Heraklion, eastern to the city and the airport. Situated some 9 kilometres far from Heraklion, it is a sandy beach affected by the northern winds.
Fully organised by the Greek Tourist Organisation (EOT), it offers accommodation facilities in numerous hotels of any kind and category,
food and drink in several fish taverns, restaurants, beach bars and cafes.
There are also facilities for swimming and sunbathing (sunbeds, umbrellas, showers), safety (lifeguards) and sea sports.
 
Amnissos Beach
Successive to the beach of EOT , in front of the homonymous tourist resort, it is found the beach of Amnissos, part of the some kilometres long and wide beach within the bay of Heraklion, at a distance of 9 kilometres far from the city and the airport, at the East. It is a sandy beach open to the North and thus affectec by the northern winds.
Fully organised and very close to Heraklion, the beach offers full accommodation facilities in many hotels of any kind and category, food and drink in several fish taverns, restaurants, beach bars and cafes. Facilities for swimming and sunbathing (sunbeds, umbrellas, showers), safety (lifeguards) and sea sports are also available on the beach.
 
Amoudara
The beach of Ammoudara (means in greek "big sandy beach"); is open to the North it is affected by the northern winds.
It is very well organised beach, offering a wide range of accommodation facilities in several hotels of all categories and rooms to let; food and drink is plenty in the taverns, restaurants, cafes and bars of the village.
The beach has also full facilities for swimming, sunbathing (sunbeds, umbrellas), safety (lifeguard service) and sea sports (including a windsurfing school located at the western end of the beach; the course lasts one week).
Some parts of this long beach are not organised at all; those who prefer a more natural environment, less crowded, will find here a place suitable for them.
Access from Herkleio is very easy by public buses with frequent service and taxi, as well as by private or rented car and motorbikes.
 
Tobrouk
The strange name of the beach is owed to a beach tavern called so and it covers the eastern end of the some kilometres long and wide beach within the bay of Heraklion. It is a sandy beach affected by the northern winds, situated at a distance of some 10 kilometres far from Heraklion at the East
 
Very well organised beach, close to Heraklion, it offers full accommodation facilities in many hotels of any kind and category, food and drink in several fish taverns, restaurants, beach bars and cafes. Facilities for swimming and sunbathing (sunbeds, umbrellas, showers), safety (lifeguards) and sea sports are also available on the beach.
Access from Heraklion is possible by public bus, running very frequently, taxi from Heraklion and rented and private car and motorbikes.
 
Hani Kokkini
With this name it is known the long sandy beach in front of the homonymous village, almost along the road, quite noisy and crowded in summer.  Fully open to the Cretan Sea, it is affected by the northern winds. It is found 12 kilometres far from Heraklion at the East.
Fully organised and very close to Heraklion, the beach offers full accommodation facilities in many hotels of any kind and category, food and drink in several fish taverns, restaurants, beach bars and cafes. Facilities for swimming and sunbathing (numerous sunbeds, umbrellas and showers), safety (lifeguards) and sea sports are also available on the beach.
As it is very close to the road, it is very popular to young people. The beach bars with the loud modern music make it an ideal place for all those preferring "high volume" amusement.
 
Gournes
The beach of Gournes is found at the homonymous village, 2 kilometres eastern to the tourist resort of Chani Kokkini and 17 kilometres far from Heraklion at the East. It is a sandy beach open to the North and affected by the northern winds.
 
Gournes is a well organised beach, close to Heraklion; it offers full accommodation facilities in the hotels, food and drink in several fish taverns, restaurants, beach bars and cafes of the nearby tourist resorts.
Facilities for swimming and sunbathing (sunbeds, umbrellas, showers), safety (lifeguards) and sea sports are also available on the beach. The short distance (approximately 1 kilometer) from the beaches of Gouves at the East and Chani Kokkini at the West provide good alterntives for swimming.
Apart from the marvellous sea, at Gournes it is worth seeing one of the most modern Aquarium in Greece, with a Research Centre of the Mediterranean Sea life. The Centre has been inaugurated in 2005 and it is already open to visitors.
Access from Heraklion is very easy by public bus, running very frequently, taxi from Heraklion and rented and private car and motorbikes.
 
Gouves
The beach of Gouves is the sandy beach in front of the village Kato Gouves, a popular and well developed tourist resort, some 18 kilometres far from Heraklion at the East. Open to the Cretan Sea, the beach is affected by the northern winds.
 
Fully organised and very close to Heraklion, the beach offers full accommodation facilities in many hotels of any kind and category, food and drink in several fish taverns, restaurants, beach bars and cafes. Facilities for swimming and sunbathing (sunbeds, umbrellas ) and sea sports are also available on the beach.
The short distance (approximately 2 kilometer) from the beaches of Gournes and Chani Kokkini at the West and Analipsi at the East provide good alterntives for swimming.
Access from Heraklion is very easy by public bus, running very frequently, taxi from Heraklion and rented and private car and motorbikes.
 
Analipsi
The beach of Analipsi is a beach close to the popular and well developed tourist resort of Kato Gouves, 20 kilometres far from Heraklion at the East. Open to the Cretan Sea, this sandy beach is affected by the northern winds. Well organised, close enough to Heraklion and the tourist resorts of Kato Gouves and Chani Kokkini, the beach covers all the needs of the visitors in accommodation and food and drink. Facilities for swimming and sunbathing (sunbeds, umbrellas ) and sea sports are also available.
 
The end of the beach is much less crowded, so if you like being isolated, you may find the place it fits you at this part of the beach.  Access from Heraklion is possible by public bus, running regularly, taxi from Heraklion and rented and private car and motorbikes.
 
Anissaras
The beach of Anissaras, a sandy beach close to the popular and well developed tourist resort of Kato Gouves, is found 20 kilometres far from Heraklion at the East. Open to the Cretan Sea, the beach is affected by the northern winds. The seabed is partly rocky, which makes it suitable for snorkelling.
 
Well organised, close enough to Heraklion and the tourist resorts of Kato Gouves and Chani Kokkini, the beach covers all the needs of the visitors in accommodation and food and drink. Facilities for swimming and sunbathing (sunbeds, umbrellas ) and sea sports are also available.
The end of the beach is much less crowded, so if you like being isolated, you may find the place it fits you at this part of the beach.
Access from Heraklion is possible by public bus, running regularly, taxi from Heraklion and rented and private car and motorbikes.
 
Hersonisos Beach
Limanakia beach
Situated some 28 kilometres far from Heraklion at the East and close to Limenas Chersonissou, Limankia are some tiny sandy beaches open to the North and affected by the northern winds.
The beaches are not organised at all; accommodation food and drink can be found at the nearby tourist resort of Limenas Chersonissou. No facilities for swimming or sunbathing are available; here you will enjoy only the natural environment and the crystal clear sea. The small size of the beaches and the lack of facilities are the reason for being quiet enough, as few people choose them; only the one closer to Limenas may be more crowded.
Access from Heraklion is possible by bus, with frequent service, taxi  and rented and private cars and motorbikes.
Beach at the very west of Limenas Chersonissou
This beach is situated some 28 kilometres far from Heraklion at the East and
very close to Limenas Chersonissou at the West. In fact, it is a wide even rocky area, near the beach of the nudists. Open to the Cretan Sea, it is affected by the northern winds. Its rocky seabed makes it ideal for snorkelling.
The beach is not organised at all; accommodation food and drink can be found at the nearby tourist resort of Limenas Chersonissou. No facilities for swimming or sunbathing are available; here you will enjoy only the natural environment and the crystal clear sea.
Access from Heraklion is possible by bus, with frequent service, taxi  and rented and private cars and motorbikes.
The beach of Nudists
Situated some 28 kilometres far from Heraklion at the East and
very close to Limenas Chersonissou, this beach too is nothing more but an even rocky area with sand here and there. Open to the North, it is affected by the northern winds. Due to the rocky seabed it is very good for snorkelling.
The beach is not organised at all; accommodation food and drink can be found at the nearby tourist resort of Limenas Chersonissou. No facilities for swimming or sunbathing are available; here you will enjoy only the natural environment and the crystal clear sea. This beach is the only spot all over Chersonissos were nudism is allowed. However, don't expect to be isolated; the beach is very close to the road, with several people passing by.
Access from Heraklion is possible by bus, with frequent service, taxi  and rented and private cars and motorbikes.
 
Stalida
The beach of Stalida is a shallow, sandy beach in front of the resort, it is open to the North and fully affected by the northern winds; when there is wind, wonderful huge waves break on the coast, giving a fascinating impression; however, in such cases swimming is dangerous, especially for the less experienced swimmers who should be very cautious and comly with the lifesavers' instructions.
 
Very well organised and close enough to Heraklion, the beach can satisfy all the needs of the visitors in accommodation ( a wide range of lodging in hotels, studios and rooms to let), food and drink as well as in swimming and sea sport facilities. And, if you feel like wandering around, the beaches of Malia at the East and those of Chersonissos at the West, offer very good alternatives.
Access from Heraklion is possible by public bus, taxi and rented and private car and mortorbikes.
The beaches of the area are all beautiful, some of them sandy and suitable for swimming and others rocky and ideal for snorkelling.
 
Malia
The beach of Malia is a more than 6 kilometres long beach, one of the most extented beaches of the prefecture and, although affected by the northern winds it is very popular.
 
The beach is very well organised, offering  good accommodation in several hotels and rooms to let and food and drink in taverns, restaurants and cafes; facilities for swimming and and sunbathing (sunbeds, umbrellas ) and sea sports are also available. Being close to to Heraklion and to Limenas, it gets crowded in summer.
And, if you feel like wandering around, the beach of Stalida at the West, the quiet beach of  Potamos and the beaches of Lasithi at the East, are some of the choices you have.
Access from Heraklion is very easy following the National road; public buses run frequently and you can always use a taxi and of course rented or private cars and motorbikes.

Villages

Archanes

Archanes is a lovely picturesque town with 3.860 permanent residents, built on a hillside within an area with luxurious vegetation and a lot of current water. It is situated at a distance of 16 kilometres far from Heraklion at the South. 
Archanes is found in the centre of an area full of archaeological sites, mainly of the Minoan period,  all of great importance.  There are many things worth seeing and visiting in the area.
The important building of the palatial type, destroyed in 1500 b.C. evidences for the existence of an important Minoan city at the place. In fact, the finds of the site in "Tourkogeitonia" ("the Turkish quartier") within the town, do confirm the importance of this Minoan site. Up to now there have been found fossilised relics of a textile, of some 5.500 -6.000 years old, big-sized storage jars and various artifacts of every day life. Excavations going on by the eminent greek archaeologists professor Yannis Sakellarakis and Efi Sapouna-Sakellaraki continue to bring in light very interesting finds.
1 kilometre far from the village to the North at Fourni,  it is found another important archaeological site. Here it has been found a quite extended cemetery, possibly the most important in the area of prehistoric Aegean. It is dated in 2.400 to 1200 b.C. Excavations carried out since 1964 by  Yannis Sakellarakis and Efi Sapouna-Sakellaraki have brought to light more than 25 buildings, most of them of funerary use, along with numerous items of everyday and ritual use.
The most important discovery at Fourni has been this of a vaulted grave (vaulted grave A), which contained the first not looted sarcophagus in Crete; the grave is dated in early 14th century b.C.
Going on with the archaeologogical sites of the area, it is worth visiting "Pisso Livadia" at Vathyetro, 4 kilometres Southern to Archanes, to see the the small palace-like Minoan villa. Archaeologists suggest that it was possibly the seat of a local governor; the building seems to have been constructed in early 16th century 
b.C., and was destroyed in around 1.550 b.C. Excavations on the site started in 1949 by the eminent greek archaeologist professor Spyros Marinatos.
The most famous archaeological site in the area is the Minoan sanctuary at "Anemospilia", some 4 kilometres far from the village of Archanes at the Northwest, on the foot of the face-shaped mountain Youchtas. The sanctuary has been excavated in 1979 by the professor Yannis Sakellarakis and according to  the finds it seemed to be a small sanctuary, with no special finds. But the place gave a serious evidence that on this place it had been performed a human sacrifice, the first known in the area of the Aegean,  just before the earthquake which destroyed the sanctuary (possibly in an effort to ward it off). At the same area you may visit the cave "Hosto Nero" interesting enough.
The most recent period of the town is represented by an excellent sample of the architectural style of the early 19th century, the "Didaktirion" (school). It is a two storey building designed by the greek architect Saliveros in 1901 and funded by the Greek - americans coming from Archanes.
A rather small but important Arcaeological Museum houses the finds from the area, along with a good collection of photos from the sites.
The town is close enough to Heraklion and access is very easy by public buses with frequent service and taxi; however the best way of arriving is by private or rented car and motorbike, as it is the only comfortable way to visit the area and enjoy both the natural environment and the evidence of a long human activity.
 
Peza
Situated at a distance of 18 kilometres far from Heraklion at the Southeast, the rather small inland village of Peza is an important agricultural and economic center, due to the extended agricultural products, mainly wine and olive oil. It has several agricultural co-operatives, many wine factories and a long tradition in viniculture and olive trees' growing. The village has a population of more than 400 permanent residents.
Despite its small size, there are many things worth seeing in the village. There are interesting buildings as the wine factory "Minos", which, apart from the production of wine, open to the visitor, has also a Museum where it is exhibited the traditional equipment of wine making.
The visitor is introduced to the secrets of wine making, through the audiovisual material available and, of course, if you be there you will be able to taste the products of the factory and buy various local products.
The Union of Agricultural Co-operatives of Peza plays a major role  in the economy of the area and there you may find high quality local products, where as in the Museum you may see equipment for wine making, soap making and olive oil industry.
Some 4 kilometres far from Peza at the Northeast, in the village of Myrtia it is found the Nikos Kazantzakis' Museum. It is also worth seeing an interesting bridge, close to the village of Aghia Irini, on the National Road leading from Heraklion to Peza and Southern Crete.
If you are interested in byzantine churches, it is worth going to the village of Kounavi, some 2 kilometres at the southwest of Peza, to see the church of Panaghia and of Christ Saviour, with the five cupolas; tradition states that the five cupolas have been built by five sisters who never married and were dedicated to God. You may also visit the small church of Aghios Ioannis, at the village of Aghios Vasilios, some 2 kilometres to the South; the church has interesting wall paintings and dates back to the 13th century.
Three important historic monasteries are found in the broader area of Peza. The Monastery of Panaghia Spiliotissa is situated at Aghios Vasilios near the church of Aghios Ioannis, within a lanscape with luxurious green and current water.
The Angarathou Monastery is found some 11 kilometres at the East, and the Monastery of Aghios Georghios Epanossifi, some 15 kilometres at the South.
Only a few rooms to let are available in the village, for those who would choose to stay here, far from the crowded beaches. But, of course, you will find good food and better wine and tsikoudia in the traditional taverns and cafes of the village.
Access from Heraklion is very easy, by public bus with frequent service, taxi and rented or private cars and motorbikes.
 
Hani Kokkini
Chani Kokkini is an important tourist resort at the Northern coast of Crete. It is situated at a distance of 13 kilometres far from Heraklion at the East, on the Old National Road and close to the actual National Road. The village counts more than 1000 permanent residents and it is successive to the settlements of Gournes and Vathianos Kambos.
The area used to be an active Minoan center throughout the Minoan era. The palace of Niros, close to the village is dated to the New Palatial Period (17th century b.C.). It is an impressive building with tens of rooms (more than 40 only on the ground floor), stairs, corridors and two big yards. It is suggested that the building served as residence of a powerful local governor, or of a high priest; the palace was destroyed by fire. Abundant terracotta vessels as amphora, big and small jars jars were found on the site during the excavations, along with ritual artifacts and various items of everyday use.
At the West of the village, close to Vathianos Kambos  it has been found the cemetery of the site; a good number of ceramic urns have been excavated, but unfortunately today the site has suffered an almost total destruction, due to the water of the numerous torrents flowing there in winter.
Dockyard constructions of the Minoan period have been detected at the beach in front of the village.
Near Gournes excavations have brought to light a site with various buildings, chiseled tombs and artefacts, mainly pottery.
In what concerns the Christian era it is worth visiting the Monastery of Aghios Ioannis Theologos (St.John) some 4 kilometres South to the village, near the village Anopoli.
Several alternatives of accommodation is offered in the area: big hotels with full facilities, smaller hotels of all categories, studios and rooms to let are available.
Swimming is possible at the beach in front of the village  as well as st the near by beaches of Gournes and Vathianos Kambos; sea sport facilities are also available.
Numerous taverns and restaurants in the area offer good food and drink.
Access from Heraklion is very easy by public bus with regular and frequent service, by taxi as well as by rented or private car and motrobikes.
 
Gouves
Gouves is a small scenic village 2 kilometres far from the well known coastal tourist resort of Kato Gouves. Both settlements are situated at a distance of approximately 16 kilometres far from Heraklion at the East; Gouves is the smaller of the two and counts less than 350 permanent residents, whereas Kato Gouves has more that 1200 people.
 
At Kato Gouves it is worth visiting the ruins of a pottery workshop of the Minoan period. It is also worth seeing the churches of the area, as that of Zoodochos Pigi ("the Source of Life"), the patron saint of Gouves, the cave of Aghia Paraskevi, close to the village Skotino, some 4 kilometres far from Gouves at the Southeast and the Monastery of Panaghia Eleousa at the village of Voros.
Accommodation of any kind and of any category is plenty; you will find hotels, studios, rooms to let and cmpings mostly in Kato Gouves. Food and drink is available in the restaurants, taverns and cafes of both villages. Swimming and sea sport activities is possible at the sandy beaches of Kato Gouves and the area around.
Access from Herkleio is very easy by public buses with frequent service and taxi, as well as by private or rented car and motorbikes.
 
Piskopiano
31 kilometres far from Heraklion at the East, the traditional village of Piskopiano is almost united with the successive village of Koutouloufari. This village of 450 permanent residents has an interesting architecture, as many of the old houses have an arch, a very common architectural feature in the village. 
 
It is worth visiting the church of Aghios Ioannis, built in the 16th century, and renovated a few times afterwards, as well as the ruins of the three-aisled basilica of the 6th century; some of the finds of this church are exhibited in the Heraklion Museum.
It is also worth seeing the Agricultural Folk Museum, housed in an oil mill of the mid 19th century; the building has been restored and renovated by the Society of Cretan Historic Studies and there are presented professional activities of the past as a traditional oil-mill, a cooper's workshop, a carpenter's workshop, a forge and other traditional activities. The Museum has also a rich collection of various traditional instruments and a good collection of photographs from the early and mid 20th century.
Many hotels of all categories, studios and rooms in traditional restored mansions and rooms to let are available for accommodation. You will enjoy food and drink in the restaurants, taverns and traditional cafes of Piskopiano and of the nearby Koutouloufari. And, if you can't miss swimming and sea sports, all the beaches of Chersonissos are waiting for you.
Access from Heraklion is very easy, by public bus with frequent service, taxi and rented or private cars and motorbikes.
 
Koutouloufari
Situated at a distance of 32 kilometres far from Heraklion at the East, the traditional village of Koutouloufari is almost united with the village of Piskopiano. This village of 600 permanent residents has an interesting architecture, as many of the old houses have an arch, a very common architectural feature in the village. 
 
Many hotels of all categories, studios and rooms in traditional restored mansions and rooms to let are available for accommodation. You will enjoy food and drink in the restaurants, taverns and traditional cafes of  the village and of the nearby Piskopiano. For swimming and sea sports, you may pop up to any of beaches of Chersonissos, just a few kilometres far away.
Access from Heraklion is very easy, by public bus with frequent service, taxi and rented or private cars and motorbikes.
 
Hersonissos
Hersonissos or Limenas Chersonissou is the most cosmopolitan and touristy developed resort of the prefecture and possibly of the island; and of course is one of the most popular tourist destinations.
It is situated some 28 kilometres far from Heraklion at the East and counts approximately 3000 permanent residents.
The place must have been a cosmopolitan one even in the past, as it is shown by the rich and important relics of the past, the most important of them being the Minoan settlement located near the actual church of Aghia Paraskevi at the western part of the port.
A very wide range of hotels of every category and for all budgets, studios and rooms to let as well as campings are available for the visitors. Many taverns, restaurants, cafes and bars offer good food and drink; there is  also an intense and fascinating nightlife. Swimming is possible at the beach of the town, as well as at the small coves of the area. Facilities of sea sport, including a water park complete the image of the resort.
Access from Heraklio is very easy by public buses with frequent service and taxi, as well as by private or rented car and motorbikes. A small port with yatch facilities is available, whereas in summer excursion boats can get you to the isle of Dia every day.
 

Stalida

A tourist resort, very popular and crowded in summer, Stalida is situated at a distance of 3 kilometres at the West of Malia and at a distance of 33 kilometres far from Heraklion at the East. The town counts some 1000 permanent residents.
 
Three local feasts ("panighyri") take place in the area: on the 26th of October in honour of Aghios Dimitrios, and on the 13th of November and 27th of January in honour of Aghios Ioannis (St. John).
Accommodation of any kind and for all budgets is plenty; you may find hotels, rooms to let, studios and apartments. Food and drink is not a problem; taverns, restaurants and cafes are abundant, offering a wide range of tastes. There are also some bars and clubs for nightlife and amusement. Of course for more alternatives of amusement you can always pop up to the nearby Malia.
Access from Heraklion is possible by public bus, taxi and rented and private car and mortorbikes.
The beaches of the area are all beautiful, some of them sandy and suitable for swimming and others rocky and ideal for snorkelling.
 
Malia
Situated at a distance of 36 kilometres far from Heraklion at the East, Malia is a town by the sea, a big tourist resort and a very popular tourist destination, which results in big crowds, especially in summer. It has some 3750 permanent residents.
The history of the village goes back to the Neolithic times, but it seems that it flourished mostly during the Minoan times, when Mallia was one of the most important towns of Crete.
At a distance of 3 kilometres eastern to the village, there is the famous palace of Malia, equal in fame and archaeological importance to the palaces of Knossos and Faistos, which also flourished during the same period. Actually, most of the ruins preserved go back to the New Palace period (17th - 15th centuries b.C.). According to the myth, the area was dominated by Sarpedon, the brother of Minos.
Apart from the palace, a very important necropolis has been found near the coast, at the Northeast of the palace. The necropolis dates back to the Old Palace period and the most important part has been excavated at Chryssolakos, with a big funerary complex. It is at this place that has been found the famous necklass presenting two bees (a symbol of fertility), now housed in the Archaeological Museum of Heraklion.
Apart from the very important ruins of the Minoan period, it is also worth seeing the church of Panaghia Galatiani, with the wonderful wall painting.
A traditional feast with the revival of the old custom "Xynochondros and Mouzoudia" takes place in the town during the Carnical. As the climate is very mild and staying here very pleasant even in February, when the feast takes place, it is worth visiting the area in this period of time and enjoy it with the residents, in an atmosphere of fun and amusement.
Accommodation in Malia is plenty; many hotels of all categories, studios and rooms to let are available. Food and drink are offered in the taverns and restaurants of the town (there are several of them), as well as in the cafes. You will not miss night life and fun, as there are a lot of good haunts for young people, famous bars and clubs.
Swimming is possible at the sandy beach of the town, as well as at the nearby beaches of Stalida (3 kilometres far from Malia at the West) and Potamos, the eastern end of the long beach in front of Malia, much less crowded than the rest of the beach.
Access from Heraklion is very easy following the National road; public buses run frequently and you can always use a taxi and of course rented or private cars and motorbikes

Helpful Information

SCHEDULES OF BUSES
 
City Buses (blue) are serving the city of Heraklion from early morning until late in the evening. Starting from the city port routes are performed also to the archaeological site of Knossos. During summer, the schedules are performed every half an hour from 7:00 until 22:30 o clock. Information: 2810-226065 and 220795.

Intercity buses (green) are connecting Heraklion with all countys of Crete for flexible movement of residents and visitors. The main Bus routes from Heraklion are:
 
Heraklion-Lasithi (Chersonissos-Malia-Ag.Nikolaos-Ierapetra-Sitia-Viannos-Monofatsi)
Starting point: Heraklion Port. Information’s at  2810-245019, 245020
 
Heraklion-Messara(Messara-Milopotamos-Malevizi)
Starting point: Chanion Gate (Chanioporta). Information’s at  2810-255965
 
Chania-Rethymno
Starting point: Heraklion Port. Information’s at 2810-245019, 245020
 
 
 
ELECTRICITY:
Greece has alternating current supply: 220 - 250 volts, 50 cycles
 
WATER:
Tap water should be use for washing and bathing, but should be avoided for drinking.
Prefer bottled water for consumption.
 
USEFUL PHONE NUMBERS
Phone Prefix to Heraklion: +30 2810 xxxxxx
• Port Authorities 244912
• Airport 228402
 • Police 100
• Fire station 199
• Taxi 2810 - 210102
• Ambulance (First Aid Advice)166
• Benizelio hospital 369000-29
 • Regional Academic Hospital (PAGNI) 392111

 

Museums

Archaeological Museum

The Heraklion Archaeological Museum is regarded as one of Europe's most important museums. The present building was constructed between 1933 and 1937 to plans by P. Karantinos, on the site of the imposing Venetian Franciscan friary destroyed by an earthquake in 1856.
The museum brings together archaeological finds from all over Crete, covering over 5500 years of the island's history. Pride of place is given to the treasures of Minoan civilisation, the entire historical course of which can thus be appreciated. Justly regarded as the home of Minoan civilisation par excellence, the museum houses the most important collection of Minoan antiquities the world over.
 
Contact details:
Xanthoudidou 2, 71202 Heraklion
Tel. (+30)2810 / 279000 - Fax. (+30)2810 / 279071
e-mail: amh@culture.gr
 
Historical Museum of Crete
Foundedin 1953 by the Society of Cretan Historical Studies (S.C.H.S.), the Historical Museum of Crete (H.M.C.) presents a comprehensive view of Cretan history from early Christian times to the present day.

The original goal of those founding the Historical Museum of Crete was to collect and preserve valuable archaeological, ethnographic and historical material deriving from the medieval and modern periods in Cretan history.
The process of enriching the collections, extending exhibition space and redefining the museum's aims has never ceased. Prolific research and publishing activity, the organisation of temporary exhibitions, educational programmes and the use of audiovisual media all form part of the modern educational role adopted by the Historical Museum of Crete over time.
The same approach also includes the gradual re-organisation of the collections on display so as to appeal to a wider range of visitors, thus offering them the opportunity to understand the many facets of historical development on Crete.
The H.M.C. is home to the following collections:
Medieval and Renaissance Collection
Struggles for Cretan Freedom
Folklore Collection
Nikos Kazantzakis Room
Emmanouil Tsouderos Room

Permanent Exhibitions:
A. G. Kalokerinos Room
Introduction to the Christian Era on Crete
Tour of 17th century Chandax (Heraklion)
Ceramics Room
Contact details:
House A. & M. Kalokerinos, 27, Sofokli Venizelou Ave. / 7, Lysimachou Kalokerinou St., 71202 Heraklion, Crete, Greece
Tel. (+30)2810 / 283219, (+30)2810 / 288708 - Fax. (+30)2810 / 283754
e-mail: info@historical-museum.gr
Website: http://www.historical-museum.gr
 
St. Catherine's Museum
Situated northeast of the Cathedral of St. Minas, this church once belonged to the Monastery of St. Catherine on Mt. Sinai
The church was founded in the second Byzantine period, and was a centre of intellectual and artistic activity from the 15th to the 17th century.
St. Catherine's now serves as an exhibition venue owned by the Archdiocese of Crete. It houses works representative of the Cretan Renaissance, the most outstanding of which are portable icons by Michail Damaskinos
The displays also include collections of altar furnishings, books, vestments and detached murals.
 
The Battle of Crete and National Resistance Museum
The Museum of the Battle of Crete and National Resistance (1941-1945) was founded by the Municipality of Heraklion in May 1994.
The museum's aim is to collect, preserve and exhibit relics from 1941-1945 in an appropriate manner, as well as to document and disseminate information on the people's struggle during the Battle of Crete and the German-Italian occupation.
In addition to presenting a range of material witnesses to the past, the museum aims to cultivate interest and respect for the history of Crete.
Contact details:
Doukos Beaufort and Merambellou Sts.
Tel. (+30)2810 / 246 554
 
Natural History Museum
Operating within the wider University of Crete framework, the Natural History Museum of Crete fulfils all the roles demanded of a comprehensive, modern museum by:
  • Keeping and developing collections
  • Carrying out research into the natural world
  • Contributing to teaching at all levels in the education system
  • Promoting the unique nature of habitats in Crete and the Mediterranean.
Contact details:
University of Crete, Knossos Ave. P.O.Box 2208, 71909 Heraklion Crete
Tel. (+30)2810 / 393276 - Tel/Fax (+30)2810 / 324366
Natural History Museum Exhibition
Sof. Venizelou Ave, Dermatas Bay
Tel. (+30)2810 / 282740
e-mail: sec@nhmc.uoc.gr
Website: http://www.nhmc.uoc.gr
 
Museum of Visual Arts
The Heraklion Museum of Visual Arts was established in order to support cultural and artistic activity of all kinds, with particular regard to the advancement and strengthening of the visual arts and the promotion of work by Cretan artists.
The museum acts as venue where artists, art lovers and their friends can meet and exchange views in a spirit of solidarity, co-operation and unity, and a place for aesthetic and intellectual cultivation, recreation and learning. To that end, the museum organizes educational seminars and lectures on matters relating to art, as well as conferences, concerts, seminars and publications. The venue is also suitable for use as exhibition space, for association meetings and for nationwide or European-level collaborative projects with other private or state-run museums.
 
Contact details:
3 Nymphon str.,Heraklion Crete
Tel. (+30)2810 / 226683 - Fax. (+30)2810 / 226489
e-mail: museum@texni-texniki.gr
Website: http://www.heraklionvisualarts.gr

Facilities

  • Reception and information desk
  • Breakfast room
  • Cafe – Bar
  • Pool
  • Large common use verandas
  • Free WI-FI
  • 24hr hot water in the apartments
  • Spacious and safe parking

Why Us

  • Reasonable prices.
  • Quiet and comfortable environment.
  • Easy access to beaches.
  • Easy access to the city of Heraklion.

Services

  • Car/motorbike rentals*
  • Restaurant bookings*
  • Housekeeping

* Upon request