When’s the best time to go?
From the ancient capital of Heraklion to the sandy beaches of Ierapetra, Crete is one of the most beautiful Greek islands, and also the largest. Packed with beautiful beaches, ancient treasures and sleepy villages, a holiday to Crete is sure to be a memorable experience. But when is the best time to go and what do you need to know before you jet off? Our Crete travel advice is here to help.
Crete has a Mediterranean climate with hot, sunny summers and mild, wet winters. The hottest month is August with the average temperature reaching around 29°C, making summer the ideal time for a beach break. Sometimes a heatwave can see temperatures as high as 35-40°C, so don’t forget to pack your sun cream.
The sea is at its warmest from July-September which is ideal for swimming and snorkelling, while from mid-May to mid-September you may find the sea a little rough due to coastal winds.
Spring remains one of the most popular times to visit Crete, with temperatures in May ranging from 19°C-27°C and plenty of sunshine. During the months of October-March, Greece has its rainy season and it can be a little chilly, with temperatures averaging around 10°C during the day which often gets lower at night.
If you’re planning on visiting ancient ruins or taking excursions, spring or autumn is the best time to visit Crete, when attractions are less crowded, and the weather is cooler.
What should I pack?
Crete’s Mediterranean climate means you’ll need to pack for hot sunny days during much of the year, and add a few extra layers and perhaps a waterproof jacket for the wetter, cooler weather during the winter months. Evenings and night time in winter can be chilly, particularly on the coast or in mountainous regions, so make sure you pack a jumper.
If you’re heading to Crete in the summer, take plenty of light, cool clothing, your swimwear for the beach and of course, your sun cream to protect you from the sun’s powerful rays. Don’t forget your sun hat and sunglasses too, for lazing by the pool or on the beach.
There are plenty of ancient ruins and historical sites to explore on the island, so comfortable shoes are a must if you’re planning on seeing everything that’s on offer.
Passport and Visas
Do I need a passport?
All visitors to Crete will need a passport which must be valid for the duration of your stay. No specific period of validity is required beyond this.
For more information on Crete passport requirements and details of the country’s entry specifications, head to https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/greece/entry-requirements.
Do I need a visa?
British citizens travelling to Greece on holiday do not need a visa. If you’re unsure if you need a visa, it’s best to check with the Greek Embassy.
Health and Safety
Should I get travel health insurance?
Anyone planning a holiday to Crete will want to ensure they have comprehensive travel and health insurance. This way if you’re injured or become ill on your trip, you’ll be covered for the cost of emergency medical treatment or even your return back to the UK. It’s always a good idea to check your policy documents thoroughly before your trip, just so you’re aware of what is and what isn’t covered. We also recommend checking that any activities you’re planning for your holiday will be covered by your insurance.
Any other tips?
- The currency here is the Euro, and you’ll find plenty of cash machines in major cities and busier resorts. Credit and debit cards are widely accepted but it’s worth noting your card issuer may charge you a fee for using your card or withdrawing cash abroad.
- Smoking is banned in all public places in Crete.
- For more information and travel advice for your trip to Crete, head to https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/greece.