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Things to do in Rethymno

With natural beauties, archeological sites, and sandy beaches, this Cretan town has something for everyone.

Our most recommended things to do in Rethymno

From Rethymno: Half-Day Quad Bike Safari

1. From Rethymno: Half-Day Quad Bike Safari

Choose from a morning or afternoon Quad Bike safari, and benefit from a hotel pick-up from Rethymno, Bali, or Georgiopoulis. Journey to the base in Rethymno town and get kitted out with all the necessary equipment. Listen to a detailed briefing before you set off for some serious off-road fun. Journey up into the mountains of Maroulas, and head for the summit for a 10-minute break to take in the panoramic views. Then, continue on your bike for another 20 minutes to reach a spot where you can relax over coffee at a traditional kafeneion (Greek coffee house). Soak up the peace and quiet of Café Gidospito overlooking beautiful Lake Potami before making your way to the picturesque village of Prassies for a quick snack to refuel after your Quad Bike experience. Return to Rethymno and get dropped off at your hotel to relax and freshen up after your dusty adventure.

From Rethymno: Samaria Gorge Full-Day Trek with Pickup

2. From Rethymno: Samaria Gorge Full-Day Trek with Pickup

Take a day trip from Rethymno to set out on an outdoor adventure into Samaria Gorge National Park. Hike at your own pace with a guide over rocks and stones, through a forest of thousand-year-old trees, along a river, and by fresh-water springs. Keep an eye out for mountain goats roaming in the wild. Begin your full-day excursion to Samaria Gorge with pickup and a drive to Omalos, in the heart of the White Mountains, where you can enjoy breakfast before you start the hike. Challenge yourself with 17 kilometers of walking over rocky terrain. Be accompanied by a mountain escort who speaks English, German and French. Get briefed about your hike and get your tickets for the entrance and ferry boat from your escort. These fees have to be paid to the guide upon arrival. After breakfast, enter the Samaria Gorge. Walk at your own pace as your guide will be at the end of the group to help out if you need them. At the end of the trek, visit the village of Agia Roumeli, where you’ll find a number of taverns, bars, and shops. Enjoy some free time to take a swim or have some lunch. A meeting point will be arranged so you can collect your ferry tickets from your guide. Late in the afternoon, board a boat to go from Agia Roumeli to Sfakia, where the bus will be waiting to transfer you back to the pickup point.

From Heraklion: Chania Town, Kournas Lake, and Rethymno Tour

3. From Heraklion: Chania Town, Kournas Lake, and Rethymno Tour

Morning Pick up: We will start collecting participants from pick-up points in the morning. Depending on the place of your hotel/apartment the bus drive will differ. Bus Drive: 3 hours 1st stop: Chania Town – 2 hours 30 minutes Our groups will enjoy their time to wander around the beautiful Venetian streets and neighborhoods of this picturesque town of Greece. Walk through its roads full of little shops, markets and local restaurants around theirfamous old port. Bus Drive: 1 hour 2nd stop:The lake of Kournas – 1 hour 20 minutes The largest natural lake of Crete reflecting the White Mountains gives you the sense of an Alpine landscape. Grab the opportunity to hire a pedal boat for a lovely ride around the lake, swimming and enjoying a meal in one of the little tavernas (not included). Bus Drive:20 minutes 3rd stop: Rethymno – 1 hour 30 minutes Visit Rethymno and its picturesque venetian town. Enjoy your free time to walk along the old port and beautiful oriental beach road. End of the tour – Return to resorts: Embarkation in the buses and drive back to the hotels where we gathered participants in the morning. Depending on traffic and on the pick-up places of each one, the time of journey back to the hotel will differ. Bus Drive: 2 hours

Georgioupolis Full-Day Land Rover Safari Experience

4. Georgioupolis Full-Day Land Rover Safari Experience

Hop in a 4x4 vehicle for a full-day safari adventure and learn about Cretan traditions while indulging in delicious food. Tour the paradisical countryside and swim in the clear water of the South Cretan Sea. Climb to an altitude of 1,200 meters and experience the quietness of the White Mountains and Cretan dances in a fascinating landscape. Keep an eye out for vultures that will take your breath away with their imposing appearance. Visit an old village with a Byzantine Church and a café stocked with Cretan products, including herbs, raki, and honey. See a castle and swim in the pristine waters of the South Cretan Sea before heading to a tavern to try traditional dishes. Visit a family-owned winery and learn how wine is produced on the island. Discover the secrets of Creten olive oil at an old factory and learn how to identify various grades of olive oil. Step into the island's past with visits to historical museums.

From Rethymno & Chania: Elafonisi Island Day Tour by Bus

5. From Rethymno & Chania: Elafonisi Island Day Tour by Bus

Ride in a comfortable coach through small traditional villages and typical Mediterranean scenery. See the rugged landscape around the Topolia Gorge and have a stop for coffee and refreshments. Arrive at Elafonissi beach. Here, you have four hours of free time to marvel at the different colors from the soft pink and white sand to the turquoise waters. As well as exploring the wonders of the beach, discover the small island. This lies just off the shore and you can reach it by strolling through the water. Both the beach and the island are protected wildlife areas of rare beauty and included in the Natura 2000 Protection Programme. 

From Rethymno: Elafonissi Pink Sand Beach Tour

6. From Rethymno: Elafonissi Pink Sand Beach Tour

Visit one of the most beautiful beaches in the world. Elafonissi is truly a heaven on earth, with soft white/pink sand, exotic crystal-clear water and cedar trees that extend down to the coastline. It is located in the easily accessible, south-western side of Crete. Get picked up from your hotel area in the morning. Stop for a short break is the Aghia Sophia cave. Visit the cave, and have coffee or refreshments if you choose. Following this, depart for Elafonissi. On your way, see small traditional villages combined with typical Mediterranean scenery, along with the rugged landscape around the Topolia Gorge. Once you reach Elafonissi, have 4 hours of free time to soak in the amazing sun and enjoy the spectrum of shades of blue that this beach has to offer. At the end of your tour, return to your accommodation in Crete.

Crete: Olive Oil Tasting with Cretan Food Pairing

7. Crete: Olive Oil Tasting with Cretan Food Pairing

Create lasting memories in Crete as you enjoy an olive oil tasting experience under the shade of olive trees. This entire experience will be enjoyed in the middle of a 2,000-year-old monumental olive grove. Discover the history, culture, and Cretan civilization of olive oil throughout the centuries. During your walk around the peaceful olive groves such as the holy Gethsemane Garden, you will discover the beauty of the Cretan landscape as well as the myths, flavors, and aromas of olive oil. The activity includes an olive oil tasting of 4 different olive oils at a tasting table in the shade of some olive trees. During the tasting you will be pairing food with more types of olive oil, and you will receive tips on how taste, preserve, choose, cook, and fry olive oil. You'll also receive more information about harvesting and olive oil extraction.

Rethymno: Sunset Cruise on a Wooden Pirate Boat

8. Rethymno: Sunset Cruise on a Wooden Pirate Boat

Board the wooden pirate boat named "Captain Hook" at the port of Rethymno and get set off on a serene cruise into the sunset. Enjoy the glorious views of the city and the Cretan mountains in the background while the sun sets on the horizon. Snap some photos of Fortezza Castle, the Venetian Port, and the city of Rethymno lit up in the twilight. Sip on a beer or a refreshing soft drink with your partner, family, or friends for a perfect and relaxing end to the day.

Rethymno: Pirate Boat Cruise with Swimming Stops

9. Rethymno: Pirate Boat Cruise with Swimming Stops

Boart the pirate-themed boat "Captain Hook" at marina port of Rethymnon. Set sail on a five-hour cruise and take some time for swimming, snorkeling, or simply admiring the beautiful views. Sail west and enjoy the views of the Venetian port of Rethymnon. Traveling along the coastline of Crete, pass Gerani Bay before the boat anchors at the Bay of Kevalas. Enjoy some time swimming or snorkeling from the boat for approximately one hour. Next, enjoy a light lunch of Greek salad , followed by more time for swimming and sunbathing. On the return leg of the journey, admire the views of the caves of Kefalas before returning to the harbor of Rethymnon.

From Rethymno: Full-Day Trip to Santorini by Boat

10. From Rethymno: Full-Day Trip to Santorini by Boat

Experience the iconic clifftop villages overlooking the Aegean on a guided day trip to Santorini. Transfer from Rethymno to a luxury catamaran. Soak up the caldera views, see the pastel-painted houses of Oia, and stroll through the streets of Fira. Start your day trip from Crete at the port of Rethymno or opt to include pickup from your hotel in an air-conditioned vehicle and marvel at the blue and white buildings typical of the island on your way to the harbor. Climb aboard a luxury, high-speed catamaran and journey to Santorini. Upon arrival at the port of Athinios, take a tour of the island by air-conditioned bus. Learn about the history of one of the most romantic islands in Greece from your guide. Travel through the beautiful countryside en route to the village of Oia at the northernmost tip of the island. Built on the lip of a volcanic caldera, the village offers magnificent views of the blue and white houses studded along the hillside.   Continue to Fira and get plenty of free time to explore the island's capital. Stroll down the picturesque alleys and take in the views of the architecture typical to the Aegean. Browse the shops or enjoy a drink at a bar with stunning views of the volcano and its caldera cliffs. Alternatively, travel by boat to the caldera (subject to availability) for views of the volcano up close. Depart for Crete in the evening for the return trip to the Port of Rethymno, where the tour ends. If you opt to include transfers, you'll be dropped off at your hotel.

Top sights in Rethymno

Available activities

  • Exploring the Greek Islands
  • Hikes around Rethymno
  • Off-road driving gems
  • Cretan wine, food, & olive oil
  • Knossos Palace & Cretan history
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What people are saying about Rethymno

Overall rating

4.5 / 5

based on 5,669 reviews

Highly recommend this e-bike tour! Michalis and Lena were very friendly and Michalis was a fantastic guide. He was very knowledgeable and shared just the right amount/depth of interesting information. The tour was very well-paced with a mix of stops: a couple of monasteries, the military museum, a hike through the stunning Myli Gorge, a viewpoint, and lunch (which was one of the best meal experiences of my life between the beautiful view and delicious food). We don't bicycle often but the motor made the hills extremely easy and the views throughout were incredibly beautiful!

Our guide Kostos made the tour informative, fun, interesting and very enjoyable . His knowledge of local and country history, architecture and Greek mythology , traditions of Creten life, families / communities helped us appreciate and enjoy our time here all the more. The food was amazing , we will buy honey and olive oil with knowledge now and of course the sampling of local alcohol . We thoroughly recommend this tour to add depth and fun to your holiday in Rethymno . Brilliant fun

The lake is cool, but perhaps not as beautiful as it is depicted in photographs (that being said I did see it on quite an overcast day). However, the towns were absolutely lovely and I really enjoyed just strolling through and exploring a different side of Crete! Really loved the guide as well!

Very well organised. Very friendly. Safe drive to our locations. Fun and well priced.

Wonderful experience for my husband and daughter .