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Heraklion – discover the heart of Crete

Get your Crete holiday off to a great start when you book your tickets cheap and easy with SunExpress. This historic city is one of the largest in the area and serves as the cultural and economic hub of the island. The city is served by a local airport, Heraklion Airport (HER), and a bustling maritime port. Heraklion is often the first port of call for wider adventures in Crete. From this popular port city, several bus connections can be made to other cities and towns across the island. Other popular holiday resorts, such as Agios Niolaos with its beautiful Lake Voulismeni or the quaint harbour town of Rethymno, are within a short journey from the airport. Regular ferry connections to Piraeus, Rhodes and Milos also make island hopping an easy decision and a great way to mix up the days for those longer getaways. You’ll find plenty of direct flights available with SunExpress, with regular departures from airports including Munich, Dusseldorf and Nuremberg.

Whether it’s a city break for culture vultures, a romantic getaway for just the two of you, or a long overdue resort holiday with the whole family, find cheap flights to Heraklion and Crete fast with SunExpress.

Short facts

Local time 16:07
Country: Greece
Language: Greek
Currency: Euro

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Heraklion – a colourful capital of culture

Although the city is today a modern harbour settlement, Heraklion offers plenty of historical layers. The Minoans, Romans, Venetians and Ottomans have all left their mark on the Cretan capital over the centuries. The Venetian port was built in the 16th century, still stands today and is incredibly well preserved, while the harbour fortress plays host to live performances during the warmer months. Other sights worth seeing include the lively Old Town of Heraklion, and Dikeossinis Square for those in the mood for some retail therapy. This shopping area is one of the most important business centres on the island and offers all kinds of stores, boutique shops and outlets.

Soak up some culture as well as some sun

A holiday in Crete offers more than sea, sun and sand. Once you’ve bathed at the beach, grab your hiking boots and head inland to enjoy some of the finest recreational hiking areas in the Mediterranean. There’s no better way to explore some of the island’s most historic relics than by foot, and you’ll find plenty of forgotten treasures as you explore the island interior. The famous Palace of Knossos is located just five kilometres south of the capital and is an essential stop for any visitor. The palace is one of the most perfectly preserved buildings from the time of Minoan rule; you’ll be awed by the imposing red columns and magnificent murals. It would be a shame to waste the weather while you’re visiting Crete, so make sure you pay a visit to the best stretches of coastline on offer. Akti Beach is particularly popular with family groups with youngsters, while the beach at Ammoudara is also worth a trip. If you’re an outdoor enthusiast, consider a day excursion to the nearby mountain of Jouchtas, with an 811-metre high summit guaranteed to provide a challenge. Push yourself to the limit and grab an unbeatable view of Heraklion from above.

Enjoy Crete in the spring and summer months

If you’re looking to enjoy the Cretan climate at its most glorious, the spring and summer months are the best time to visit the island. Crete is one of the most sun-drenched of the Mediterranean islands and enjoys about 300 days of sunshine annually. Temperatures in the south of Crete are generally higher than the north, with the southern climate heavily influenced by that of the African continent even further south. In Crete, spring usually begins toward the end of February, with its signature almond blossoms. During the beginning of spring, you can expect temperatures in the region of 15 degrees Celsius. Although you can enjoy mild temperatures in the day, spring nights can plummet to much cooler temperatures. From April onwards, the mercury rises to around 20 degrees Celsius in the day, climbing to 23 degrees Celsius in April. The height of summer is dominated by hot and dry conditions, with an average high of 29 degrees Celsius. What’s more, for those keen to hit the beach and enjoy a swim in the big blue, water temperatures are an incredibly pleasant 24 degrees Celsius in summer.

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