From the beach to your room and then to the tavern, and the next day the same all over again. We have all lived this holiday routine, more or less (sometimes every summer!). Everybody loves relaxation and simplicity in their holidays, but there comes a time when you wish you experienced something more, something different. Perhaps the time has come to redefine the meaning of holidays and try something new!
Experience-based tourism is the new trend internationally; and apart from some ‘all-inclusive’ fanatics with their colorful bracelets, who are happy with the hotel pool and hotel food experience, the rest of the world has realized that the meaning of traveling lies in having new experiences by interacting with the local culture and nature. The question is, wouldn’t you like to have a new, exciting reserve of good memories to get you through the next winter?
We introduce to you four of the most interesting alternative tourism companies in Crete, each focusing on different activities, but all offering high quality services.
Now you have a new basis to daydream, plan your next holidays and make a difference!
Petassos, the alternative tourism 'gang' that offers the most exciting organized tours!
“Which are the holidays we will always remember?” This is the question raised by the founders of Petassos. Have you ever thought about it, really?
Beautiful memories are something like a personal refuge to escape to when difficult times come. In our fast-rhythm times, unique, memorable experiences have become rarer, and thus more precious. This is why the team of Petassos has taken action. Their tours extend through space (the unique Cretan nature, from the White Mountains and Sfakia to Asterousia and Dikti) but also time – and this is what makes them unique: the tours combine elements of anthropology, archaeology, history, geology, folklore and the natural environment. You may choose a package that will follow the ‘steps’ of El Greco, or the famous rebel Daskalogiannis, an important historical figure of Sfakia who led some of the most crucial Cretan revolutions! In another package you can discover Crete through the eyes of a Russian monk of the 18th century, or “live” the last dramatic days of the Turkish siege before the fall of Chandax (today Heraklion) through a tour on the Venetian walls! There are also many ‘pure’ nature and environment oriented tours that will take you to the most pristine corners of the Cretan land. Their website offers analytical descriptions of each tour that are enough to awaken your senses. So, take your ‘petassos’ (the characteristic hat of ancient travelers) and hit the road for new adventures. The only thing to decide is, what would you like to remember from your next holidays?
Address: Amaltheias 20 & Katehaki, Heraklion, Crete
Tel. +30 2810 327222
Mobile. + 30 6974330375 / + 30 6934821659
Packages: 1 to 7 days
Languages: Greek, English, Russian
Cretanpaths, the alternative ‘path’ to authentic Crete!
On the road to authentic Crete, make sure you took the right path. This path will avoid tourist attractions of mass consumption and will lead you straight to the essence and soul of the island. Follow Cretan Paths and feel confident that you’re on the right track: this alternative tourism company offers new experiences that combine culture, gastronomy and nature.
Now that Cretan gastronomy has gained the fame and attention it deserves, you can finally taste its secrets with the guidance of locals. Taste original recipes made with care and learn how to make them on your own while experiencing Cretan culture and nature at the same time. The packages of Cretan paths include tastings of Cretan wines and olive oil, cooking lessons, tours to picturesque villages, wineries and vineyards and meetings with old and new connoisseurs of Cretan gastronomy. Learn how raki (aka tsikoudia) is distilled, the secrets of the Cretan grandma cooking traditional delicacies, how olive oil and wine is produced and much more. Plus, you will have the chance to experience a completely different city tour of Heraklion, focusing on its ‘tasty’ side!
The people of Cretan Paths are experience creators that never rest, always planning new activities and tour ideas based on personal interaction, communication, and the knowledge of locals who hold the secrets of culture and the environment.
And if you have another idea, inspiration or desire, they are ready to listen and make it a reality!
Cretan paths - Alternative Tourism
Address: Katalagari Pediados P.O 8, Ano Archanes, 70100 - Heraklion
Tel. & Fax: +30 2810 751717
Packages: 1 to 14 days
Languages: Greek, English, German
Cretan Sports Cycling, discover the unseen side of Crete by bicycle!
Cycling has reclaimed its place in our everyday city lives, and this is definitely a positive development. Why can’t we make it part of our holidays then?
In Crete it is not uncommon to meet tourists cycling around the island. However, this is not the easiest place to cycle: steep mountains and uphill roads, unmapped trails, and great distances can make your cycling tour a challenge. But if you want to enjoy the authentic face of the island with your favorite bicycle while avoiding all these obstacles, you just need to contact the experienced cyclists of Cretan Sports Cycling. Cycling tours will take you all around Crete, fully supported with company vans, experienced guides, equipment, ect. This means you don’t need to stress for anything; instead, you can just focus on enjoying the route and the beautiful landscapes off the beaten track, places no car can go! This is the goal of the Cretan Sports Cycling team: see a different side of Crete through well designed tours and trails that reveal its authentic identity. And if you are not very ‘strong’ in cycling, do not fear: difficulty levels are adjusted according to your abilities (or desires). Above all, the people of the company want you to have fun, so they will also reward you with excellent Cretan gastronomy and culture breaks (as locals, they know all the secrets!)
Cretan Sports Cycling
Address: Mornou 22, Heraklion Crete
Tel. +30 2810 360768
Fax. +30 2810 361123
Packages: 1 to 8 days
Languages: Greek, English
Sailing adventures for you, ‘sail by sail’
In wintertime our good friend and collaborator Christos Paterakis is a permanent resident and ruler of the mountain refuge ‘Kallergis’, up the majestic White Mountains (Lefka Ori). In summertime, however, his adrenaline finds refuge to the sea -to the open sea to be precise – and wild mountain man becomes the captain of a lovely sailing boat (Jeanneau 40, 12,5 meters).
Christos created ‘Sail by Sail’ company because he wanted to make sailing holidays accessible to all, since the cost per person (with a capacity of 8 people) is quite low.
Tours include a three-day trip to Menies and Gramvousa (western Crete) or trips to nearby islands: Kythira, Milos, Folegandros, Sikinos, Ios, Santorini. Considering that Crete is not directly connected to many of these islands, these tours are really precious! Furthermore, ‘Sail by Sail’ is a collaborating with Petassos (see above) in a unique tour of Santorini, focusing on the island’s geology. Christos will guide you through the waves, geologist Spyros Staridas guide you through the rocks, and the beauties of Thirasia will offer a spectacle for your eyes! Ready to go?
Sailing holidays ‘Sail by Sail’ (Pani me Pani)
FB page: www.facebook.com/sailbcrew
tel. +30 6973400077