Biggest Greek island

The largest of the Greek Isles, Crete is also the fifth biggest island in the entire Mediterranean. And, it barely misses out on being the fourth largest -- an honour that belongs to Corsica – by only a few acres. So, there’s plenty of ground to cover and so much to see on Crete – including miles of sandy beaches, dramatic mountain scenery and tonnes of historical sites, such as the ruins of the Palace at Knossos.

A Beach for everyone

With its 650 miles of coastline, it’s no wonder that Crete features a spectrum of beaches that virtually guarantees something to suit every taste. For instance, the swathes of sand in Heraklion are well-suited to those who like to party the night away and like to retire to the beach for a day of rest and getting ready for another evening ahead. The 12-kilometre-plus stretches of sand in Rethymnon, on the other hand, provide the perfect playgrounds for families. And, the beaches in Lassithi – near to the sophisticated towns of Agios Nikolaos and Elounda – are favourites with a set who likes to mix their sunbathing with shopping in chic boutiques and luxurious lunches in the square. Finally, Chania boasts several Blue Flag beaches, interspersed with a charming old town.

Historical Isle

With a history that dates back about 4,000 years, it’s no wonder that Crete features many ancient sites to visit. Some people even believe that western civilisation, itself, began in Crete. A claim that you can explore by visiting the ruins of the Palace of Knossos where you can check out evidence of the advanced Minoan culture.

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Heraklion Area

Whoever said less is more had never been to the Heraklion area. In these parts, more is more. The region’s beaches are case and point. They come in all shapes and sizes, from busy bands of sand like the ones in Hersonissos and Kokkini Hani, to quiet, family-focused stretches, like Agia Pelagia’s.

Rethymnon Area

This part of northeast Crete is home to some of the best beaches on the island. And you only need to look as far Rethymnon town for evidence – it’s bookended by two beaches, which are both more than 7 kilometres long.

Lassithi Area

Set on Crete’s east coast, Lassithi has its fingers in more than one pie. For starters, the region has some really lively beaches. In Agios Nikolaos and Elounda, for example, the stretches of sand are metres away from the town centres, so you can go from beach to bar to shop in a matter of minutes.

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Top 5 resorts in Crete

Top 5 hotels in Crete