As the days get shorter, the temperature begins to drop down to single figures and January exams loom, why not give yourself something to look forward to by booking your summer getaway now? There’s nothing like a light at the end of the dark tunnel of the winter months to get us through those grey skies and biting cold. Believe me, the party resort of Hersonissos on the Greek island of Crete will shine quite a light.
Forget the snow and ice outside and instead let your imagination stray to beautiful stretches of golden sand offering a range of thrilling water sports, great sunbathing and a fun party crowd. Picture getting dressed up (no need for hats, scarfs and gloves) for a night out in the balmy Mediterranean heat, where you can party the night away in a fantastic selection of lively bars and clubs.
Winter may be a season we need to get through (and there is always Christmas to brighten it up) but it’s much easier to deal with once you’ve got the booking confirmation for your sizzling summer getaway waiting for you in your inbox.
Hersonissos, Crete’s Party Capital
Like Crete’s other great party capital, Malia, there is much more on offer in Hersonissos than just great bars and nightclubs (although of course there are these, and plenty of them!).
Hersonissos – on the northern coast of the island, just 26km east of Heraklion – occupies a stunning stretch of coastline with beautiful calm, clear seas and golden sand. Perfect for lying in the sun, topping up your tan or recovering from the night before. Originally a small port serving the resort’s Old Town, since the 1960s Hersonissos has warmly embraced tourism, with a lot of development leading to a wide range of excellent holiday accommodation being built along its coastline.
Today the town is all about tourism, with a wide number of bars, cafés, restaurants and nightclubs all vying for your custom and a great selection of shops selling tourist goods. The young crowd who come here come to party and many of the clubs stay open through the night, so you and your mates can literally dance till dawn and then head straight to the beach.
Top Up Your Tan
Hersonissos has a number of beautiful beaches that all have the advantage of calm waters, rare in other parts of the island. Of course, the sand here can get pretty crowded in the height of the summer season, but if you like it lively and buzzing then this is the resort for you.
There are a number of small coves around the resort, with the ones to the west having the calmest waters and the fewest crowds. Head east out of the resort, however, and you’ll discover the bustling lively stretches of sand with their water sports, sun loungers and bars the resort is famous for. Many of the small coves on the east side of town are overlooked by the big hotels and have plenty of facilities, but by far the best area – if you’re looking for a lively crowd, great bars and a wide variety of water sports – is Star Beach.
Star Beach and Water Park
This is probably the single most popular stretch of sand in Crete, with thousands flocking here in the summer months to enjoy the excellent facilities, great water sports, water rides and lively party atmosphere.
Despite the name, Star Beach is more like a combination of water park, resort and club than just a beach. The resort plays host to regular parties, including weekly foam and bikini parities, with a variety of live DJs creating a pumping musical soundtrack for your summer fun.
Whether you come to party or just to hang out in the sun and enjoy the facilities, you’re in no danger of getting bored here, there is simply too much to do. The sea is literally awash with various inflatables being pulled along at high speed with tourists hilariously trying to cling on as they’re spun around in the waves. There’s high-octane fun in the form of jet skiing, parasailing and water skiing, and for the truly adventurous, there’s even a bungee jump above the sand.
And then, of course, there are the water rides including slides, winding tunnels, a lazy river and loads of other water-based fun.
If you’ve spent the day on Star, then there’s really no need to move to find your night-time entertainment. Once the sun goes down the resort comes alive with pumping tunes (often provided by big name DJs), great drinks offers and a choice of different partying options.
While Star is great fun, I would definitely recommend dragging yourself away to enjoy the bar and club scene in Hersonissos itself. There are so many bars and clubs in the resort that, if you’re not sure where to start, it’s well worth joining one of the many bar-tours to check out the best spots. Many of the best bars and clubs are set on, or just back from, the waterfront. Just some of the highlights worth exploring include the all-night Temple Bar and the mega-clubs with their big name DJs: New York, NRG, Aria and Amnesia.
How to Get to Hersonissos
The best news is that you and your mates can be in Hersonissos with the minimum of fuss or hassle, as it’s only a four-hour flight from the UK and then a short drive from Crete’s Heraklion N. Kazantzakis Airport to the resort. A number of UK airlines fly directly to Crete, including Thomas Cook, easyJet, British Airways and Jet2.
Avoid any stress at the airport by booking your whole group an airport transfer with Shuttle Direct. Book online from the UK and they’ll make sure that a vehicle big enough to fit all your friends and your luggage is waiting for you when you land. For a cheaper option you could also try a Shuttle Direct shared group transfer from the airport to the resort.
Where to Stay
Star Beach Village & Water Park – For the ultimate party holiday, you and your mates should book accommodation at the Star Beach Village & Water Park. Putting you right at the heart of the action, you’ll have a choice between rooms or apartments and access to all the bars, restaurants and facilities of the resort. Go all inclusive and you will be able to relax knowing everything is paid for upfront.
About Shuttle Direct
Shuttle Direct is Europe’s leading airport transfer provider, offering a range of travel options perfect for groups or individuals. For a mates’ holiday, nothing could be more convenient than the group transfer option, with a minibus on hand to pick you and your friends up from the airport and delivery you directly to your accommodation. Let the partying begin!