Situated in the southern part of Greece, Crete island lies between the Aegean and the Libean Sea. It is actually the largest of the Greek islands and a very popular holiday destination. Every year, Crete welcomes thousands of tourists, who fly to the international airports of Heraklion and Chania so as to explore the unique charm and character of this island.
For many tourists, Crete also constitutes the point of departure for their vacation on other Greek islands. Here are the most famous itineraries for Crete island hopping.
Crete island hopping: from Heraklion to Santorini
Only 2 hours by boat separate the port of Heraklion in Crete from the unique island of Santorini. World famous for the still active volcano, the stunning caldera cliffs and the romantic sunsets, Santorini is a dream destination for everyone.
This popular island has beautiful beaches, characterized by red or black sand and volcanic rocks. Tourists can choose to stay in fantastic hotels in Santorini in one of the lovely quaint villages, which are scattered all along the caldera of Santorini and are built in the traditional Cycladic architectural style.
In summer, there is daily ferry from Heraklion to Santorini, but during the rest of the year the itineraries are not so frequent. From Santorini, visitors can continue their trip to the Cyclades, as there are ferries from Santorini to other popular islands, such as Mykonos, Paros, Naxos and Milos.
From Heraklion to Rhodes
Crete island hopping to Rhodes can be very easy. Three times per week during high season, a direct ferry schedule takes tourists from the port of Heraklion in Crete to the magnificent island of Rhodes. Rhodes is located in the southeast side of the Aegean Sea and constitutes one of the top summer destinations. There, historic sights and long-standing traditions combine with stunning natural landscapes and a vibrant nightlife, producing a unique result.
The distinct Medieval atmosphere of Rhodes Town with the Street of the Knights and the Palace of the Grand Master enchants all visitors. The long beaches with pure crystal waters, and the modern bars and restaurants further captivate tourists. Fantastic hotels in Rhodes are found along these beaches, while for something more special you can choose a boutique hotel in Rhodes Town or Lindos.
From Heraklion and Sitia to Karpathos
Another great boat trip from Crete is to the nearby island of Karpathos. Twice per week during the summer season, a ferry departs from Heraklion and arrives at this beautiful island, where tourists can explore the incredible golden beaches, the clear azure waters and the picturesque villages of the countryside. Pick a hotel by the sea and enjoy days of pure calmness.
Alternatively, tourists can start their Crete island hopping from Sitia. Situated in eastern Crete, in the region of Lassithi, Sitia is a little port at which the ferry stops on its way from Heraklion to Karpathos.
In close proximity to Karpathos, there is a very small island called Kassos. This is a peaceful destination, ideal for ultimate relaxation. It would be a good idea to include Kassos in your Crete island hopping plans, since the ferries from Heraklion and Sitia stop at Kassos before finally arriving at Karpathos.
From Kissamos Chania to Kythira
Another amazing Crete island hopping trip is to the secluded island of Kythira. A direct ferry schedule operates three times per week and takes tourists to Kythira from the small port of Kissamos, about an hour drive from Chania Town.
Lying just below the mainland region of Peloponnese, Kythira is a small yet beautiful island with magnificent mountain scenery, crystal turquoise waters, golden beaches and family hotels. The capital town called Chora is perfect for leisure strolls under the imposing Venetian Castle, which dates back to the 13th century.
Want to organize your Crete island hopping? Check our booking system for Greek ferry tickets!