18 days in Crete Itinerary

18 days in Crete Itinerary

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Route & dates

18 days in Crete Itinerary

Start: Edinburgh, Scotland
Fly + Shuttle:  9​h 15​min
1
Chania Town
— 7 nights
Bus:  1​h 15​min
2
Rethymnon
— 6 nights
Drive:  1​h 45​min
3
Matala
— 1 night
Drive:  1​h 30​min
4
Hersonissos
— 3 nights
Fly:  8​h
End: Edinburgh, Scotland

7
nights
Chania Town

Chania Town ©
The place where Cretan and Venetian cultures merged in the 13th century, Chania Town attracts throngs of tourists with its well-preserved medieval harbor.
Discover out-of-the-way places like Chania Venetian Lighthouse and Archaeological Museum of Chania. You'll get in some beach time at Elafonissi Beach and Balos Lagoon. You'll find plenty of places to visit near Chania Town: Akrotiri (Holy Trinity Monastery (Agia Triada) & Seitan Limania Beach), Elafonisi Viewpoint (in Elafonissi) and Kastro Gramvoussas (in Gramvousa). And it doesn't end there: kick back and relax at Agii Apostoli Beach, see the interesting displays at MINOAN'S WORLD, stroll through Sougia Beach, and do a tasting at Manousakis Winery.

To find where to stay and tourist information, go to the Chania Town visit site .

Edinburgh, UK to Chania Town is an approximately 9.5-hour combination of flight and shuttle. You can also fly; or do a combination of train, flight, and shuttle. Traveling from Edinburgh to Chania Town, you'll lose 2 hours due to the time zone difference. Plan for a bit warmer temperatures traveling from Edinburgh in May, with highs in Chania Town at 29°C and lows at 19°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 18th (Mon) to allow time to take a bus to Rethymnon.

Things to do in Chania Town

Outdoors Parks Beaches

Side Trips

Akrotiri, Kissamos, Palaiochora, Souda, Elafonissi
Highlights from your plan
Elafonissi Beach ©
Elafonissi Beach
Kedrodasos Beach ©
Kedrodasos Beach
Agii Apostoli Beach ©
Agii Apostoli Beach

6
nights
Rethymnon

Rethymnon ©
Rethymnon combines the old-fashioned charm of a small town with proximity to long sandy beaches with all the modern conveniences usually found in big tourist resorts.
Your day-by-day itinerary now includes Mount Ida. Historical and Folklore Museum of Rethymno and Terzisart will appeal to museum buffs. Take a break from the city and head to Imbros Gorge and Off-Road Tours. Explore Rethymnon's surroundings by going to Frangokastello Beach (in Frangokastello), St. Nicholas Church (in Georgioupolis) and War Museum Askifou (in Askifou). There's still lots to do: discover the deep blue sea with a scuba or snorkeling tour, look for all kinds of wild species at Reptisland, tour the pleasant surroundings at Damnoni Beach, and take a stroll through Rethymnon Old Town.

Plan a Rethymnon trip in moments using our itinerary builder.

Take a bus from Chania Town to Rethymnon in 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive. Expect a daytime high around 29°C in May, and nighttime lows around 19°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 24th (Sun) to allow time to drive to Matala.

Things to do in Rethymnon

Parks Outdoors Beaches

Side Trips

Plakias, St. Nicholas Church, Imbros Gorge, Karavostasi Beach, War Museum Askifou
Highlights from your plan
Mount Ida ©
Mount Ida
Skinaria Beach ©
Skinaria Beach
Reptisland ©
Reptisland

1
night
Matala

Matala ©
A low-key tourist resort known for its ancient cliffside caves, Matala boasts a rich history that spans over 2,000 years.
Kick off your visit on the 25th (Mon): view the masterpieces at Moozart Wood Art Shop, then delve into the distant past at Palace of Faistos, then stroll through Komos Beach, and finally stroll through Red Sand Beach (Kokkini Ammos).

To see other places to visit, ratings, traveler tips, and tourist information, you can read our Matala online travel route planner .

You can drive from Rethymnon to Matala in 2 hours. Another option is to take a bus. In May, daily temperatures in Matala can reach 28°C, while at night they dip to 18°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 25th (Mon) early enough to go by car to Hersonissos.

Things to do in Matala

Parks Outdoors Beaches

Side Trips

Palace of Faistos, Komos Beach
Highlights from your plan
Komos Beach ©
Komos Beach
Red Sand Beach (Kokkini Ammos) ©
Red Sand Beach (Kokkini Ammos)
Palace of Faistos ©
Palace of Faistos

3
nights
Hersonissos

Hersonissos ©
Wholeheartedly dedicated to tourism, Hersonissos remains best known for its vibrant nightlife, its bars and clubs attracting partygoers from around the world.
Satisfy your inner culture vulture at The Palace of Knossos and Fortress Spinalonga. Appreciate the collections at Heraklion Archaeological Museum and The Natural History Museum of Crete. Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Hersonissos: Lake Voulismeni (in Agios Nikolaos) and Heraklion (Church of Saint Titus, Domaine Paterianakis- Κτήμα Πατεριανάκη, & more). There's still lots to do: examine the collection at Lychnostatis Open Air Museum, stroll through Stalis Beach, and get engrossed in the history at Ιστορικό Μουσείο Κρήτης - Historical Museum of Crete.

For maps, more things to do, reviews, and other tourist information, read our Hersonissos trip itinerary builder website .

You can drive from Matala to Hersonissos in 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of shuttle and bus; or take a bus. In May, daily temperatures in Hersonissos can reach 28°C, while at night they dip to 15°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 28th (Thu) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Hersonissos

Museums Historic Sites Parks

Side Trips

Heraklion, The Palace of Knossos, Stalis Beach, Fortress Spinalonga, Lake Voulismeni
Highlights from your plan
Fortress Spinalonga ©
Fortress Spinalonga
Stalis Beach ©
Stalis Beach
The Palace of Knossos ©
The Palace of Knossos

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