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Heraklion Crete Map & Heraklion Travel Information, Sightseeing, Attractions in Heraklion Crete

Heraklion (Iraklion) Crete, Greece


Heraklion Region Crete Greece
Heraklion Crete Greece is located between the prefectures of Rethymnon and Lassithi. It is comprised of seven counties: Temenos, Viannos, Malevizios, Pyrgiotissa, Kenourgio, Pediada and Monofatsio. The prefecture lies between the mountains of Psiloritis and Dikti and therefore has mountainous terrain. Heraklion (Iraklion) is the most cosmopolitan and densely populated prefecture of the island of Crete Greece. It used to be the most important center of the Minoan civilization, and the Municipality of Heraklion has managed to preserve the archaeological integrity of precious monuments and sites. The prefecture is characterised by mild climate making it the perfect place for vacations throughout the year. During the summer, which is the high tourist season, Heraklion is host to thousands of visitors from all over the world.

Heraklion, Crete Greece Area / Population / Capital:
Heraklion (Iraklion) Crete occupies an area of 2011, it has 265,000 inhabitants and Heraklion city is the capital of the prefecture.

Attractions & Sightseeing in Heraklion, Crete

Sightseeing in Heraklion (Iraklion), Crete Greece:
If you have come for sightseeing in Heraklion, Crete, you have selected the right place. In the prefecture of Heraklion, we recommend visiting:
The Koules Castle, the Venetian Walls, the churches of Agios Titos, Agios Markos, Agios Minas, the Minoan Graves, the Medieval Monastery of Agarathos and the fountains of Priouli and Bembo in Heraklion Town.

You can also visit:

  • Knossos Minoan Palace
  • Ancient Amnissos
  • Malia Palace & Cemetery
  • Phaestos Minoan Palace
  • The monastery of Apanosifi and the ruins of Rizinia in Agia Varvara
  • The Post-Minoan Graves in Agia Pelagia
  • The Monastery of Panagia Odigitria in Kali Limenes
  • The Tilissos Minoan Site
  • The Archaeological Site in Hersonissos
  • The house of Dominikos Theotokopoulos (El Greco) in Fodele

Museums in Heraklion Crete:
There are some fantastic museums in Heraklion Crete that are worth visiting, such as:

  • The Archaeological, Historical, Ecclesiastical Museums and the Museum of Natural History in Heraklion Town
  • The private collections of Kastrinogiannis, Kafatos and Kazantzakis
  • The museum in Ancient Gortyna
  • The “Lichnostatis” Folklore Museum in Hersonissos

Natural Sites in Heraklion Crete:
Natural sites are also abundant in Heraklion Crete enchanting all visitors:

  • The rock, also known as "Drakos" in Agios Miron village
  • The Minoan Cave-Sanctuary in Arkalochori
  • The "Chosto Nero" Cave in Archanes
  • The "Sarhos" Cave in Asites
  • The canyon that extends from Viannos to Amiras and the "Vigla" Cave in Viannos
  • The "Kamares" Cave and the canyon in Zaros
  • The Caves in Matala

Sports / Recreation in Heraklion Crete
For loads of fun in the water you can visit the water park "Anopolis" in Chani Kokkini and the private water park in Limenas, Hersonissos.

If you like mountain climbing, Mt. Psiloritis is the ideal site for the sport. In the region of Prinos, there is a lodge awaiting all mountaineers. You can contact Heraklion Mountaineering Club at +30 2810 227-609.

If you have a boat, you can dock and refuel it at the marina in Heraklion Town or at Hersonissos Port.

Entertainment in Heraklion Crete

Throughout the prefecture of Heraklion Crete Greece, there are tavernas where you can try traditional delicacies like dakos salad, kalitsounia, apaki smoked meat, staka cheese, traditionally-cooked snails, and more. You can also find cafeterias, bars and clubs, especially in Heraklion Town and Hersonissos.

Local Events in Heraklion Crete:

  • The summer cultural events "Heraklion - Kalokairi" that take place in the garden - theatre "Kazantzakis" in Heraklion Town
  • The floriculture competition in Varvari
  • The festival of Panagia on August 15 in Rodia
  • The festival of Agios Ioannis Klidonas on June 24 in Agios Miron, fruit and tsikoudia are offered
  • The two – day cultural event in September and the festival of Metamorphosis on August 6 in Arkalohori
  • The various cultural events and the festival of the grape of Archanes in August in Archanes
  • Three – day cultural events in August and the memorial for the 820 inhabitants that where executed, on September 14 in Viannos
  • The festival of the cherry in May in Krousonas
  • Cultural events during July and August, in Mires, Festos and Tibaki
  • The festival of Panagia on August 15 in Hersonissoss

Local Products of Heraklion Crete:
In the prefecture of Heraklion, you can buy oil, wine, tsikoudia, olives, raisins, fruits, honey, herbs, various cheeses and sausages. There are traditional shops in Heraklion Town that sell leather products, belts, stivania and knives. Weavings and rugs can be purchased in Zaros, while pop art products are sold in Arolithos.

Major Towns / Cities / Villages in Heraklion Crete Greece
Heraklion Town, Crete Greece
Heraklion Town has a multifaceted character that is reflected throughout the attractive town. Cosmopolitan and picturesque, Heraklion Town combines modern lifestyle with superb natural setting and impressive archaeological sites, also offering many Heraklion Hotels for your accommodation.

Knossos, Heraklion Crete
The ancient town of Knossos is a breathtaking archaeological site that was the center of the Minoan civilization. At this site, visitors can see the largest Minoan Palace in Crete.

Matala, Heraklion Crete
Matala is a small fisherman's settlement that was the national center of the hippies during 60s and 70s. Nowadays, Matala is a popular tourist center, famous for its natural caves.

Phaestos, Heraklion Crete
The ancient town of Phaestos is a very important archaeological site where you can find another grand Minoan Palace and an exquisite Minoan Cottage.

Hersonissos, Heraklion Crete
Hersonissos is the most organized tourist resort in the Heraklion Prefecture, with endless beaches and superb nightlife, especially during the high season, when the area is buzzing with excitement.

Malia, Heraklion Crete
Malia is a popular coastal settlement. Apart from its traditional characteristics, the settlement also has some archaeological sites. You should definitely visit the Minoan Palace, the Minoan Cemetery and the Monastery of Panagia Galatiani. The area is also well-known for the stimulating nightlife and the party atmosphere.


The island of Dia.
Dia is a craggy islet, located 7 nautical miles from Heraklion Crete Greece. The island has a breeding facility for the Cretan wild goat. In July, an important festival takes place in the church of Analipsi. You can reach the Dia by trawler.

Transportation in Heraklion Crete

By Ferry Boat:
From Piraeus Port, ferries depart for Heraklion Crete Greece throughout the year, but more frequently during the summer. The voyage from Piraeus Port to Heraklion Port takes 10 hours and 30 minutes. From Thessaloniki, there are ferries that depart for Heraklion Port. The voyage from Thessaloniki Port to Heraklion Port takes 21 hours. Heraklion Crete is also connected to the Dodecanese Islands and the Cyclades Islands.

Heraklion Crete Sea Travel Information:

  • Piraeus Port: +30 210 422-6000 to 03
  • Heraklion Port: +30 2810 244-912
  • Thessaloniki Port: +30 2310 531-505

By Airplane:
From the Athens Airport “Eleftherios Venizelos” in Spata, there are flights to the Heraklion Town all year round. The flight lasts approximately 1 hour. The Heraklion Airport “Nikos Kazantzakis” is located 5 km from the center of Heraklion Town. Heraklion is also connected to Thessaloniki Rhodes and Santorini.

Heraklion Crete Air Travel Information:

  • Heraklion Airport: +30 2810 245-644
  • Olympic Airways in Athens: +30 210 966-6666
  • Olympic Airways in Heraklion: +30 2810 244-802

By Bus:
From Thessaloniki, buses depart for Pireaus to board a ferry boat to Heraklion Crete. Heraklion is also connected by bus to the other prefectures of Crete Greece.

Heraklion Crete Bus Travel Information:

  • Thessaloniki Bus station for buses to Heraklion Crete: +30 2310 595-424
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