“Explore the beauty, history and culture of Crete”
May 19 to May 26 2020
£985 pp 7 nights guided tour in Western Crete
Price includes self catering accommodation at the Aptera Aparthotel in the village of Aptera, North Western Crete with breakfast, flights, transfers and a full programme of 6 days excursions with expert guidance throughout and first evening meal. The tour is suitable for single travellers, couples and small groups. (single supplement £100, regional flight supplement may apply. Limited to 12 spaces)
Fully Guided by Dr Jill Marrington BA (Hons) Ancient History, the week promises to be an interesting introduction to the culture and archaeology of Western Crete. The annual Battle of Crete commemorations also take place during this week and the tour will include a visit to the memorial service at Souda Bay War Cemetery and the Preveli war museum. Guests will be accommodated in the family run Aptera Aparthotel, with private self catering room facilities, where breakfast can be taken in the garden. Transport will be in our comfortable air conditioned mini- coach and you will have the opportunity to enjoy an optional taverna lunch throughout the week. A supermarket stop to shop local supplies, will be given at the beginning of the week. Evenings can be spent enjoying a drink or snack from the comfort of the hotel’s cafe-bar or for those wanting an evening stroll (3/4 mile walk, steep on the return) you can visit one of traditional tavernas in the village centre.
Above photos of Ancient Aptera
7 miles along the coast from Chania, the road winds gently up to Aptera (formerly Megala Chorafia) a Cretan village set in the foothills of the White Mountains. The village’s hilltop setting makes for breathtaking panoramic views, over Souda Bay to the North and of the White Mountains, rising over 7,000ft to the South. Megala Chorafia, which literally means “Big Fields”, is a scatter of houses and farms with an ornate orthodox church as its centrepiece.
The “Metoche” area on the Eastern side, where your accommodation is located, (see above ) is on a ridge which extends towards the ancient ruins of Aptera. Wild flowers bloom along the narrow roads on which shepherds move their flocks between fields.The archaeological remains of Aptera, dating from the Minoan and Roman times, are within walking distance of the village. Beyond these stands a Turkish castle, perched strategically on the headland overlooking the sea (pictured below).
Exploring Crete Itinerary:- (subject to change according to local conditions):-
Day 1:- Arrival. Evening – guide introduction and complimentary group evening meal at the Aptera village taverna.
Day 2:- Exploring Ancient Aptera, Stilos & Gavalochori. Classical Greek, Roman and Hellenistic remains and a Minoan tomb and settlement.
Day 3:- To the south – Phaistos & Preveli Monastery (& Battle of Crete museum)
Ayios Ioannis nr Preveli
Day 4:- Armeni tombs. Argiroupolis. Alikambos winery (Dourakis ) & Wine Tasting.
Day 5:- A free morning to relax. For clients who wish to continue exploring, taxis can be arranged to take them to Chania town and harbour (not included)
Afternoon: Battle of Crete Memorial Service at Souda Bay War Cemetery (subject to change, exact date of commemorations usually announced nearer the time )
Day 6:- Arkadi Monastery & free afternoon in Rethymnon town
Day 7:- Falasarna, Kasteli, Maleme German War Cemetary and Galatas (Battle of Crete)
Day 8:- Departure
Call us on 01444 880404 to book Exploring Crete Week, spaces are limited to 12 to only . £995pp which includes your flight, 7 nights accommodation, with breakfast at Aptera Aparthotel, all transfers, entrance fees, guide and complimentary welcome meal. Single supplement and regional flight supplement applies.
“The Exploring Crete Week is a wonderful idea ,not just for first time visitors, but for those who have been before , but don’t want to drive great distances..”
“Dr, Jill Marrington was a wonderful guide. She gave an excellent overview as well as detail of our location. The “handouts” were especially very useful”
“My husband especially enjoyed not having to drive.. The day always started wonderfully with a beautiful breakfast , provided by Nectarios and his Family at the Aptera Hotel !! Add into the mix, a group of joyous like minded people”
“The accommodation, information and help from your people on the ground were, as usual, excellent, and
our host Nectarios at the Aptera Hotel was a delightful man, and plied us with delicious fresh orange juice
squeezed from fruit from his father’s trees and little cheese and greens pies made by his mother”
Souda Bay War Cemetery
The Egyptian lighthouse Chania Harbour
The Egyptian lighthouse Chania Harbour