The 13 Best Tours in Crete
Food & walking tours are my favorite way to explore a new city and this is a good one. Heraklion is not as picturesque as Chania but it’s loaded with true Greek character, gritty charm, and great traditional Cretan food. This is the best tour in Heraklion.
Walking the 18 km gorge is the activity highlight of Crete. It’s a little tricky to arrange on your own but with a tour they get you from your hotel to the start of the hike – then pick you up at the other end of the gorge (after a short ferry ride) and return you back to your hotel. There’s a tour guide and a couple of other interesting stops that you wouldn’t do on your own. Free hotel pickup from these towns: Chania, Heraklion, Rethymnon, Agios Nikolaos, Elounda, Hersonissos, Georgioupolis, Sissi, Milatos, Matala, Agia Galini, Malia, and Stalida. (Click “Book Now” and then select your departure town.)
A wonderful 6-hour tour that explores the local farms and wineries of western Crete. Lots of food, olive oil, and wine tastings (but still kid-friendly).
Make and enjoy delicious Cretan cuisine at a traditional family home. Learn firsthand about local culture and history while sampling homemade wine and enjoying beautiful views over the foothills of the White Mountains. This small, hands-on group tour is great for kids, with exceptionally welcoming family hosts and guide. Includes free transportation from Chania.
Great tour with lunch, 15 wine tastings, several olive oil samples, and multiple vineyard tours.
Santorini is the most amazing island in Greece. This one-day tour involves a 4 hour boat trip (2 hours each way) and about 7 hours on Santorini to explore Fira, Oia, and the fantastic views of the caldera. (This is a worthwhile tour but if you can stay overnight on Santorini you’ll see much more of the island. I typically do not recommend day trips to other islands as they’re a poor use of time, but I make an exception for Santorini as it’s so unique and memorable.)
Elafonisi is the best beach on Crete (maybe the best beach in Greece). It’s pretty easy to get there on your own with local buses but the tour makes it effortless and you also get to stop at some local villages along the way. There’s also an Elafonisi tour that departs from Rethymnon.
(Suspended as of October but should return in 2022.) Rethymnon/Rethymno is a very interesting city that is often overlooked. This 4-hour tour gives a good overview of its fabulous history and interesting culture.
Excellent small-group tour of some of central Crete’s top sights. Good local insight and history.
10 hour tour that takes in the highlights of eastern Crete.
The Lasithi Plateau is amazingly beautiful. The tour is filled with vineyards, olive groves, and windmills.
Good tour if you’re based in Heraklion, Agios Nikolaos, Elounda, Rethymnon, or one of the nearby beach towns. Start with Knossos (one of the best historical sites in Greece and a personal favorite of mine) then tour Heraklion and learn the history of the island. 10 hours long and includes hotel pickup and drop-off. There is also an excellent private tour of Knossos from Heraklion.
(Suspended as of October 2 but should return in 2022.) Great tour of Chania’s old town, highlights, and history. Highly recommended.