Elounda is a small fishing village found in the north of Crete, the largest Greek island. Amongst the breath-taking views and classic tourist attractions such as the sandy beaches, Elounda and its surrounding areas have so many other opportunities for adventure and discovery…
Top Tip: Read this blog post about Platanias to discover even more hidden gems around Greece.
History – Explore the Island of Kalydon
If you’re interested in discovering the diverse historical past of Crete, the Island of Kalydon makes for an excellent day trip. Occasionally referred to as ’Spinalonga’ or ‘Leper Island’, this remarkable location was once where leprosy sufferers in Crete were quarantined and is now an immensely popular tourist spot. There is also a large fortress on the island that is notorious for its role as the leper hospital.
Kalydon has played a significant role in Greek history, and it is truly worth a visit. To access the island, you can take a boat from either Elounda, Agios Nikolaos or Plaka. The journey usually lasts between 10 and 20 minutes and is a wonderful opportunity to enjoy the thrills of the ocean (without getting too wet!).
Adventure – Visit Agios Nikolaos
Venture a little further from your accommodation in Elounda and explore the enchanting town of Agios Nikolaos for the day. As the largest natural bay in Crete, astonishing views are a given, and it’s worth the short journey just to admire the glistening sea and quaint traditional buildings around the harbour.
There are plenty of things to do in Agios Nikolaos, from shopping to dining to relaxing on the sandy beach, but the beauty of this small town lies within its authentic architecture and narrow streets. You can find some wonderful shops, bars and restaurants in the area, many of which are family-run and favourites among the locals.
Top Tip: It’s worth finding some famous Gelato while you’re in the area – several competing ice-cream shops will be offering this creamy delight in a variety of flavours. Perhaps it’s best to sample them all before you decide on your favourite…
Cuisine – Discover Traditional Delicacies
Greece is home to some culinary masterpieces, both sweet and savoury – it would be a crime to miss out on tasting the very best traditional cuisine! These Elounda restaurants are both highly-respected and popular spots for authentic Cretan food.
Dine in the charming garden of the Marilena restaurant and enjoy some scrumptious seafood dishes among other freshly-prepared delicacies. Family-run and unmistakably authentic, this beautiful restaurant has a long-standing reputation of high-quality cuisine and excellent service.
The family running this business are renowned for their hospitality, and the eatery itself is known to be one of Elounda’s best. Situated on the corner of the central square, visitors can enjoy a peaceful meal of excellent quality while admiring the striking views of Elounda Bay and Spinalonga Island.
Where to Stay
Eleftheria Sea Side Traditional House – This holiday home has simple yet elegant décor and is situated right on the beachfront – it’s the perfect place to relax after a long day exploring Crete. There are barbeque facilities available as well as a charming outdoor seating area; you can admire the wonderful views while sampling some local Cretan produce from the nearby shops.
The Island Sea View Apartment – These stylish one-bedroom apartments are beautifully furnished and can be found in a fantastic location just a three-minute walk from the beach. There is a spacious sun terrace available, providing exquisite panoramic views of the landscape. Enjoy excellent traditional cuisine at the nearby restaurants and spend the evening exploring the shops and bars just around the corner.
Selena Hotel – This hillside haven offers outstanding views of Elounda bay and the island of Spinalonga, and is just a 20-minute walk from the sandy beach. The hotel provides a restaurant and bar as well as snack bars beside the two outdoor pools. Many of the rooms have recently been refurbished and now have a fresh, modern feel. There are also plenty of outdoor seating areas where you can sit back and enjoy the view.
How to Get There
From the UK, flying into Heraklion International Airport is the fastest way to get to Elounda. Flights tend to take around four hours, but thankfully there are approximately 22 flights very week, and plenty of direct airlines. Choosing an appropriate flight time should not be a problem.
From there, a pre-booked Shuttle Direct transfer will take you straight from Heraklion airport to Elounda and your chosen accommodation. Their service is reliable and easy to organise online. Pre-booking also means you can avoid the inevitable public transport and taxi queues that holidaymakers can seldom escape!
About Shuttle Direct
Our transfer services here at Shuttle Direct strive to be consistently reliable and secure. Pre-book your shuttle today and prepare for a completely hassle-free holiday.