Overview

Introduction

Rethymnon - Panormos - Georgioupolis

Transfer time 1-1½ hours

Historic Rethymnon is the only town on the island which can rival Chania in terms of atmosphere and character. In many ways a more compact version - the old harbour is a fraction of the size of  Chania's (but none the worse for that) - the Venetian/Turkish old town behind is equally maze-like and enchanting. Rethymnon also has a sandy beach in town itself, below the palm-fringed promenade, although this gets busy and we prefer to walk the short distance beyond the harbour wall to the miles of sandy beach which lie beyond. The whole is dominated by a massive Venetian fortress above.

The seaide village of Georgioupolis between Chania and Rethymnon offers a relaxed Cretan charm with plenty to do away from its 10 kms of sandy beach. The village is large enough to satisfy all tastes but not so big it loses its village feeling. 

The village hub is its large central square, quite buzzy at night when the cafes and tavernas are full. There are plenty of taverna restaurants elsewhere and a handful of bars. Georgioupolis has good amenities including ATMs, a doctor, pharmacy and several supermarkets. A regular fast bus service runs along the coastal road behind making a trip to Rethymnon quick, easy and affordable (c. 4 euros in 2016).

With the White Mountains as a majestic backdrop, there are plenty of traditional villages to explore inland by foot, car or road train, and Lake Kournas is only 3 kms away. The Almiros River runs to one side of the village and is home to numbers of geese, frogs and terrapins. Take a pedalo trip to the small lake just upstream, a boat trip to the caves, or a fishing trip. 

20 minutes drive beyond Rethymnon, the atmospheric village of Panormos has everything we look for – oodles of laid back charm, two good sandy beaches, a photogenic harbour (with church above and tavernas to each side) and, above all, a true Greek village atmosphere. Yet, remarkably for such a pretty place, foreign tourism here is still low-key and there is only one hotel.

Panormos has everything close to hand, including some ten tavernas and a good selection of local shops in the narrow streets leading down to the harbour and beach. A fun trip is the ‘road-train’ which runs to villages in the hills. For bright lights Rethymnon can be easily reached by the frequent local bus.

Transfer note: Panormos transfers are combined with Kalives/Almirida. Private taxi transfers can be quoted for and cost £120 each way (per taxi).

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There is so much to see, discover and enjoy here. There is 1020 km of coastline boasting an abundance of beaches, from quiet coves to long expanses of golden sand. Inland there are lofty mountain peaks and lush countryside, dotted with traditional villages and walking trails, and fascinating archaeological sites.

Claire Kalatzis
Claire Kalatzis
Note: Map is for guidance purposes only.

Talk to our Crete expert

Claire Kalatzis
Claire Kalatzis

There is so much to see, discover and enjoy here. There is 1020 km of coastline boasting an abundance of beaches, from quiet coves to long expanses of golden sand. Inland there are lofty mountain peaks and lush countryside, dotted with traditional villages and walking trails, and fascinating archaeological sites.

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Rethymnon, Crete, Greece

North Coast Crete

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We promise that a member of our specialist reservation teams will reply personally to your holiday enquiry before 5.30pm if received before 12.00pm (Monday to Friday). Enquiries received after 12.00pm will be replied to within 24-hours (excluding Sundays).

If your enquiry is of an urgent nature, please telephone our dedicated reservation teams on the numbers listed below.

Our lines are open from 9.00am to 5.30pm Monday-Friday and from 9.30am to 4.30pm Saturday.

  • Greece: 020 8758 4758
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  • Portugal, the Azores, Spain, Italy, Sicily and Scandinavia: 020 8758 4722
  • Latin America: 020 8758 4774

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