Destination guide

Crete is rich in history

The Greek island of Crete dazzles with its crystal-clear water, stunning array of beautiful beaches and charming villages, nestled along the seashore and hidden in the craggy mountains. With exquisite Minoan palaces and towering medieval castles, Crete is steeped in history. The ancient treasures of Crete can be viewed in excellent museums that showcase fabulous Neolithic cave discoveries, intricate mosaic floors from Roman times and other cultural artifacts from the past 5,000 years. Crete vacation rentals are close to elegant places of worship, from Byzantine monasteries to Ottoman mosques, as well as the glorious natural wonders of this beautiful island.

Things to do

Gorgeous beaches and hiking trails in Crete

The island of Spinalonga, a former leper colony, is a fascinating day trip from Crete. Samaria Gorge is a spectacular area for hiking, winding from alpine forest to sheer cliffs that soar up nearly 1,000 feet. Some Crete vacation rentals are near ancient sites, where the breathtaking remains of Minoan societies can be viewed up close. Of Crete's many gorgeous beaches, Vai Beach is especially impressive, with the largest palm grove in Europe. Elafonisi dazzles with its pink sand and shallow lagoon, and you can wade across to a tiny, uninhabited island with a lighthouse and chapel.


Fairytale sites in Crete

With huge palm groves and glittering pink sand, Crete is home to an abundance of sites that feel like something out of a fairytale. Soaring mountains are divided by sheer cliffs and deep gorges that offer spectacular vistas for hiking. Crete vacation rentals provide a comfortable base from which to explore exquisite palaces, haunting ruins and Venetian fortresses. The coastline is dotted with picturesque villages and fishing harbors that are delightful spots for strolling and people-watching. Kids looking for fun will find it in 3 waterparks, where they can scream down waterslides and keep cool in the summer heat.


Mild winters and sunny summers in Crete

Crete, the largest island in Greece, enjoys a beautiful Mediterranean climate. Summers are characterized by blue skies, abundant sunshine and temperatures ranging from the low 70s to the mid-80s. Summer in Crete is dry and clear, an ideal time for exploring this beautiful island, with its silky beaches and rugged mountains. Winter temperatures run from the high 40s to low 60s. Winter is the rainy season, with most of the rainfall happening between October and March. Although winters on Crete are mild, brisk winds can intensify the cold, so be sure to bundle up if you're visiting in winter.

Natural features

Playful dolphins and wild goats in Crete

With majestic mountain ranges and sand beaches, Crete is a jewel of an island in the Aegean Sea. Situated north of Tobruk, Libya, and south of Athens, Greece, it is just west of Turkey. Separated from its nearest neighbors, Crete retains a unique environment. Among its soaring peaks and spectacular gorges are wild goats with huge curved horns, badgers, hedgehogs and long-haired sheep. In the surrounding sea, playful dolphins leap through the waves while whales swim in the distance. Mediterranean monk seals are occasionally seen lounging on the shore. Although sharks are plentiful, no attacks have been recorded.

Can I find a vacation rental around Crete?

Yes, our 2019 property listings offer a large selection of 6,989 vacation rentals near Crete. From 3,244 Villas to 1,568 Houses, find a unique house rental for you to enjoy a memorable stay with your family and friends. The best places to stay near Crete for a holiday or a weekend are on HomeAway.

What are the most popular destinations to visit in Crete?

There are many lovely places to stay for a holiday trip or just for a weekend in Crete. From HomeAway travelers, the most popular destinations to visit are:

  • Chania: 2,363 vacation rentals
  • Iraklio: 656 vacation rentals
  • Rethimno: 2,546 vacation rentals
  • Chania Region: 3,434 vacation rentals
  • Rethymno: 2,928 vacation rentals

And HomeAway offers you the chance to discover many other popular destinations in Crete! Please use our search bar to access the selection of vacation rentals available in other popular destinations.

What are the main cities to discover in Crete?

Whether you're traveling with family or friends, here are the cities with the largest selection of vacation rentals for a holiday trip or just for a weekend in Crete:

  • Chania: 2,363 rentals
  • Iraklio: 656 rentals
  • Rethimno: 2,546 rentals
  • Kastelli Kissamou: 821 rentals
  • Apokoronos: 2,515 rentals

For other cities, please use our search bar to access the selection of vacation rentals available.

Can I find easy-access vacation rentals when traveling by plane to Crete?

Yes of course. Our owners offer a large selection of vacation rentals near airports. The airports with a large selection of vacation rentals in Crete are:

  • Nikos Kazantzakis Airport (HER): 882 vacation rentals
  • Souda Airport (CHQ): 2,403 vacation rentals
  • Sitia Airport (JSH): 294 vacation rentals

For other airports, please use our search bar to access the selection of vacation rentals available.

Near which points of interest can I spend my holidays in Crete?

HomeAway offers a large selection of rentals near lovely places in Crete. From HomeAway travelers, the most popular points of interest to stay for a holiday trip or just for a weekend are:

  • Elafonisi Beach: 421 rentals
  • Rethymnon Venetian Port: 2,722 rentals
  • Falassarna Beach: 901 rentals
  • Chania Central Market: 2,519 rentals
  • Balos Beach: 837 rentals

But there are many other points of interest around Crete listed on HomeAway where you can find your place to stay. Just write your wanted destination in our search bar and have a look at our selection.