Roman Malanke

Exploring the Island of Crete

As I write these lines I’m living through one of those moments which are best described by Spanish saying “¡Esto sí que es la vida!”, which means “That’s what I call life!”. Why? Well, for a “couple” of reasons… It’s 10 p.m. and I’m sitting on an open balcony at +25˚C listening to Led Zeppelin’s “D’yer Mak’er” mixed with the murmur of the sea, breathing one of the freshest airs on Earth, still feeling the aftertaste of delicious Mediterranean dinner.

The name of this paradise is Crete. After spending six days here I have no doubt that the choice of vacation destination my girlfriend and I made was perfect. The island proves to be incredibly tourist-friendly and authentic at the same time, having everything one needs to relax and refresh. Renting a car for four days (which is by the way ridiculously simple and way more cost-effective compared to mass excursions) allowed us to explore many places and form more or less complete impression of what Crete has to offer. And here is everything: beautiful nature, wonderful beaches, romantic little towns, cultural sites and more.

The variety of beaches can equally satisfy people looking for tranquil family vacation and those wanting to try water sports or find seclusion in nature. There’s sand and there’s pebble, there’s deep and there’s shallow, there’s crowded and there’s deserted.

We had a chance to walk through three largest towns on Crete which are anything but large: Heraklion, Chania, and Rethymno. All of them have equally nice old towns with cozy narrow streets, venetian ports and, of course, authentic tavernas. Most of all we liked Rethymno close to which our hotel was located.

Greek cuisine deserves a special word from vegetarian/seafood-eating me for variety and freshness of the ingredients that together form very simple but tasty (and healthy) dishes. If you are crazy olive lover like me, then, yes, this is your heaven. The level of service in all places we went to pleasantly surprised and in general Greeks leave an impression of very welcoming and hospitable people.

Okay, it’s now time for me to sleep to then enjoy the last sunny day here.