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Crete, Greece

Crete is the largest and most populous of the Greek islands, the fifth-largest island in the Mediterranean Sea, and one of the thirteen administrative regions of Greece. It forms a significant part of the economy and cultural heritage of Greece while retaining its own local cultural traits (such as its own dialect, poetry, and music). Crete was the centre of the Minoan civilization (c. 2700–1420 BC), the earliest "high culture" civilization in Europe, which built the first palaces in Europe.

The island has a number of gorges such as the famous gorge of Samaria, Imbros gorge, Kourtaliotiko gorge, Ha gorge, Platania gorge, the Gorge of the Dead (at Kato Zakros, Sitia) and Richtis Gorge and waterfall at Exo Mouliana in Sitia. The rivers of Crete include the Ieropotamos River, the Koiliaris, the Anapodiaris, the Almiros, and Megas Potamos. There are only two freshwater lakes: Lake Kournas and Lake Agia, which are both in Chania prefecture. Lake Voulismeni at the coast, at Aghios Nikolaos, was formerly a sweetwater lake but is now connected to the sea, in Lasithi.

The economy of Crete is predominantly based on agriculture and is one of the few Greek islands that can support itself independently without a tourism industry. The economy began to change visibly during the 1970s as tourism gained in importance.

The island has three significant airports, Nikos Kazantzakis at Heraklion, the Daskalogiannis airport at Chania and a smaller one in Sitia. The first two serve international routes, as the main gateways to the island for travellers. The island is served by ferries mostly from Athens by ferry companies such as Minoan Lines and ANEK Lines.

Crete is one of the most popular holiday destinations in Greece. Popular tourist attractions include the archaeological sites of the Minoan civilisation, the Venetian old city and port of Chania, the Venetian castle at Rethymno, the gorge of Samaria, the islands of Chrysi, Elafonisi, Gramvousa, and Spinalonga and the Palm Beach of Vai, which is the largest natural palm forest in Europe.

Tags: Crete, Greece travel experience, city guide and tourist map of Crete, accommodation in Crete apartments for rent prices in Crete, hotels Crete, travel guide Crete tourist info, weather forcast, 3

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Map of Crete »

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Crete private accommodation, apartments, hotels...

Aldemar Royal Mare Hotel Crete Aldemar Royal Mare Hotel

The hotel is situated on its own sandy beach, 2 km from the center of Hersonissos, 25 km from the city of Heraklion. The hotel has 341 rooms and 43 su...
Aquila Rithymno Beach Hotel Crete Aquila Rithymno Beach Hotel

The hotel is located on a sandy beach 500 m long, 7 km east of the city of Rethymno, 68 km from the airport. The hotel complex consists of a main buil...
Aquila Porto Rethymno Hotel Crete Aquila Porto Rethymno Hotel

The hotel is located 50 yards from the sandy beach (crosses the street), in the center of Rethymno, near the old town, 60 km from the airport of Chani...
Astir Beach Hotel Crete Astir Beach Hotel

The hotel is located 50 m from the sandy beach, 10 km from the place of Hersonissos, 15 km from Heraklion airport, 16 km from Malia, 18 km from the ci...
Atlantis Beach Hotel Crete Atlantis Beach Hotel

The hotel is located 50 yards from the sandy beach (crosses the street), in Rethymno, 15 min. walk from the city center, 85 km from the airport. Renov...
Avra Imperial Beach Resort & Spa Hotel Crete Avra Imperial Beach Resort & Spa Hotel

The hotel is located on the sandy-pebble beach in Kolimbari, 23 km from the city of Chania, 35 km from the airport of Chania. The hotel was opened in ...
Creta Maris Beach Resort Hotel Crete Creta Maris Beach Resort Hotel

The hotel is located 150 m from the sandy beach, 3 km from the center of Hersonissos and 26 km from the city of Heraklion. A large hotel complex consi...
Galini Sea View Hotel Crete Galini Sea View Hotel

The hotel is located 300 meters from the sandy beaches of Santa Marina, on the hill (exceeding the street and a bus that goes to the beach), 800 m fro...

Popular places in Crete

Amnesia club Crete Amnesia club

Club Amnesia was started in 2001, is one of the most popular and most frequented clubs in Hersonissos-in. The Club has great atmosphere.
Aquaworld Aquarium Crete Aquaworld Aquarium

Mission at Aquaworld is quite simply to encourage interest in marine life and reptiles in general, and in those of the local area in particular.
Koules Venetian fortress (Castello del Molo ) Crete Koules Venetian fortress (Castello del Molo )

A Venetian seaside fortress situated at the entrance of the old harbour. It was built by the Venetians, before the construction of the new Venetian fo...
New in this city
Cafes with food
Cafe Restaurant Tzitziki
Cafe Restaurant Tzitziki
If you are a fan of barbecue, Tzitziki is the place for you, located in the central street opposite the church in the tourist village Hersonissos
Palladion Hotel
Palladion Hotel
Location: 150 m from the sandy-pebble beach (crosses the street), in Adelianos Kambos, 7 km from the town of Rethymno. The hotel consists of a main building and bungalows and has 79 rooms. Hotel facilities: safe, swimming pool, restaurant,...
Historical Museum of Crete
Historical Museum of Crete
The Historical Museum of Crete presents a comprehensive view of Cretan history from early Christian times to the present day. It was founded in 1953 by the Society of Cretan Historical Studies, which had been established two years earlier. ...
Religious places
The Varsamonerou Monastery
The Varsamonerou Monastery
The Varsamonerou Monastery lies in the surrounding fields of the village Voriza, 54.5 kms from Heraklion. The monastery is abandoned and, though its cells have been destroyed, its church has some of the most remarkable wall paintings in Cre...
Tourist attractions
Spinalonga islet
Spinalonga islet
Spinaloga is a small rocky islet - area 85000 square meters, highest point 53m - in the entrance of the lagoon of Elounda. Spinaloga, since antiquity, has protected the harbor of ancient Olous. It used to be one of the most powerful fortres...
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