Crete tourist guide

The best Polish website dedicated to the Greek island Crete and to a small extent of continental Greece. You will find useful information related to visiting Crete that goes beyond the offer of optional tours. On the website you will also find descriptions of the most interesting places that we visited by visiting this largest Greek island. The content complements the current news, photographs and recipes of Greek cuisine.

Zakros and Kato Zakros

Zakros is a small town on the east coast of Crete, less than 40 km south-east of Sitia . Through Zakros leads the main road leading from the north coast to the 8 km distant Kato Zakros, where there are ruins of the Minoan palace and the entrance to the Gorge of the Dead. However, few of those who are going to these places stop at the center of the village of Zakros and leave the car to explore this interesting place.

Epano Zakros - alleys

Contemporary Zakros

Zakros is a relatively large village, which also "manages" a few smaller villages in this area: Kato Zakros, Adravasti, Azokeramos, Kellaria, Klisidi, Ayios Georgios, Sfaka, Kanava and Skalia.

At the top of the village of Zakros there are springs supplying about 800 cubic meters of water per hour. In the past, water from these sources has driven the surrounding water mills, and now it overwhelms over 250,000 olive trees growing in nearby groves. This is important because around 800 permanent residents of Zakros are mostly farmers, whose main source of income is money obtained from growing olive trees. This area of Crete is known for the fact that the oil produced here is among the best on the island. Its high quality is apparently due to the specific soil morphology and the aforementioned spring water.


Few people living in the area of Zakros find employment in the tourism sector, because in this area it is underdeveloped. The far east of Crete is still the least "contaminated" by mass tourism. No large hotel complexes have been built here so far, so the entire area of the island "does not exist" for travel agencies. At present, on the east coast of the island you can find accommodation only in a few private and relatively small guesthouses. Personally, we hope that this situation will not change for many years.

What is important, guests who stay in Crete as part of the so-called organized holiday, to the Minoan palace and the gorge in Zakros can only reach by rented cars. From what we know, travel agencies do not organize optional trips, which in their program have a tour of the area.

Ouzeri at Epano Zakros

However, it is not only the lack of hotel infrastructure that affects the tourist separation of the Zakros region. The second additional factor is the large distance from the airport in Heraklion , where most of the charter flights land. It is true that there is an international airport next to the town of Sitia , but for now it plays a marginal role in servicing tourist traffic.

For the above reasons, this piece of Crete raises more interest in principle only among individual tourists, who repeat that here in the east you can still see a piece of wild and real Crete.


History. Zakros

You can not say much about the history of Zakros itself. The Venice census made in 1721 did not mention its existence, although the village was marked on the maps of the region from that period under the name Xacro. Its inhabitants were also not recorded in the census of 1671 made during the Turkish partition. The village was probably destroyed and abandoned during the Turkish invasions that took place in 1471 and in 1538. For the first time in the census, residents of Zakros appear only in 1820.

The etymology of the name Zakros is also not known, although it is believed to be the pre-Hellenic word. One theory involves Zakros with Za-ka-ron, a maritime people who invaded Egypt in the 13th century BC. However, it did not gain popularity.

Traces of the past

Next to the road connecting the village of Zakros from Kato Zakros are the remains of a villa from the late Minoan period. It was discovered in 1965 by I. Sakellarakis and Nikolaos Plato, the discoverer of the Minoan palace in Kato Zakros . The villa had full facilities for wine production. There was found a wine press with two tanks, fragments of wall paintings and clay pots with inscriptions engraved in linear writing A. The wine press found here is now exhibited at the Archaeological Museum in Sitia. Many such places are still waiting to be discovered, because this area was of great importance in the Minoan era.

There are stories (we do not know how many truths are in them) about the local inhabitants who, while working in their own gardens, excavated by accident the Minoan tombs. However, the finds were nowhere reported, and the excavations found were quickly filled up. Residents were afraid that after marking the site of the discovery as an archaeological site they would lose their homes. Seemingly such an action seems irrational. Anyone who knows the way archaeologists work in Greece knows that these fears were not unfounded.

Accommodation options

If someone is planning to make a base in Zakros to explore the area, there are only a few guesthouses in the village itself. Places should be booked here well in advance. As we wrote above, there are not many lodgings in this area, but the number of vacationers is growing more and more from the hustle and bustle of tourist centers. In the village itself there are also several shops with basic supplies, taverns and a shop with regional products. In addition, the village itself is quite interesting and picturesque, so it is worth just walking its streets and delve into its recesses.


Epano Zakros - small streets

What's worth seeing?

It is also worth paying attention to the other interesting places located in Zakros. These will be restored mills, a former cheese factory and a small church of Afentis Christos, in which the remains of a fresco depicting Christ have been preserved. In Zakros there is also the Museum of Water and Plumbing located in three water mills restored in 2007. It is a thematic museum whose aim is to collect any objects or other materials related to the use of water in past eras, but also to emphasize the importance of water in our times.


Epano Zakros - mills

Communication with Zakros

If you decide to come to Zakros for a longer period, it is worth bearing in mind the very poor bus communication being carried out in this region of the island. Buses from Heraklion or Chania do not come here. If you want to get KTEL to Zakros, it will be necessary to change in Sitia . At the same time, only two buses per day leave for Zakros in the high season. In the off-season, communication is even more difficult because two courses a day are only carried out on Mondays, Tuesdays and Fridays. So if someone is interested in mobility in this area of Crete, then a car or scooter will be necessary.

Welcome to Kato Zakros

Kato Zakros

8 km from the village of Zakros, on the seafront above the picturesque bay, lies the village of Kato Zakros. Although in the town itself there is just a large number of taverns, this place is the main destination for tourist trips. In Kato Zakros there are extensive ruins of the Minoan palace which was then the religious, administrative and commercial center of the region.


In Kato Zakros there is also one of the entrances to the Zakros Gorge, also known as the Gorge of the Dead. It is extremely picturesque which is especially visible on sunny days when the color of high rocks is underlined by sunny rays. The name of the gorge comes from numerous Minoan graves, which were found here in the nearby rock caves.

The main street in Kato Zakros


In Kato Zakros itself, you will not find anything interesting except for the aforementioned taverns. This is a purely tourist destination, where one of many great taverns can simply take a break from sightseeing. An undoubted advantage of these premises is that they are located right next to the beach.

At a distance of 5 km from Kato Zakros, there is also the impressive Pelekita cave, one of the largest caves in Crete. Its total length is 310 m in a straight line, and the total area is 4.5 acres. On its grounds were found traces of residence from the Neolithic era.

Taverns at Kato Zakros

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Interesting places on Crete

↤ click the appropriate part of the island to change the bottom map

Malia
Malia

Malia

Information about one of the more known tourist cities of Crete, or about Malia. Description of attractions located in the city of Malia and a description of the specificity of this town.

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Kritsa
Kritsa

Kritsa

Kritsa is one of the largest villages in Crete. The village has a lot of shops with local crafts.

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Lasithi
Lasithi

Lasithi

The Lasithi Plateau is located about 70 kilometers from the capital of Crete - Heraklion. The average height at which the terrain of this plateau is located is 840 m above sea level.

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Dikte Cave
Dikte Cave

Dikte Cave

One of the tourist attractions eagerly visited by people spending their holidays in Crete is the Dikte (Psychro) cave. The main factors that attract people to this cave are a rich and varied dripstone robe and a close connection with mythology.

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Panagia Kera
Panagia Kera

Panagia Kera

Among the olive groves in the place called Logari, which is less than a kilometer from the village of Kritsa, there is a small Byzantine church of Panagia Kera from the 13th-14th centuries.

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Stalida
Stalida

Stalida

Stalida is located directly along the coast and is one of the most famous tourist destinations in Crete, which definitely comes alive with the advent of the tourist season

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Gorge Ha
Gorge Ha

Gorge Ha

Most people crossing the route between Agios Nikolaos and Ierapetra will definitely notice the large crack which is marked by the mountain located east of this road. This majestic geological creation called Ha was probably created as a result of an earthquake.

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Xerokambos
Xerokambos

Xerokambos

Xerokambos is a small settlement in which you will find literally several taverns, and most of the buildings are single-storey and one-story houses. The big advantage of this beach is a gentle sandy descent to the sea.

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Agios Nikolaos
Agios Nikolaos

Agios Nikolaos

Agios Nikolaos (Άγιος Νικόλαος) is a small town with less than 20,000 inhabitants. permanent residents (according to statistical data from 2001). This city is the capital of the Lasithi nomos.

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Elounda
Elounda

Elounda

Although Elounda seems to be a sleepy fishing town to this day, however, appearances should not fool you, because this town and its surroundings can boast of probably the largest number of the best hotels.

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Elounda
Elounda

Elounda

Although Elounda seems to be a sleepy fishing town to this day, however, appearances should not fool you, because this town and its surroundings can boast of probably the largest number of the best hotels.

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Stalida
Stalida

Stalida

Stalida is located directly along the coast and is one of the most famous tourist destinations in Crete, which definitely comes alive with the advent of the tourist season

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Lato
Lato

Lato

The ancient city of the LATO can be found near the charming village of Krista near Agios Nikolaos.

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Gournia
Gournia

Gournia

It is recognized that Gournia was inhabited between 3000 BC. 1,200 BC and is one of the few cities unearthed to a large extent.

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Zakros
Zakros

Zakros

Zakros is the fourth-largest Minoan palace in Crete in importance and size. This latest found, built on the east coast of the island is located in the village of Káto Zákros.

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zakros
zakros

zakros

Zakros is the fourth-largest Minoan palace in Crete in importance and size. This latest found, built on the east coast of the island is located in the village of Káto Zákros.

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Palace in Malia
Palace in Malia

Palace in Malia

The first palace was built around 1900 BC. in the place where there was a quite impressive settlement whose remains were later transformed into the central part of the city.

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Moni Toplou
Moni Toplou

Moni Toplou

Moni Toplou (Μονή Τοπλού) also called as The Great Monastery is one of the most beautiful and important monasteries in Crete.

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Moni Toplou
Moni Toplou

Moni Toplou

Moni Toplou (Μονή Τοπλού) also called as The Great Monastery is one of the most beautiful and important monasteries in Crete.

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Mochlos
Mochlos

Mochlos

Mochlos is a small town located roughly halfway between Agios Nikolaos and Sitia.

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Vai
Vai

Vai

O Vai zrobiło się głośno, gdy w latach 70-tych na tle palmowego gaju nakręcono reklamę kokosowych batoników Bounty.

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Spinalonga
Spinalonga

Spinalonga

This inconspicuous little island located about 5 km from the center of Elounda is one of the biggest tourist attractions in Crete.

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Trypitos
Trypitos

Trypitos

When heavy equipment entered the promontory near Sitia, no one expected that this area contained the ruins of the Hellenic city.

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Richtis
Richtis

Richtis

The abundance of water and shade mean that even at the peak of the tourist season, this place is full of lush vegetation.

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Chamaizi
Chamaizi

Chamaizi

At the top of a cone-shaped hill called Souvloto Mouri, the remains of an unusual building with a unique oval shape were discovered.

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Moni Toplou Winery
Itanos
Itanos

Itanos

The ruins of the ancient city of Itanos are located at the eastern tip of Crete, less than 3 kilometers north of the famous palm beach of Vai. Although there are also nice beaches at Itanos, unlike its well-known neighbor, this place does not attract crowds. There are either accidental stray tourists or excavation enthusiasts here.

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Roussolakos
Roussolakos

Roussolakos

Just over 2 km from Palekastro, next to Chiona beach, there is a large archaeological site called Roussolakos

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Roussolakos
Roussolakos

Roussolakos

Just over 2 km from Palekastro, next to Chiona beach, there is a large archaeological site called Roussolakos

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Ierapetra
Ierapetra

Ierapetra

Ierapetra (Ιεράπετρα) is the fourth largest city of Crete and also the largest town located in the Lassithi prefecture.

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Diaskari - Green Beach
Diaskari - Green Beach

Diaskari - Green Beach

Diaskari Beach, also known as Green Beach, is less than 3 km from Makry Gialos.

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Koufonissi - cruise to the island
Koufonissi - cruise to the island

Koufonissi - cruise to the island

Koufonissi is a small island in the Libyan Sea, located just a stone's throw from the southern coast of Crete.

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Makry Gialos
Makry Gialos

Makry Gialos

Makry Gialos is one of the less-appreciated tourist destinations in Crete.

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Sitia
Sitia

Sitia

Less than 10,000 population of Sitia makes the city the smallest in Crete. Some even go a step further and say perversely that it is rather the largest village of Crete.

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Napoleon's house
Napoleon's house

Napoleon's house

Napoleon's house is one of the few typically tourist attractions in Ierapetra. About what could have happened here in the summer of 1798 and possibly how much in this legend is the truth we write in the article on the page below.

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Zakros and Kato Zakros
Zakros and Kato Zakros

Zakros and Kato Zakros

Zakros is a small town on the east coast of Crete, less than 40 km south-east of Sitia.

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Komentarze

 gość}
gość PiotrWie
2019-03-18 09:18:39

A ja przede wszystkim proponuje przejście z Zakros do Kato Zakros - wąwóz jest ładny, w przeciwieństwie do większości wąwozów Krety cały rok płynie nim woda więc jest zielony. Przejście nie jest trudne spokojnie w jednym dniu da się zejść, zwiedzić ruiny w Kato Zakros i wrócić do Zakros.

Piotrek | www.crete.pl
Piotrek | www.crete.pl
2019-03-18 09:21:54

Wąwóz

Piotr, opis wąwozu na pewno z czasem pojawi się na naszej stronie. My również polecamy zwiedzenie tego wąwozu. Tym bardziej, że dzięki kilku alternatywnych wejść szlak można zrealizować na kilka sposobów.

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Lentas - a place in the shadow of the rock of a lion

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The south of Crete in the area of ​​the Asterousia mountains is still an isolated area, which relatively few tourists reach. Only a few places can be considered as one in which you can find the minimum necessary leisure services. One of such places is Lentas (Λέντας) located about 75 kilometers south of Heraklion.

Plakias

Plakias

Plakias is a perfect place for people who like to spend time hiking. In the area of ​​the town and the surrounding area there are several walking routes marked out, which you can reach to interesting beaches or gorges. It is worth mentioning places such as Skinaria, Damnoni or Preveli beaches as well as Kotsifou and Kouartaliotiko ravines. It is also worth visiting the nearby mountain villages, from which there is a beautiful panorama of Plakias Bay.

Matala

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Booking.com

Polecamy:

Oliwa i kosmetyki organiczne Olivaloe

Najnowsze komentarze:

gość drozda: My atakowaliśmy tydzień temu od strony morza , po jakimś kilometrze niestety całą szerokością płynie strumień, ale i tak jest fajnie :)
gość PiotrWie: Dzisiaj zrobiło się tak ciepło że o 19 kupiliśmy lody na ulicy. A Rosjanie to się nawet kąpali ale nie wiem może są z Syberii
Andy Hatfield: Drove through it from rythmno to avios pavlos plakias and galini beautiful drive
Danusia Krzyżaniak-Sowa: Będę pozytywnej myśli
Piotrek | www.crete.pl : A u nas w Polsce na ten tydzień zapowiadane są dwa dni z temperaturami podchodzącymi pod 30'C. Na razie jednak póki co mamy bardzo silne wiatry, które podnoszą z ziemi pył i kurz :/
Piotrek | www.crete.pl : Super, że poprawili oznakowanie szlaku, bo wcześniej bywało z tym różnie. Podziwiam, że mimo takiej ilości wody udało Wam się dojść do wodospadu. Pamiętam, że miejscami nawet w czasie kiedy my byliśmy było dosyć ślisko. W szczególności na tych odcinkach gdzie szlak przechodził w błotnistą ścieżkę (niedaleko ruin dawnych młynów wodnych).
Iwona Strzałkowska-Warmuz: Ja w czerwcu
gość PiotrWie: Byliśmy dziś w wąwozie Richtis. Po deszczach jest wysoki poziom wody i pomiędzy mostem a wodospadem jest naprawdę trudno trzeba mocno kombinować by przekraczać strumień. Miejscami kamienie przeznaczone do tego są przykryte 10 centymetrową warstwą wody. Nawet dojście do mostu nie jest takie proste bo kilkudziesięciometrowymi odcinkami woda płynie całą szerokością i jest niebezpiecznie ślisko. (...)
gość PiotrWie: Było zimno - nasz gospodarz stwierdził że jeszcze nie serwował śniadania w kurtce. Ale od dziś się zdecydowanie ociepla i w przyszłym tygodniu ma być już ciepło.
Anna Pielecka: Wrzesień też bywa niepewny. Mnie zawrócili po kilkuset metrach
Joanna Wypych: Początek maja nigdy nie jest pewny jesli chodzi o Samarie. Jesli byly prognozy przelotnych opadow w regionie Chania, dosyc czesto zdarzalo sie zamykanie wawazu na dzien czy dwa. Jak wiadomo ta zima byla koszmarna i stan wody jest jeszcze wysoki.
Aldona Olińska: No właśnie doświadczyłam tego na własnej skórze, no i w ramach małej rekompensaty byłam dzisiaj w wąwozie Imbros
Daniel Gorzelak: Mam nadzieje ze do 20 maja otworzą
Magdalena Woszczek: Aneta Re
Zofia Sokołowska: Zakonczono poszukiwanie Polaka na Krecie
gość gośc XXXX: Dzień dobry, wybieramy się w tym roku w okresie Majówki na Kretę. Zastanawiam sie jak wygląda sytuacja pogodowa obecnie i czy ktoś może przybliżyć jaki rodzaj ubrań powinniśmy sie zaopatrzyć czy bardziej plażowe czy niestety raczej ciepłe swetry i kurtki?  Z góry dziękuje za odpowiedz.
Emilia Ignatowicz-Steć: Jak z pogoda w Stalidzie?
Ewa Blue: Już za tydzień lece
gość PiotrWie: Strategiczne miejsca to akurat te które warto było odwiedzić co najmniej kilkanaście lat temu - pamiętam Elafonisi z kilkunastoma leżakami przy samym parkingu, obecnie należy szukać miejsc o których przewodniki nie wspominają.
gość PiotrWie: Zakyntos jest - tak samo jak np Korfu - dla tych co lubią odpoczywać w tłumie. Kreta jest na tyle duża że da się znaleźć miejsca gdzie na plaży jest się samemu bądź w towarzystwie kilku osób - a na Korfu na większości plaż trudno było znaleźć miejsce na położenie ręcznika. (...)
Adam Machoczek: Wyspa Kos - Kardamena,polecam.
Sylwia Ba Ka: Dziwne bo tam wcale nie jest ladnie:( Kreta jest niestety przereklamowana. Z Greckich wysp to Zakhyntos jest krolową
Przemek Kądraś: W tamtym roku była Kreta właśnie teraz zmiana kierunku :p
Agnes Mokros: Taak
Jola Ostraszewska: Kreta maj i chyba wrzesień
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