Things to do in Kritsa

Our most recommended things to do in Kritsa

From Agios Nikolaos: Day Tour to Zeus Cave & Lasithi Plateau

1. From Agios Nikolaos: Day Tour to Zeus Cave & Lasithi Plateau

After pickup from your hotel, the first stop on your tour is Kritsa, a historical village rich in legends. Here you'll discover picturesque gorges and several ancient archaeological and religious sites. From Kritsa, drive higher into the mountains through the pine forest and past Katharo Plateau (altitude 1250m). This plateau is famous for the Cretan dwarf hippopotamus fossils found in the area and features a magnificent landscape surrounded that is home to many legends dating back to the Ottoman era. Next you'll visit the impressive Lassithi Plateau (altitude 1150m). More than 10,000 traditional windmills operated in the area until just a few decades ago. In the 1950s and 1960s, the plateau was actually one of the first wind farms in Europe. If you're lucky, you'll also have a chance to see some native wildlife. From here you'll continue on to the Diktaean Cave, that is, the birthplace of Zeus, which is located at the village of Psychro (altitude 840m). Finally, explore the village of Krasi and take photos of the famous Cretan author Nikos Kazantzakis’ beloved plane tree. This particular plane tree’s circumference is approximately 24 metres and it is estimated that it is 2400 years old.

From Heraklion: East and South Crete Villages Tour and beach

2. From Heraklion: East and South Crete Villages Tour and beach

The excursion starts after collecting the participators at Malia. You're passing the north-east coast and St. George’s Gorge. After a short ride you'll visit an olive oil park where you can experience first-hand the standardization of extra virgin olive oil, table olives and olive paste. Here you will be able to taste the authentic Greek products, which are famous worldwide for its great taste and its nutritional value, as well as, other authentic Cretan products like “raki” and honey. You'll stay there for about 30 min. Later visit to one of the oldest villages on Crete, which retains even today elements of the Venetian architecture, the village of Kritsa. Here, you will have about 1 hour free time to stroll around its narrow streets. Then, head towards to Myrtos Beach, 13km west of Ierapetra the most south situated city in Europe, at the output of a wide valley filled with greenhouses and citrus groves. You will have free time to enjoy swimming and sunbathing to the nice beaches of Myrtos, with the coarse gray sand that doesn’t stick on the body. After 2 1/2 hours in Myrtos you'll go back to the hotels.

Crete: Agios Nikolaos, Kritsa and Amazonas Park Day Trip

3. Crete: Agios Nikolaos, Kritsa and Amazonas Park Day Trip

Start with pickup from your hotel and first pass the Selinari monastery with its impressive gorge, and reach the small town of Neapolis. Visit the Vassilakis Estate, one of the oldest and most successful olive oil producers in Crete. Enjoy a detailed tour of their production facility and learn how olive oil is made. Continue to the provincial capital of Agios Nikolaos where you can admire the shimmering blue waters of the bay of Mirabello. Walk along the harbor and over the bridge to the freshwater Lake Voulismeni. Visit a local market and browse for specialty local products such as honey, olive oil, and spices. After a Greek coffee in one of the cozy cafes, continue to Kritsa, one of the most picturesque villages on the island. Admire the views of the whitewashed houses of the village located below a steep rocky slope. Take a break for some lunch at your own expense, followed by a stroll through the village. Finally, travel to Amazonas Park and discover a sanctuary for the conservation of endangered species. Take a guided tour of the sanctuary and see a variety of colorful parrots and curious monkeys. See rare parrot species which will eventually be released back into their natural habitat, and enjoy the fantastic views of the foothills of the Dikti Mountains.

Private Group Tour in Lasithi & Traditional Cretan Villages

4. Private Group Tour in Lasithi & Traditional Cretan Villages

Ever felt you wanted to get away from crowds and blaze your own trail? This is your chance to enjoy the many sights, tastes and aromas of Crete on your own terms. Take advantage of this personalized tour service and get ready for private tour that will take you from one sight to the next, from breathtaking views to traditional villages to the secret villages of Crete – each one chosen by you. Are you into wine culture, archaeological sites, traditional Greek cooking lessons, unique beaches, or Mediterranean gastronomy? This tour will take you from the heights of the rocky Lassithi plateau to the traditional villages tucked away off the beaten path. Start at the village of Krasi and visit the huge 2,400-years-old Writer’s Plane Tree, named so because it was beloved by Nikos Kazantzakis, one of the most famous Greek writers of the 20th century. In the same village, see how the Cretans used to wash their clothes in the traditional manner. Next up is Panagia Kera, a 13th century Byzantine monastery where you can find a depiction of the Catholic St. Francis, who is famous in Crete among the gorgeous iconography. Afterwards, the tour will ascend to the unique Lassithi Plateau, a rocky and austere place, long treasured for the beauty of its scenery. There you can visit the Diktaion Andron, an ancient cave believed to be the mythological birthplace of Zeus. Have lunch in a traditional taverna outside Krasi, at your own expense.

Crete: Lasithi Plateau Off-Road Land Rover Safari with Lunch

5. Crete: Lasithi Plateau Off-Road Land Rover Safari with Lunch

Experience being driven off-road in a Land Rover through traditional mountain villages and historic landmarks on this Lasithi Plateau safari with lunch. Visit the Cave of Psychro, see the Roman aqueduct, and more. Admire the view from Afentis to the north, south, and west side of the island. The day starts in Hersonissos (Chersonisos). After the necessary briefing from the driver, head south towards the Lasithi Plateau. The road soon leads to the Aposelemis Dam. There you can see the abandoned village of Sfendili, which, depending on the water level, is visible or not. Continue driving on the provincial road among the olive groves to the picturesque village of Amariano. Here you can have a drink and see the remains of the Roman aqueduct. Then, the off-road driving begins. The landscape becomes wilder and the altitude increasing quickly. If you’re lucky, spot the vultures that fly in the area. The road ends at the fertile Lasithi Plateau where there were once more than 1000 windmills, which pumped groundwater to irrigate the fields. Next, stop at the impressive Cave of Psychro (Dikteon Cave) at an altitude of 1025 m. There, according to mythology, Zeus was born. The cave is considered an archeological site and can be visited for a surcharge. To reach the cave, follow a beautiful and short uphill path. If you do not want to walk, there are donkeys that take visitors to the cave for a fee. Right after your visit to the cave, get the opportunity to taste traditional Cretan cuisine in a local restaurant. After your meal, start your return. Travel through the col, where the windmills that the locals used to grind their flour are still standing. A few kilometers later, visit Keras Monastery (Monastery Panagia Kera Kardiotissa), one of the most important religious monuments in Crete. Due to its central location between Heraklion and the Lasithi Plateau, the monastery was used as a shelter for Cretan freedom fighters. Within a few months, between October 1866 and June 1867, Panagia Kera was burned twice by Omer Pasha's army. On the way back, make a final stop in the village of Mohos for a drink of raki (alcoholic drink). The view from the road to the Cretan Sea, Mallia, and Hersonissos as the sun sets is a perfect way to end the day.

From Heraklion: Private Guided Tour of East Crete

6. From Heraklion: Private Guided Tour of East Crete

Experience East Crete like a local on a private guided tour from Heraklion. Get the inside track as you uncover the region's best-kept secrets, venturing from village to village to marvel at sights like the Kroustas Forest Historical Landscape Park, Agia Fotia, and much more. Start your guided day trip with a convenient pickup from your hotel and travel in your choice of luxury vehicle as you set out to explore East Crete. Venture from village to village to see the island through the eyes of a local. Stop at the hanging Byzantine monastery of Kremasta, an oasis of calm. Then, head to the villages of Kritsa and Kroustas for a glimpse into the past. Connect with locals as you wander around these traditional Cretan villages where time seems to have slowed. Next, go off the beaten track and follow ancient trails across the Minoan mountains as you visit the Kroustas Forest Historical Landscape Park. Admire Crete's natural beauty as you breathe in the clean mountain air and take in panoramic views of the Libyan and Aegean Seas. From here, you'll make your way to Agia Fotia, the ideal spot to break for lunch at one of the local taverns (cost not included). Then, travel to Sarakinas Gorge to discover a canyon with gurgling water, rich vegetation, and bird life. Finally, head to Ierapetra to bask in the warm turquoise waters of the Libyan Sea. Hop back into your vehicle, sit back, relax, and enjoy some complimentary snacks as you travel back to your accommodation in Heraklion, where your tour comes to an end. 

Heraklion: Palace of Minoa & Spinaloga/Elounda Village Tour

7. Heraklion: Palace of Minoa & Spinaloga/Elounda Village Tour

Experience a private day tour in the Heraklion area and visit the third-largest Minoan Palace in Crete, stop at the Island of Spinalonga, and explore Agios Nikolaos and Elounda. Learn more about the history and culture of the Heraklion area on this private tour. Start the tour with pickup from your designated pickup point, and first go to the Archaeological site of Malia, dating back to the Middle Bronze Age. See this majestic site, the third-largest Minoan Palace in all of Crete, built close to a beautiful beach. Move on to Kritsa Village, one of the oldest and most picturesque villages in the area, built atmospherically on a rocky hill called Kastellos, and surrounded by olive groves. Explore the local village with narrow winding lanes, renowned for the skill of its weavers, and see their craftsmanship Visit the Church of Panagia Kera, one of the most important monuments in Crete because of its well-preserved wall paintings representing various periods of Byzantine Art. See the original church, dedicated to the Dormition of Theotokos, built in the middle of the thirteenth century. Make a stop in Agios Nikolaos, one of the first cities in Crete where tourist development began. Admire the picturesque harbor and see two of the sweet water lakes of Crete. Pass by the fishing village of Elounda on the northern coast, and enjoy the traditional and idyllic scenery. Reach the marina of Plaka and from there travel to the Island of Spinalonga, famous as it was a former Venetian Fortress and Leper Colony. Learn more about the site's history and its significance as it left an unfading mark on Crete's history.

Other Sightseeing Options in Kritsa

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What people are saying about Kritsa

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 9 reviews

Value for money is very good. The activities are very interesting. The Amazonaspark is great, the owner looks after the animals very well. His commitment is admirable. Highly recommended, even with small children.

Had a wonderful day guide was the best .. Told us everything best experience on our trip to Crete high recommend it private tour get to go at your pace .. We loved it

Excellent and very interesting day. The guide was very friendly, accommodating and available. Very good driving, very clear explanations. We recommend this excursion

Our guide was super friendly and knowledgeable...we had an amazing time!!