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A day trip to explore Agios Nikolaus, Elounda and Spinalonga island

by Crete Locals

  • Posted 3 weeks ago

Are you looking for a day trip to explore the Northeast part of Crete that will take you to some beautiful places? If so, consider spending a day in Agios Nikolaos, Elounda and Spinalonga Island. These places are all located on the north coast of Crete and are worth exploring. This blog post will tell you more about each destination and provide travel tips to help you make the most of your visit. So, what are you waiting for? Grab your sunscreen and start planning your trip!

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Introduce the Northeast part of Crete

The Northeast part of Crete is a region full of natural beauty and historical significance. The area is home to the picturesque town of Agios Nikolaos, which is known for its lovely lake. Visitors can also explore the village of Elounda, a former fish village, which is also famous for its beautiful beaches and crystal-clear waters. From there, visitors will have the opportunity to take a boat trip to Spinalonga Island and explore its history with an experienced guide. They can marvel at the former home of the isolated lepers, relax onboard the boat while admiring the stunning views of Elounda Bay, and learn about Cretan culture and traditions from their knowledgeable guide.

Don’t miss out on this amazing chance to explore Crete’s Northeast region on a full-day tour! Families, couples, and groups of friends can all enjoy the sights and sounds of this day trip.

Beginning the day with Agios Nikolaos

The charming town of Agios Nikolaos is located on the shore of Mirabello Bay in Crete. The town is well-known for its lovely lake situated in its centre, which looks like an intricate maze of winding streets and alleys. The name of lake Voulismeni translates to ‘sunken’ in Greek, and it is believed to stretch down to depths of more than 100 metres. A stroll on the lake’s promenade – a lovely walkway that runs around the perimeter of the lake – is a popular activity among visitors and locals alike.

Apartments and hotels in Agios Nikolaos from Crete Island
Agios Nikolaos Lake

In addition to the breathtaking lake, visitors can enjoy browsing through local shops. You’ll find one-of-a-kind Cretan art pieces, jewellery, and traditional embroidery. Many stores also sell tasty local food products perfect for taking home as gifts (or keeping for yourself!). Be sure to stop in one of the charming coffee shops for a bite to eat and drink while taking in the beautiful sights.

Explore the village of Elounda, a former fishing village

Elounda Village, a charming fishing village

Next, we’ll head to Elounda Village, a charming fishing village with incredible views of the Mediterranean Sea, which is a world-renowned resort north of Agios Nikolaus

Elounda is a tourist resort that derives its name from the ancient city of Olous, which was located on the southern shores of the bay. The picturesque beaches, protected against harsh winds, sandy shores, and crystal clear waters make it a popular destination for visitors looking to relax and enjoy some peace and quiet. Some of Elounda’s most notable beaches include Schisma, Chiona, Kolokytha, Dianiskari and Alykes. Elounda is also home to some wonderful restaurants that serve fresh seafood dishes. Whether you’re looking for a romantic dinner or just a light meal, Elounda has something to offer every taste. And when the sun goes down, you can take a stroll along the waterfront, take in the stunning views of the sea and listen to some live music at one of Elounda’s many bars.

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After exploring Elounda, we’ll take a cruise to Spinalonga Island. This stunning island is home to an ancient fortress, ruins of Venetian and Ottoman settlements, and stunning beaches. The views from the island are breathtaking, so make sure to bring your camera!

Depart from Elounda for the cruise to Spinalonga Island

Spinalonga island crete
Spinalonga Island, Done Shot

Spinalonga is a small, picturesque island located in the Gulf of Elounda in north-central Crete, Greece. The island is just over a kilometre long and boasts stunningly clear water, lovely beaches, and awe-inspiring views. Spinalonga has a long and colourful history, dating back to the Minoan period. The island was used as a leper colony from 1903 until 1957, after which it was turned into a tourist

The history of Spinalonga is a colourful one, full of Venetians and Turks. In the late 1500s, the Venetians invaded Crete and took control of the island. They built a fortress on Spinalonga to protect themselves from the Turks, who were also vying for control of the island. The two groups fought back and forth for control of Crete for many years, with Spinalonga serving as a strategic stronghold for both sides. In 1669, the Venetians finally lost control of Crete to the Turks and Spinalonga was taken over by the Ottoman Empire. The Ottomans ruled the island for more than 200 years until it was finally taken over by Greece in 1897.

Spinalonga’s time as a leper colony began in 1903 and lasted until 1957. During this time, the island was off-limits to the public and was only accessible by boat. The island served as a place of isolation for those with leprosy, a situation that has been described as both cruel and inhumane. After the leprosy patients were relocated to a sanatorium on the Greek mainland, Spinalonga was reopened as a tourist destination and has since become one of Crete’s most popular attractions.

Today, visitors can explore the island’s rich history, take in its stunning views, or simply relax on the beach. The island is also home to some unique wildlife, including rare birds and marine life.

Recap of the tour

Today, we visited the beautiful town of Agios Nikolaos and the charming fishing village of Elounda. We then took a cruise to Spinalonga Island, which is home to an ancient fortress, and ruins of Venetian and Ottoman settlements. This full-day guided tour of northeastern Crete is the perfect way to explore some of the area’s most beautiful villages and stunning beaches. So if you’re looking for a day filled with breathtaking views, interesting historical sites, and lovely beaches, be sure to check out this tour!

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