Excursions Around Crete
“Every perfect traveler always creates the country where he travels», N. Kazantzakis
Myrtle & Skalani (Kazantzakis Museum & Boutaris Winery)
It is a short half day tour which includes a visit to N. Kazantzakis museum in the village of Myrtle and a walk through the vineyards of Fantaxometocho and then a stop in Skalani for Cretan snacks.
Dafnes & Zaros (Douloufakis Winery & Monastery of Varsamonero)
A full day tour to visit Douloufakis winery at Dafnes followed by the Monastery of Palliani with the sacred perennial Myrtia tree, then to Agia Varvara and Zaros village with its spring waters, and lastly, to the Byzantine Monasteries of Vrontissi and Varsamonero.
Melidoni Cave and Wax Museum
A full day tour to the picturesque Melidoni cave with the ancient stalactites and stalagmites, which was constantly used from the Neolithic period to the Late Roman period and constituted a refuge during the Turkish occupation. Afterwards, a visit at the museum of Cretan tradition and the wax museum and then lunch at the famous Anogia village.
Spinalonga, Elounda, Agios Nikolaos, Neapoli (Traditional Olive Press)
A journey to discover eastern Crete. A stop in Neapolis for a refreshing soumada, a visit to the oil mill where oil production is performed using the method of great-grandfathers and then, a visit to Elounda and the famous “island” of Spinalonga.
Cretan cultural events
Heraklion, at a 12 km distance, is a very lively metropolis where many cultural events are organized (theaters, balls, concerts, exhibitions) mainly in summer but all year round too. Also, in every village in Crete various festivals and celebrations are organized according to the season, which will allow you to get to know the people, the morals and customs of the island.
Plan your Excursions
The Holy Easter, the greatest feast of Orthodoxy is celebrated in every corner of Crete. Each day of the Holy Week offers something unique and interesting. On Holy Thursday, the dyeing of the red eggs and the decoration of the Epitaph (Bier of Christ). On Good Friday, the procession of the Epitaph. On Holy Saturday, the Resurrection of the Christ and the midnight dinner with the famous Easter soup, (magiritsa). On Easter Sunday the twinge of lamb followed by a hearty lunch which lasts until late at night.
May Day is a festival that celebrates the arrival of spring. Everyone goes to the countryside to make the famous wreath of flowers which adorns the entrances of houses.
Feast of Cherry in the village of Sarhos
On June 24, the feast of Agios Ioannis Klidonas, celebrating the longest daylight of the year with bonfires and dances until late at night in most villages, like in Mochos and Ano Asites.
During the July-September period cultural events are organized by the Municipality of Heraklion at Nikos Kazantzakis Garden Theatre and in other places.
Early in July, the wine festival takes place in the historical village of Dafnes with a lot of wine, Cretan delights and dancing. Guests can marvel the works of local artists and the ancient churches of the region.
Shepherd cheese festival at Zoniana. Try all sorts of cheese and Cretan appetizers and enjoy Cretan music by Stelios Bikakis.
Yakintheia (Agios Yakinthos is the Cretan Saint Valentine). Celebrated in Anogia with daily cultural and sporting events, concerts and art exhibitions. Having reached Psiloritis for the Yakintheia, it’s worth visiting the famous Mitata (stone cylinder houses used as shelters) and the Cretan Observatory.
July 26, festival of Agia Paraskevi in the village of Pendamodi
On 6 August, is the great feast of the Transfiguration of Christ in the village of Archanes in the foothills of Youchtas.
The fifteen of August (Dekapentavgoustos), is the third most important day of Orthodoxy, with celebrations and festivals in every corner of Crete.
The last week of August you can be at no other place but in the village of Choudetsi at the Musical Workshop “Labyrinth” with traditional instruments and Cretan music.
7 August. Feast of Agios Fanourios at the Monastery of Varsamonero in Zaros village at Voriza.
The harvest begins. In many villages the traditional custom is kept, where girls are dancing in the winepress.
September 8, the birth of Virgin Mary. Feast at the historic Monastery of Panagia of Keras in Lasithi. Combine it with lunch in the village of Krasi under the perennial plane tree.
Raki. The distillation of raki is transformed into an impressive “banquet” ritual, as friends and passers become one celebrating and having fun together with simple appetizers, raki and a lot of emotion.
During the 3rd week, festivals for celebrating the opening of barrels with new wines.