Our most recommended things to do in Margarites

From Rethymno: Arkadi, Melidoni, and Margarites Tour

1. From Rethymno: Arkadi, Melidoni, and Margarites Tour

Benefit from pick-up at your hotel in the Rethymno area, and then explore the traditional lifestyle and historical legacy of Crete. Learn the Neolithic history of the Melidoni Cave and discover the pottery traditions of the village of Margarites. Discover the oldest monastery in Crete at the 16th-century Arkadi Monastery, and then go to the village of Apostoli to visit an old olive oil factory. Enjoy lunch in a traditional tavern and listen to the beautiful sound of live folk music before making your way to St. Antonios Gorge. Stop at the Fragma Potamon dam before making your way back to Rethymno.

From Rethymno: Arkadi- Margarites - Melidoni Cave - Axos

2. From Rethymno: Arkadi- Margarites - Melidoni Cave - Axos

After you will be picked off in the morning from your hotel in Rethymnon, this unique village tour begins from Arkadi. There you will visit the historic Arkadi Monastery, renowned for its pivotal role in the resistance against the Turks. You will learn a lot about local history from the icons and the weapons there. After this enriching visit, you will enjoy a majestic route towards Eleutherna where you will stop to glaze the landscape and enjoy the view. The next station will be the village of Margarites, in which you can learn about the art of pottery and create your own ceramic in their local pottery workshop. The tradition of pottery goes back many generations in this village and the ladies there will be more than happy to initiate you to the Cretan pottery art. Afterwards, you will be heading to Melidoni cave, also called “Gerodospilios,” which is a historic cave filled with stalactites and stalagmites. This 220-meter altitude cave was a place of worship for Talos the bronze giant guardian of Crete who protected the island of Crete from enemies. You will have an hour to explore the cave. Before heading back to Rethymnon, you will stop at Axos Village, where you will have the chance to experience firsthand the production process of fresh cheese. Along with the local people you can take part in the milking process, witness the production of local cheese pies and cheese and of course taste the fresh traditional handmade snacks. After the relaxed time for snacks and resting you are ready to depart and get dropped off at your hotel in Rethymnon, with a full experience of Crete's history, art and flavors.

Crete: Cretan Culture Tour and Pottery Workshop

3. Crete: Cretan Culture Tour and Pottery Workshop

See Crete on a guided tour that combines history and craft for a hands-on experience. Visit the most historical spots on the island, learn their history, and enjoy a pottery lesson and olive oil tasting. Visit the Museum of Ancient Eleftherna, Melidoni Cave, and more. Start by getting picked up from your accommodation in Rethymno, then arrive at the most important monastery of Crete: the Monastery of Arkadi. Explore the museum where many icons, monastic relics, and weapons reveal the monastery’s history. Enjoy an hour of free time. Next, visit the Museum of Ancient Eleftherna with its historical findings from Homer’s era. This is the first archaeological site museum in Crete. The museum hosts the whole history of Eleftherna from 3000 B.C. to 1300 A.D. Afterward, enjoy a tour of the pottery workshop “TSIKALARIO” in the village of Margarites to learn about the art of pottery and create your own ceramic. The tradition of pottery goes back many generations in this villa. Later, visit Margarites village where you will have free time for lunch or a walk. Next, head to an olive oil manufactory. Learn how Cretan people made olive oil in the past and see the evolution up to today. Take part in an olive oil tasting before heading to the next stop, Melidoni Cave. Lastly, arrive at Melidoni, also called “Gerodospilios,” a historic cave filled with stalactites and stalagmites. This 220-meter altitude cave was used for religious ceremonies and as a place of worship. Learn the cave's archaeological and historical significance before heading back to Rethymno.

Crete: Margarites, Rethymnon, Argyroupoli Full-Day Tour

4. Crete: Margarites, Rethymnon, Argyroupoli Full-Day Tour

Visit the famous pottery village of Margarites in western Crete. This important center of regional pottery invites you to explore its narrow streets and hidden cafes. Enjoy the wonderful view and the harmonious coexistence of old and new. Visit the fascinating city of Rethymnon, which has maintained its unique flair. The Venetian fortress is particularly impressive as well as the so-called “Fortezza” at the city harbor, and the minarets from the Turkish era. Stroll through the city center and soak up the special atmosphere. Finally, visit Argyroupoli with its beautiful waterfalls. Enjoy a coffee in the shade of the imposing sycamore trees and learn more about the former ancient city of Lappa, which, according to myth, was created by Agamemnon. Admire a mosaic from the Roman period and see an existing Venetian portal with the inscription “All things of this world are smoke and shadows”.

Private Wine Pairing for Brunch

5. Private Wine Pairing for Brunch

Escape on the most intimate and exclusive Cretan brunch journey with your loved one or a group of friends. Explore a vineyard, cellar and the production facilities with the winemaker before you dive into a homemade Cretan brunch. The setup is designed to please the eyes! The food is prepared by a local taverna and is based only on local and traditional products, and will be accompanied by 5 wines. All pots and plates are handmade with care by a local ceramist from natural clay. Your private sommelier will teach you how to taste wines like an expert, and introduce you to the secrets of food and wine pairing; After this delicious experience, and if the weather allows it, visit and discover the nearby and hidden gem known as Patsos Gorge, inside of which are numerous walkways and hidden altars.

Rethymno:Private Trip to Arkadi-Margarites and Melidoni

6. Rethymno:Private Trip to Arkadi-Margarites and Melidoni

Get in touch with the history and the art of the Cretan pottery on this tour from Rethymno. Learn about local honey and bees at the Honey Museum. See natural stalactites at Melidoni cave. Explore the villages and feel the cretan hospitality. Enjoy the convenience of being picked up from your accommodation in Rethymno. Sit back and relax on a scenic drive through the countryside. Arrive in Margarites and take a tour of a ceramic shop. Immerse yourself in local crafts during pottery.  Take a guided tour of the Honey Museum to discover the secrets of one of Crete's most popular foods. Travel to Melidoni to visit the subterranean chambers and stalactites in Melidoni cave. Hear about the fascinating history of this cave. Finally return to your accommodation in Rethymno at the end of your tour. 

Crete: Rethymno Guided Bike Tour & Monastery of Arkadi

7. Crete: Rethymno Guided Bike Tour & Monastery of Arkadi

First we collect you by bus from your hotel and drive to the monastery of Arkadi. Before we set off on our bikes you will have a chance to visit the historic and very famous monastery. Arkadi played a very important part in Crete's history of resistance against the Turks and you will also be able to see a fascinating collection of icons, weapons and clerical items in the museum. We then get on our bikes and cycle through stunning scenery, olive groves and orange trees, passing through the villages of Amnatos, Kyrianna, Loutra and Asteri. Here you will get a glimpse of how Cretan people still live and work in the traditional way. We then pass through Hamalevri and eventually arrive at Stavromenos and then Scaleta. We will stop for a coffee break at the lovely village of Scaleta, next to the beach, just before we load all the bikes back to the trailer and drive to Margarites pottery village. Just outside the village we get back on the bikes and you will get a chance to explore this beautiful location, which has been famous for its pottery for centuries. Then we'll meet up and have a relaxing snack in the picturesque countryside and under a carob tree. After the snack we cycle down to Perama, before hopping back on the bus to drive to Melidoni and visit the famous cave. The history of this amazing archaeological site goes back thousands of years and it is said to be the mythical home of Talos, the giant bronze protector of Crete. From here we get back on the bus and visit a sandy beach, where you can swim or just laze in the sun, before we take you back to your hotel at the end of a perfect day.

Heraklion: Western Crete Shore Excursion & Melidoni Cave

8. Heraklion: Western Crete Shore Excursion & Melidoni Cave

Embark on an enchanting small group tour, specially designed for cruise ship guests, to experience the diverse beauty of Crete. Led by a local expert, uncover the island's hidden gems and captivating history, creating unforgettable memories. Begin by diving into the crystal-clear waters of Bali, a picturesque seaside haven that offers the perfect setting for relaxation. Next, journey to the intriguing Melidoni Cave, rich in history and natural beauty. Let the stories of its past unfold as you venture into its mysterious depths. The charming village of Margarites awaits you, showcasing its traditional ceramics and local craftsmanship. Stroll through the narrow streets and admire the authentic Cretan lifestyle before taking a break at the beautiful Heraklion Marina old harbor. Savor a cup of coffee, tea, or fresh orange juice, as you soak in the stunning views. Your adventure concludes as you return to the Heraklion port, enriched by the beauty, history, and vibrant culture of Crete. This tour offers a perfect balance of relaxation and exploration, leaving you with a newfound appreciation for the island's treasures.

Rethimno: Margarites & Gorge Tour with Live Music and Lunch

9. Rethimno: Margarites & Gorge Tour with Live Music and Lunch

Admire the ceramic artwork in the town of Margarites and take a nature hike on this van tour from Rethimno. Take your taste buds on a journey with a delectable Cretan lunch. Immerse yourself in Cretan culture with a live music demonstration and dancing.  Enjoy the convenience of being picked up from your accommodation in Rethimno. Sit back and relax on your air-conditioned van ride to the mountains. Begin a leisurely walk near the foothills of mountain of Psiloritis. Reach the charming village of Margarites. Step back in time as you walk down narrow paths of Margarites and admire stone-built homes surrounded by old Venetian mansions. Marvel at the colorful and creative ceramic artwork as you walk. See how villagers have kept the pottery tradition alive.  Pass by the remains of Venetian and Ottoman pottery workshops and notice how their work affected how they built their workshops. View how they kept large rocks next to their windows, so villages would have a place to tie up their horses.  Explore the winding streets with your guide and take in the vibrant colors before continuing to the gorge of Margarites. Capture pictures of this stunning natural landscape that is dotted with cypress trees and low shrubs. Go into the gorge and listen to the sound of running water.  See traces of an old irrigation system before heading to a goat pasture. Follow a small stream which gives way to rock formations, before finishing your hike in a forest glade with a splendid chapel overlooking breathtaking views.  Stop for a delicious lunch of mezes, olives, rusks bread, and gruyere cheese. Sip on plenty of raki (grape and anise liquor) and listen to live Cretan music. Delight your ears with songs played on laouto and lyra instruments.   Hear about traditional styles of song like the mantinada and erotokritos. Be moved to dance like a local. Return to your accommodation in Rethimno at the end of your tour. 

Heraklion: Rethymno and Western Crete Highlights Day Trip

10. Heraklion: Rethymno and Western Crete Highlights Day Trip

Embark on a journey to explore the hidden gems of Western Crete, where you'll experience the region's rich history, charming villages, and breathtaking landscapes. With our expert guide, uncover the authentic Crete and its unique selling points, ensuring a memorable adventure. Begin by venturing into the captivating Melidoni Cave, filled with fascinating geological features and ancient legends. Then, wander through the picturesque Margarites village, renowned for its traditional pottery. Participate in a pottery-making show with a local artisan and explore the charming alleys. Head to Kournas Lake, Crete's only natural freshwater lake, and marvel at its serene beauty. Take the opportunity to spot local wildlife and enjoy the peaceful atmosphere that surrounds this unique location. Immerse yourself in the vibrant atmosphere of Rethymno, the main western town, boasting stunning Venetian architecture and a rich historical past. Stroll through its enchanting streets, taking in the sights and sounds of local life. After a day of exploration, you'll be dropped off at your hotel, leaving you with unforgettable memories of Crete's hidden treasures.

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What people are saying about Margarites

Overall rating

4.4 / 5

based on 7 reviews

It was a very nice tour in a small coach, which made it even more enjoyable and entertaining, with many stops and a great tour guide (many thanks and regards to Andreas). There were actually seven stops in total, which is not clear from the description here, but which surprised us very positively. The stops had the following order: Melodini Cave, the pottery village Margarites, Eleftherna Museum, Arkadi Monastery, lunch together in a tavern in a traditional mountain village with a visit to an old oil mill, visit to a beautiful small gorge in Patsos and then a short photo stop of a dam. During the trip, Andreas told a lot of interesting facts about the island and the stops. The length of stay at the individual stops was always appropriate. The tour can only be recommended.

A wonderful well organised experience with gorgeous sights, delicious food and music. However the highlight of this tour was Andreas the guide, a true treasure of a man. Kind, knowledgeable and funny. (Andreas, from your Irish friend Frank and Brazilian wife Marina, we thank you for such an unforgettable day - also shout out to our lovely bus driver too! we don’t want to misspell your name!)

It was a very nice tour, where you could gather many impressions of the Cretan culture. The small village of Magarites with its pottery and ceramics was particularly beautiful. The highlight was eating together in the tavern and the Cretan live music. Kostas and Nektarius have always created a good atmosphere and are very welcoming. Top.

Such great value for money. I was actually booked onto a similar tour with another company that was cancelled and I am so glad that it was. Anastasia and Costas were amazing tour guides. Anastasia has so much knowledge of the history of the island and Costas provides insight into the local culture (I don't want to ruin any surprises).

Perfect mix of scenery from monastery to museum to olive oil to pottery and cave. Even though we couldn’t make our pottery- upon request our guide was very helpful to request to have my son try it and experience it!