The town of Rethymnon is between the town of Heraklion
on the east and the town of Chania on the west. Its geographical
position, in relation to these two major towns of Crete explains
to some extent its minor role in the casting of regional development,
with major roles reserved for Heraklion and Chania. At some
time however, the town of Rethymnon decided to claim a leading
role in a play of its own production and direction. This would
not have been possible if it were not for the love of the Rethymnians
for their historic town. In an effort to change the image of
their town, the local authorities and the people worked closely
together. Currently, the town of Rethymnon is considered the
center of Arts & Letters of Crete, with Venetian buildings
and monuments freshly renovated and valorized.
Have a cup of Greek coffee before you set off for an evening
out in Rethymnon. You need all the energy you can get. Do the
same as soon as you wake up in the morning. The best place to
have coffee is by the seaside, a favourite promenade for tourists
and locals alike. You can pick and choose from the following
names of coffee shops: VENETSIANIKO, KAFE-KAFE, BOBO’S,
GALERO (at Platanos) and EN PLO.
If you are hungry but cannot choose from among the plethora
of restaurants, AVLI is an excellent choice. It was established
13 years ago and is famous for its delicious Cretan and Mediterranean
cuisine. The restaurant is housed in a building of the 13th
century and features an impressive garden. In addition, the
gourmets from around the world will be surprised by the restaurant’s
selection of excellent wines. The restaurant also functions
as a wine-and-cheese bar at after midnight hours.
One more excellent choice is the restaurant of
the VENETON hotel located in the old town. This hotel is also
housed in a renovated Venetian building with a long history.
Learn more about it!
In addition to the above high-class restaurants,
there are more affordable choices classified as “tourist
restaurants” located inside the old town. On the waterfront
you will find the TOSKANA with Greek and Mexican cuisine and
the PALIAZZO, along the beach road, with Italian cuisine. Other
restaurants, of traditional character, are the “Kobos”
(lamb ribs), the “Zissis” and the “Gavalas”
If you are on holiday, you have plenty of time to enjoy yourselves
until early morning hours. Take this opportunity to enjoy the
nightlife of Rethymnon, which is quite vibrant and varied.
Your first call should be at “Roloi”
(Watch), a trendy bar/club favourite with the young at heart,
particularly at weekends. Vassilis, the owner, is a very hospitable
and pleasant person.
The “Fortezza” is what we call a “tourist
club”, a large establishment offering traditional entertainment
and cuisine. The “Metropolis” is an “all American
classic bar”. Other bars/clubs are the “B52”,
“Art”, “Nafpigeio”, “Karma”,
“Opera” or “Summer Opera”.
BEACHES - GETTING
The entire northern coastline along the province of Rethymnon
may be considered as a huge beach. From Georgioupolis location
(west) to Skaleta (east) you will find the spot that best suits
your character and purposes. The small beach along the waterfront
of Rethymnon may not be one of the cleanest, but it offers a
chance for sunbathing and a swim for those who would rather
stay in town.
The picturesque fishing village of BALI, approx.
25 km east of Rethymnon, features a small beach and remote bathing
spots that are hard to access.
The beaches in the south of Rethymnon are enticing
and clean. We have already described the area of Aghia Galini
above with the beautiful beach of Agios Pavlos (the best on
Crete), Triopetra, and Aghia Paraskevi. The famous PREVELI settlement
and beach with the snake-like stream acts like a magnet for
locals and tourists alike. Further to the west lies SCHOINARIA,
a remote and rather inaccessible beach. However, you will find
a hotel with a swimming pool there.
One more difficult to access location is KERAMES
with the beach of AGIA FOTINI, rooms-to-let, and the fish tavern
of Stavros & Viky. The tourist resort of PLAKIAS, with a
nightlife of its own, lies next to KERAMES. It features beaches
suitable also for windsurfing. Nice beaches with camping opportunities
can be found in RODAKINO. They offer privacy and clean waters;
however, be cautious of windy days!