Holidays in Rethymnon
The jewel of Crete’s north coast, Rethymnon is renowned for its Venetian architecture and lashings of Cretan charm, plus over 10 kilometres of sun-drenched, sandy beaches. Sightseers will love discovering hidden gems in the narrow streets of the old town, and the bustling Venetian harbour has become a nightlife and dining hub. Relax in traditional harbour-front tavernas or spend the night experiencing the city’s vibrant bar scene.
Sun-worshippers will love the weather in June and July.
Heraklion Airport (HER).
Book a holiday to Rethymnon with Thomas Cook to experience one of Crete’s most beautiful Renaissance cities, home to a Venetian fortress and golden beaches.
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Throw yourself into the heart of Rethymnon’s old town and stroll between Venetian churches, and see the impressive Renaissance architecture. Stop to browse the markets for Cretan olive oil and cheese, then visit the beautiful old harbour or take the walk up to the impressive fortress, Rethymnon Fortezza. When you need to cool off, the beach is minutes away on foot and is the ideal place to lie back on a lounger or try some water sports. If you fancy yourself as a foodie, head to the harbour after dark for the catch of the day or Cretan specialties, and pick from a variety of local bars and clubs.
Rethymnon may be known for its city sights, but it still has its own slice of Crete’s golden coastline. The beach is over 10 kilometres long, featuring fine, light sand that shelves gently into the blue Mediterranean waters, creating the perfect environment for leisurely days of sunbathing and swimming. Backed by a lively, well-stocked seafront promenade, you’re never too far from an ice cream or lunch spot. Ideal for spending the day, the beach has sun loungers and umbrellas as well as lifeguards on duty. Popular beach activities in Rethymnon include jet skiing, parasailing and windsurfing.
The biggest attractions in Rethymnon are the remnants of its fascinating history, with an intriguing old town winding inland from the Venetian harbour. Considered one of the finest examples of a preserved Renaissance city, the old town is a narrow maze of old churches and architecture dating from the Venetian era to the Ottoman Empire. The perfect place to wander, the old town is filled with tiny cafes, interesting craft shops and market stalls. Rethymnon’s landmark is the Venetian Fortezza, the ancient fortress that gazes out across the town, providing incredible insight into the town’s past and beautiful views across the coast.
Rethymnon’s vibrant nightlife scene has a little something for everyone, with a top choice of lively bars and clubs as well as easy-going drinking holes along the waterfront. For a night out with a more traditional, Cretan feel, the best place to go in Rethymnon is the beautiful Venetian harbour and old town. Visit a Cretan taverna or locally-run restaurant for some authentic cuisine, or sit outside an old town cafe enjoying the sociable buzz of revellers. The choice of cuisine is excellent, with fresh seafood available at the harbour, quality Cretan olive oil, feta cheese and smoked lamb.
Sightseers: Rethymnon’s old town is full of hidden treasures, with renowned Renaissance architecture and sights like the fortress to explore.
Beach lovers: Away from its historic sights, Rethymnon still enjoys a classic Cretan beach, with golden sand and beautifully clear waters.
Night owls: The nightlife in Rethymnon is upbeat and diverse, with an exciting mix of Cretan tavernas and a lively bar scene.
Language: The language spoken in Rethymnon is Greek
Currency: The currency used in Rethymnon is the Euro (€)
Local time: Rethymnon is 3 hours ahead of GMT/UK time
Fly to: Heraklion Airport (HER)
Flight time from UK: Approximately 4 hours
Tourist Information: Further Rethymnon tourist information can be found at www.incrediblecrete.gr/11/index.en.html
Visa & Health: Before you travel, visit www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/greece for recommendations and advice on visas and health for your holiday to Rethymnon
Temperature: Average of 28°C in summer.
Best time to visit: Sun-worshippers will love the weather in June and July.
Rethymnon enjoys hot, Mediterranean summers. Temperatures stay in the sunny mid to late 20s (°C) between June and September, reaching towards 30°C during the months of July and August.
By bus: Rethymnon is well serviced by buses, which run regularly in high season and visit neighbouring towns and cities like Heraklion. Buses are generally the most efficient and affordable way to get around in Crete.
By taxi: There are plenty of taxis available in Rethymnon. They can either be picked up from the taxi rank or hailed down on the road. The taxis in Crete are a reasonably affordable option for short journeys.
By car: If you’re interested in exploring the island, hiring a car is ideal. There are a number of car hire companies to choose from and the roads in Crete are well-maintained and easy to navigate.
Renaissance festival: Rethymnon hosts a famous Renaissance Festival every August. The festival attracts visitors from all over the world to enjoy its theatre, dance and music productions, as well as art exhibitions celebrating European Renaissance. The events take place in the open-air Erofili Theatre within the ancient Venetian fortress of Rethymnon.
Wine festival: In August, the Cretan Wine Festival comes to Rethymnon. A favourite summertime event, the festival includes dance, music and celebrations in addition to tasting lots of Cretan wine in the sunny streets of the resort. The ticket price includes unlimited wine tasting.
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