If your vision of Crete includes concrete hotels, discos and all-night burger-bars, then an autumn break with Pure Crete should be a pleasant surprise. They specialise in refurbishing traditional stone houses in hideaway villages far removed from the brash tourist towns. We stayed in Megala Chorafia, where our house, complete with pool, offered panoramic views of snow-capped mountains on one side and the turquoise waters of Souda Bay on the other. There are good tavernas nearby and, even with children, eating out is stress-free and enjoyable. Crete is warm until the end of October and there is plenty to see. Don’t miss the ruins at Knossos, Chania old town and Panagia Kera church in Kritsa with its 14th and 15th century frescoes.