Rethymno sits on the northern coast of Crete almost halfway in distance between the islands two major airports at Heraklion and Chania. With beautiful long sandy beaches and the historical town with it's restaurants, bars and nightlife the town offers a 'best of both worlds' scenario affording long warm summer beach days and evenings of dining, shopping and strolling the atmospheric town. Rethymno's university is also one of the major education institutions on the island and makes for a young and artistic vibe to the town's stunning narrow Venetian alleys and streets. Rethymno provides a balance in a holiday destination that delivers for couples seeking artistic vibrancy and families alike and our guides aims to help you plan your trip to this lovely resort.
Driving times from Chania or Heraklion International airports are both around an hour so when choosing where to land you can take your pick based on the cheapest or most convenient flight you can find for your break. If you are looking for a calmer and less chaotic airport experience then Chania is a more modern, better laid out and quieter option compared to the high season hoards at Heraklion so that might be a consideration, and once landed if your not on a package holiday coach transfer car hire is very reasonable if you use a local company on the island and the drive is mostly on National Road 90 to the town. A taxi from Chania or Heraklion airport will cost between 80 and 100 euro to reach your destination in Rethymno and is worth booking in advance of arrival, but if you do decide to take a taxi from the stand outside the airport our advice is to always agree a fixed price before getting into the car.
Where to Stay
Because Rethymno caters for a wide range of tastes and desires its important to do you research on what type of holiday you're seeking before booking your accommodation in Rethymno. The long, wide sandy beach that stretches to the East of the main town is over 3km long and at it's far reaches is mainly populated by big all inclusive resorts and from those the trip to town is a short taxi ride. The town's Venetian streets and alleys have numerous lodgings in a charismatic setting and if your desire is to check out the town's history, shopping, gastronomy and bars then this could be for you. Our personal advice would be to opt for the best of both worlds and seek out a hotel that affords a stunning beach front location to enjoy the sound of the sea and that incredible view whilst being within a kilometre of the centre of town so all it has to offer is only a short pleasant seafront stroll away.
Whilst many flock to seaside destinations all over Crete to sun worship and take a drink and a cooling dip in the sea don't discount Rethymno as not being suitable for this type of holiday because of it's town status. Of the larger towns in Crete Rethymno's beach for me is the best and is a genuine 'resort' destination. The beach is soft sand that is manicured early each morning by the local council's tractors that sift and cleanse the beach each day and it's wide and long too so it doesn't become overcrowded. Rethymno Beach affords beautiful long walks paddling in the ocean for as far as the eye can see. Just behind the beach is a long road that is dotted with hotels, cafes, shops, restaurants and bars so finding a cocktail or a beer is easily done or if it's a spot of lunch or a superma