Athens to Crete: Everything You Need to Know

Are you planning your trip to blue-ocean Greece and want to find out what the optimal route for getting to Crete is? Perhaps you are currently in Athens and you are looking for the best way to get to this iconic island. Whatever the case is, you have come to the right place. Read on to learn everything you need to know about getting to Crete from Athens, together with some of the best places to see, and the best places to stay.

Where to Stay in Athens Greece

When people think of Greece, they tend to think of blue oceans and white houses; however, each neighborhood in the city of Athens has its own unique style and offers Greek residents as well as visitors very different ambiances. We have compiled a list with some of the best neighborhoods for you to stay in Athens, depending on your preferences and what it is that you are looking for.

Monastiraki Square: Downtown Athens

If you want to stay in the heart of Athens, then Monastiraki Square is the place to be. Monastiraki square is the most lively spot of Athens, with beautiful cafes and restaurants marked all along the streets, captivating street performers, shops, and the famed Monastiraki flea market, open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily, in which you can find hidden Greek gems. Take a look at some of our vacation rentals in Monastiraki square.

Plaka: Downtown Athens

Plaka is also located in downtown Athens. This neighborhood is next to the Acropolis and is extremely picturesque. Being the oldest section of Athens, a lot of little roads along Plaka have been closed to drivers. This makes taking walks along this neighborhood all the more special.

Halandri: Uptown Athens

Halandri is a posh area, about 15-20 minutes away from downtown Athens. The streets of Halandri are filled with cute little cafes and high-class restaurants which usually open from the morning until the night time. They close earlier on Mondays and Thursdays.

Check out some of our best vacation rentals in these Athenian neighborhoods.

Where to Stay in Crete Greece


Chania is the capital and largest city of Crete. If it is your first time visiting this beautiful island, we highly recommend that you stay in Chania. Get lost in the city’s gorgeous alleyways and don’t forget to make a stop to explore the famous Venetian Harbor the popular Archaeological Museum of Chania.


Rethymno is Crete’s third largest city. It is known for combining a charm from the old world, together with chic restaurants and historical landmarks. The beaches in Rethymno are famed for being some of Greece’s most marvelous beaches. Stay here if you are planning to visit Crete for a good number of days and are really looking to explore the island a little more.


If you are looking to dance the night away in Crete, then Malia is the place to be. Malia is Crete’s party capital, filled with lively music, top of the top bars and nightclubs, and dance-floors waiting to be danced on till the morning. If you are a young couple looking to enjoy some of Greece’s best nightlife scene, then make sure you stay in this beautiful town of Northern Crete.

Check out some of our best vacation rentals in Crete.

Athens to Crete By Flight

Flights within Greece are a short hop. Greece has 18 of its very own airlines, including Aegean Airlines, Aeroland Airways, Air Mediterranean, Astra Airlines, Bluebird Airways, Ellinair, Hellenic Seaplanes, Minoan Air, Olympic Air, Olympus Airways, Orange2Fly, Sky Express (Greece). All of these airlines will provide passengers flights from Athens to Crete and from Crete to Athens, in no time. Tickets will typically range from 50-150 euros. The flight from Athens to Crete is approximately 50 minutes, so if you are looking to get to your destination the fastest way possible, then taking a flight is your best option.

The airlines that we recommend you take to fly to Crete from Athens or vice-versa, are Aegean Airlines, Minoan Air and Olympic Air.

Athens to Crete By Private Jet

You could also choose to experience your short flight from Athens to Crete via a private jet. Two Greek private jet companies that you can definitely take a look at are GainJet Aviation and Amjet Executive.

Athens to Crete By Ferry

Did you know that Greece has over 6,000 islands? This is an exceptional phenomenon for the entirety of the European continent, and one of the many things that make Greece such a special destination. As a matter of fact, most Greeks tend to travel amongst these hundreds of islands via ferry. Greece’s main and most popular ferry companies include Blue Star Ferries, Hellenic Seaways, Minoan Lines, Seajets, Golden Star Ferries, and Fast Ferries, amongst others.

Traveling from Athens to Crete by ferry takes approximately seven to nine hours, and is a route that is currently operated by two ferry companies: Minoan Lines and Anek Superfast. The Piraeus Heraklion ferry route will take about seven hours with Minoan Lines, and about eight hours and 45 minutes with Anek Superfast. Minoan Lines runs up to 11 times each week, and Anek Superfast runs up to 10 times each week. Don’t worry if you are making a last minute booking, these daily ferry routes from Athens to Crete and vice versa will leave you with a large array of choices for the day that you want to make your trip. All you have to do is decide which day you prefer to travel, which time works best for you, and which fare is most suited to your preferences. If you do not mind taking a long ship ride, then Athens to Crete by ferry will be your more economical option. It is also a new experience for someone who has not traveled to another island by ship before, especially in the Mediterranean sea.

What is Better?

Crete is approximately 250 miles away from Athens city. This makes Crete one of the farthest islands from Greece’s capital. If you are looking to experience a ferry ride and do not mind being on the ferry for over seven hours, then Athens to Crete by ferry is the more cost-saving alternative. If you want to get from Athens to Crete in the fastest way possible and would rather not sit on the ferry for a long period of time, then you might want to take a flight with a Greek airline instead. You could also choose to take a private jet if you would rather take a more luxurious flight; however, remember that this option will be more pricey than both of your other options combined.

Book your vacation rental in Crete today!

Picture of Christian Velitchkov

Christian Velitchkov

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