6 days/5 nights
The picturesque island of Crete is endowed with a wealth of important sites and first rate museums ranging from Mythology, Minoans, Greeks, Romans, Venetians to the Battle of Crete.
Flight to Heraklion. Your Hellene rep will meet you on arrival and accompany you to your accommodation in the picturesque resort of Aghios Nikolaos, your base for this tour. Hotel and evening meal.
First stop today is the Minoan Palace at Malia, which, according to myth was the seat of Sarpedon, Minos’ brother. Continue to Heraklion to explore the Cretan capital and visit the town’s museum, a repository of amazing archaeological artefacts, relating to the Minoan civilisation on the island. Following this you’ll visit the legendary Palace of Knossos which, according to Greek mythology was designed by Daedalos and was the setting for Theseus’ slaying of the Minotaur. Hotel and evening meal.
Full day excursion travelling through spectacular scenery to the Lassithi Plateau. Visit Diktaean Cave, the reputed birthplace of Zeus and Trapeza Cave, a burial ground during the Pre-Palatial period (2500-2000 B.C.) and an important pilgrimage site from its Neolithic occupation to seventh century B.C. Hotel and evening meal.
Morning visit to Lato, one of the most important Doric cities in Crete to view the remains of the fortified city and the Prytaneion, a monumental complex resembling an ancient theatre. Continue to the palaces of Aghia Triada and Phaestos for fine examples of Minoan architectural design and Phaestos Disc excavation site. Afternoon visit to Gortyn. Once a flourishing Roman town and home to the ‘Code of Gortyn’. Hotel and evening meal.
Today you will explore the eastern part of the island, starting at Sitia. This largely unexplored region holds much interest because of its rich archaeological finds. The town’s museum exhibits a fascinating array of objects from the region, dating back to the Neolithic period. A short journey takes you to the famous fortress-monastery at Touplou en route to Kato Zahkros to see the Minoan Palace and the Ravine of the Dead (burial ground). The last port of call is the site of Paleokastro, the ruins of a settlement which flourished during the Late Minoan period (1550-1220 B.C.). Hotel and evening meal.
Morning at leisure before your transfer to the airport and return flight to the UK
Feel free to contact us to tailor your own tour. 01342 324727
Optional Extra: Extend or base your stay at the Enagron Ecotourism Village at Axos in the Cretan Mountains. Enjoy excellent home produced organic food and wine, participate in hiking, 4×4 and donkey treks to local Monasteries, Caves and Archaeological Sites. View Cretan wild flora, rare species of eagles and hawks, old Olive Mills or simply relax around the pool in a peaceful and rural setting.