Captivating Crete

  • Sample Itinerary
  • Experiences
  • Pricing
  • Featured Hotels
  • Custom Quote

Journey to the captivating island of Crete, caressed by secluded coastal splendors and enriched with an enticing culinary heritage of Greek legend. Delve into the ancient winemaking heritage of Peza and the Archanes Wine Route, before savoring the healthful benefits of the Cretan diet with a cooking class amongst an idyllic countryside setting. Uncover vestiges of the ancient Minoan civilization in Knossos and discover the island’s intriguing cultural blend of Venetian and Turkish influences in seaside Rethymno, all while luxuriating along the pristine beaches of enchanting Mirabello Bay.

Sample Itinerary

Day 1

Begin your voyage through captivating Crete with arrival to Heraklion Airport. Your private chauffeur will be waiting to whisk you away to your sanctuary of seaside bliss, one of the island’s most sumptuous five-star stays. Your welcome to Crete will commence on a cloud of pure relaxation with a wellness experience at your resort’s world class Six Senses Spa. For dinner you will savor gastronomic creations inspired by classic Cretan cuisine at your hotel’s fine dining, seaview restaurant.

Day 2

Today will be an immersion into the ancient winemaking heritage of Crete. Begin your viticultural voyage in the stunning wine region of Peza for a private walk through the vineyards followed by a tasting flight featuring native varietals like Kotsifali at the esteemed estate of a passionate family of winemakers, awarded for their organic vintages and sustainable approach to winemaking. You will next be transported to an organic farmstead dedicated to the cultivation of heirloom Cretan produce and ancient ingredients, from fruits and vegetables to legumes and olives. Be introduced to an ancient pillar of the healthy Cretan diet, olive oil, with a private olive oil tasting experience, followed by a lunch of traditional Cretan dishes highlighting farm fresh produce. The afternoon will lead you to the Archanes Wine Route with a winemaking heritage that dates back to the Minoan civilization, where you’ll delight in a private tasting at the winery of a vintner renowned for their exquisite Mandilari based vintages.

Day 3

A full day to luxuriate in the luminous cyan waters of your hotel’s spectacular Blue Flag beach is yours to be enjoyed. In the afternoon be transported to the sparkling coastal town of Agio Nikolaos along the Gulf of Mirabello, for free time to browse its many shops selling local wares and stroll along its scenic old town harbor. Dinner will be an ode to Mediterranean flavors at a storied restaurant with splendid views onto the town’s enigmatic Lake Voulismeni.

Day 4

This morning you will be welcomed into the countryside home of a local family to uncover the sustainable ingredients and heritage recipes that have made the Cretan diet world famous for its healthful benefits. You’ll forage for herbs and pick fresh fruits and vegetables from the family’s idyllic garden, before rolling up your sleeves for a hands-on cooking lesson of typical Cretan recipes, followed by a lunch of your handmade creations. In the afternoon you will continue your exploration of the Mediterranean flavors of the Cretan diet with a food focused walking tour of ancient Heraklion, stopping to visit unique purveyors of epicurean specialties. Along the way, appreciate some of the city’s most intriguing historical sites showcasing vestiges from its Venetian era.

Day 5

Set off for a day of archaeological discovery in Europe’s oldest city, the Bronze Age settlement of Knossos, a cultural treasure offering an incredible glimpse into the heart of the Minoan civilization. With the help of your Regional Ambassador, an expert archaeologist, you will journey back to the age of the ancient Minoans as you discover the incredible array of artifacts on display at the Heraklion Archaeological Museum, before traversing the Palace Complex site at Knossos. From Knossos you will next travel to another jewel of the Minoan civilization, the romantic seaside town of Rethymno. Savor a lunch of traditional Cretan cuisine at a lovely family owned eatery, before exploring the town’s scenic old town peppered with architectural wonders from its Venetian and Turkish past, culminating with a guided visit of the spectacular 16th century Venetian citadel, the Fortezza of Rethymno.

Day 6

Today you will embark for a day of private boating along the azure waters of Crete. Along the way, your captain will help you discover the island of Spinalonga with its Venetian fortifications and hidden coves perfect for swimming. Enjoy a lunch of freshly prepared dishes while on board, before snorkeling to an ancient sunken city to witness remnants of the area’s mysterious past. A sunset toast to your time in Crete will crown your day of private boating before returning to your sumptuous accommodation.

Day 7

Bid farewell to your Cretan coastal retreat as you are transported by chauffeur to Heraklion Airport for departure, or the next leg of your Encounter.

Experiences We Recommend

  • Exclusive wellness experience at world class Six Senses Spa
  • Private vineyard visits with tastings of organic wines in Peza Wine Region
  • Discover the merits of the incredible Cretan diet at a noted organic farm visit, including a private olive oil tasting & lunch
  • Cooking class of traditional Cretan dishes hosted in the home of a local family of culinary experts
  • Wine tasting along the Archanes Wine Route
  • Archaeologist led visit of Minoan sites of Knossos & Phaistos
  • Private boating to island of Spinalonga
  • Snorkeling experience to discover the ruins of an ancient sunken city

Pricing

The minimum trip length for a CountryBred Encounter is 5 Days/4 Nights

Pricing for our Greece Encounters begins at:

  • $800-$950/per person, per day* based on double occupancy and a travel party of two
Small group pricing available for travel parties of four or more

*The final price of your custom tour will be determined by your travel party size, departure dates, trip length, amount of meals included, percentage of guided time requested, cities chosen in your itinerary and signature CountryBred excursions selected. This sample itinerary can also be crafted for solo travelers.


Encounters Include

  • Stays at five & four-star boutique luxury hotels
  • Chauffeured transport for touring & transfers
  • Private touring with professional local guides
  • Engaging activities led by cultural experts
  • Signature experiences with insider access
  • Regionally authentic dining
  • Traveler Welcome Package
  • Taxes & base gratuities

Read Client Reviews

  • Gay B.

    Alentejo to Lisbon
    Above and beyond our expectations for an amazing well organized adventure for 26!!
  • Mark W.

    From Castilla to Basque Country
    Our third CountryBred travel experience guided us through the rich cultural history, food, wine & unique culture throughout central/northern Spain. Our selected experiences coupled with the region/city ambassadors throughout our trip were exceptional and made our experience GREAT! (hotels too!)
  • Barbara R.

    Getaway to Tuscany and Northern Italy
    CountryBred thought of every detail for our trip. We didn't have to think about or worry about anything because they had it all covered by professionals every step of the way. From the chauffeurs, to the private boats, to the ambassadors who were extremely knowledgeable and spoke good English, to the amazing hotels, to the selection of restaurants and wines...WOW!

Crafting the Experience

Experiential travel takes time, passion and local ingredients to make something truly special.

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TRIP DESIGN INQUIRY

We turn travel inspiration into unforgettable journeys. Begin the trip design process by filling out the form below and a CountryBred specialist will contact you to get your next great adventure underway.


PRICING

  • CountryBred Encounters begin at $750-$1,000/per person, per day
  • The minimum trip length for a CountryBred Encounter is 5 Days/4 Nights
  • All CountryBred Encounters are land touring experiences only and do not include airfare
  • Groups of four or more are eligible for small group pricing

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