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Crete information guide

General information about Crete

Hotels in Crete, Rethymnon, Chania, Lassithi and Heraklion prefectures inforrmation guide.
Short Description
Enjoying a rest under the sun in CreteThe largest of the inhabited Greek islands is Crete; it is also the fifth largest in the Mediterranean Sea totalling some 8.350 square km and home to a population of about 650.000 residents.

Along with the tiny island Gavdos to its south, its position marks the southern most tip of Greece and in fact Europe as a whole. This large island lacks for nothing in all respects and it is so well organised and equipped that despite its distance of some 160km from the nearest mainland it could well be a state within a state. In fact in many respects it is which is a part of what makes the island so special. It is almost a world apart with respect to dialect, the singing lilt of the language, the fierce people that inhabit it and the incredible way they enjoy life.

Of course, being an island it is surrounded by water that whets a coastline of over 1000km with such a large number of beaches and so wide a variety of them that it would be impossible not to be satisfied. The clean, clear waters lap the island in a variety of colours, to the north the Sea of Crete that faces the mainland, to the south we have the warm Libyan sea, to the west the Myrtoan Sea (named after the mythical hero Myrtilus, who had the misfortune of being thrown into this sea by an enraged Pelops although the name has also been connected to that of the maiden Myrto). Toward the east where you will find Greek speaking EU member Cyprus, Crete is washed by the by the Karpathian sea.

Crete is unique in every sense of the word, it is a world on its own; an extraordinary combination of old and new mingle quite harmoniously creating a spiritual serenity and equilibrium. It is vividly coloured by mythological adventure, love stories, danger and suspense, tempered by a tumultuous, violent natural and modern history and offering a stable and easygoing present, with nature as a feature show centrepiece. Crete island offers a profusion of alternatives make it an ideal destination for every kind of tourism and budgets big and small.

Crete has 4 prefectures in a straight line due to its somewhat linear geomorphology starting from west to east we have the Prefecture of Chania (pronounced Hania) followed by the prefecture of Rethymnon then the Prefecture of Heralkion (pronounced E-raklio) and to the east the prefecture of Lasithi, the capital of each prefecture constitutes the major gathering point for both tourists and the local populace. The capitals of each prefecture have managed to retain their traditional character in part although this is harder to see in Heraklion, however Hania and Rethymno are the most picturesque by far a firm favourite for tourists.

The weighty numbers of tourism and the fact that they are the commercial hubs of each of the corresponding prefectures have converted them into modern cities with all their pros and cons this is especially true of Heraklion. It is most likely that a visitor will confront a beehive of activity that is to be found in any urban centre with traffic jams and noise. The trade-off is that you will also find every amenity and facility in a variety of qualities and prices to match. All in all, they are a good point to start exploring the respective prefectures.

Travel in Crete

Travel in Greece

Traditional Cottages in Greece and the Greek islands