Agia Fotini is located in a remote part of Southern Crete, far from the holiday makers and resorts found elsewhere. It has a Taverna perched on the waters edge which serves beautiful freshly prepared food, it also rents four rooms. On the hillside nearby the Taverna of Agia Fotini is the ruins of the ancient town of Kionia which flourished in the promineon age. there is also a fresh water river running from its own green forest. The beach is of white pebble sands and is ideal for swimming and snorkelling. and for those whose night life is counting the stars.
Agia Galini is exactly what one expects a Greek seaside village to look like; painted white and rising steeply from the pretty harbour with its many fishing boats and the the bright yellow nets piled up on the waters edge. We also have an amphitheatre built in the traditional style which is used for public concerts. The beach is a short walk away and there are several beachside and harbour front tavernas. Almost all the lanes in the village are pedestrian lanes with colourful bougainvillea tumbling over arches, pergolas and balconies and providing endless photo opportunities. There are mini markets, a post office, doctor, bakeries, butcher and fish shop. We also enjoy the benefits of two massage therapists, hairdressers and a nail salon as well as yoga classes. This is a village that has repeat visitors, some who have been coming for many years and also visit during the winter as Agia Galini has approximately 330 days of sunshine and benefits from the milder south coast winter climate. The area is popular with walkers, cyclists and swimmers. There is lots to do; either visiting other nearby resorts, taking boat trips or visiting a host of archaeological sites nearby including the Minoan Palace of Festos, the Roman structures at Gortys and the Matala caves. Whether you are a tourist or intend being a resident in the area, there are many social activities which one can choose to be part of. Many of the foreigners that have chosen to live here permanently have been accepted into the villagers hearts and become their extended family. DISTANCES The beach, tavernas and facilities all within easy walking distance Timbaki with all facilities is 12 kms away Heraklion airport is 77kms
This village is something quite exceptional. It is nestled against a hill and overlooks the coastline and the beautiful sandy beaches between Agios Pavlos and Plakias. This is truly for those folks who want to get away to a quiet village, all on its own surrounded by beautiful countryside. The turn off is on the main road which links Rethymnon to Agia Galini in the south. At Kissou Kambos there is a junction which is sign posted for Kerames. One sets off along this road and the road winds over a mountain and suddenly has the most breathtaking of panoramic views to enjoy. One skirts around the edge of Kerames and on to Agia Paraskevi. After this the road to Agia Paraskevi is clearly sign posted and the further one goes the more relaxed one becomes as the traffic thins to almost none. This is the perfect place to unwind and enjoy Crete. This village is exceptional in that it is not a new tourist development, it is an old village that was completely neglected and uninhabited for many years except for 2 nuns and was then resuscitated back to life by the next generation of the original village families. The ruined houses have been restored or rebuilt in the traditional style and all newly built houses must comply with the regulations and be built out of stone, and finished with wood and roofed with terra cotta roof tiles. As the bougainvilleas, trees and shrubs grow, the old and the new all blend together to form a charming village with its own unique personal character. Being some distance from any form of mass tourism it allows one to appreciate the slow pace of the farming community, the magnificent sunsets and the absolutely breathtaking night sky. The beaches in the area are quiet even during the high summer season. There is a taverna within the village and there are several excellent small tavernas on the nearby beaches which operate during the summer months. The beaches are all sandy beaches with crystal clear water. Agia Paraskevi is 1 hours drive from Rethymnon city and 5kms from Kerames a popular town with some amenities. The most popular beach locally is Ligres beach is known for its pristine sand, gentle shore line and clear water, but you may often have the beach all to yourself. There are two summer tavernas on the beach and it is only a short drive away from the Agia Paraskevi. There is a real sense of community between the inhabitants, maybe being so isolated, makes for good company with ones neighbours.
Agios Giorgos (Saint George) Beach This delightful, secluded and protected cove is reached by boat or road from Agia Galini. There is a delightful laid back beachside taverna and bar. The food depends on what is available to the chef, but it is absolutely fresh and the owner, a true Cretan, is a very entertaining and welcoming host. This is definitely about kicking off ones shoes and relaxing in the sunshine. The water is crystal clear and ideal for swimming and snorkelling. . This area is in a protected valley and enjoys particularly mild weather even during the winter months. It is only 6kms from Agia Galini and the road is clearly demarcated, it is about the same distance to Melambes further up the hill. DISTACES: Agia Galini and Melambes 6 kms to either village Timbaki ‚?? nearest large town 18kms Heraklion airport about 1h40 min driving time.
Agios Pavlos, is easily reached by taking the turn off from the main road which links Rethymnon with Agia Galini. One heads to the villages of Upper and Lower Saktouria and then is is gentle drive down the hill to the coast and ends at Agios Pavlos. Agios Pavlos, has a hotel, several rent rooms establishments and tavernas. However, despite it distance from an large town, it is surprisingly busy especially over weekends and July And August when the Greeks enjoy their summer holidays and come to spend it in this charming bay. It is just as popular over weekends with families. It is a very picturesque setting the surrounding hills rising quite steeply from this lovely protected and safe bay. There are some unique rock formations which often feature on postcards. Away from the main cove there is a massive sand dune, which allows one to go down to a long sandy beach of Agios Pavlos and stretches endlessly along this coast. In and around the bay there are excellent snorkeling possibilities including caves which can be explored. There are daily excursion boats which stop in the bay to allow passengers on and off. This area is also the home to several yoga schools one of the best known, is in Agios Pavlos. It is about 23 kms from Spili and approximately the same distance from Agia Galini where most services are available.
The village of Akoumia with a population of approximately 900 is directly alongside the main road connecting Rethymnon and Agia Galini. Passing by one sees the bakery and coffee shop-taverna alongside the road. The buildings lining the road all look fairly modern. However once you turns off and enter the town there is a completely different village to be seen. Many ancient buildings, a shaded village square which is the hub of activity at all hours and generally it is a tight squeeze to get by or find a parking spot much to the amusement of the locals. There are several coffee shops, a pastry shop and tavern. In addition to this the travelling salesmen pass by frequently and one can buy any other normal household requirements from them. The village itself has a traditional taverna which operates all year round and is alongside and ancient castle like building dating back to the time when the Turks occupied Crete. It is only about 10 mins drive from Spili where most services are available. The nearest beaches are the beautiful beaches of Akoumia and Triopetra where there are also several excellent tavernas which operate during the summer months and are very popular.
This small village is reached by turning off at Kissou Kambos at the sign post for Kerames towards the coast. There are many interesting and charming villages along this road, but Drimiskos is the first one the seaward side of the mountain and is only 2 kms from Kerames and 4 kms from the beach at Agia Fotini. The village has a lovely village square with kafenion and a tavern and has a large number of permanent residents given its size. It is a really pretty and tidy village and most people take pride in their gardens and properties. Small villages like this always seem to be particularly friendly and welcoming. Amazingly there are several villas for rent which seem to be popular.
Kalamaki is a simple sea side resort with a string a tavernas and bars along the waters edge. Behind this nestled on the sand dunes on higher ground are some surprisingly expensive homes. It has the comfortable feel of a relaxed and laid back resort with the most wonderful sandy beach, and on windy days there is more surf than in most other parts of the Bay of Messera. The village itself is very well promoted on the internet and it is one of the first road signs one sees as one exits the airport in Heraklion! Despite they way it has developed there is a certain charm about the village, there is a square with a kafenion, a car rental company, kiosk several hotels and rent rooms establishments and everything else that one would deem necessary for a regular small resort. What is special about Kalamaki is certainly its beach and the friendly service in the water front bars and tavernas. It is close to the towns of Timbaki and Mires which have a large variety of shops and services. It is also close to the main road to Herkalio and of course is close to the Minoan site of Phaestos. There are beautiful views out to the Paximathia islands and one can enjoy spectacular sunsets as the sun sets across the bay.
This is a very pretty village which is now expanding with new builds on each side of the village. The central part of the village has retained all its charm and it is very clear why people fall in love with the village and the area. The village is only 2kms from the beautiful sandy south coast beach of Kalamaki. This village is well positioned for easy access to the main road to Heraklion and also a few kilometers from Timbaki which has almost every service and shop one could need. Kalamaki is one of the first villages which became really popular in this area and I feel it was the foreigners who bought into the village and who restored and repaired the houses to look typically Greek and absolutely charming. The Greeks themselves soon copied what was being done and soon the whole village looked like a picture postcard. Prices in this area are higher than average, but once one falls in love with Kamilari nothing else will do.
Karines is only 35km from Rethymnon and less than 10 kms from the bustling mountain village of Spili, with its fountains and kafenion culture. It is a small town of approximately 80 inhabitants but looks surprisingly lively especially during the evenings when the kafenions are well supported by young couples who like to escape notice in the larger villages. The village is lush and green and very well tread, with massive walnut trees hanging over the water ways as well as almost every garden having fruit bearing trees and vines. It is a pretty village and quite busy over weekends when people who work in the city come to their weekend homes or to visit family. It is a sheep and goat farming area and sheep shearing despite hard work is also a festive occasion.
This village is a charming cool retreat from the heat, for those who find the intense heat down at the coast a bit too much. Water rushes through the town endlessly in lined furrows and passes through the village fountains and drinking troughs for animals. It is a lovely sight to see ladies and men on the way from the fields with their goats and donkeys stopping for the animals to drink. The village is set against the lower hills of Mount Kedros. The town has a shaded square and a few kafenions, and surprisingly, given the size of the town an excellent taverna. Greeks come from many surrounding villages to eat the local seasonal fare, very different from what is served in your average tourist taverna. The village is full of beautiful old houses, some of which have been well restored and more are being done by local owners and the village is continuously improving. It is well positioned for getting to Spili, Rethymnon or the coast. It is 37 Kms from Rethymnon and a short ride to Spili. While the village does not have a shop, the traveling salesmen come to town with everything one would need, fresh bread, vegetables, fish and even clothes and household goods. The beaches of Akoumia are the closest and on a hot summers night it is definitely worth the ride for a evening swim and a meal. The houses are mainly original and many have been beautifully restored retaining all their special features and almost every house I have seen has huge tree trunks for ceiling beams. The village is the setting for at least two novels, giving details of village life giving an insight into village life.
This is an amazingly popular village. This small village is reached by turning off at Kissou Kambos at the sign post for Kerames towards the coast. One heads over the side of Mount Asideratos and once you start the downward journey the view is simply breathtaking. It is charming in that it is almost Santorini or Paros like as the village is a maze of narrow foot paths all demarcated in white. These lanes were designed to allow a fully packed donkey to reach the houses in days gone by. If you had a fully packed donkey you would still be able to access your house, however, nowadays it is mainly pedestrian. The village does have several parking areas for leaving ones car close to ones property. Other than its charming village square with several well supported kafenions, the village because of its position enjoys particularly mild weather during the winter months. It is also close to the most beautiful south coast beaches and there are fabulous sea views from many of the houses as they nestled against the foot of the mountain and overlook the south coast and the Paximathia islands. It is believed that the village owes its name to the word Potter(Ceramics) in Greek.
This small agricultural village is quite rustic, but absolutely charming. There is a mixture of the modern and times gone by all living happily side by side. Several foreigners have made this their home find the locals very friendly and caring. There is a tavern which operates in the evening and basic essential are available. However the larget market town of Timbaki is only 3 kilometres down the hillside and all services are available there. There are some beautiful old buildings some still waiting for restoration and there are two village squares and several times a year, celebrations are held and very well supported by the locals.
Tucked into the corner of the bay of Messara, is the small seaside resort of Kokkinos Pirgos. This seems a forgotten small resort. In recent times several expensive homes have been built and it seems that this will become a desireable area, but plot prices are still reasonable. The small harbour has been developed and ideal for anyone wanted to keep a boat and the beach area is never crowded. There are several shops for fishermans supplies and some rather good tavernas. The bus trundles through here on its way between Heraklion and Agia Galini. It is only 2kms from Timbaki where all services are available.
Positioned right at the foot of the Kedros mountain and in two parts. One part is directly alongside the main Rethymnon-Agia Galini road. However the main village is a bit further back and almost hidden from the main road. The church dominates the village square along with a large and popular kafenion which also serves as a small mini market. It doesnt take much for the villagers to come out and gather on the village square and have a chat or party. There is a war museum as this village was particularly had hit during the war. This is largely an agricultural village and there are still many donkeys and 3 wheeler vehicles which double as a plough when not being used for transport. There is a very pleasant kafe-bar in the lower part of the village where one can spend a pleasant evening watching the sun set over the sea from the back terrace or during cooler times enjoy the interior of this lovely stone building. Approximately 14 kms from Agia Galini and the coast.
Lampini is altitude of 400 metres above sea level, means that one has a very pleasant climate especially during the summer months when some people would find the temperatuares at sea level too hot for comfortable living. The village has about 150 inhabitants and does have a traditional kafenion. However, it is only 800 sq metres from Mixorouma and less than 4 kms to Spili where all services and shops can be found and only 20 minutes drive to the city of Rethynon. This tiny hamlet is well maintained and there is a charming old church in the village which is dedicated to the Virgin Mary and a popular tourist stop and photographic opportunity. Life in the village is generally quiet although it does liven up during the weekends. Local cheese and honey is sold in a roadside cabin near the Mixorouma and is well worth stopping for.
Is a village very much set in the times of an era or two ago. It is still a place where the new age hippies like to congregate and reminisce. It is in fact a place which is very laid back and relaxed. The village doesn't appear to have any real roads, but no matter, you will find your way to the waterfront. Once you get there you find rather nice and really friendly tavernas line the beach and a variety of accommodation is available. The beach is a narrow strip and there are no formalized rows of sun umbrellas here. Everyone seems to come with the own beach mats or picnic blankets and umbrellas and pick their spot for the day. If you are lucky you may find and unoccupied tamarisk tree. While everyone talks about the lovely beach to the west, I personally really enjoy Lendas. With a tiny bit of imagination the old waterfront looks something like Mykonos waterfront must have looked. Unfortunately while some of these lovely old places are for sale, the Department of Archaeology makes it almost impossible for potential buyers to buy. There is a newly built small boat harbour nearby but it is the fabulous coastline, views and spirit of place that bring people. There are many permanent homes with about 100 permanent residents and there is a mini market which sells most things including fresh fruit and vegetables all year round. If beach camp fires and guitars appeal to you this is the place to be. It is about 2 hours drive from Heraklion airport and the nearest large town is Mires with all the necessary facilities.
LISTAROS Listaros is approximately 200 metes above sea level in this south western area of the prefecture of Heraklio. At this pleasant altitude, just above the intense heat down at sea level, but low enough to enjoy the benefits of the very mild winters on the south side of Crete. Add to this; views over the lower end of the might Messara Plain, across the bay to Agia Galini and out to the Paximathia Islands. All this with a backdrop of the Psiloritis mountains, and you have a truly beautiful part of Crete. The village is so well situated only 3 kms away from the village of Sivas, with all the charm and bustle of a country village with tavernas known for the excellent food and a mixture of visitors who wish to visit the cultural sites in the area. 10 mins drive to Matala, with its beautiful sandy beach, characterful seafront and historical caves. About the town itself, it dates back to ancient times and currently has been revived by the cosmopolitan mix of foreigners who have restored or built homes in the area. There is currently one taverna-bar which operates all year round. It is approximately 65 kms to the airport on a good road to Heraklion.
Most people who visit Matala go to see the caves which are entirely man made an carved into the sandstone cliffs on the western side of the bay. They really are worth a visit. When you climb up and look inside, it is fascinating to see that each cave is completely different. Beds and even pillows are carved out of the stone. One thing that is the same throughout all of the caves is the absolutely stunning view of the beach in this rather unique small bay. No wonder the ‚??hippies‚?Ě moved into the caves during the 70‚??s and stayed. Amongst the well known names was Joni Mitchell and Cat Stevens.The hippie rave still takes place annually and draws up to 10000 people to party on the beach! Matala seems like a really small town once you get there, but there is a good collection of shops selling all kinds of goods manufactured on Crete, from light cotton clothing to truly beautiful pottery. There is a really comfortable feeling about the village mainly because the traffic is severely restricted in the central village as most cars and buses are parked on the outer edge of the village. The village is also inundated with tourist buses during the day time, but the evenings it is really just the people who are staying either as residents or tourists on holiday and there is a really good atmosphere. The tavernas are good and food is available in every price range. The beach is the gem of Matala. The local authorities are also very good about keeping their beach and even the sand clean. As one heads down towards Matala, one seems to pass many hotels, but don‚??t let this deter you it still is a lovely place and come sunset time, all the bars have a terrace for you to enjoy this spectacular sight as the sun sinks into the sea. The turn off to Matala is clearly marked from the main road from Heraklion which is 75 kms away. From Mires onward it is an easy and gentle drive through the olive groves and through the village of Pitsidia down to Matala.
The village belongs to the municipality of Lambi and has 790 inhabitants. It is located at the 51st km on the road Rethymnon-Spili-Melambes-Timbaki. It lies at an altitude of 570 m above sea-level, in the valley between Mount Kedros (1777 m) and Mount Vouvala (947 m). The village is mentioned by name in the Venetian censi.In 1881; it is the seat of the municipality of Melambes and has several hundred inhabitants. Below Melambes, at a place called Kouroi, there was a temple dedicated to Elektra, hence the name of the river Elektras. The village boasts a wonderful village square with Venetian lion head fountain. Where one can sit of an evening in the local cafe-neo under the cool shade of a plane tree. It has a community of both Cretans and foreigners as it give all the joys of village life as well as being only 15 minutes drive from a the beautiful resort of Agia Galini and 6kms to the nearest beach at Agios Giorgos. It is a large village as Cretan villages go and . It has all the necessities of everyday life available. Bakers, Mini-markets, caf-neos. The village also hosts a football playing field and a school so is ideal for families. The streets are narrow and windy and are a maze of whitewashed village houses. Many of the young children from the families in Agia Galini are sent here to their grandparents during the summer months as their parents work in their various businesses in the resort. . This is getting to be a popular village for those who want to buy property at reasonable prices for renovation. It has a wonderful country feel and looks out to the Psiloritis and Kendros mountains.
Morne is one of those village most people think they don't know but in fact if you travelling along the road from Rethymnon to Spili and beyond you will have noticed this village visible on a hillside both before and after Spili. There are some beautiful houses with interesting architecture probably around 250 years old and many have been beautifully restored. The friendly locals will give you unsolicited praise and advice on all matters whether you understand or not. They are extremely generous and love to share what they have from their gardens/allotments or produce, like their own raki or wine. There is a small English speaking foreign community so if you do not speak Greek you will still find someone to speak to. Morne is well positioned, being only half an hours drive from Rethymnon, and you have a fabulous choice of beaches available, all 25 -35 minutes away. To the east there are Ligres, Akoumia, Triopetra, and Agia Galini beaches. To the west you have Preveli , Skinaria, Amoudi, and Plakias. Alternatively the mountains are only a short drive away if you take the Gerakari road from Spili. There are also many pleasant walks to be had around the village or along tracks or lanes to nearby villages. A favourite walk is from Mixorouma to Frati enjoying the views of the gorge from there. There are approximately 240 inhabitants and it is 34 kms from Rethymnon and only 4kms from Spili.
The tiny hamlet of Orne has only 123 permanent inhabitants. For the moment the easiest way to get there is to turn of the main Rethymnon-Agia Galini road at Krea Vrisses, the road is well sign posted. The drive down is a winding tarred road amongst large well established olive trees and there is barely any traffic. Once one gets to the village one seems that every lane ends up in someones back yard, but one is always helped and guided on ones way through or past the village. While would imagine this road ends here, it does in fact carry on across to the villages of the Amari Valley. There is also an dirt road which links one to the main road down to Agia Galini. I understand that funds have been approved to hard top this road which would mean one would only be approximately 8 kms from Agia Galini. Being at a elevation of 300 metres above sea level, the climate is ideal, not too hot during the summer, but lovely and warm in the winter as basks in the afternoon sun. As one of Agia Galini's satellite villages, properties will increase in value quite sharply once the road is tarred.
This is such a tiny village and really quaint and lovely. The houses that are being restored are all beautifully done and the village is well cared for. If you go through during the day you would think no one at all stays there it is so quiet. The younger people work in the large town of Mires only 4.5 kms away and the rest are out working in their fields. The buildings are so interesting, some homes have beautiful courtyards or terraces and everyone keeps their gardens looking colourful and charming. It is 3 kms to Pombia and approximately 4kms to The large town of Mires with all services. In the area are Phaestos, Zoros with it fresh water trout restaurants, and the Faneromeni lake.
This lovely village has 600 inhabitants and is spread out over a large area and up against the side of a hill. Depending on where you are in the village you can have beautiful views of the sea, the Paximathia islands and enjoy the magnificent sunsets as the sun sets into the sea. There are several small supermarkets, a bakery and butchery and numerous tavernas and coffee shops. The village is a few 3 kilometres from the well known resort of Matala, but it a much quieter and relaxed place. The nearest beach is Kommos which is beautiful long sandy beach less than 1km away. Pitsidia is 3km from Matala from Kamilari. The nearest large towns with all services are Timbaki or Mires both approximately 10kms away. It is about 65 kmss to the airport. There is quite a number of foreigners who have made Pitsidia their permanent or holiday home having fallen in love with the town and the way of life.
Plakias is now a renowned resort because of its natural beauty and beautiful beaches and dramatic surrounding countryside. This is a resort that appeals to every age group. The long beautiful sandy beach has a shallow shelf which makes it safe and easy for everyone to enjoy swimming or just splashing around. The village is mainly level which makes walking or cycling everywhere very easy and there is a long promenade which stretches the length of the bay. The small boat harbour is charming and allows for boat trips to Preveli and for fishermen to bring in their catch. The tavernas and bars in the port area are directly alongside the seashore and just marvelous for a relaxing time. For walkers of cyclists it is a paradise and there are books published and locally available giving one details of the walks in the area. The nearby villages of Mirthios and Selia offer fantastic views of Plakias and the bay and are within walking distance for even the average walker. Snorkelling in the bay is good and there is a diving school in the area. Accommodation wise, there is something for every budget from camping to really pleasant hotel accommodation. As Plakias has developed, more facilities have become available and nowadays there are supermarkets, a vegetable shop and butchery which stay open all year round. The permanent residents number approximately 250 but that is about to change as the property developments under construction are completed and many more people will make this a long term holiday or permanent home. It is understandable that many more people want to spend much more time here. Plakias is only 36 kms from Rethymnon and 112 to Heraklion and the airport.
A surprisingly large agricultural village with approximately 1000 inhabitants. As one drives through Pombia, one gets the feeling of a really traditional village and there are always men having their coffees outside several tavernas watching the world go by. Pombia is a central village with signs leading off in every direction. There are roads linking many other villages, Mires, Lendas, Kali Limines, Matala and several more towns. One passes through here to get to Lendas on the coast. The village is about 10 minutes drive from the nearest beach, but it is a short easy ride across the Messara Plain to any of the beaches and Kommos, Kalamaki and Matala. It is also a gentle easy ride to the large town of Mires, one could easily do this on a scooter or even a bicyle. From the village there are beautiful views up and down the Messara plain with its thousands of olive trees and across to the Psiloritis mountains. It has several tavernas, many coffee shops, a bakery and most stores, but the large town of Mires with all services is only 4kms away. It is only just over 1 hours drive to Heraklion and there are many places of interest in the area of interest both as a tourist or as a permanent resident.
The rather small pretty village of Rodakino is directly alongside the south coast road linking Plakias with Hora Sfakion. The village itself is small with only a few kafeneions and while new homes have been built in the area to enjoy the beautiful sea views, the main reason people come to Rodakino is the beach resort of Koraka which is nowadays referred to as Rodakino beach, as it is only 1,5 kms away from the village. There are several tavernas down on the beach. The beach itself is lovely white sand, and a gentle slope and one feels like one is a million miles away from the rush of any city or large resort although Rethymnon city is only 42 kms away. It truly is a relaxing and peaceful place and the surrounding countryside is spectacular.
This dreamy traditional Cretan village rests on a hill side at 600metres above sea level. Saktouria is divided into an upper and lower village. The population in total being about 350 which increases in summer as all the families who live away in Athens and other places come home for holidays in August. The first thing that is sticking about this village is the wonderful view down to the sea, the beach of Trio Petra and the coast line as far as Xora Skafia. It hosts traditional white washed houses a church and two cafe neons. It is a country village and most of the inhabitants have land that they farm, so during at the break of day in the summer months the villagers are up and about going to work their land, tend there amimals or doing chores around the house while it is still cool. In the afternoon it is quiet and then in the evenings most of the villagers emerge to gather for a chat . There are also a few stills and it is renowned for its excellent raki. Every year when the grapes have been collected and the stills are bubbling away it is customary for all passers bye to stop and partake in a glass or two. Needless to say this is a very jolly time. Not so long ago this was an area for the production of silk and there are many mulberry trees at the back end of the village. Sadly this trade came to an end as the silk from Thiland and other areas could be produced at a much lower cost. The village is services daily by sellers of fresh bread, fish, vegetables, cheese, yogurt and honey. Their arrival is announced by the tannoys playing Cretan music. These are wonderful fresh produce, the land around Saktouria is also famous for its wild mushrooms which are very sought after and during November there is a scramble to collect them. Daily you can see the local women walking the land early in the morning collection their wild Horta which is like wild spinach to cook with their daily meal. The villagers are friendly and accommodating and there are a small handful of foreign community now in permeant residence. This village is within a short drive from some of the most beautiful beaches on the south coast. It is only 10 minutes drive to the nearest beach of Agios Pavlos, 15 minutes drive to the beautiful beaches at Trio Petra and Akoumia and 15 minutes drive to the resort of Agia Galini. As this village is quite high up it enjoys cooler temperatures during the summer months sometimes as much as 5 degrees less than those villages along the coast and at sea level, this makes it very pleasant. The sunsets are quite spectacular and in the winter one can see the snow capped White Mountains in the distance. It is approximately one and a half hours to the airport in Heraklion and one hour to the city of Rethymnon on the north coast. There is also a regular bus which goes to Agia Galini and Rethymnon.
A wonderful mountain village 430 metres above sea level at the foot hills of mt. Vorizi in the Kendros range. It is located 30 kilometers from Rethymnon in the north. Due to it's location it offers fabulous views and is surrounded by luscious vegetation. A wonderful area for trekking and nature lovers. The main square is in the middle of the village and is backed by Spili's famous lion head Venetian fountains, gushing out the coolest clearest water. Many people drive to spili just to fill up their water containers as this water as been certified. Spili also hosts the bishop's palace and monastery which is an impressive building on your right as you enter the village from the north. At the other end of the village it hosts a medical clinic which is excellent. There are three schools in the village which means that there is a year round community. The main street which runs through Spili is filled with shops selling linen goods and rugs which attract many foreign shoppers who come for day trips during the summer months. There are numerous caf-neos , taverns and coffee shops and all the necessities one needs like mini market, bakeries, bank, pharmacy and hairdressers etc., Various festivals take place throughout the year and every second year it host a music festival during the month of August. In the winter months there is usually a free Greek language and dance tuition on offer. This is a traditional Cretan village and the villagers live and carry on with their life as they have done down the ages. They collect horta, grow vegetables and raise chickens and also you can see a few donkeys carrying their loads through out the day. There is also an organic shop selling vegetables and wonderful ointments and creams made locally from l organic oils and herbs there is also therapeutic treatments available. Spili has always attracted arty people and there is quite a foreign community who have bought and tastefully restored old village stone houses. This is a wonderful village to set down roots for a relaxed and easy lifestyle where one can savour all the aspects of village life while having every facility close by.
Water melons being sold off the back of trucks, bustling traffic, motor bikes doing wheelies down the main road, are some of the fascinating things about Timbaki. Driving through one would find this a rather industrial looking town, but the lovely green town square only a few metres back from the main road has people on it at all hours of the day and night and is a really pleasant place to spend some time. Local and foreign newspapers can be bought here. Timbaki is the central town for many of the small towns in the surrounding area and offers almost all services. It is a large town that has everything to support the inhabitants including several banks, dentists, doctors, pharmacies and of course many shops. It is less than 2kms to the sandy beach at Kokkinos Pirgos with its crystal clear water.. This area enjoys an exceptionally mild climate which is why it is ideal for fruit and vegetable production the main income in the area. Being directly on the route to Heraklion or Rethymnon it is conveniently situated and bus connections are easy and plentiful. Just over 1 hours drive to Heraklion.
The picturesque village of Zaros known for its spring water which is bottled and sold all over Crete. It is an area of great natural beauty and a walker‚??s paradise. Above the village is the wonderful gorge of Rufus, which attracts trekkers during the tourist season. There is a small lake at the foothills of Mount Idi on the edge of the village with several trout tavernas offering superb meals. The village has all the necessary amenities for every day life which include Banking, a health centre, post office, pharmacy and supermarket. There are many shops selling traditionally made items including lyres, local herbs and teas etc. It has an abundance of good restaurants and coffee shops. The altitude is 340m above sea level, which makes it pleasant during the very hot summer months and makes year round gardening a rewarding pleasure. The nearest large town of Mires is only 10kms It is just under an hours drive to Heraklion (45 kms). There is a regular bus service to Heraklion and Mires.