Crete to Santorini – The 2017 Guide

Updated: June 13, 2017

Flights from Crete to Santorini

There are no flights between Crete and Santorini for the summer of 2017.. The schedule below is for 2015 and I leave it up for reference only. There were no direct flights in 2016. That may change for 2018 – or it may not.

The only direct flight from Crete to Santorini for the summer of 2015 was on Minoan Air. They had 7 flights a week from Santorini to Crete and 7 flights a week from Crete to Santorini. All flights were to and from Heraklion in Crete and used the prop plane Fokker50. Ticket fares between Crete and Santorini cost from 52,00€ up to 62,00€ (20kg baggage & 4kg carry on is included). Flights between Crete and Santorini ran from June 10 to September 21, 2015.

Flights from Crete to Santorini on the Minoan Air Fokker50.

Flight times from Crete to Santorini
Monday 9:00 & 16:10
Tuesday 19:00
Wednesday 16:10
Friday 9:00 & 16:10
Saturday 19:30

Flight times from Santorini to Crete
Monday 10:00 & 20:00
Tuesday 11:20
Wednesday 10:00
Friday 10:00 & 20:00
Saturday 10:00

Ferry Schedule: Crete to Santorini for Summer 2017

Note: All ferry schedules can change with little notice so be sure to double check all routes and times with (the most reliable site for Greek ferry schedules).

  • Hellenic Seaways Highspeed 7 – Departs Heraklion at 9:00 and arrives in Santorini at 10:45. Economy class costs €56. This route runs from April 11 to October 4, 2017. The Highspeed 7 is the most stable highspeed ferry that runs from Crete to Santorini and the best choice for those prone to seasickness. From Santorini to Crete it the Highspeed 7 leaves Santorini at 17:25 and arrives in Heraklion at 18:50.
    Highspeed ferry between Crete and Santorini
  • April 20 to October 16, 2017 the Champion Jet2 (run by the SeaJets company) departs Heraklion at 8:50 and arrives in Santorini at 10:35. It costs €59.70. It does the return from Santorini to Crete at 17:00 and gets to Heraklion at 18:40.
    Champion Jet2 from Santorini to Crete
  • As of January 5th, 2017 there are no ferries scheduled between Rethymnon and Santorini for the summer of 2017. There were ferries last year so this could change.
  • There are no ferries from Chania or Agios Nikolaos to Santorini. If you’re traveling from these cities you’ll need to take the bus to Heraklion which is 2 hours away.

Where To Pickup Ferry Tickets in Crete and Santorini

If you book tickets in advance online you’ll need to pick them up at one of the agents below:

  • Hellenic Seaways and SeaJets Tickets in Heraklion
    Paleologos Shipping & Travel Enterprises.
    Address: 5, 25th August Street. Alternative ticket collection at the port on the day of your departure (see below).
    Tel: (+30) 2810 346185
    Fax: (+30) 2810 346208
    [email protected]
  • SeaJets Tickets in Rethymno
    Dolphin Express
    Address: El. Venizelou 90
    Tel: (+30) 28310-57666
    Fax: (+30) 28310-58020
    email: [email protected]
  • Hellenic Seaways Tickets in Santorini
    Pelican Travel
    Address: Central Square of Fira & Port of Athinios
    Telephone Number: (+30) 2286022220
    Fax: (+30) 2286022570
    Email:[email protected]
  • SeaJets Tickets in Santorini
    Nomikos Travel
    Address: Opposite Post Office in Fira & Port of Athinios
    Tel: (+30) 22860-22660 /23660
    Fax: (+30) 22860-23666
    [email protected]

Things To Know

How and where to pickup ferry tickets in Heraklion.

These are the ticket booths where most people will pick up tickets that were prebooked on the internet. The white booth is for the Champion Jet2 (SeaJets). The red and blue is for the Highspeed 7 (Hellenic Seaways). They’re located directly in front of the ferries docked in the port – you can’t miss them. They open about 1.5 hours before the ferry is scheduled to depart. Getting here 40 minutes before departure is what I would recommend.

Business class seats on the Highspeed 4 from Crete to Santorini.

Business class seats on the Hellenic Highspeed. All tickets have a seat number and reserved seat.

Economy class seats on the Highspeed 7 from Crete to Santorini.

Economy class seats on the Hellenic Highspeed. All tickets have a seat number and reserved seat.

Economy class ferry seats between Crete and Santorini.

Economy class seats on the Hellenic Highspeed. All tickets have a seat number and reserved seat.

Business class seats on the Terajet from Crete to Santorini.

Business class seats on the SeaJet. All tickets have a seat number and reserved seat.

Economy class seats on the Terajet from Crete to Santorini.

Economy class seats on the SeaJet ferry. All tickets have a seat number and reserved seat.

Luggage storage on the Highspeed ferry from Crete to Santorini.

Luggage storage on the Hellenic Highspeed. This is below deck on the vehicle level as you enter the ferry. Don’t leave valuables here but large luggage is usually fine.

Luggage storage on Flying Cat 4 from Crete to Santorini.

Luggage storage inside a highspeed ferry. This is the main seating area as you enter the ferry. It’s very crowded when boarding and disembarking so be prepared for a little madness – but it all works out.

Luggage storage on the Terajet from Crete to Santorini.

Luggage storage on the Terajet. This is below deck on the vehicle level as you enter the ferry. Don’t leave valuables here but large luggage is usually fine.

Is there food available on Greek ferries?

All ferries have some food available: drinks, sandwiches, beer and alcohol, treats. This is the menu available on the Terajet.

The ferry arriving at the port of Santorini.

Arriving at the port of Santorini. Buses and taxis are to the left. Get there quickly as seats and taxis get taken in a hurry.

See Also

258 Questions and Comments

  1. Crete to Santorini 2 Day Tour

    Hi Dave,
    I am considering booking the two day tour from Héraklion to Santorini in October, as advertised on “”.
    Is that a reputable company?
    Any better suggestions?
    Regards and Thanks,

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      I’ve never booked through that company but the website has been around for years so it’s not something that’s new (for what that’s worth). Viator has a similar Crete-Santorini 2-day tour and I can vouch for them.

  2. Last Ferry of Year between Santorini and Crete

    Hi Dave. I am thinking of traveling to Greece in early October. I see your cut-off dates for the ferries is October 12th for this year. However, on the website for SeaJet I see they are running to October 30th. Do you have different information or am I missing something? Specifically, I am looking at the Crete to Santorini and vice versa routes. It is correct that they don’t have daily ferries, but they do have them past the 12th of he month, if I’m viewing it correctly per their website. Any clarity would be appreciated to help me plan. Thanks!

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      The last ferry (that I can find) is on October 16, 2017. (I updated the info above.) But I can’t see anything beyond that on either or the SeaJets online booking app. The only place I see it (and probably where you’re looking) is on the schedule page of SeaJets with the heading date 30/20/2017. It’s not nothing, but it’s less reliable than the ticketing searches so I wouldn’t put a lot of faith in the October 30 cutoff. You can try emailing them at [email protected]. They’re pretty good at replying within 4 to 10 weeks.

  3. Student Discount on Greek Ferries

    Are there any student discounts on tickets from Crete to Santorini and back?

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      Only students from Greek public universities get the student discount on ferries in Greece.

  4. Ferry Tickets Between Crete and Santorini/ Santorini Tours


    Are tickets round trip? Or will I need to purchase a ticket from crete to santorini and from santorini to crete? Also what is a good website to look at tours while in Santorini?

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      All ferry tickets are one-way. You can purchase return tickets but they are simply two one-way tickets – there’s no price difference or any other difference. is the best website for booking tours in Santorini (prices, reliability).

  5. Tour from Crete to Santorini

    I’m about to book the SeaJets tour from Crete to Santorini

    I see there’s a small tour, but does the tour include the beaches in Santorini? How much free time do we really have? I want beach time plus view all the sites as well.
    Lyn Robertson

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      Not sure what tour you’re booking but with most Crete-Santorini tours you’ll have about 5 to 6 hours of free time on Santorini. You’ll probably have to choose between spending that on the beach or exploring the caldera towns of Fira, Imerovigli, and Oia. It would be hard to do both as the beaches and caldera are on the opposite sides of the island.

  6. Santorini to Crete Day Trip

    Hi – Do you think a day trip from Santorini to Crete is worth it?

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      No, not worth it and not even doable if you’re referring to taking the public ferries which go to Santorini in the morning and to Crete in the evening. (Of course, anything is possible if you spend enough, and there are private helicopter/private boat tours that could do it.)

  7. Ferry from Rethymnon to Santorini for 2017

    Hi Dave!

    Do you have any new information about ferries from Rethymnon to Santorini?

    Best regards,

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      For 2017, there is one ferry per week that runs Tuesday from Rethymnon at 8:15am and arrives in Santorini at 10:30am.

  8. Mykonos, Santorini, and What Other Island?

    Hi Dave,
    If I want to leave Mykonos and go to another island for 1 night and 1 day, which island should it be.
    I will be heading to Santorini for 3 days after leaving your suggested place.

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      Both Paros and Naxos are wonderful islands and the 2 easiest to make ferry connections between Mykonos and Santorini. There are daily direct ferries for the two routes you’ll take.

  9. Hellenic Tickets Bouth Online

    Dear Dave according to the Hellenic Seaways website it is possible to print web bought tickets or show them on your phone when boarding, is it necessary to pass through the Hellenic booths otherwise?
    Thanks jacques..

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      As long as they have a bar code then you can use them to board.

  10. Ferry from Crete to Santorini in Early April

    Hi Dave,
    Just a quick question. I’m trying to buy a ferry ticket (Hellenic Seaways 7 & Seajet) from Herkalion to Santorini on April 9th, 2017 (one way) but either website is not giving me the option to do so. I see that ferry services commence on the 7th of April. Do you think that is why I can’t buy the tickets ahead of time?

    Thanks for your help.
    Gana Chandratilleke

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      The first ferry of the year is scheduled for April 11th. This could change but probably not.

  11. Afternoon Ferry from Crete to Santorini

    Hi Santorini Dave – Love the site. Quick question (and sorry if this was already asked and I overlooked), are their any other ferries from Heraklion to Thira other than the 8:40am and 9:00am? Was wondering if they had any afternoon and/or evening ferries? Joe D.

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      Sorry, just the morning ferries to Santorini.

  12. Easter in Santorini

    Hey Dave, Great website thank you. We have used the information to plan our trip to the Greek Islands to celebrate my daughter’s 18th birthday in April 2017. We will be in Santorini at Easter and would value any ideas you might have to experience an authentic Greek Easter (we live in Australia so imagine it will be different to how we celebrate Easter). I am excited show my daughter Santorini and to visit again after being there 20 years ago. Jo Ackerley

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      Easter in Greece is a special time and this year it coincides with the churches of western Christianity on Sunday 16 April 2017. Assuming you have your accommodation booked and sorted there are a few things you need to be aware of about Easter in Greece. The week before ‘Anastasi’, or resurrection at midnight of the 15th is a solemn week where little happens and where very little traditional non-fasting food (meat primarily) is available for consumption. Greeks, even if they don’t fast during the 40 days of Lent will almost always go without during ‘Megali Evdomadha’ (Easter, or Great week). Foreign visitors during this time can feel left out.

      Restaurants will be offering fasting food only, or may not even be open at all. Post-Easter is the time traditionally when businesses kick-start the season and get rolling, so you will be riding the lull before the storm during Easter week. Even the normally raucous TV stations tone it down and show only mild or religious programmes and clubs and bars will be timid at best. Each parish church will normally run its own programme and in Santorini most festivities will most likely revolve around the main Metropolitan Orthodox Cathedral in Fira.

      That said there are religious happenings to be aware of with one event happening each night in the lead-up to Anastasi. The two that may be of interest to you and your daughter are the ‘Epitafios’ where the bier of the deceased Christ is carried around the streets followed by throngs of people carrying candles. This happens on the evening of (Good) Friday while the Anastasi happens the following night with the appearance of the priest at midnight bearing a lone candle in a sea of otherwise darkness and gives the light to the awaiting crowd. That one single candle light becomes hundreds within a minute and the church service continues. Firework crackers commonly explode all around the church and pandemonium rules for a few minutes.

      What follows is the retreat to homes where the fast is broken with tripe soup (!) and whatever the chef of the house has chosen to prepare plus cracking red-dyed eggs. The feasting and eating (and drinking) may go on until the morning. On Easter Sunday families, traditionally roast lamb on the spit, gather to talk and renew ties and then eat and drink some more.

      Now this is all well and good if you are Greek and have a home to go to, but it can be tricky for non-Greeks without ties. Some hotels or restaurants may put on post-Anastasi food, or even organise lamb on the spit on the Sunday but it’s not guaranteed so you’ll need to check with your hosts. It’s not difficult to befriend locals who may invite you along to their own celebrations. If you end up with no firm plans Pyrgos is especially delightful over the Easter weekend (visit at night when the town is alight).

      One last thing, travelling before and after Easter can be trying as everyone is on the move. Try not to move during those shoulder periods. Here are a couple of links that may fill you in a bit more about Easter in Greece: Easter in GreeceGreek Easter

  13. When To Buy Ferry Tickets for Crete to Santorini in July

    Hi Dave:

    Great website!!!! We are taking the Hellenic Seaways boat from Heraklion to Santorini on July 21 at 9:00am.

    When do we need to buy the ticket??



    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      You could buy them the day before and have a 98% chance of getting on. That said, I’d probably book online a month in advance just for peace of mind.

  14. Ferry from Rethymno to Santorini in 2017

    Hi Dave,

    When do you think the ferry schedule between Rethymnon and Santorini for the summer of 2017 will be available?


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      I do not think they’ll be any ferries between Rethymnon and Santorini this year. Something could change but it’s getting pretty late and I haven’t heard anything yet. I’d assume for planning purposes that there won’t be anything for 2017.

  15. Crete and Santorini in September

    Hi Dave! Such an awesome site!
    Just a couple of questions:
    1) We are flying into Chania on Sept 16th, and are thinking to visit Balos beach. Is the best way to get there by ferry? Do they sail at this time of year. Is Balos beach very busy this time of year?
    2) We are also going to get a rental car to explore other sites for the 3 nights we are in Crete, is it possible to drop if off in a different location -Heraklion.
    3) We are going to get the ferry to Santorini. How often are the sails cancelled at this time of year, just wondering if we should add an extra day in Santorini just in case, we were only planning for 2 nights before flying to Athens.
    Tracey Kuzniak

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      1. The best way to get there is via the Cretan Daily Cruises which run until late October each year. Mid-September is still a pretty busy time for Crete, so you may want to book ahead online a few days before your planned trip. The beach gets ‘busy’ as a result of the cruise trippers, so your group will be the crowd of the day.

      You can get there by car – an off-road vehicle is recommended – and there are some basic facilities on the beach for the road trippers – but you really don’t get to see the beauty of the place unless you come by cruise boat and the cruse boat really does provide everything. That said, you don’t really get to appreciate the place as in those glamorous overhead drone photos that show Balos Beach from the air, but the cruise trip is by far the better option.

      For the cruise you’ll need to get yourself to the starting point at Kissamos Port from Chania and that is about an 45 minutes’ drive. You can alternatively take a KTEL bus from Chania’s bus station that conveniently dovetails into the departure and arrival back of the cruise boat. A taxi will cost you around €42 each way.

      2. Yes, most rentals will allow you to drop at the ferry port parking lot in Heraklion – steps from the ferry to Santorini.

      3. There are two ferries a day and both leave in the morning. Ferry cancellations are rare in September. Take the Hellenic for a smaller chance of a cancellation.

  16. Santorini to Crete Flight in November

    Hello Dave! Great Information! Question, we would like to travel from Santorini to Crete on November 18. It appears a flight is our only option. It that correct? Any advice for getting a good price on the flight? Any tips? We will be staying in Oia for a few days before traveling from Oia to the airport? Lisa

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      There is not a lot of choice (or difference) with flights and prices. You’ll fly via Athens, search for the best prices.

  17. Crete to Santorini Ferry in Late April

    Hi Dave
    Thanks alot for all the great Infos!
    For our wedding on May 2th we are trying to find a good way for our guests to travel to Santorini. We will let them fly to Crete or Athens and need ferry or flights from there, but I can’t find anything End of April (28/29or30th of April 2017)
    Would be very greatful for your help!!
    Stefanie Thoeny

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      There will be early morning ferries between 8:30 and 9:30) from Crete to Santorini in late April. Schedule is not out yet but no need to book tickets in advance.

  18. Long Term Parking at Ferry Port

    Hi Dave, fantastic work on the website, your tips are so useful! I flew from Canada with my wife and we are currently visiting Crete (very beautiful) I would like to ask you two questions please: 1- how much does parking a car for one week near the Heraklion Ferry would cost? 2- the car rental company (justrentals) surprised us by telling us we could not bring the rental to Santorini… (its all Greece to us!) and would not refund (or deal) the one week period during which we will be in Santorini, does this sound normal around here in Crete? We still have one week in Crete before we take the Hellenic Seaways Ferry to Santorini. Thank you


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      There is a large parking lot right at the ferry port and it’s pretty cheap (less than 5€ per day). And yes, you generally can’t take rental cars on the ferry.

  19. Crete to Santorini in February

    Hi Dave,
    We are planning to go to Greece in February 2017. What are the options of going from Crete to Santorini? Is it even advisable to go in this time of the year? Prat

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      There will be flights and ferries from Athens to Crete, and Athens to Santorini in February but not between Crete and Santorini. You’d have to return to Athens to connect to the other island. February can be grey, cool, and wet on the islands. You certainly would not be swimming. That said, some people love visiting in the off-season when crowds are non-existent and the few restaurants open (on Santorini) are populated by locals. The weather is not great but it’s mild and far better than northern Europe.

  20. Santorini to Crete in Early October

    Hello Dave,
    We intend to travel from Heraklion to Santorini on Oct.5th. I have three questions:

    How far ahead should one book the ferry?
    Are there any flying options (can’t afford helicopter!)?
    What is the best way to go from the ferry dock to Imerovigli?

    Many thanks for any advice you can provide,
    Peter Thomas

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      1. Book ferry tickets anytime. Actually, you don’t really have to book tickets in advance but most people do for peace of mind.
      2. No flights from Crete to Santorini this year in early October.
      3. Taxi is the easiest way. Bus is the cheapest (but you’ll need to switch buses in Fira and get the one heading to Oia, then get off at Imerovigli).

  21. Buy Ferry Tickets Online or in Greece?

    Hi Dave,

    I have to say, your website is great. Heep’s of very useful information. You definitely have a big knowledge of Greece. I would like to ask you maybe a silly question but very important for me. I would like to go to Santorini from Crete and I was wondering what is better, to buy a ticket in Greece or buy it online?

    Thank you so much in advance.


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      Either way is fine. If you were traveling during high season then booking in advance is probably a good idea (if only for peace of mind). If traveling outside of July and August then you could easily show up at the port and buy a ticket.

  22. Crete to Santorini (not on a ferry)

    Hi Dave,


    We’ve just woken up and realise we didn’t set our alarms properly and missed our ferry at 9am!!

    We REALLY need to get to santorini today!! How do we do it!?!

    It’s only 9.30am now, seems silly that we can’t get there if we want – we’re willing to pay!


  23. Problems with SeaJet to Crete

    Hey Dave
    Thanks for the great website. Just a quick note to report issues with SeaJet transfer. Obviously the Crete to Santorini route, in the morning, is rather reliable, but we had a very disappointing experience on the other way, with a 4 to 5 hours delay. The boat departed at 9pm instead of 5, and still arrived later. In the mean time 1/ no excuse or explication or any reliable information by the company or its agent whatever, some of them blaming the 15th of August bank holidays for the delays in the successive ports, nothing about the much slower route and 2/ a very strange feeling about a boat mismanaged : no ac in the economy rooms (but in front an open door to let some see wind come in), no set seats (OK no big deal boat wasn’t full) and everything a little or a lot worn out. Lastly the people in Santorini and some fellow tourists had tales about how this boat (still, the return to Crete route) was always late, and seemed to express a preference for the other company.
    This also came after a day with no boat sailing due to strong winds and got us to scramble twice for hotel rooms while our Crete bookings were lost.
    Just to share and to express caution about this particular trip. Feel free not to publish if out of bounds of your own publishing rules.
    Guillaume Bernard

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      Yes, I always take (and recommend) Hellenic Seaways over SeaJet whenever there is a choice. That said, the larger the SeaJet (e.g. Tera Jet) the more reliable they are.

      Thanks for the feedback.

  24. Timing of Ferry from Crete to Santorini

    Is there a later ferry to Santorini from Heraklion than 9am? I am afraid that our bus from Chania at 5am won’t get there in time.

    Andreas Kelster

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      9am is the latest ferry but your bus should get you to Heraklion in time for the ferry. The bus is scheduled to arrive by 8am. Even if it was 30 minutes late you’d still have time to walk from the bus station to the ferry port (about 5 minutes), get your tickets (10 minutes), and get on the ferry with a little time to spare.

  25. Crete to Santorini in July

    Hi! I absolutely love all the details! I’m departing from Heraklion port on July 28 and arrive at Santorini port. Should I buy my tickets in advance? I also would like a ferry where I can walk outside the deck. I do want the fastest route as well. What do you recommend? Are the departing times from Crete to Santorini limited?

    Mona Lisa Estrada

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      Yes, I would probably buy tickets in advance through the ferry company websites. There are two: Hellenic Seaways and SeaJet but neither have ferries that will allow you to walk on the decks so you’ll be seated inside. Both ferries leave Heraklion in the morning (before 9am) so there’s little choice on time either.

  26. Rough Ferry Ride from Crete

    Is there a problem with rough Seas in the beginning of October?

    Nick Nicholas

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      In particular, no. But anytime can give a pretty bumpy ride on the open seas between Crete and Santorini.

  27. Car and Ferry

    Is there a place to park a car by the ferry?
    Can you take a rental car on the ferry?

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      In Heraklion, yes there is a parking lot right beside the ferry. Car companies are very reluctant to allow their cars to travel to other islands. In theory, you could get their permission but would definitely be a big hassle. Plus, it’s expensive to take a car on the ferry and you need to book well in advance. And then all that for very little benefit. Much easier to just rent a different car once you get to wherever you’re going.

  28. Tickets for Crete to Santorini

    Hi Dave. Excuse my ignorance but we have booked tickets for a return trip from Crete (Heraklion) to Santorini in June. I have printed off what appear to be the tickets. Does this mean I can present them directly at the ferry or do I still need to call at the port ticket office?


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      Without seeing them I can’t say for sure, but I suspect you’ll have to check in at the ticket office. It’s directly opposite the ferry (it’s a 30 second walk from the kiosk to the ferry) so it won’t be a big deal.

  29. Honeymoon in Greece

    Hi Dave –

    Your website is great, thanks for all of the great information on your website, it’s so helpful. I am planning a honeymoon in Greece from May 21 – May 31. We’d like to do 3-4 nights in Santorini and then head to the one of the other islands, and we’re thinking either Crete or Rhodes? Do you have a recommendation between those two? Our criteria are:

    – Pretty quiet beach town
    – Targeted towards couples/adults
    – Relaxed
    – Sandy beach if possible
    – Easy to get to from Santorini

    Thanks for any advice!
    Chris Saxon

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      Santorini is a great spot to start your trip and May is a great time to visit. You mention Crete or Rhodes as your next destination and you do hint that you may be open to ‘other islands’. Let’s look at the pros and cons of both Rhodes and Crete then at possibly one or two other options that are accessible from Santorini.

      From Santorini, Crete is faster and less expensive to get to than Rhodes. Two catamarans run daily between Santorini and Heraklion in Crete leaving Santorini at 17:00 (Sea Jets Consortium) and 17:25 (Hellenic Seaways) respectively arriving in Crete after around 90 minutes. The one-way ticket is €62.00. That leaves you plenty of time to enjoy one final day in Santorini and enjoy dinner in a fine seaside taverna in Crete’s capital, Heraklion. From Santorini to Rhodes it’s a much longer and less frequent ferry ride or a flight via Athens and a connecting flight on to Rhodes. There are plenty of flights during the day but the trip can last between 2 hours and 150 minutes (the 14:30 flight) or 9 hours and and 25 minutes involving an overnight stay in Athens. The ticket price ranges from €116 to €206.

      Of the two destinations both Rhodes and Crete meet the kind of criteria that you list, but they are both big islands and vary quite a bit from one end or one side to the other. Of the two, Rhodes is possibly a little more romantic and suitable for a honeymoon – on the proviso that you stay in the exceptionally romantic Old Town of Rhodes. I’d be looking at a cosy boutique hotel with old stone walls and all the mod cons. Avalon Hotel is superb as is the Spirit of the Knights and the Old Town is quite unique. The town beach near the Casino is perfectly sandy and relaxing. Outside of the old Town hotels tend to be less boutique-like and more resorty with infinity pools and your every need pampered to.

      Crete is bigger than Rhodes and has a different feel – more rugged, more independent, more mountainous, and culturally the people consider themselves apart from the mainlanders (and quite likely other islanders). It’s a fine destination in its own right and – for honeymooners – can provide just what you are looking for – a touch of luxury, laced with comfort and coziness. Consider one of two possible destinations in Crete: the old world intimacy of Chania’s Old Town, or the new world luxury of Elounda. Both destinations are at opposite ends of this lengthy island. Chania’s Old Town will be more like the Rhodes Old Town experience, while Elounda will give you the lazy, luxurious open feel of the all-in hotel. Beaches are better at Elounda – some hotels have private beaches – while Chania scores relatively low on that feature.

      With regards to an alternative destination, a couple come to mind. Just two islands north of Santorini is the archetypically Cycladic island of Paros with just about the right balance of everything: beaches, good food, atmosphere, and top-flight accommodation. Less-touristy and more travel-ly than both Crete and Rhodes, Paros is well connected in terms of transport, has more of an ‘island’ feel and is a perennial favourite with all walk of travellers – and honeymooners.

      Here finally is a wildcard that you may not have though of. It’s a bit ‘arty’, popular with Greeks, coy and understated, but meets your criteria. It is Folegandros. Look north west of Santorini and you will see it an almost inconspicuous, Cycladic rock with all the charm that a traditional island can muster. You’d be better served staying in the “Chora” or main settlement up on the cliffs overlooking the cobalt-blue sea, where you can wine and dine in sequestered insouciance and maybe rub shoulders with film directors, football players, or philosophers. One suggestion for a place to stay Fata Morgana high up on the cliffs, but there are plenty more if you look around. For swimming the little beach at Angali (3km) is just fine. Catamaran services link Santorini with Folegandros twice daily.

  30. Minoan Airlines still Operating?

    Hi Dave

    Can you tell me if Minoen Air are still trading, we would like to us them this year, but have noticed on the web they have suspended services.



    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      I have been trying to email them but they haven’t responded so yes, perhaps they have stopped running.

  31. Ferry to Crete and Getting to Chania

    Hi Dave,
    First, thank you for creating such an amazing resource in your website. It’s wonderful! Second, I want to warn you that the below is so very specific to my vacation & I want to thank you in advance (and apologize!)

    We currently booked a trip to Greece and for the last leg of the trip we’re going from Santorini to Crete on July 7th and flying out from Herkalion on Monday, July 11th. I know you mentioned that there are currently no ferries from Santorini to Rethymno, but we really want to stay in Chania for the entirety of the trip to access all the beaches and activities we’d like to do. I am running into many questions and concerns when figuring out how and when to get to Chania.

    For July 7th, the only ferries from Santorini to Herkalion arrive in Crete around 7pm. The only bus to Chania leaves at 9pm. This concerns me because 1. what if the ferry is late? 2. it pretty much wastes the night of the 7th. I heard staying in Herkalion should be avoided, mainly because there’s not much to see/do, but staying the night of the 7th seems like the most viable option. Unless of course, a ferry schedule pops up for Santorini to Rethymno.

    Here are a couple questions:
    1. Should we rent a car the next morning (the 8th) and drive to Chania? Is it dangerous?
    2. Is Herkalion an okay city to stay in for the night?
    3. If a new ferry schedule were to be released, where should I check? When’s your best guess on when it would come out?
    4. What’s your best advice on what we should do? On one hand, the bus ride on the night of the 7th seems like a good idea because we wouldnt have to drive ourselves, and we can wake up the 8th and are ready to go. On the other hand, not wasting a night traveling and staying in Herkalion seems like a good idea. What do you think?

    Thank you, thank you, thank you!

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      1. If you needed a rental car for other purposes then yes, rent one, but if it’s only to get to Chania then just take an early bus. Here’s the Heraklion to Chania schedule. Is it dangerous driving a car? No more than in Western Europe.
      2. Heraklion is great. There’s a wonderful museum, great restaurants, and Knossos (one of the best historical sites in Greece) is a short drive outside of town.
      3. Check for the most recent ferry schedules.
      4. Personally, I would stay in Heraklion for a night and morning and explore its attractions. But you don’t sound too interested in the city so trying to take the last bus of the day is probably what I would recommend. You’ve got a good two hours between ferry and bus so it should work out. The bus is a 5 minute walk from the ferry port.

  32. Day Trip from Crete to Santorini in March

    Hi Dave, we are going to stay in Crete from 24th to 31st March. What would be the quickest way to go to Santorini for a day trip or two?
    Would there be any possibility of those fast ferries starting earlier than 8th April? Please suggest.


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      The only way to get from Crete to Santorini in March is a flight via Athens or hiring a private helicopter. One takes a half day of travel each way (so you’d have to stay a night to make it at all worthwhile) and the other is very expensive.

  33. Day Trip from Crete to Santorini

    Hi Dave,

    Here I found a one day trip from Crete to Santorini but I don’t understand how much is the transfer from Chania to Agia Marina zone. Or it is not available the transfer?
    Last year it was 120 euro and it included the excursion in Santorini. Same trip without excursion was 119,6 euro. A little bit strange….
    Thenk you,

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      You’re right. It doesn’t say anything about a transfer from Chania. They usually do. If you waited to book after you arrive I’m sure you’ll find a tour company in Chania advertising this tour with transfer. Taking the bus is also a possibility. The first one of the day leaves Chania at 5:15 and gets to Heraklion at around 8am. It’s about a 5 minute walk from the bus station to the ferry port in Heraklion.

  34. Crete to Santorini Ferry in Late May

    Hi Dave. Hoping you can advise regarding transportation. We are leaving Crete on May 31 (Blue Palace) and will be heading to Santorini Oia (Atrina Traditional House). Which port should I buy a ticket from in Crete? Is there only one port in Santorini? Would like to spend most of the day on the 31st in Crete. What would you suggest? thanks.

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      You’ll leave from Heraklion port and there is only one port in Santorini. Two different ferries leave at 9am from Heraklion and there are no later ferries.

  35. Santorini to Crete in February

    Hello Dave,

    A friend and I are traveling to Athens in February. We hope to visit both Crete and Santorini; however, I am not having much luck finding ferries between the two islands. Do you have any ideas for the best route to take in the off-season?

    Thank you!
    Aaron Barton

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      There are no ferries between Crete and Santorini in February. You’ll need to fly or ferry via Athens.

  36. Crete to Santorini Ferry for April 2016

    Thank you for the very informative website and the advice to buy ferry tickets in advance and pick up at the port. We are planning a trip to Crete and Santorini departing on April 8, 2016 from Athens to Crete (via air), then a ferry to Santorini on April 11, 2016 and back to Athens on April 19, 2016 (via air). I don’t see a specific ferry schedule for April, just a comment about mid-April. Do you have an idea when the specific schedule may be released? I may need to change the itinerary and don’t want to make reservations until I see the schedule.


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      The schedule has not been finalized yet but is currently showing a ferry 7 days a week starting April 8, 2016. It’s the Hellenic Highspeed 6 and leaves Heraklion at 9am and gets to Santorini at 10:45am. (It continues to Ios, Paros, and Mykonos.) Not sure when this will be finalized but I personally would feel 98% confident that there’ll be a ferry from Crete to Santorini on your chosen day. (Of course, it could be cancelled for bad weather but that’s a different issue.)

  37. Crete and Santorini in February

    Dear Dave
    We will spend one week in Crete and 3 days in Santorini in February 16. What should be the best transport way from and to those slands: ferry boat or by air?
    Alvaro Avezum

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      There will be no direct ferries between Crete and Santorini in February. You’ll need to fly or ferry (very long) via Athens.

  38. Paleologos Shipping & Travel Enterprises

    Paleologos Shipping & Travel Enterprises – you listed them in your above details. Are they and all the other mentioned by you reliable? I mean, if I were to go into their office in Iraklio and pay for a two day trip to Santorini from Iraklio, will they be able to give me the ferry tickets and any other paper I will need for accommodation or do I just have to be at the port and pick them up on the trip day?

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      I’ve used them and think they are reliable. I can’t vouch for them other than a few personal experiences. It’s much easier to pick up tickets at the port the morning you depart. I would book hotels online and not through a travel agent.

  39. Timetable for Hellenic Ferries

    Hi Dave. My wife and I are visiting Santorini for 3 nights in June 2016. I see that the Seajet timetable for 2016 is out. Could you tell me roughly when the Hellenic Seaways timetable will be out please? Thanks.


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      It should be out the in the New Year.

  40. Ferry from Santorini to Chania

    Hi Dave,

    Firstly thanks so much for this webpage. It is so useful! Myself and my partner are travelling from Santorini to Chania on June 11th (+/- 1 day) and we are trying to figure out the best way to do this. Originally we were thinking of just catching the late ferry from Santorini – Heraklion and then catching the even later bus, but I saw a comment you made in May about catching a ferry from Santorini to Rethymnon but I can’t find any information about this ferry. Is it true that there is a ferry from Santorini to Rethymnon? And if so where can I find the schedule for this ferry? I also take it that is no Santorini to Chania ferries that you might happen to know about? Ideally, we wanted to fly direct from Santorini to Chania but it doesn’t seem that is an option.

    Thanks in advance!


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      The schedule for ferries to Rethymnon is not out yet (probably in January) but there’s a 95% chance that there will be a ferry from Santorini to Rethymnon for the summer of 2016. However, there won’t be a Santorini to Chania ferry.

      1. Aaron

        Thanks Dave. That sounds promising at least. Do you know where i would find the ferry schedule from Santorini – Rethymnon so I can keep an eye out for it? Thanks again, Aaron.

        1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

          GTP.GR has the most recent and best ferry routes and times.

      2. Ferry from Rethymno to Santorini

        Dave, this blog is so helpful! Do you know which company will have the ferry from Rethymno to Thira in the summer (if it does happen)?

        1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

          If it runs it will be with SeaJets.

  41. Crete to Santorini in Mid-November

    Gday Dave, got lots of info here but can you help me with the most econamical way to get from Crete 15th November 2015 to Santorini. Are the ferries still going or do I have to fly ? thanks, Jason

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      No more ferries. Last one is November 11, I think. So yes, you’ll have to fly via Athens.

  42. Flights from Santorini to Crete in July

    Hi Dave,
    Thank you in advance.
    I am currently planning our trip for next July 2016 and looking for Flights from Santorini to Crete July 8th.
    However they are not available on the website?
    Is it too early or am I too late?
    Many Thanks,

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      Yes, much too early. Keep checking every few weeks but it likely won’t be until January or February (or later) until they have their schedule posted.

  43. Day Trip to Santorini from Chania

    Hi Dave ,
    Apologies if you have already answered this question previously ! We are visiting Chania next week (5-10 Oct) and planning a day trip to Santorini… I wanted some clarification on pricings. When I’ve tried to book online it seems to be charging me for the passengers x 2 plus the car, this seems quite expensive!

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      You don’t want to take your car to Santorini (and if it’s a rental car you wouldn’t be allowed anyways). Just buy 2 passenger tickets.

  44. Crete or Athens to Santorini

    Your site is extremely helpful! I’m helping my parents plan a trip to Santorini. My mother has cancer and has always wanted to go. Their trip will be sometime – April to October, 2016. They were planning to stay in Crete and then go on to Santorini. Do you see any potential issues with staying in Crete versus Athens, in regard to being able to get to Santorini easily?

    Thank you in advance for any advice you can provide!
    Lisa Hale

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      There are fewer ferries from Crete to Santorini and they don’t run all year round (though they should be running between April and October). Other than being sure there is a ferry, Crete makes a good starting point. The ferry ride to Santorini is much shorter too.

  45. Ferries Between Crete and Santorini in March

    Hi I have a question. We have a trip planned for the end of March of 2016 and I am wondering when do the ferries start running between Santorini and Crete?

    Thank you!

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      Not sure yet (no schedule), but ferries usually start in mid April.

  46. Private Boat to Santorini

    HI DAVE ,








    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      I’m sure there’s someone that would take you if you paid enough money but there is no service I know of besides the ferries. You’ll have to fly via Athens.

  47. Ferry from Santorini to Crete on October 20

    Hi Dave

    I need your help really bad. I’m leaving Santorini on October 20 to Heraklion. I was planning to take ferries but no ferries service that day for me. All my hotels is book and can’t be changed.


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      There are only ferries on the 19th and 21st. If you have to travel on the 20th then you’ll need to fly via Athens.

      1. Jackson

        Ok. Thanks for your reply and all your help Dave

  48. Ferry from Santorini to Crete in Late October

    Dave your website is amazing. Thank you for being so helpful. We are a group of 4 adults 2 infants traveling Santorini- Crete-Athens from October 16-26. I’m trying to find a ferry from Santorini to Crete on Tuesday October 27 either with or without a car. Is there a ferry that runs that route on Tuesdays? I tried Hellenic sea ways and it says that itinerary isn’t released yet. I’m not sure what that means. Can you help?


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      The last ferry of the year from Santorini to Crete runs on October 21. If you want to get to Crete from Santorini you’ll have to fly via Athens. The schedule could change but probably not.

  49. Difference between Special Economy, Economy and Airtype Seat?

    Hey Dave,

    I am trying to book a ticket on Blue Star Paros from Mykonos to Athens. And it’s very confusing with the type of seating. Can u please explain me the difference between a Special Economy, Economy and Airtype seat lounge? Will I get reserved seats in each category and will they be inside the cabin or on the deck and with a table?


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      Special Economy and Economy are the same seats – there are very few Special Economy and they sell out fast. Air Lounge Seats are the reservable seats. All seats are inside, not all have a table. I recommend getting the Air Lounge Seats.

  50. Which Ferry to take from Crete to Santorini

    hey!! 🙂
    i am going with my family to santorini from heraklion and back on a ferry (staying couple of days on the island itself) and I was wondering what ferry is best to see the view on the way. Maybe one that you can actually be outside in the sea air for a bit and see the view.
    In the website is says that the ferries available those days are eater sea jet “CHAMPION JET1” or “HIGHSPEED 4”
    of Hellenic, is one of them better then the other?

    thank you, alla.

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      There’s no difference for views. Neither ferry allows passengers out on the deck when the ferry is not in port.

  51. Super Economy for Car Ferry to Santorini

    Hi Dave,
    I just booked my ferry from Crete to Santorini on the Highspeed 4 and was really frustrated in the process with Hellenic Seaways. I couldn’t find any information online about the prices for cars. When I went to book it, it rang up as 50 euro each way for a compact car. This seemed reasonable. Unfortunately, I didn’t get a chance to pay for it right then and complete the booking. When I went to book it a week later, the return trip was now 69 euro per car but the way there was still 50 euro. Frustrating. So I tried to book that and the website kept getting the error “scaling occured during pricing” over and over again. So I tried to book it again and now both the trip there and the way back were 69 euro each! We have 2 vehicles so this 76 more euro altogether! I am so frustrated by the price increases, especially as it increased while I was actually attempting to pay for it. Anyway, my question is: is there somewhere online that lists the vehicle prices for the ferries and also when they increase, maybe a certain number of days before travel? The passenger rates are very well laid out but not the vehicle rates. I’m asking you because I can’t find this information anywhere and you seem to be the most knowledgeable one around! Thank you!

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      That was the super economy ticket you had and there are very few of them. You have to book them the instant you see them as there are very few. €69 is the price for taking a car from Crete to Santorini by ferry if you don’t get the discount. More info: the super economy fares on Hellenic.

  52. Bus from Heraklion Port to Chania

    Good Afternoon,
    I have getting a ferry into Heraklio port from Santorini on the 17th September – the ferry is arriving into Heraklio at 18.55.

    I believe there is a bus from Heraklio bus station which is not far from the port at 20.00 travelling to chania – is this information correct ?? and do I need to prebook the ticket?

    Geraldine Keegan

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      Yes, the bus station is an easy walk (about 5 minutes) from the port. The most recent schedule that I’ve seen (which can change for any reason) has buses leaving every hour on the half-hour in the evening. So you’ve got buses to Chania at 19:30, 20:30, 21:30, and then 22:45 is the last of the day. No prebooking bus tickets is necessary – and you wouldn’t want to anyways as your ferry could be on time or an hour late pretty easily.

  53. Booking Ferry Tickets to Santorini in Advance

    Hi! Will be in Heraklion from the 3rd September-10th September. Just have a few questions;
    Is it cheaper to book ferry tickets to Santorini in advance/online than when we arrive in Crete?

    Is it worth going for just the day to visit Santorini and if not, would it be much more expensive to stay in a cheap hotel for one night?

    Is the costs listed on your page for the ferries one way? Or is it around €50 in total?

    Sorry if any of these have been answered/sound ridiculous but I’m desperate to visit but without spending massive amounts of money!

    Thanks in advance,

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      1) There is no saving by booking ferry tickets in advance (except in very limited circumstances that don’t apply here).
      2) I definitely recommend staying a night in Santorini instead of trying to do a day trip. Santorini is expensive, but yes, cheap hotels can be found.
      3) All ferry tickets are bought for one-way travel and the prices listed here are indeed one-way.

  54. Flight or Ferry to Crete

    Hi Dave,

    Question for you! I’m going to Crete from Santorini. Would you recommend a flight or ferry? The flight is cheaper and we’re mainly flying from island to island but not sure if the ferry is worth trying at all.


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      The Blue Star ferries (and similar types) are worth trying as they have open air decks that you can walk around. But the ferries to Crete are all enclosed high speed ferries and you’re not allowed outside. So, fly if you can find available flights.

  55. Daytrip from Crete to Santorini

    Myself and my partner are going to Agia Pelagia on the 29th Sept, am just looking to find out if you can book a day trip from the hotel to Sandorini?

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      It’s possible. Bus or taxi to Heraklion port then a 2 hour ferry ride then bus from port up to Fira. You’d have about 4.5 hours to walk around Fira and area then the return trip on the last ferry. It’s much better to try to stay on Santorini – even if just for a night.

  56. lazergir1

    No question, just a thank you for such a lovely informative post! (plus your answers to comments are clear and exactly what I’m looking for). Thank you! Cheers 🙂

  57. Parking at Heraklion Port

    I plan to take the Ferry from Heraklion to Santorini and need parking in Heraklion for the two days we are on Santorini. Is there long term parking available near the Heraklion Port and is it expensive?

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      There is parking right at the port, literally steps from the tickets kiosks and the ferry. Enter the port and turn left. Always lots of space and very reasonable rates.

  58. Ferry from Heraklion to Santorini in October

    My wife and I will be in Crete from Oct 18 – 23 and traveling from Heraklion to Santorini on the 23rd. Will there be ferries available then? The Hellenic Seaways website says the “itinerary is not open yet”. Or should we look for flights?

    Many Thanks!

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      As of today, the last ferry of the year from Heraklion to Santorini will be the SeaJet on October 21. This could change again. If it doesn’t and you need to stick with your original date then flying is the next best option.

  59. Day Trip from Crete to Santorini

    Hi Dave,

    Great website, thank you. Planning to take the Mega Jet from Rethymno to Santorini on Sat August 29th and back the same day. I was wondering what was the best way to travel around Santorinig to be able to get back to Thira for 17.40 departure. Your help will be much appreciated. Thanks in advance!

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      A taxi is the quickest way to the ferry port but they can be hard to find (especially when a ferry is arriving or departing). So, you’re probably best to take a bus from Fira. There will be a schedule posted at the bus station with bus times that correspond with each ferry departure. It will probably leave about an hour before your ferry is scheduled to depart.

  60. Ferry with View

    Dave, thanks for your helpful website. I just read through this and am planning on going from Crete to Santorini via boat. My question is: are there any scenic options? I was hoping for something where I could hang out outside on the boat decks and watch the water. Do any of the ferries let you do that? Are there private boats for hire, like charter water taxis or something? Thank you!!

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      From Crete to Santorini there are no ferries with a deck (and a good view). They are all enclosed high speed ferries. Of those the Terajet probably has the best viewing windows. From Santorini to other islands there is the Blue Star which does have walkable decks and wonderful views of the caldera. There are private boats to hire in Santorini but don’t think you’d want to take them on the open water between Crete and Santorini.

      1. magda

        Thank you Dave!!

  61. Chania or Rethymno?

    Hi Dave,
    Thanks for your very informative site!
    We are planning to go to Crete in October 14 for 5-6 days. Could you please advice what is the best place (Chania or Rethymno) to stay or better to stay around the town? We would like to see the island and spend 1 day at the beach (what is the best one?).
    Thank you,

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      Chania is much nicer than Rethymno. Elafonisi is the best beach on Crete and about 90 minutes by bus or car from Chania.

      1. Valentina

        Hi Dave,
        Thank you.
        What you recommend to stay in Chania town hotel or around Chania in some resort hotel?

        1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

          In Chania, for sure. It’s a very charming town and it’s fun to stay right in the thick of things. The best restaurants are all in Chania.

  62. Should I Buy Crete to Santorini Ferry Tickets in Advance?

    I’m planning to go to Santorini from Heraklion by ferry (High speed 4 or Terajet) on Sept. 9 and return to Heraklion the following day. Do you think it is safe for me to buy the ticket long before my planned departure? Or is it OK to buy the ticket in Crete when I arrive there on Sept. 5? I’d be very grateful if you would reply to me. Thanks a lot~!

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      I would buy in advance and pickup at the port the morning of departure.

  63. Crete, Santorini, Mykonos

    Hi Dave,

    Great website mate, very informative!

    My wife and I are planning a romantic getaway in a couple of weeks time. Our time might be limited in Greece , Sep. 19th – Sep. 26th, but we are trying to make our first ever visit worthwhile!

    Here is what I have planned for so far….
    September 19th – 21st Crete (Northeast, I think)
    September 21st -23rd Santorini (Oia)
    September 24th – 26th Mykanos Town

    Now, my questions are..
    1. Would you have picked a different route? maybe Mykanos, Santorini then Crete?
    2. Should I visit another island instead of the 3 listed above? Naxos?
    3. When hopping from island to island should I be flying or taking the ferry? I heard some of these boat rides take up to 5 hours!
    4. If I do end up in Crete, do I stay in one area or rent a car and explore other parts of the island? (do i have enough time?)

    I will flying in from either London or Istanbul, if that helps with your much appreciated advise and recommendations!

    looking forward to hearing back.

    Many Thanks,
    Moe Mosly

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      1) Your route is fine. South to north (like you have) is a little better as the ferries leave Crete for Santorini in the morning but go Santorini to Crete in the afternoon. I think morning is better for traveling, getting more out of the day, and works better for check out/check in at hotels.
      2) Santorini, Naxos or Paros, Mykonos would be great as well and maybe a little better: shorter travel distance and Naxos and Paros are smaller and thus better for short 2-day visit.
      3) Ferry is the only option (except for a handful of direct flight from Crete to Santorini on Minoan Air). The ferries routes you’ll be taking are short (less than 2.5 hours).
      4) 2 days (or maybe just one full day) is not much time to explore Crete. Chania is the most charming town and is 2 hours by car from Heraklion (where most ferries leave from) – if possible, base yourself there.

  64. Honeymoon on Mykonos, Santorini, and Crete

    Hi Dave,

    I posted another question earlier today, but have a specific question about Crete. For my honeymoon we will have 10 nights/11 days to explore the Greek Islands (sandwiched between a day in Athens on either end). We will start in Mykonos and then go to Santorini. Then I was thinking of going to Crete. So it would Mykonos (3 nights), Santorini (4 nights) and Crete (3 nights). Mykonos and Santorini look so picturesque and Crete does not so much, but I’ve heard great things! Do you think this would be an enjoyable itinerary for a honeymoon or would you spend more days in Mykonos or Sanorini? What is your opinion on what itinerary would make the best honeymoon (also taking into consideration Pasos and Naxos)?

    Thank you!


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      Given the time you have and it’s your honeymoon I would stick to a few of the Cyclades: Santorini, Mykonos, and either Naxos, Paros, or Ios (flip a coin – all are great).

  65. Heraklion to Rethymnon

    Dear Dave,

    I am visiting Rethymnon tomorrow. Would you please help me in the following queries:
    (1) How to reach Rethymnon from Heraklion airport, I am not be able to book bus tickets online. What is the name of Bus stand (bus going to Rethymnon) near Heraklion airport.
    (2) About how much a Taxi will charge from Heraklion airport to Rethymnon.
    (3) What are the Family beaches at Rethymnon, I am looking it for my two kids?
    (4) Can we get some good Buffet style restaurant at Rethymnon?
    Looking forward for your help in these queries. Thanks in advance
    Best Regards

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      1. Take the bus from the airport into Heraklion. The bus is easy to find, walk out of departures, turn left, and walk up the road 100 metres. From there catch the bus to Rethymnon.
      2. A taxi from Heraklion airport to Rethymnon will be about €100.
      3. The beach in town is good (not great but good) and fine for kids. Sunbeds for rent.
      4. No idea on the buffet. Probably not.

  66. How Much Luggage Allowed on Santorini to Crete Ferry

    Hi Dave,

    My fiancé and I are getting married in Santorini in around a year’s time. We were thinking of staying in Santorini for a week then getting the ferry to Crete and staying there for another week then flying back to the UK from there.
    My question is, how much luggage you are allowed to take on the ferries? As I assume that most people who are using the ferries will be doing so for day trips. But obvously we would have to take all our luggage with us if we go ahead with this plan.


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      You can take as much on board as you can carry. Many people have many (large) bags. FYI, there are very few day trippers on the ferries. Most people will be like you: moving, with their bags, from one island to another.

  67. Greek Islands in Late October and Early November

    Hi Dave,

    Thanks for the great info! We are planning to travel to Greece (Athens, Crete, Santorini and Rhodes) October 26-November 6. Is this too late in the season for a direct flight to Crete from Santorini, or to Crete at all?

    Thank you!!


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      There definitely won’t be a direct flight from Santorini to Crete but there will still be ferries and flights between Crete/Santorini and Athens. You don’t say where you’re flying from in Europe so can’t comment on international flights to Crete.

  68. We Got Gender Wrong on Ferry Tickets – Does It Matter?

    Hi, We bought our tickets for 4 people to Mykonos – Thira (date: 02/08/2015) but apperantly we made a mistake about genders while filling the forms.
    We are 3 female and 1 male, but on booking info the male seems female too,
    Would it cause any problem on travel? And if it is, is there any chance to correct it?
    Halil Gungor

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      It won’t matter, don’t worry about it another second. They do not/will not look at ferry tickets beyond destination and seating area.

  69. Book Crete to Santorini Ferry Tickets in Advance?

    Hi Dave! Thanks for all information! Is it necessary to book ferry tickets online or is it OK to book it on a spot in Crete? We are travelling from Crete to Santorini on July 9, 2015. Thanks so much!

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      For July, I would book in advance. But that doesn’t mean you have to book online (a minor hassle) – if you’re on Crete a week before your travels you should be ok booking at a local travel agent. But if you hate uncertainty then book online as waiting provides no guarantees.

  70. Direct Flights from Santorini to Crete in 2015

    Hi Dave,

    Are there any direct flights from Santorini JTR airport to Heraklion HER airport this summer, specifically July 2015? Thanks.


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      No direct flights this year. Though Aegean has a flight via Athens that only takes 3 hours and costs about $125.

      1. Sesh

        Looks like there is a Minoan Air flight MAV 241A from JTR to HER 10:00am-10:30am

        1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

          Yes, you’re right. Thanks for the tip. Have updated the info above.

  71. Ferry from Athens to Santorini or Crete in Late October

    Hi Dave

    Is there any ferry service from Athens to Crete or Santorini on October 17, 2015? Thank you

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      Yes, there is a ferry 7 days a week from Athens to Santorini leaving at 7am and getting to Santorini at 12:35pm on Blue Star Ferries. There are also night ferries 7 days a week (until the end of October) from Athens to Heraklion and Chania with Anek. They leave at 9pm and get to Crete at 6am. There is also a Minoan ferry with similar times to Heraklion.

  72. Nick

    Hi Dave,

    Thanks for your very informative site!

    My girlfriend and I are planning a trip to Santorini and Crete. We have Santorini all sorted out and plan to be there June 27 and leaving July 2nd. We are looking to spend some time in Crete and have from July 2 to July 5. We’re planning to take the direct flight from Heraklion to Rome around 6PM on Sun, July 5, then have a return flight home from Rome on Mon, July 6.

    Since we have such a short time in Crete, we are wondering about the best use of our time. We’ve decided we’d like to book a hotel and spend most of our time in Chania, and are interested in seeing Knossos, but struggling with how to best maximize our time, since we arrive and depart through Heraklion.

    The ferry from Santorini gets in at Heraklion at 7:15pm on Thurs July 2. We wish we could get in earlier, but can’t find earlier ferries or flights that aren’t expensive (ie. 475 euros). Is that correct?

    We’re debating whether Knossos is worth visiting, given the limited time we have, since we’ve heard reports that it’s overrun with tour groups during the high season. We are considering either
    1) staying at a hotel in Heraklion on Thurs, then going to Knossos early on Fri, before continuing to Chania for the rest of Fri, Sat and returning Sun afternoon to Heraklion, or
    2) continuing on to Chania on Thurs, Jul 2 (getting in around 10:00 PM or so) after arriving in Heraklion, staying in Chania until early Sun, going to Knossos on Sun, then continuing to Heraklion airport for our evening flight, or
    3) staying in Heraklion on the Thurs night, heading to Chania on Fri, Sat and return to Heraklion on Sun, but skipping Knossos entirely.

    What would you recommend?

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      Yes, ferries from Santorini get in late to Crete. I would do option 2. Knossos is at its quietest in the late afternoon (though, admittedly, Sunday is a busy day). And if you find you don’t have enough time and have to skip Knossos then no worries.

  73. Heraklion or Chania?

    Hi Dave – thank you for the informative site. We are planning our honeymoon this June, and will be traveling from Santorini to Heraklion (by Ferry, so we’ll arrive in the evening ~19:00). We will then have three full days in Crete, and leave for Athens on the fourth day [arrival day, full, full, full, departure]. Originally, we were going to spend all of the days in/around Heraklion, but we’ve recently begun considering taking a bus to Chania on the morning of the second full day (leaving us with ~1.5 days in Chania). Would this be too rushed, or would this additional travel be worth it? The more I’ve been reading, the more it seems Heraklion is a place to see the Knossos (which we’re very interested in), but not all that great (comparatively) for an extended amount of time. Would we be wasting our precious time in Crete by doing this additional travel, or do you feel it would be worth it? Thanks again!

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      I think the trip to Chania would be well worth the time and effort. Chania (and western Crete) is the highlight of Crete (along with Knossos). There is a night ferry 7 days a week from Chania to Athens with Anek (which will have sleeping cabins) should you not want to return Heraklion.

  74. Where To Get Ferry Tickets in Rethymnon

    Hi Dave – I have booked tickets online for Rethimno to Santorini. Do you happen to know:
    1. If I can collect the tickets from the port on the morning of departure (or do I need to get to Dolphin Express the previous day/s)?
    2. Where in the Rethimno port the ferry departs from?
    Any advice you can provide would be greatly appreciated.

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      You can get your tickets either the night before (recommended) until 10:15pm from the office at the entrance of the port of Rethymno (building on the right side) or the following morning before 07:20 from the same office. The ferry port is right in central Retyhmno – walking distance from the old town and most hotels.

  75. From Rethymnon Ferry to Chania

    My husband and I are travelling with our 6 month old daughter from Santorini to Chania in July. We need to be in Chania by the 27th, and I can see from your posts above that you recommend taking the MegaJet from Santorini to Rethymnon (which saves us some time off the 90+ minute bus ride from Heraklion to Rethymnon). Can we take the one hour bus trip from Rethymnon to Chania as soon as we arrive that evening, or would we need to spend a night in Rethymnon? Alternatively, if it’s only a hour from there and no buses to Chania connect, would it be easier to just hire a car, so that the trip is over and done with in a day, rather than having to stop overnight in Rethymnon (which is a bit disruptive with a baby)? Thanks, I look forward to hearing from you. Rachel

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      Your ferry gets to Rethymnon at 8pm which leaves 2 possible buses for you to catch: the 9:30 and the 10:30. The bus terminal is about a 15 minute walk from the ferry port. You could also grab a taxi from the port and have it take you directly to Chania. Obviously this isn’t cheap but at 50€ to 60€ it might be worth it. With a taxi you’d be at your hotel shortly after 9pm. With the bus to Chania (and then from the bus station to your hotel) you’d be to your hotel at 11pm. The bus from Rethymnon to Chania costs 6,20€.

  76. 3 to 4 Months in Greece

    Hi Dave, Terrific and helpful website, thank you.

    I’m planning a 3 -4 month stay in Greece next year with my 13-year-old whom I’m pulling out of school for a semester. Its been great fun but overwhelming to figure out our itinerary. I’m thinking of spending 4 to 7 days in Athens, 1 to 3 weeks in Nafplio (so we can mostly tour the ruins and historical sites in the Peloponnesian, my daughter loves Greek mythology) and some island hopping—Santorini and Naxos or Paros probably. I am hoping to find one more spot where we would stay for a month, so she doesn’t get exhausted constantly moving and so we can experience life in a traditional Greek village. I am hoping I might find such a village on Crete, since that island seems to offer so much of what we are looking for in terms of nature, history, and ruins. But, once again, I am smitten by the possibilities! Is Crete a good choice for the time in our adventure that we just settle down for a month? If so, which village/s? I’ve read your posts saying you find Chania the most interesting, but I worry it might be too touristy and I wonder if in a smaller village people might be friendlier? We’re planning on doing this trip between April and June of 2016. I haven’t figured out the order yet of how to connect these cities but am thinking April, the start of our trip, might be a good time for Crete (though is it too cold to swim?) because of the wildflowers and because its not so crowded then. I am looking at airbnb because many of them seem lovely and affordable, and because we’re not interested in luxury hotels anyway. mostly at airbnb places so that’s another factor—where we can find a nice place. I’m a little concerned about transportation, too—seems I’ll need to rent a car for a whole month on Crete which could get pricy, but don’t see an alternative no matter where we end up. Do you have any suggestions for villages I should consider staying at for a month, or, maybe, two weeks in one and two weeks in another, given how big Crete is?

    Thanks so much!

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      Chania would be great for a month and April would be a perfect time to stay there – warm but not too busy yet. I think you can get by fine without a rental car in Crete as the bus service is excellent. Nafplio is a wonderful town but I still think you’ll need to move south and west a bit to be able to see all the Peloponnese as Nafplio is not very central to the main tourist sites. And a week visiting Delphi, the Meteora, and central Greece (very beautiful) would be something to consider. Good luck.

  77. Santorini to Chania

    Everybody seems to be going from Crete to Santorini, while I have to get from Santorini to Chania (28th July) the eariest possible, but all ferries arrive to Heraklio quite late in the afternoon + time on the bus = I’d arrive to Chania in the evening 🙁 Are you by any chance aware of any morning ferries/flights from Santorini to Crete?


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      There are no morning ferries from Santorini to Crete nor are there any flights (unless you go via Athens, which is doable and would get you to Crete by noon). You’re better off taking the MegaJet from Santorini to Rethymnon. Though it gets in a little later than the Heraklion ferry you’re saving yourself the 90+ minute bus ride from Heraklion to Rethymnon. You’d only have to do the one hour bus trip from Rethymnon to Chania. (All buses from Heraklion to Chania stop in Rethymnon on the way.)

  78. Horseback Travel in Crete/Santorini and Where Else To Go?

    Hi Dave!
    I’m planning an early September 2015 trip throughout Greece.

    I’ll fly from JFK to Athens, then take Olympic Air (thanks for the tip and link!) to Heraklion. From Heraklion, I’ll taxi to Avdou to start a week-long horseback riding adventure throughout Crete.

    This where I’d like your personal opinion: does it make sense to pay $600 more through this horseback travel company to ride my way south to some unnamed beach town in Southern Crete? How easy (and safe) is it to travel alone throughout Crete? From Crete, I’ll be going to Santorini (like everyone else).

    But I was wondering, after Santorini, is there anywhere else I should visit?

    I’d really like to add a third destination. I heard Athens isn’t worth spending more than a day… although I’d love to see the Temple of Delphi. Say hi to Apollo. You know, just say wassup.

    Any thoughts would be so great!

    Thank you!

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      The towns along the south coast of Crete are great. Not sure what it’s like getting there on horseback. Crete is generally very safe. There is no shortage of other islands to see. It would depend a fair bit on how much time you have. I wouldn’t hurry through Santorini to get somewhere else. Plan for at least 3 days on Santorini. Naxos, Milos, Sifnos, Mykonos, Paros, Antiparos are all great islands and worth a visit. Delphi is a 3 hour bus trip from Athens so not a good candidate for a day trip. It’s much better to go the night before, stay in a hotel, and see Delphi before the tour groups arrive. There is plenty in Athens itself to fill 2 very full days.

  79. Santorini, Crete, and Mykonos

    Hi, thanks for your great site. It has been invaluable as my wife and I plan our honeymoon in July. We are using miles to book our trip and coming from Rome to Santorini, then leaving from Mykonos to go back home at the end of our trip. We are trying to decide if we can fit Crete into our schedule. Based on what I have read from your site, I am not sure if it would work. One option is to do 3 days in Santorini, spend a day or 1.5 days in Crete, 2.5 days in Athens, and 2.5 in Mykonos. The flight from Crete to Athens is less than an hour and very cheap. If we take the ferry, we should get to Crete by 19:15 and spend the evening and next day in Crete (taking last flight out back to Athens). We planned on staying at the Blue Palace Elounda, but it says it is about an hour from Heraklion. Or would it be better to go from Santorini to Athens spend a few days in Athens and go to Crete and back and then ATH to Mykonos or are we trying to cram too much in? There are no options to go straight to Aghios Nikolaos from Santorini correct? Is there still a possibility for flights from Crete to Santorini?

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      There is little sense in going to Crete for just 1.5 days. The fact that it is out of your way (as your trip is planned) and involves backtracking makes it even less appealing. If you wanted to add an island make it one that is in between Santorini and Mykonos: Paros and Naxos are the easiest to visit and have good connection to Santorini and Mykonos. They’re both small enough to make a tour of in a day and a half.

  80. Crete to Spinalonga

    Hi Dave,

    I’m planning a solo trip to Greece and need some help with the travel information. My plan is this:

    Fly from London to Heraklion airport.

    Take bus from airport to Plaka – book hotel for one night here.

    Catch boat from Plaka to Spinalonga as that’s my main reason to stop off here.

    Then return to Heraklion to catch ferry to Santorini (stay for around 5-6 days) then fly Santorini to London.

    Can you please inform me if this sounds like the best way to see both Spinalonga and Santorini. Also, how would I book the ferries to Santorini? And any recommendations for hotels in Plaka?


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      To get to Plaka you take the bus to Agios Nikolaos first (about 1.5 hours) and then switch to a bus to Plaka (40 minutes). Here is the bus schedule. There is a boat from Plaka to Spinalonga that leaves when it’s full or close to it – no need to pre-book.

  81. Irene

    Hi Dave a great, informative website, thanks!!

    Planning a day excursion from Crete to Santorini, beginning of May. What time is sunset usually? Worried the ferry departs to early to get those fabulous views if not staying overnight.


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      These are the sunset times in Santorini for May (of last year, but they couldn’t change much from year to year).

  82. Ferry Tickets: Passengers Must Be Same Gender?


    I wonder if you could shed light on booking with Hellenic Seaways. I’m booking the 2 hour trip between Heraklio and Santorini and noticed this detail:
    “Berth/Seat: Passengers will share the cabin with other passengers of the same gender.”

    Berth/Seat is the default option for Economy class, so is it really impossible for my wife and I to sit together?


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      This is a generic stipulation that applies only to people buying a berth in a multiple-berth cabin and stating that you will share the cabin only with people of the same gender. It does not apply to non-cabin seating (like the economy, business, or VIP class).

  83. Santorini to Crete Early in the Day

    Hello Dave, I was wondering if you could help me. I am travelling to Santorni from Crete for a week, and have a hotel booked for our time there. However, we fly out on a Monday night at 9pm from Chania airport. What is the best way for us to leave Santorini that Monday in order to make it to Chania that night at 9pm? I have been looking, but looks like the ferries only get into Heraklion for 7pm? is there any other way?
    Grainne O’Reilly

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      All ferries between Crete and Santorini do a loop that begins in Crete (in the morning) visits Santorini then the other Cyclades then Santorini again and back to Crete in the evening. So there are no ferries that go from Santorini to Crete in the morning and afternoon. You’ll need to travel the night before.

      1. Grainne

        Thanks Dave, would you recommend staying in Heraklion or Chania then for our last night? We have the day on Monday until we fly out that night at 9pm. Great blog by the way!


        1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

          Chania is a much more interesting city than Heraklion but if you have any interest in the ancient historical site of Knossos (just outside of Heraklion) then staying in Heraklion might be worth it. Rethymno (half way between Heraklion and Chania) is another great town and worth some consideration if you’ve already spent some time in Chania.

  84. Take Rental Car from Crete to Santorini

    I am arriving to Chania and renting a car at the airport. Then the next day going by ferry from Heraklion to Santorini. Can I take rental car via ferry to Santorini? Thanks.
    Inga Santostefano

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      Short answer: no you can not take a rental car from one island to another. Technically it is possible but you’d need to do a lot of paperwork with the rental agency. Plus you’d have to pay the car fee on the ferry – so there’s no good reason to take the car with you.

  85. Ferries from Crete to Santorini in May

    HI Dave, this is amazing informative website !

    We are planning to visit Crete and Santorini in May, reading above information I can see ferries to Santorini from Crete are available from two ports Rethymnon or Heraklion. Can we book these ferry tickets online or through agents in Chania as that’s where we will be staying. Aprreciate your help, many thanks.

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      You can do both. You can book online using the links above (book directly with the ferry companies, booking through travel agents will add extra fees) or can book in Chania after you arrive. For absolute certainty it’s best to book in advance online as that ensures your spot on the ferry. But it’s rare for ferries to sell out in May – so as long as you’re in Crete and book tickets 5 to 7 days in advance you’ll probably be fine (but there’s no guaranteed). If you do book online you pickup the tickets in Heraklion or Rethymno depending on where you depart from.

  86. Crete to Santorini to Koufonisia

    Hi Dave,

    My family and I are planning to visit Crete, Santorini and Koufonisssi in late June for a swimming and snorkeling adventue. Which towns do you reccomend to stay in on those islands and what beaches might be the best for snorkeling? What is the best way get from Santorini to Koufonissi? There doesn’t appear to be a direct way by ferry. I appreciate your help.

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      Chania is my favorite town in Crete and makes a good base for exploring western Crete – though the ferries to Santorini leave from Rethymno (1 hour away by bus) and Heraklion (2 hours).

      Greek islands are not the best places to snorkel and there’s nothing fantastic on any of those islands but Olous a sunken city near Elounda in Crete is probably the most interesting. Also, the southern coast of Crete is better for snorkeling than the north coast of Crete.

      Starting from June 12 there is a direct ferry from Santorini to Koufonisia. It departs 7 days a week at 11:50 and arrives at Koufonisia at 13:35 (except on Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday when it arrives at 15:55). It’s a SeaJet and this route runs until September 6.

    2. Anne

      Thank you for your invaluable information Dave. I have a couple of new questions for you. In you experience Is Koufonisia worth the trip for a couple of days (we aren’t even sure what there is to do there, except it seems less developed and the cave formations look interesting) or would you recommend using those days in Crete or Santorini?
      Thanks again,

      1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

        You never know what you will love and find memorable but generally speaking I would recommend spending that time in Crete, Santorini, Mykonos, or Naxos – islands that are easier to get to than Koufonisia.

  87. Rome to Crete to Santorini to Athens

    Hi Dave!

    For my honeymoon we will spend 4 nights in Rome and then 9 nights in Greece. Thinking of flying from FCO to HER on Sept 12, staying for 4 nights (where?), then travel from Crete to Santorini (how?) on Sept 16 for 3 nights. I’m leaning towards staying in Imerovigli for that once in a lifetime view… Then flying from JTR to ATH on Sept 19 and staying for 2 nights. Nothing is booked so we are very flexible and open to ideas! How do you feel about Air BnB rentals in Greece? Is it better to book with a hotel? Also, is it safe to rent a scooter on the islands or Athens? Chelsea

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      That sounds great. EasyJet, Aegean, and Iberia have direct flights from Rome to Crete (but in September they only fly on Sunday, Monday, and Wednesday). Chania is the most enchanting town on Crete – though as for seeing things there’s lots to see and it’s all spread around a large island. From Crete to Santorini there is a daily high speed ferry from Heraklion. AirBnb is fine as long as you know what you’re getting – this is not a hotel experience with great service. It’s hit and miss (mainly hit) but people can be disappointed with AirBnb when they’re not prepared. For the best views and locations on Santorini you’ll want to stay in a hotel.

  88. When to Buy Flight Ticket

    Hi Dave,
    We are flying from Canada to Athens, and then ferry hopping – Naxos, Santorini and Crete. From Crete, we plan to fly from Heraklion Airport to Athens Airport.

    Upon our arrival to Athens, we plan to visit the travel agency to buy ferry tickets. I was wondering if we should book in advance the flight ticket from Heraklion Airport to Athens Airport? Or would you advise booking the flight when we visit the travel agency in Athens?

    Thanks so much,

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      Buy the flight tickets as soon as possible (i.e. book and buy online in advance). Flights often sell out (and the cheapest tickets sell first).

  89. Sanorini to Crete in Late March

    Hi Dave, we are currently in Athens for a few days and wanted to travel to Naxos to Santorini and then Crete as we fly to the UK from Crete end of march. I see there are no ferries from Santorini to Crete! Any ideas on alternative routes? I’m stuck. thank you

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      You’re right, there are no ferries from Santorini to Crete until April. The best you can do is fly with Aegean. The best connection (via Athens) takes 2 hours and costs $102 – so it’s not too painful.

  90. Where to Pickup Ferry Tickets

    Your website has been invaluable in organising the Greek part of our dream trip. We will be arriving in Santorini on 19th May and travelling to Crete on 22nd May, then Crete to Paros on 28th May. I have had a look at the Hellenic Highspeed 5 weblink, and there appears to be sailings to fit in with our plans. I will book tickets online through your link. The website asks for address – I take it they will not deliver to Australia 🙂 my question is, therefore, where do we get our tickets. I notice there is a collection point in Piraeus. Can we pick them up during our few days in Athens, before we head to Santorini or do we have to pick them up in Santorini and Heraklion? If this is the case can you please advise collection points for these. Many thanks Jane

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      You can pickup tickets at any of the Agent Offices. In Piraeus (the Athens ferry port) the Hellenic Office is very easy to find. If you exit the metro station and follow the crowd of people walking to the port you’ll find yourself there without really looking. It’s right beside the Blue Star ferry that is farthest to your left as you come out of the metro station and cross the street. Here’s a map of the pickup office in Piraeus. In Santorini you pickup tickets at Pelican Travel on the main street in Fira – very easy to find, ask anyone and they’ll point you towards it. In Heraklion, Crete the pickup spot is in the port – just to the right as you enter the port area from the main road.

  91. Santorini to Crete/Crete to Athens

    Hello Dave,

    You have a great website! Thanks for sharing all your knowledge.

    My girlfriend and I will be going from Santorini to Heraklion on May 1, assuming there are no May Day labor disputes that stop all transportation. We are looking at the daily FlyingCat4 ferry, as it is the only ferry on May 1. We are a little concerned about potentially choppy waters and also am considering flying. Do you know or have a good guess as to when Olympic Air might issue its non-stop schedule between the two cities? And by any chance do you recall the price from 2014?

    Also, by any chance are you knowledgeable about the ferry from Heraklion to Piraeus? We are returning to Athens on May 4, which is the full moon. We were planning on taking the 5:35 pm flight from Heraklion to Athens and enjoying the Parthenon under the full moon, but I wonder if on the ferry we might be passing islands that would be lit up by the light of the full moon that might make it an incredible trip? I’ve never done a long ferry ride like this. Do you have any thoughts on the ferry versus flying back to Athens?

    In doing some more research, it looks to me (if I did it correctly) that for May 1, 2015, we could book the Hellenic Seaways Highspeed 5 ferry as well as the Flying Cat 4 ferry from Santorini to Heraklion. Your report says that the Highspeed 5 does not start until May 29, 2015, subject of course to change. Could you please let me know if in fact the Highspeed 5 if running between Santorini and Heraklion on May 1? I also saw that we could book the Sea Jets MasterJet ferry between Santorini and Heraklion on May 1, 2015. Is that correct? If so, this would give us 3 choice! How to decide? Also, am I correct that on the Flying Cat 4 we cannot be outside on the deck to see the views? Do you know if we can be outside on the deck on the Highspeed 5 and the Sea Jets MasterJet? Where we are below deck, can we still see the sights through windows? Sorry for so many questions. Any answers would help a great deal.

    Thank you so much.
    Paula Katz

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      On May 1 for Santorini to Crete you have 2 choices: The Megajet that leaves Santorini at 17:00 and the Highspeed5 that leaves at 17:30. There are no flights scheduled so far – all we can do is wait, perhaps there won’t be any this year, perhaps they’ll be added 1 month prior to the dates.

      There are no ferries between Santorini and Crete that you can be outside on the deck (excluding the occasional Anek Ferry). The views from inside look like this on a MasterJet:

      View from ferry going from Crete to Santorini.

      The view is a little better on the Fly Cat 4 and a little better again on the Highspeed5 but it’s never great.

      There are 3 different overnight ferries with Anek and Minoan from Crete to Athens in early May. It can be fun taking an overnight ferry though be sure to get a cabin. It’s a 9 hour ferry ride so it can feel long but it’s a unique experience so if you’re inclined to do it then go for it. The ferries are direct so they won’t be stopping at any islands.

  92. How Many Nights in Santorini and Crete

    Hi Dave,
    We are planning our trip, and was wondering if you could provide any suggestions.
    We plan to stay Athens (2nights), Naxos (2 nights) and then have 8 nights left for Santorini and Crete. I know that Santorini is known for its views, but with comparison to Crete there are more things to do and nicer beaches. What would you suggust with the remainder of the nights?

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      If you’re going to do Crete it deserves at least 4 or 5 days – so I would split it 3/5 or 4/4.

  93. Santorini to Crete

    Hey Dave,

    This website is incredibly helpful, thank you! We’re traveling from Santorini to Heraklion in June, and I have two questions:

    – When do you suggest would be the right time to book ferry tickets for June 9th? Is there any point in doing so now, or is it better to wait?

    – Which would you choose between the High Speed 5 and the Tera Jet? According to the schedule one gets in to Heraklion 20 minutes earlier, but do either have a better reputation for being on time? Trying to avoid a night time, mountainous cab ride with the neurotic I’m traveling with.

    Thank you so much for your help!

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      1) There’s no advantage to waiting unless you end up changing your plans. If you’ve chosen to buy online you might as well buy sooner rather than later.
      2) Hellenic has a better reputation but that’s based on SeaJets reliance on the SeaJet2 and other small catamarans. I suspect the TeraJet is much more reliable (owing to its size which mean it doesn’t get cancelled or delayed as often).

      1. Santorini to Crete

        Thank you! I really appreciate it.

  94. Claudia

    Thank you so much… After browsing through numerous travel blogs and forums I finally found all the informations I needed at the same place. I guess I’ll go for the Tera Jet and keep my fingers crossed for a calm sea 🙂 Cheers!

  95. Ferry from Oia to Crete

    Hi Dave,

    We are going to be in Oia Aug 25th to 29th and are looking to get to crete after that. Is there a ferry that goes direct from Oia to Crete (any town) ? How long approximately is the ride?


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      There is no ferry from Oia to Crete. You have to use the main Santorini port which is about 40 minutes from Oia. The ferry to Crete takes just over 2 hours.

  96. Turkey to Greece

    Hi Dave – Great site. Thank you!
    I have a trip plan for August flying into Istanbul and leave from Athens. My current plan is 4 nts in Istanbul, 3 nts in Santorini, and 3 nts in Athens. But now I think I want to revise it and add eithee Crete or Mykonos in the trip.
    What would you recommend here?
    Istanbul to Crete? or Istanbul to Santorini? or Istanbul to Mykonos?
    Would 2 nights be enough for Santorini and Athens?
    Thank you in advance!

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      There are no direct flights from Istanbul to Santorini
      There are 2 flights per week (Monday and Wednesday) from Istanbul to Crete with Aegean Airlines.
      There are 6 flights per week (not Saturday) from Istanbul to Mykonos with Atlasjet.

      Crete is too big an island to explore in 2 days so Mykonos is a much better choice. 2 nights in Athens is fine, 2 nights on Santorini is not enough – but heh, you sometimes have to compromise so maybe this is one of those times.

  97. Crete to Sanorini in Early April

    Hi Dave,

    I am going to be arriving in Crete on April 4th, and was hoping to get the ferry to Santorini on April 6th. I notice that the ferry schedule says that the ferries don’t start running until April 9th. This is creating a big problem as I am trying to see more of the islands, and if I am forced to stay in Crete for 3 extra days, this cuts dramatically into my trip. I was wondering if there are any alternative ferries, or private/independent boats that run to Santorini or another island in the Cyclades when the ferries aren’t running? I am just trying to figure out all of my options, as I am trying to avoid staying on Crete for 5 days, when my total trip is only 12 days. I appreciate any help. Take care!

    Mike S.

    P.S. Do you have any suggestions as to what Islands I should see? I fly into HER, Crete on the 4th, and fly out of Athens on the 16th. Where should I go after Crete and how should the days be broken down?

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      Yes, the first ferry of the year from Crete to Santorini runs on April 9. Before that you’ll need to travel via Athens. The best connection takes 2 hours, 10 minutes – so it’s not too painful. Personally I would spend 5 days on Crete, 5 days on Santorini, and 2 days in Athens. Could also cut 1 day off of Crete and Santorini and do 2 days in Mykonos or Naxos. April 12 is Greek Easter and you’ll enjoy being in Mykonos Town or Pyrgos (on Santorini) during that weekend to see the festivities. Ferries will be very busy the week surrounding Easter so book ferries in advance.

  98. Ferry from Santorini to Crete in March

    I’ve read all the post but still unsure…. Are there any ferries from Crete to Santorini in March 2015?
    Many thanks, Mark

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      Not in March. Ferries from Santorini to Crete start on April 9.

  99. Rethymnon to Santorini in early May

    Does it have fast speed ferry to santorini from Rethymnom on 10th May? Our hotel is just 15 mins drive to rethymnom.
    What is the price and timetable ?
    Do we need to book in advance? Or can buy same day?

    Many thanks in advance

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      • There is no ferry from Retymnon to Santorini on May 10. That route does not start until May 12.
      • There are 3 ferries that day from Heraklion to Santorini departing at 8:20, 8:30, and 9:30am.
      • You should book these tickets in advance.
      • All ferries between Crete and Santorini cost from €55 to €60 for economy class seats.

      1. Vivi

        Thanks for the fast reply.
        I will be at Crete from 10 to 17 May so maybe I will go after 12 May.
        Is it enough time to go back in same day ?
        The price is it same for child 2 years old ?
        Again thanks for the information.

        1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

          There is just enough time to do a day trip (you’d have about 5 hours on Santorini) – the return ferry leaves Santorini at 17:30 – but I would highly recommend spending a few nights on Santorini if you’re interested.

          Children under 5 are free. Children ages 5 to 10 get a 50% reduction.

          1. VIVI

            Thanks again !!!
            I have already booked hotel at Crete therefore can’t Stay at Santorini for more days.
            So I think we gonna just spend a day trip there.
            I just try to look at prices for the ferry at Megajet (your link provided) but seems they don’t do return price cheaper and count each way. Total per person is nearly 140€ For return trip.
            You mention child under 5 travel for free but my child is aged 2 so do they need check passport?
            Sorry so many questions.
            Many thanks again

          2. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

            Yes, ferry prices are one-way. There’s no such thing as a return ferry ticket in Greece. You probably won’t need your child’s passport but I would definitely have it with you when you travel.

  100. Rental Car near Heraklion Port

    Hi. Will be taking ferry from Santorini to Heraklion, Crete on 12 April 2015. Where is the nearest car rental place to ferry terminal? Also how long of a drive is it to Rethymnon? Thanks!! First time to Greece- birthday present!

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      There are several rental car agencies close to the Heraklion port. Enterprise and Avis (downtown offices) are close. Hertz is only at the airport. From Heraklion to Rethymnon takes about an hour.

      Use Auto Europe for the cheapest rental car rates. If you need an automatic (rare in Greece) book in advance.

  101. Chania to Santorini

    What is the fastest way to get from Chania to Santorini? Seems like none of the ferries depart from Chania and there are no direct flights.


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      The fastest way would be a Chania to Athens to Santorini flight. The best connection with Aegean Air takes 2 hours 35 minutes and costs $120 for the cheapest tickets. Otherwise you’ll need to go via Heraklion (2 hours away by bus) or Rethymno (1 hour away by bus but not so many ferries).

  102. Flights from Crete to Santorini

    Hi Dave, the schedule of the Sky express flights from HERAKLION/ SANTORINI for august 2015 is not published yet. Do you know how many times a week and wich days it used to flight ? What about Olympic ?


    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      I don’t think Sky Express will have any flights to Santorini this year. I could be wrong but that’s the way it’s looking now.

      Olympic and Aegean don’t have any direct flights either. You can fly via Athens which takes about 2.5 hours with the best connection. Check

  103. Best Place in Crete?

    Hi Dave
    Where is the best place to stay in Crete?
    Thank you

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      Chania is my favorite town in Crete. Very charming and beautiful. Great nearby beaches.

  104. Athens to Naxos to Santorini to Crete

    Hello Dave!
    We are thinking about going from Athens =>Naxos=>Santorini=> Crete. Do the ferries run frequently from Santorini to Crete? And do you recommend going to Crete or is there another island you’d prefer? Does that seem like too much to see in 6 days?

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      There are regular ferries (one per day all year, more in the high season) from Athens to Naxos to Santorini. Ferries from Santorini to Crete are less regular but at least once per day in high season. But … yes, that is way too much for 6 days. You have just enough time to visit 2 islands (Naxos and Santorini are great choices). And if you did add a 3rd island it should be a small one close to Naxos and Santorini – not a large one that is off that route.

  105. Crete to Santorini Ferry in April

    Hi Dave ,
    Your website is so very helpful!!
    I understand the ferry timetable is not out for 2015 but do you think there will be a ferry from Heraklion to Santorini roughly the 6th of April or is that still a little out of season?
    Thanks in advance for your help.

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      The first SeaJet ferry from Crete to Santorini runs on April 15, 2015. Not sure on the Hellenic Seaways ferry yet but probably won’t start until late April.

  106. Laura Clemens

    My husband and I are honeymooning in Mochlos, Crete and are also looking for travel from Heraklion Port to Thira. Most boat companies seem to be out of season currently. I found your website and in the comments section saw Santorini Yachts website. I have contacted them about travel on Wednesday Oct 29th and am waiting to hear back. I just wanted to thank you for the helpful resource!

  107. Crete to Santorini in October

    Hello dave, is it possible to get from Crete to Santorini any other way then ferry? Private boat hire? Cruising? Seaplane? Local fishermen? Paddle board lol we are here in Oct and most ferries have stopped or slowed down?

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      I’m sure if you’re willing to pay someone will be willing to take you. I’d start by contacting Santorini Yachts.

    2. Neil McBride

      If you find a way/want to split the cost we (fiancé and I) are looking to get to Santorini from Crete on oct 24th. Let me know if you have figured anything out! Thanks.

  108. Santorini to Crete in July

    Hi Dave,
    We are planning to go the opposite way from SANTORINI to crete next year in July. What time does the ferries usually run to crete? Is there only one a day?

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      The schedule is not out yet but there should be one ever day going from Santorini to Crete. This year it left Santorini at 17:35 and got to Heraklion at 19:30. Will likely be a similar schedule next summer.

  109. Crete to Santorini in January

    Im planning to travel from crete to santorini in Jan. What are my ferry options?

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      The Prevelis goes once per week from Heraklion to Santorini. It’s the only ferry doing this route in January. If that doesn’t work for you you’ll need to go via Athens (either flight or ferry). Currently the Prevelis leaves Crete at 17:05 on Sunday night and gets to Santorini at 12:01am Monday morning – but this could change for January.

  110. Crete to Sanorini Ferry for late October

    Hi Santorini Dave!
    We’re in Crete at present and had been hoping to take the fast ferry with Hellenic Seaways to Santorini on Oct 25. However I called them just now and they said ferries were scheduled until October 20th. I see you’ve said schedules can be confusing with many only published 2-3 weeks beforehand. Would you think this is the case here and I should just wait a few more days?
    Many thanks

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      No, I think that’s the schedule at this point. Not sure where you are but there should be travel agencies about (with ferry ticket signs out front). Pop in and ask about ferry schedules for that week – just to be sure.

  111. Heraklio Airport ot Heraklio Ferry Port

    I am flying into Crete and probably renting a car at the airport for my few days there in Oct. I will therefore have to return my rental car at the airport, but intend to take a ferry from Crete to Santorini on Sunday, Oct 19.
    If the ferry leaves at 9:45 (it DOES run on Sunday, correct?), how early should I plan on returning the car? That is, how far is the ferry terminal from the airport by taxi?

    Thanks for your help.

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      Yes, the ferry runs on Sunday. From the airport to the ferry port is only about a mile and shouldn’t take more than 5 or 10 minutes. Many car rental companies allow drop-off at the ferry port so you may want to check as this would make it very simple.

  112. Crete to Santorini late October

    Dave, I’m hoping to book this ferry Oct 23, but cannot find the schedule / timetable listed anywhere else past the 20th. Are you sure it will still be running?

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      That schedule is not released yet and until it is I can’t guarantee that it will run on the 23rd. Keep checking with or

  113. Crete to Santorini in October

    Hi Dave,

    Thanks for the very informative site. We plan to travel fron Heraklion to Thira in late Oct (24 or 26). Should we reserve ferry tickets in advance?
    Also hoping the crowd will thin out by then so we can stay in Oia without bumping into people’s thoughts?



    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      It’s not mandatory but I would probably buy them in advance. (No idea what your second question is asking.) Cheers.

  114. Michael Glanville

    Wow !!! Thanks most up to date information. well organized and inputted, cant thank you enough , was the most helpful information we got.

  115. Booking Ferry Tickets Online

    Hi Dave, I am finding your website really helpful. I am looking to book a the Flycat4 from Crete to Santorini in early Oct however after using the link provided above it takes me to this website After filling in all the details and getting to the payment page, I noticed there is no padlock at the top of my webpage showing that the site is not secure. I am a little hesitate to input my card details. Can you confirm this website is secure and reliable?

    Kind Regards

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      I have no relationship with the websites I link to and can not confirm their security. Sorry, but you must use at your own risk. Good luck.

  116. Chania to Santorini


    How much is the ticket from Chania to Santorini ?

    thank you

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      There are no ferries from Chania to Santorini. You’ll need to go from Heraklion. Info here.

    2. Day Trip from Crete to Santorini

      DURING SEPT 14.



      F L O R Y

      1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

        You can take the Highspeed 5 ferry from Heraklion to Santorini. It arrives in Santorini at 11:50 and departs back to Crete at 17:55 giving you about 5 hours to explore the island. Nothing is included in this price though I’m sure you’ll see package offers in Crete that you can buy. They’ll still use the same ferry connection but might have some meals and bus connections lined up for you – you’ll have to ask.

  117. Santorini to Crete Day Trip

    Hi Dave, is it possible to have a one day trip from Santorini to Crete ? Thanks. Pella

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      No, a day trip from Santorini to Crete is not possible. Traveling on the Highspeed 5 it’s just possible to do a Crete to Santorini day trip (you’d get about 5 hours on Santorini) but since the ferry goes from Crete to Santorini in the morning and Santorini to Crete in the afternoon it’s not possible to do in the opposite direction.

  118. Ferry, Heraklion to Santorini?


    I am travelling to Thira from Heraklion on Saturday 21st June, I wanted to take advantage of the views and as I am an avid birdwatcher and cetacean enthusiast I would prefer to travel in a ferry rather than a catamaran so I have the option of getting our on deck with binoculars. Can you tell me which of the fast ferries this is possible on? I am assuming, having travelled on a catamaran before from Naples, that the cats are fully enclosed and one cannot enter the deck when moving? Do any of the other fast ferries have a passenger viewing deck? Would be most grateful for information.

    Many Thanks

    1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

      None of the fast ferries have the type of decks that you can walk around on and enjoy the view. The Prevelis by Anek leaves Heraklion on Sunday night at 18:05 and arrives in Santorini at midnight. That’s the best you’re going to get.

      1. Ferry to Crete

        Hello Dave,

        I am travelling from Thira Santorini to Heraklion Crete on September 9th 2014. I only see one option in the schedule. Are there other affordable ways to get to Heraklion in the same amount of time under 4 hours?

        1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

          Nope, that’s your only option.

        2. Heraklion to Rhodes and Santorini

          Dear Dave — I see a summer schedule for Anek now:

          But it seems to stop at Rethymno and not Heraklion. Am I understanding that correctly? Does it mean there will be no slow boats from Heraklion to Cyclades or Dodecanese this summer?

          Many thanks,

          1. Santorini DaveSantorini Dave The Guide to Greece

            That’s what it looks like. That’s not surprising for the Cyclades (there usually are not many) but Rhodes to Crete usually has more service. There is also Sitia on that Prevelis/Lane ferry.

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