All 28 Heraklion Sightseeing

Here are all the Heraklion sightseeing that we suggest. Have a look on various attractions that you can see during your visit in Heraklion, such as churches, monasteries, museums, castles and other sights.

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All sightseeing in Heraklion

Located at a distance of 5 km from Hersonissos, this is an amazing waterpark with lots of games for all ages, including Black Holes, Octopus Spacebowl, Kamikaze Hydrotube, and others.

Location: Town
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The church of Agia Ekaterini of Sinaites was built in the 16th century by the Venetians and during the Ottoman rule, it was converted into a mosque. The church is located in the heart of the town, next to the church of Agios Minas.

Agios Minas
Location: Town

This impressive church in the heart of the town is the cathedral of Heraklion Town. It was constructed during 1862-1895 next to the smaller church dedicated to Agios Minas.

Location: Town
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The church of Agios Titos was originally constructed in the 10th century by the Byzantines. Later on, it was renovated by the Venetians and when Crete was conquered by the Ottomans, it was turned into a mosque. This is where the skull of Saint Titus is guarded.

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Rizinia is the ancient town of Prinias, located about halfway between Gortyn and Knossos. This archaeological site has revealed a 7th century BC temple that has striking similarities to the Egyptian architecture.

Location: Hersonisos village

This small Aqualand was created in 1995 by the private initiative of John McLaren. It hosts sea species, reptiles, and other animals.

This cave was used as a place for worship of the goddess Eileithyia (truth), who was protecting childbirth. During Early Christian times, the Christians were using this cave to hide and practice their religion, while in the Minoan times it was also used for cult rituals. The cave lays 7 km east of Heraklion Town.

El Greco Museum
Location: Town

Close to the Gate of Bethlehem, in the Venetian Walls of Heraklion, a new museum recently opened dedicated to the famous Cretan painter Domenicos Theotokopoulos, also known as "El Greco". He was born in Heraklion in 1542 but worked and died in Spain in 1614. The museum includes copies of his paintings and costumes of the awarded movie "El Greco" (2007), directed by the Greek director Iannis Smaragdis.

Location: Myrtia

This museum is housed in a modern building in Myrtia. Nikos Kazantzakis was born in Heraklion and is considered to be one of the most important Greek writers of the 20th century.

Location: Hersonisos village

Located in the village of Hersonissos, east of Heraklion, this museum offers an original and creative approach to the culture and nature of Crete. Frequently it organizes many cultural events, such as educational seminars for kids, audiovisual performances or traditional dancing events.

Location: Peza

Minos Winery was the first to bottle the delicious wine of Crete. Its premises in Peza, about 18 km southeast of Heraklion Town, also work as a museum and visitors can see the wine production process and buy local products.

Monastery of Agia Irini
Location: Kroussonas
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Located high up in the mountains, the Monastery of Agia Irini in Kroussonas probably dates from the Venetian period. It was destroyed during the Turkish occupation but it was later rebuilt in 1940. Today the monastery is still active.

Monastery of Koudoumas
Location: Koudoumas
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The Monastery of Koudoumas is located in southern Crete, close to the bay of Tris Klisies. It was constructed in the 19th century and it is dedicated to Virgin Mary and celebrates on August 15th.

Monastery of Vrontissi
Location: Zaros
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The Monastery of Agios Antonios Vrontissi is situated close to the village of Zaros, in southern Heraklion. It is a male monastery and its location gives a great view to the Gulf of Messara and Asteroussia Mountains.

Location: Mires

The Monastery of Panagia Kaliviani is located close to Mires village, on the south western side of Heraklion Crete. This is a relatively modern monastery, as it was probably built in the early 20th century.

This beautiful cave can be reached on foot from Skoteino village. It used to be an important sanctuary in the Minoan times. Outside the cave, there is a nice chapel of Agia Paraskevi and a celebration is performed there on 26th July, the name day of the saint.

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The Minoan Palace of Knossos lays about 5 km south of Heraklion Town. This is the most famous and largest Minoan site in Greece. Discovered in the early 20th century by the British archaeologist Sir Arthur Evans, the site was found almost intact and covered by ashes. This led scientists to believe that the palace was destroyed by a tsunami wave caused by the volcanic eruption of Santorini in 1,550 BC.

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Koules Fortress is the symbol of Heraklion Town. It stands at the entrance of the port and dominates over the lovely Venetian harbor. The fortress was originally built by the Venetians in the 13th century but then it underwent many transformations by the Ottomans, who ruled Crete till the late 19th century.

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The Minoan Palace of Phaistos is the second most important Minoan site in Crete, after Knossos. The design of the palace is a copy of Knossos, but on a smaller scale and without many labyrinths.

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The caves of Matala are formed in the rock formations right above the beach. They were used as residences in the prehistoric times and then as graves in the Hellenistic and the Roman period.

Location: Gouves
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Founded in 2005, this is the largest aquarium in the Mediterranean. It depicts marine life with upgraded and impressive presentations of natural landscapes, offering visitors a chance to see rare sea-living creatures.

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The Doric town of Gortyn was one of the strongest in ancient Crete. It lays 44 km south west of Heraklion, close to the villages Agioi Deka and Kasteli. The famous Minoan law code has been excavated on Gortyn as well as a superb Roman Odeon. The findings testify about the prosperity of the ancient city of Gortyn, which used to be an ally of Rome and the capital of Crete.

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The tomb of Nikos Kazantzakis is located outside the city walls, in Martinego Tower. On his tomb, the following words have been carved, as was his will: "I hope for nothing. I fear nothing. I am free".

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In the center of the town and close to the old port of Heraklion, there is an impressive building, the Venetian Loggia. This building of elegant architecture, that now houses the Town Hall, was constructed in the 17th century and was used as a meeting point for the noblemen.

Location: Town
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The Archaeological Museum of Heraklion Crete is one of the richest in collections. It houses findings exclusively from Crete and the most important collections come from Knossos, Phaestos, Gortyn, Aharnes and other ancient sites.

Byzantine Collection
Location: Town

This collection is housed in the beautiful 15th-century basilica of Saint Ekaterini, Heraklion Town. It houses valuable ecclesiastical items and rare Byzantine icons.

Location: Town

The Historical Museum of Heraklion was established in 1953 by the Society of Cretan Historical Studies. The museum presents the history and culture of Crete from the early Christian times till modern era.

Location: Town

The Natural History Museum of Crete allows visitors to see and experience the biodiversity of Crete. It is housed in a modern building at the port of Heraklion Town.

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The port of Heraklion
Lions of the Morosini fountain in the center of Heraklion.
Old bridge in Crete