Expect to be shocked as soon as you step out of Crete’s Heraklion airport with a line of tour company stalls and groups of tourists! Pick up their tourist map because it shows you five routes you can take to tour the key sites in a mapped out way. You can spend two or three days visiting all the sites including the Palace of Knossos, and be sure to enjoy some fresh seafood along the waterfront, they are all in a row. A recommended restaurant would be Kastella 🙂 You can take a 20min taxi from the airport straight to the city 15Euros to most city centre locations. And from the city back to the airport, you can find taxi’s for as low as 10 euros! They will have sign boards so they can’t cheat you. They don’t use their meters in Greece so make sure you clarify price beforehand.
The main area is really walkable and the only commute is to the Palace.
Heraklion, also known as Iraklio, is a port city and the capital of the Greek island of Crete. It’s known for the Palace of Knossos, just outside the city. The huge archaeological site dates back thousands of years to the Minoan civilization, and includes frescoes and baths. Guarding the city’s Venetian port is the 16th-century Koules fortress. Heraklion Archaeological Museum has a large collection of Minoan art.
Note for breakers: You can train at the town hall 8pm onwards! There are skaters there too. I was lucky enough to join in on their busking the night I was there which was the highlight of my trip.
Note for EU students: You gain free entry everywhere to most sites!
Here are some of the highlights from my trip:
- Palace of Knossos – the main Bronze Age archaeological site at Heraklion, a modern port city on the north central coast of Crete. It really is just ruined remaining but worth a visit since it’s their main highlight. Read some history beforehand as there are limited sign boards at the site. There are tour guides you can pay for outside if you have the extra money. I would also recommend getting the entry ticket that includes the archeological museum as they do a package deal that make’s it a lot cheaper.
- Archeological museum
- Venetian Port and fortress
- Historical Museum
- Church of St Titus
- Town hall
- Cathedral of St Minas and Museum of Christian Art which is right next to the church
- Natural History Museum
- Morosini fountain, Lion Square.
- Priuli Fountain
- Enjoy the main street filled with shops
- Stay at Dom Boutique Hotel – one of the best hotels I’ve stayed at. They had amazing service and it’s in the heart of the city centre.