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Europe » Greece » Crete » Rethymno May 10th 2015

We stayed at the Cambridge Hotel in Horley the night before we flew as our flight was at 8.15am. The flight was delayed by 2 hours as the windscreen wipers on the plane were broken and as it was drizzly rain in Gatwick, they couldn’t see to take off!! So after taxing down to the runway for take-off – we then had to taxi back to the stand where the little problem was fixed! We then had to wait for more fuel (due to all the taxing around!!) before waiting for another slot for take-off!! Anyway, he made up time flying and we arrived in Crete about 3.00pm. An hour and a half transfer to Rethymnon and onto our Hotel Astali in the town. The hotel is run by a very friendly Mother with her two ... read more
Chris at Rethymnon Fort
Mili Gorge
Agios Nikolios bottomless lake

Europe » Greece » Crete » Rethymno May 10th 2015

We caught the bus from the local Bus Station (6 euros each person, each way) and went to Chania! It took about an hour but very pleasant journey running along the coast! Chania was massive!! I had imagined a small walled village but it was an enormous town with two rows of fortifications and a huge Venetian Harbour! Wandered down from the bus station, through the narrow touristy streets, past the old walls, down to the harbour. The dockyards originally contained 17 Neoria’s built in 1599 (storage sheds!) but only five were now left. Walked out to 16th C lighthouse, for views of the harbour and the snow-capped mountains and then back along to the Giali Tzamisi mosque built in the 17thand the ‘Firka’ Fortress on the Northwest side of the port. Spent ages watching an ... read more
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Plakais
Walking down to Date Palm Beach

Europe » Greece » Crete October 21st 2014

No, I was not in Kentucky but Crete itself where I arrived by overnight ferry from Athens. I opted not to take a berth in a cabin or even an "airplane" seat but went deck class which wasn't actually on the deck but in one of the lounges where I could crash out after it closed at midnight. Last time I did that was in 2000 on a 20+ hour sailing from Athens to Rhodes and all I remember about that trip was that it was still legal to smoke indoors on Greek ferries. That is thankfully no longer the case. Crete is probably my favorite place in all of Greece. There are so many cool, little villages scattered all over the interior and along the coast with sparkling clear water and miles of hiking trails ... read more
Chania
Kri-kri in Samaria Gorge
Agia Roumeli Beach

Europe » Greece » Crete » Chania August 16th 2014

Truly splendid and exotic holiday destination! It's a paradise for foodies!It's a shame I couldn't click any pictures of the delicious food we had throughout the trip. But I must say that you really got to be a BIG eater to survive their three courses of meal. I am not kidding :) There is something for everybody no matter you are vegetarian or a meat-lover and if you have a sweet tooth (I DO) then I bet you gotta work really hard to lose those extra pounds you gonna gain during this vacation. Food has never disappointed us even a single time during our 4-days spent in Greece. Everything they serve is a BIG portion that you are really not ... read more
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Europe » Greece » Crete » Agia Pelagia July 1st 2014

My long time friend and I (the one who got married in Montreal), were chatting on Skype about life and whatnot, and she decided she needed a vacation. We talked about "oh, couldn't it be nice to go somewhere warm, the Mediterranean, Greece!" and suddenly, flights were booked, an AirBnB was found, she was flying from Canada and me from Copenhagen, and we had a gorgeous 3 day getaway in Greece together. We rented a car and stayed in a place whose name I could only ever describe as a Harry Potter spell, Agia Pelagia (seriously, say it out loud). The AirBNB was perfect, a big place with loads of rooms and a big kitchen and a rooftop terrace overlooking the ocean. We went on daily adventures, looking at small towns and going to the absolute ... read more
Amazing little restaurant
Doing the dress & hat thing
Incredible views

Europe » Greece » Crete June 29th 2014

Our next stop Crete, the largest of the Greek islands. Our tour today was to the ancient site of Knossos, of the Minotaur fame. We visited the palace of King Minos with 2000 rooms. The site was reconstructed by a British archeologist named Evans, he made many assumptions of what things were and how they looked. Unfortunately, modern archeologists disagree with Evans' work and as such most sites are no longer reconstructed. In any event, the site was huge. Our local guide took us all over the site, fighting crowds and the heat. It was near 100 again today, but our water allowed us to keep cool. Fortuntely, no one needed medical attention, so it was a fun day for all. The site was amazing, even though Evans had made many mistakes and bad interpretations of ... read more

Europe » Greece » Crete » Chania May 14th 2014

Crete Arriving in Crete we disembarked our ship and begun looking for the Budget car rental booth. After walking in circles for ten minutes a nice gentleman with a giant "Tyler Selk" sign ran up to us. Apparently we had walked right by him and he was running after us for ten minutes. After getting the car we made our way over to Chania. The drive was long in the dark but we made if alright. When we arrived we immediately fell in love with the cobblestone streets that lined the harbour. We walked up and found our hotel. Our hotel was great and was run by a family that explained to me that Stavros the father grew up in Montreal. When I met him in the morning we spoke about Montreal. Stavros was also nice ... read more
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Europe » Greece » Crete July 21st 2013

After breakfast we drove across Crete to the south coast. The terrain constantly reminded me of Crete’s famous history of fierce resistance to all invaders – somewhat futilely from a strategic point of view as they were repeatedly conquered. The deep folds of the mountains were thick with trees, bushes and weedy ground-cover, thus provided endless places to hide and sneak around. This vegetation generally rose up to about a third of the height of the rocky mountains, although further south some mountains were covered in green. Presumably much of this burns off in the summer. Traditionally the mountain villages formed because people wanted to be completely out of sight of pirates and invaders from the sea. They beat off the elite of Germany’s paratroopers by hiding in bushes and caves only to pop out at ... read more
Mountain valley
Folkloric Museum
Phaistos Old Palace

Europe » Greece » Crete July 20th 2013

We never planned on visiting Crete this time, but our week there was great. We began with Sitia, in the northeast. This was a quiet little seaside village with few tourists and a very nice sandy beach. Nearby, at Vai Beach, was a natural palm forest which is unique to the Greek Islands. About 2 hours north, (by bus), along the coast, was the pretty town of Agios Nicholas. It was from here that we visited the island of Spinalonga. The British author, Victoria Hislop, wrote a book about Spinalonga entitled The Island. This was the story of the leper colony that was established in the Venetian fortress on the island in the early 1900's. I read the book in 2010 and was touched deeply by the story of a young woman forced to leave her ... read more
Palm Forest at Vai Beach
Vai Beach
Vai Beach

Europe » Greece » Crete » Paleohora July 20th 2013

On our third day we left Chania and started driving along the road in the direction of Kissamos. We thought we might stop there and spend a day or two. Most of the way to Kissamos seemed to be wall to wall tourist resorts and hotels. The day was overcast, the wind was blowing and there were a lot of tourists sitting in cafes looking glum. The town of Kastelli is on a wide bay, surrounded by mountains. It looked very pretty but as we drove along, there seemed to be no break in the tourist resorts and before we knew it, we were at the end of the bay. I had wanted to take a boat and visit Balos for the day but you have to stay there nearly all day and we didn’t really ... read more
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