Explore the wild beauty of the secluded beaches of southern Crete with this tour starting from the North coast of Heraklion. We will lead to the vertical road passing through vineyards and olive groves, and we will reach the rich plain of Messara with scattered greenhouses for vegetable production.
Our first stop will be at a local award-winning winery where we will meet the people behind these amazing wines. We will take part in a tasting of five different labels based on local varieties. The next stop will be at an undisclosed beach on the south coast of Crete. Crystal waters perfect spot for a nice swim.
The second stop is in a magical place. A Greek Orthodox Monastery was founded in the 14th century and related to the Kallergides family to which it belonged.
Our last stop to enjoy the rest of the day is the city of Matala. A picturesque fishing village that in the early 1960s became a hub reference point for hippies all over the world.
Free time for bathing, food, drinks!!
Technology and knowledge in enology easily create good wine. However, when your goal is the best quality, then the winning factor is for the wine to originate from the best vineyard. That is why the Zacharioudakis family happily invested in a Cretan organically cultivated vineyard that was planted on the hill Orthi Petra in South Crete, a location that can guarantee exceptional harvests.
The Holy Patriarchal and Stavropegian Monastery of Odigitria is located on the mountain range of the Asterousia Mountains in the south of the prefecture of Heraklion, which constitute the "Mount Athos" of Crete. Asterousia was the cradle of Christianity and a rich monastic and ascetic tradition developed in them, centered on Agiofarago and Martsalo.
It was founded in the 14th century and is related to the Kallergida family to which it belonged. It is considered one of the oldest monasteries in Crete since it is mentioned in a document of the Ducal Archive of Chandakas (Heraklion) in 1393. The monastery also includes a number of hermitages and chapels with remarkable frescoes.
This monastery also includes its former monastic center of Agioi Eftychian, where, according to tradition, Saints Eftychios, Eftychianos and Cassiani, their brothers, were buried. The Holy brothers Parthenios and Eumenios, the owners of the Holy Monastery of Koudouma, were also brothers of the Monastery.
Vathi is a spectacular beach located 79km and 17km southwest of Heraklion and the village Sivas, respectively. Situated very close to the southernmost point of Crete, Cape Lithino, and far away from urban centers, Vathi is an ideal destination for anyone seeking for the ultimate relaxation. The beach is shaped at the exit of a small gorge, surrounded by long cliffs. The circular bight of the bay conceals it from the open sea, making Vathy a natural hideout; the legend says that pirates used it as their anchorage. The well-protected beach has almost always calm waters, although the surrounding beaches can be very wavy. The only wind that causes a storm in the area is form southwest directions.
Matala is located at the exit of a small valley, which forms an enclosed bay with a nice view of the island of Paximadia. There is a beautiful sandy beach, 300m long, with fine gravel and crystal-clear deep water. Moreover, the seabed is quite rocky in some places (especially in the central part of the beach) and waves are common, due to frequent west winds. Furthermore, there is a huge cave on the north part of the beach, from the top of which some people dive. The beach is very well organized with umbrellas, toilets, showers, lifeguards, first aid, beach volley courts, snack bars, water sports, excursion boats, a camping site, etc. Around Matala, you will find many options for accommodation, entertainment, and eating. Also, a large part of the beach is covered by tamarisk trees, where you can find shade. In the evenings, the bars on the beach are full of many people, both locals, and foreigners. Especially in June, the internationally renowned Matala Festival takes place.
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