Here you will find the crossroads of cultures and a paradise for the senses!
Here are canyons and caves, natural beauty of mountains, crystalline beaches for resting, architectural monuments and traditional special flavors and aromas. The place that combines all of this has a simply name – Chania!
– The old town of Chania is situated in the western part of the island and as it said in history, identified with the ancient Cydonia, one of the major cities of Minoan Crete.
– The walk through the narrow streets will return you to the ancient times with old buildings, elegant Venetian, Byzantine churches, mosques and paved neighborhoods that will lead you to the picturesque Venetian harbor, which will complete the romantic stroll beside the lofty Faros.
– In the city you will also see the Archaeological Museum of Chania that is housed in the imposing cathedral of St. Francis of the Order of the Franciscans, the Municipal Market that was inspired by the corresponding market of Massalia, which fills with colors and crowds and the Municipal Park which hosts a small zoo park with animals from Cretan fauna.
– In Topchana you can also see the church of San Salvatore, which houses the Byzantine and Post-Byzantine Collection of Chania
– Going down you will see the Square of Eleftherios Venizelos, the home of the famous politician, which houses the homonymous National Research Foundation, and the palace of Prince George and the Russian Church of St. Magdalene.
– “The princely church” of St. Mary Magdalene was built when the High Commissioner of Crete Prince George offered in early 1901 ten thousand rubles and plans for the erection of a church dedicated to Mary Magdalene, in memory of her staying in Chania in the house of her sister Mary, who was the wife of Grand Duke George of Russia.
– The narrow streets have the name Stivanadika, that are situated on the main road Skridlof, are always fulfilled with many small shops selling all kinds of leather (stivania are the tall boots from leather that wear Cretans).
– In the traditional “Macheradika” that are located along the road Sifakis, many professional masters nowadays continue the working with metal fabricating authentic Cretan knives.
– If you have a car, take a walk in Akrotiri, where are located tombs of the Venizelos, it is one of the most beautiful places of Chania with amazing panoramic views.
Mountains and canyons
Chania is divided with imperious White Mountains in two completely different landscapes. The section of coastline that is richer and more densely populated is one of the most authentic areas of Crete.
The largest, most imposing and beautiful gorge, not only in Chania but in all Europe, is in Samaria.
Over three hundred thousand lovers visit each year this wonderful landscape, with rare geomorphic formations and an unique habitat with unique flora and fauna and a rich mythology from prehistoric era. The Samaria Gorge begins at the plateau of Omalos it has 16 km long and from 3 to 300 m wide. The passage of the gorge, which lasts about 4-5 hours, is allowed from May to September.
The sea caves and non-cave places of the region let us see the “games” of nature. The most impressive places are the place ofApokoronas, of St. Ioannis and os Arkoudospilios that is close to the Monastery Gouvernetos. Also it is worth to discover the green oases of traditional villages on the slopes of the White Mountains, where the cute little houses with the magnificent views and genuine hospitality welcome you for a day to feel yourself in the “village” escape. You can learn more information about thesimple life of Crete in Keramia, Vamos, Askufos with the paradise of Sfakia, Milia and Spilia.
The area of Chania offers dream beaches, it is 415 kilometers of coastline, many of beaches are organized and combined with excellent hotels.
– In Agia Marina, you can combine swimming with a fun, to drink your coffee in the organized beach bars and to try yourself in the water sports –the beach Ag.Marina is ideal for surfing-it is the most «mainstream» beach in the town. The sea is characterized with the stone in the deep and usually bright wave, but the waters are crystal clear. On the beach of Agia Marinayou can will in the evening, and here you will find more vibrant night clubs of the area. Close to it are situated the beaches ofMarathi and Loutraki which are also very well organized and have several taverns on your taste.
– On the beach of Platanias, the beautiful turquoise waters will host your most enjoyable dive. It is situated in the area of the village Maleme, which is ideal for quiet sunbathing.
– The beautiful Falasarna is known for its famous exotic beaches and the more-famous-annual Beach Party that is organizing here at the first week of August. Located about 60 km from Chania and you will reach here through the magical journey of Kissamos.
– On the islands of Gramvousa and Balos, in the northwest of Chania, where you arrive by boat from Kissamos, the lagoon ofBalos will provoke you for diving in the green waters beneath the castles of the cape. The red-gold sand along the clear waters is impressive, but even more pleasing is the fact that this is one of the quietest and “natural” beaches on the island.
– On the beach Elafonisi: 80 km from the city of Chania, lies the majestic Elafonisi an exotic beach with white sand dunes, crystal clear, shallow waters and serene landscape. During your visit there, be sure to walk a few steps to reach the striking beach Kedrodasos.