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Crete: Hania & Samaria Gorge

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Days 7-8
Next stop: Rhodes Previous stop: Crete: Matala & Phaistos Return to full itinerary »

The elegant city of Hania owes its harbors, architectural jewels, and exotic charms to Venetian and Turkish occupiers. The city features eucalyptus-lined avenues and cobbled alleyways lined with Venetian and Ottoman houses. After exploring the city, use Hania as a base to check out other nearby sights, such as the Samaria Gorge and plenty of fine beaches.

  • Natural Beauty
  • Beaches
  • Museums


  • In Hania, take your pick from several museums. The Archaeological Museum displays artifacts from all over Western Crete while Cretan House, a folk-life museum, is bursting with traditional items such as farm equipment and wedding garb.
  • A trek through the Samaria Gorge is an unforgettable experience. Extending 10 mi/16 km from the village of Xyloskalo to the Libyan Sea, it is surrounded by a landscape of forest, sheer rock faces, and running streams.
  • Kick back and spend the day at a nearby beach. There's a string of beaches west of Hania center, but your best option is to head west of Hania. Falasarna and Elafonisi are rarely crowded.