Crete or Mallorca? Where to go?

Old Mar 5th, 2014, 03:01 AM
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Crete or Mallorca? Where to go?

I'm planning a trip to the Mediterranean Sea for one week in May.

I'm considering Crete or Mallorca. I have never been to any of theese two island.
I like a mixture of everything - beaches, landscapes, food, nice towns etc.

I think the weather would be more or less the same in Crete and Mallorca.

Which of the two islands would you recommend?
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Old Mar 5th, 2014, 05:59 AM
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I have never been in Mallorca but I think Crete is a wonderful island, but it is much better in July and August. Nice Towns in Crete are Chania and Rethymnon and the food in Crete is absolutely amazing if you like meat! And about the beaches in Crete it is better to wait a while for the warmer months to make a visit in Crete, because the good beaches are located on the southern part of the island and the waters are a little colder than the northen beaches, if you decide to choose Crete as your destination. And about the landscapes I suggest to see on YouTube a video called "Crete: See for yourself"
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Old Mar 5th, 2014, 12:00 PM
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I think Mallorca has lost its character as an island, it became a touristy resort island for beer thirsty British. Of course there are some beautiful beaches and the Capital is charming, but adding the thousands b-class tourists which come for cheap Alcohol and Clubbing, it loses it's beauty.

Crete from the other hand, as it's is a really large island, has a great variety of beautiful landscapes, charming towns, wonderful beaches, Ancient Ruins, and wild olive landscapes. Crete is famous for its great cuisine, the Cretan Cuisine is the Flagship of the Mediterranean Diet, fresh vegetables, the best olive oil on Earth, fruits, and fresh Aegean fish. Some nice towns in Crete are, Rethymnon and Chania, both gorgeous port towns, with Byzantine, Venetian, Ottoman, and Neoclassical Elements, truly very interesting to stroll them. Some great beaches are Vai, a top Greek beach with the only Palm Forest in Europe, and crystal blue water, also Elafonisos is a wonderful beach. There are countless things you can do in Crete, like visiting the Samaria Gorge which is the Largest in Europe, Medieval Monasteries like the Arkadi Monastery, Castles and Fortresses like Frangokastello and Spinalonga, Ancient Ruins like the Palace of Knossos, visit traditional villages, explore the Cretan Nature which has no deadly animals as it is blessed by Zeus since he was born in Crete, and of course taste the Cretan Delicacies like Snails, the Huge variety of cheeses, pies, meat, pilaf, and vegetables, everything cooked with the top quality Cretan Olive Oil. Explore Crete by your own, Google it.
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Old Mar 5th, 2014, 08:57 PM
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Both are beautiful islands, both are spoiled in parts and lovely in others. They both have plenty to see, gorgeous beaches and interesting towns.
I would choose Crete, as in May, the weather is likely to be better. Chania is lovely.
In Mallorca, the north of the island is the nicest, and Palma the capital is wonderful.
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Old Mar 6th, 2014, 12:56 AM
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Hi, I don't think you can go wrong with Mallorca as it has everything you have asked for. The later in May that you go the better the weather should be. Yes there are a couple of areas that have been spoiled by the drinking culture but not only by the Brits as one answer says, the Germans have not helped in places either. These couple of places can easily be avoided though, namely Arenal and Magaluf. You get these type of places everywhere though just places where the young wish to party. There are many lovely places to visit and if you do decide on Mallorca then I'm sure you will have a really good time.
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Old Mar 6th, 2014, 01:15 AM
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I agree with theshedman. Mallorca is very busy with young people from across Europe, not just Brits and their activities are limited to a small area on the Bay of Palma. Add Palma Nova to Magaluf and Arenal and unless you want late drinking, poor food and cheap hotels then the whole of the rest of the island is fantastic. Petros is wrong to damn the whole island for the antics in a small corner, as Crete has it's own antics, albeit on a smaller scale.

It's very difficult to compare these two places as they have a different feel to them. Crete is the largest of the Greek islands and I've never felt that it pulls me back again, maybe because it is so large. Mallorca on the other hand is a great place for a week and you can cover the whole island in that time. There are charming villages, good sites to visit, nice beaches and lovely people. Stay in the North at Pollenca, Puerto Pollenca or Alcudia and you have a week to remember.

There is a North/South highway that gets you from one coast to another in under an hour.
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Old Mar 6th, 2014, 01:17 AM
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Oh and the food in Mallorca is IMO streets ahead. Unless you like burnt lamb.
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Old Mar 6th, 2014, 02:07 AM
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<<There are charming villages, good sites to visit, nice beaches and lovely people.>>

Well exactly that exists on Crete as well....

<<Oh and the food in Mallorca is IMO streets ahead. Unless you like burnt lamb.>>

That is absolutely not true. Petros already mentioned that Crete is famous for it's cuisine based on fresh local products and the local olive oil, which belongs to the best in the world.

Also on Crete there are places like Chersonissos and Malia, that are attracting young Brits, and i would better avoid them.
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Old Mar 6th, 2014, 07:03 AM
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clausar, I did say IMO. I think that fresh ingredients are available in most Med countries, providing you avoid chain "restaurants".
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Old Mar 6th, 2014, 08:16 AM
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Rubicund

Crete has a very healthy and unique local cuisine, the cretan diet is indeed becoming famous all over the world.
You only wrote about burnt lanb...
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Old Mar 6th, 2014, 09:20 AM
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The image of Mallorca from above is dated and wasn't accurate about what was happening 30 years ago.

The boys booze image exists for small around Arenal and Magaluf. Even in Magaluf things are fairly game and we will probably see Calvin Harris at clubs there this summer.

The other 95% of the island offers absolutely everything you could want at any level. The are extremely up market resorts, family resorts and middle market resorts. Inland much of the land is totally unspoilt and still earns it income from farming. There are many market towns wich are nearly untouched by tourism and much of the islands offers stunning sea/landscapes.

The shopping in Palma is good with many international chains.

What level do you want, hotel or house rental.

Time of year?

The two posters above are Greek and understandably protect Crete's corner. I have only been to Crete three times, it has more to offer in terms of ancient culture but the modern visitor culture is nowhere near as developed as Mallorca. Everyone has their own view of food but it has never been a main attraction to me in Greece. As Rubs puts it, burnt lamb is a speciality, I would add wine tasting like paint stripper.
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Old Mar 6th, 2014, 09:52 AM
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Dickie_Gr

I may be Greek, i have never said anything negative about Mallorca though. I am NOT protecting anything at all.

If all you experienced in Greece is burnt lamb, that is fine with me.
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Old Mar 6th, 2014, 10:53 AM
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I loved Greece.. spent only 2 weeks there however.. but the food.. er. not the highlight..
I would still go back,, eat yougurt ( good) and salads.. but frankly I won't get fat in Greece.
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Old Mar 14th, 2014, 03:10 PM
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Defintely Crete

Chania is great
as is Cretan food and beaches
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Old Mar 25th, 2014, 03:21 AM
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Thank you for your replies. It is really a difficult choice. Both places seem great.
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Old Mar 29th, 2014, 07:32 PM
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This is repeated from a previous post I replied to:

Wife and I spent one full month in Mallorca, two years ago. Going to Mallorca started with having booked a cruise from Palma to Miami at exceptionally low cost. Initially we thought of staying one week prior to boarding, than decided for ten days, later on to 15 days and finally for a full month.

We had a car for the full month and stayed at four different hotels, one each week. The last one was in Illetas, nearby Palma, since we wanted to be close to port at our last stay.

I kind of feared we would be bored, but we did not regret one minute having spent the full month in the island.

There is an awful lot of things to see. Dozens, maybe hundred of little "Calas", or small beaches. Caves to see and explore (We visited Cuevas del Drach, near puerto Cristo, which was awsome) The cave has an underground lake and you can attend a classical concert inside the cave, which was really incredible).

You have mountains: The whole western coast of Mallorca is mountainous, where you can visit Sa Calobra, Valdemossa (Chopin and his mistress spent a full winter in there), Soller, etc...

You will find medieval cities (Valdemossa and Cap de Pera.

Pollensa, on the northwest of the island is quite interesting, and worth a visit.

If you like ancient history there are Roman sites to be visited in Alcudia, near Pollensa.

One of the hotels we stayed was Port de Pollensa, near Pollensa. Very close to it there is an amazing place you can visit called Formentor (google it in order to see some images).

Palma de Mallorca is nice, but the other little cities are amazing.

If you want beaches, as I said, there are hundreds of little Calas.

One of the places we spent a week was the little city of Cala D'Or. It is the most modern of the cities we visited. It is very small and you can do all you wish walking.

Cala Millor is also nice, but if I were to choose just one place I would recommend Cala d'Or. This is somewhere near the southeast of the island.

We were in Barcelona, and frankly speaking, two days in Barcelona is fine, but one month in Mallorca is great.

Any questions, please post and I will try to answer the best way I can.
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Old Apr 3rd, 2014, 12:41 AM
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In my opinion these 2 islands are completely different.
I would definitely go to Crete, as it is more authentic and the villages in Crete, especially in the south, are really fantastic. The south beaches looking at Libyan Sea are magical!
Mallorca is too commercial and touristic and has no character left. You can even find Burger King to eat. Ok, why not stay home then?
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Old Apr 3rd, 2014, 12:52 AM
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KFC and McDonalds are both in Crete. Much more authentic and not at all touristy.

If you think Mallorca has no character, I doubt if you've been there.
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Old Apr 3rd, 2014, 09:11 AM
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"authentic"

Soon as I ad this word in travel advice I switch off.

It's used by people who gain their travel experience by reading Sunday Supplements.

From your description of Mallorca, you gained your experience from supplements of papers that are 40 years old. One of the more ridiculous posts I have read here.
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Old Apr 3rd, 2014, 09:41 AM
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Both are beautiful islands, I love Majorca and if it was just on food alone then it would be Majorca. If it was on beaches I probably would still go with Majorca. Crete in May is more or less guaranteed the weather not as certain in Majorca. Overall for atmosphere I would pick Crete - there is no equivalent to Chania or Rethmynon in Majorca (depite their commercialism. I have stayed near Magaluf and although it has cleaned up its act it still can be brash and rowdy but not on the scale that people make out and this is only one resort. Dont let this put you off Majorca.
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