Why choose a cruise to Chania?
Chania is widely regarded as one of Greece’s most enchanting towns, and it’s easy to see why. It has a picturesque old town of winding streets and colourful houses, leading down to a Venetian harbour. You can even take a horse-drawn carriage if you want to sightsee in style.
A Chania cruise also enables you to experience Crete’s stunning natural beauty. Chania is surrounded by pristine Blue Flag beaches, while the sublime Samaria Gorge is less than 10 miles away, encircled by the majestic peaks of the White Mountains.
A guide to Chania’s hotspots
You’ll be beguiled by Chania’s old town, which bears traces of Turkish and Venetian influences in its brightly coloured buildings, many of which have been transformed into boutique hotels or one-off shops. Sip a cocktail in the courtyard of a former monastery, or visit Stivanadika, an entire street devoted to selling leather products.
Chania has a fascinating regional cuisine, and many local restaurants where you can try it. Foodies will love Agora, the covered market, where bustling stalls sell regional produce. At the market and along the harbour you’ll find restaurants selling local dishes. Look out for loukoumades (fried doughnuts drenched in honey), stuffed calamari and delicious braised octopus with wild asparagus.
If you can tear yourself away from Chania, we recommend a trip to Samaria Gorge, a World Biosphere Reserve just 10 miles away. This steep gorge is surrounded by steep limestone cliffs, and a clear blue river winds through the centre, bisected by wooden bridges. It’s a great spot for hiking, or just taking photos.
You’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to beaches. The closest to Chania is the appropriately named Golden Beach, a gorgeous sandy bay with a blue flag designation. For something really special, visit Balos, a stunning beach with pink-tinted sand and vibrant turquoise waters. It’s just over an hour away from Chania.
Cruise lines that sail to the port of Chania
The best time to visit Chania
If you want a holiday of hot, sunny days and warm nights, visit Chania during July and August. You’ll experience cloudless skies and temperatures averaging 25°C (although with highs of 30°C, make sure you pack sun-screen).
Winters in Chania are warm, with temperatures averaging 13°C in December. With its illuminated houses and seaside carolling, Chania makes an ideal Christmas destination. You won’t be able to miss the annual Santa run, where hundreds of runners dressed as Santa Claus throng the streets.
Did you know?
· Lonely Planet describes Chania as ‘the most evocative town in Crete’
· When Aristotle Onassis got engaged to Jackie Kennedy in 1969 he tried to buy her Chania’s Venetian Harbour for her as a wedding present
· Chania is surrounded by vineyards and renowned for its delicious wine