Great range of resorts
Heraklion puts you close to the thriving coastal resort of Hersonissos. It has a huge array of shops, bars and clubs along its main street, while nearby Stalis has one of the best beaches in the island. For an even more relaxed pace, there’s the inland village of Koutouloufari or upmarket Elounda.
The Minoan Palace of Knossos lies just 5km inland from Heraklion. Built by the Minoan civilisation, these incredible ruins date back over 3,500 years. You could also explore the Heraklion Archaeological Museum, which houses some of the best artefacts found around Knossos.
As the island’s largest mountain plain, the Lasithi Plateau offers incredible views of the rural Cretan landscape. You’ll see fruit orchards and old windmills laid out before you. Over in Aghios Nikolaos, you’ll find Lake Voulismeni, a beautiful lake in the centre of town, lined by waterfront bars and restaurants.