At the beginning of the 70’s, the archaeologist Marinatos discovered the well preserved remains of a Minoan city. Was Santorini the lost Atlantis? No one can be absolutely sure, but on this tour we can show you the places where history and myth were born.
Day 1: Welcome to Crete
Arrival at the airport of Heraklion where you are greeted by your guide and transferred to your hotel in the area of Heraklion. After rooms have been allocated we meet for a welcoming cocktail and to go over the details of the programme.
Day 2: Knossos and archaeological museum
Your excursion begins from Knossos, the largest Minoan Palace, which is situated only a few minutes from Heraklion. The tour is simply fascinating giving you a detailed insight into the history the Minoan civilization under the reign of Kind Minos as well as the mythology connected to the Palace and Minotaur. You then continue the tour in the archaeological Museum in Heraklion where the largest collection of Minoan artifacts is displayed. In the afternoon you can take a walk through the centre of Heraklion.
Day 3: Monastery of Arkadi - Rethymnon and Chania (approx. 150km)
Today you travel along the the north coast to the monastery of Arkadi, the national sanctuary of Crete, where you can visit the the church and the museum. You then continue to Rethymnon, where traces from the east and west coexist in complete Harmony. A walk through the old town will take you to the Rimondi-fountain and to the Venetian Castle. In the afternoon you drive a bit further to Chania. A walk through the attractive old town and the picturesque harbor where you can have dinner. Overnight stay in Chania.
Day 4: Samaria Gorge (approx. 120km)
You have an early morning start, driving through a breathtaking landscape high up into the Omalos-Plateau overlooking the deep, steeply-carved Samaria Gorge. With good weather circumstances, the Gorge is a 5-hour walk approximately bringing you to the south coast at the beautiful beach of Agia Roumeli. After a relaxing swim you catch the ferry boat over to the Chora Sfakion where your bus will be waiting to take you to your hotel in Rethymnon. Overnight stay in Rethymnon.
Day 5: Via Festos to Heraklion (ca. 200 km)
This trip takes you over the Kedros Mountains to the Messara plain, the biggest and most fertile plain of the island, where you can visit the archaeological site of Agia Triada. From there you continue to the famous beach of Matala with the numerous caves and crystal clear waters of the Libyan Sea. After a swim in Matala you continue to Gortys, the old Roman capital of Crete, where the first law texts were found. On the return trip to Heraklion you pass the village of Agii Deka.
Day 6: Daytrip to Santorini
In the morning you get the ferry from Heraklion to the volcanic island of Santorini. When entering the flooded Caldera of Santorini you can see just how powerful the explosion that destroyed Santorini and the Minoan civilization 3500 years ago was. The rest of the day is free for you to explore the island’s capital. Overnight stay in Santorini.
Day 7: Akrotiri and Fira (approx. 22km)
Today you go to Akrotiri to visit the archaeological site of the Minoan town, that was discovered in the early 70’s and is believed by some archaeologists to be the lost Atlantis. After that you continue to the capital of the island, Thira, for a guided tour in the archaeological museum. You then take a walk through the attractive town with the narrow winding streets and the pretty white houses. You can also visit the crater edge in Oia where hundreds of people gather every day to watch the sunset..
Day 8: Volcanic Islands Kameni and Thirasia
This day is free for you to spend as you like. As an alternative we suggest a boat trip to the volcanic island Kameni where you can walk around the crater that was created in 1925 and from there to the islands New Kameni and Thirasia where you explore the capital Manolas before returning to Santorini.
Day 9: Returning to Crete (approx 70km)
You take the ferry during the day back to Crete and are transferred upon arrival in Heraklion to your hotel in Agios Nikolaos. The rest of the day is free. Upon request a Cretan folklore night can be organized for you with traditional delicacies and wine as well as Cretan music and dancing, creating a very festive atmosphere!
Day 10: Eastern Crete (approx. 200km)
Your excursion begins with Gournia where you visit the Minoan city. From here you continue to the Minoan Palace of Kato Zakros on the east coast. On the way back you can visit the the Venetian monastery of Toplou and stop for coffee at the pretty harbor village of Sitia before returning to your hotel in Agios Nikolaos.
Day 11: Lasithi Plateau (approx. 104km)
On your way to the Lasithi Plateau you stop in Malia to see the Minoan Palace and continue to the Monastery Kera. You then arrive at the Plateau with the hundreds of windmills and visit the famous Dikti-Cave, where – according to myth – Zeus, the father of the Greek gods, was born. You then return to your hotel in Agios Nikolaos and have the free.
Day 12: Return flight
Transfer to the airport of Heraklion for your return flight. Extending of your stay is possible upon request.