Information about the Villages of Crete island, in Greece but also information about villages in many locations of the island: Crete is highly-appreciated for its rich history, the age-old traditions and hospitable people, characteristics that are spread out across all Crete villages. The stunning landscape and the rich diversity of the scenery make Crete one of the most outstanding destinations in Greece that draws the attention of all visitors.
The beautifully preserved Cretan villages have ancient roots that go back in history. The largest towns, including Chania, Rethymno and Heraklion, are found in the northern coasts of the island. Although they were originally established in the ancient times, these towns mostly developed during and after the Venetian times, which is why their architecture has very evident Venetian and Ottoman features.
In fact, many towns and villages in Crete have Venetian and Ottoman features, including castles, towers, stone bridges, churches and mosques. Other places located up in the mountains have a characteristic architecture with stone houses, red-tiled roofs, narrow streets, flowered gardens and always a square with a church in the center of every village.
List of best villages and photos
Here are some of the best villages in Crete island: Towns of Chania and Rethymno, Anogia in Rethymno, Agios Nikolaos in Lassithi, and more.
1. Chania Town in Chania Crete
Chania Town is probably the most beautiful town in Crete. The Old Town of Chania, with the evident Medieval style, is a wonderful place to walk around, lined up with elegant Venetian mansions. The old port is the most picturesque spot of Chania Town and gets very busy especially in the evenings, when the soft lights create a romantic Medieval setting.
2. Sfakia village in Chania Crete
Located on the southern side of Crete, Sfakia is among the picturesque villages on the island. This small seaside village with the traditional style has a lovely fishing port and pebbled beaches in the region. In short distance from the seaside village of Sfakia is the mountainous village of Chora Sfakion, a secluded village that still keeps intact its costumes.
3. Rethymno Town in Rethymno Crete
The Town of Rethymno is located on the northern side of Crete and, like all major Crete towns, it has an evident Venetian style. A walk around Rethymno Town will bring you to old churches, elegant mansions, interesting museums and a picturesque port. On the hill above Rethymno Town is a Venetian Fortress, locally called Fortezza, offering fantastic view to the sea and the town.
4. Agios Nikolaos town in Lassithi Crete
Located on the eastern side of Crete island, Agios Nikolaos is the capital town of Lassithi. This is a lovely seaside town that also has a sealake next to the port. Although the town is developing in tourism, it has still kept its traditional style. Except for a beautiful place to explore by foot, Agios Nikolaos is a convenient base for excursions in eastern Crete.
5. Anogia village in Rethymno Crete
With pure traditional architecture and evident local costumes, Anogia is one of the most picturesque villages in Crete. Located in an hour drive from Rethymno Town, this village is famous for its long tradition in Cretan singers. A large festival called Yakithia takes place in this village every July, attracting many visitors to Anogia.
6. Archanes village in Heraklion Crete
Located 30 min drive from Heraklion Town, the mountainous village of Archanes is a lovely place with traditional architecture and alive traditions. A large plane tree is found at the main square, creating a refreshing atmosphere in summer. At the close village of Houdetsi, the wonderful Houdetsi Festival is organized every summer by Ross Daly.