Driving directions
 

Koum Kapi

 
East of Chania, you will find a series of cafes and taverns along the esplanade with both indoor and outdoor seating and breathtaking sea views.

 

Old Municipal Market (‘agora’) 

 

This market houses a wide range of local Cretan products such as cheeses, wines, ‘raki’, ‘tsikoudia’, extra virgin Cretan olive oil and even Cretan knives.
The small stores in this market feature fresh fruits, vegetables, butcheries, fisheries, eateries, bakeries and leather stores.

 

Halidon Street 

 

 
This is the main street that leads down through the old town to the harbor front. Several small stores as well as sightseeing locations such as the Archaeological Museum, Folklore Museum, Catholic Church and Greek Orthodox Metropolis are lined up along this street.

 

Skrydlof Street

 
 
This street is also known as ‘Leather Lane’ was for centuries the center of the manufacturing and selling of leather goods.
Now resembling a souk with several small stores one can still find the ‘stivanadika’ (traditional long hand-made Cretan boots).

 
The lighthouse
 
 
The lighthouse (‘faros’ in Greek) is the oldest existing lighthouse in Greece and a most valuable landmark.

Recently renovated, one can walk from the easternmost side of the harbor along the stretch that leads to the lighthouse.

 

The Venetian Arsenali

 
 
The Venetian Arsenali (Ta Neoria) is made up of seven Venetian-built arsenali that line the main eastern basin of the harbor which functioned as a location for ship building and repairs.

 

Firkas Tower

 


Firkas Tower is a small observation tower on the northwest corner of the Firkas Fortress. Admission to this sacred historical location is free.

 

Municipal Art Gallery


 
The Municipal Art Gallery is located high up on Halidon Street (where the city street begins to lead to the old town). 
This art gallery is an impressive structure and not to be missed by those who appreciate and are inspired by art.

 

Public Gardens

 

Located in Chania center between Andrea Papandreou and Tzanakaki Streets (entrances from both streets) the public gardens were planned and created in 1870 by Reouf Pasha. The city’s clock tower can also be seen here.

The gardens are a recreational area with trees and flowers, a playground for children, an outdoor summer cinema as well as a well-known café visited much by locals and tourists alike.

 

Archaeological Museum

 

The Archaeological Museum is housed in an impressive and extensively restored building dating back to the 14th century which once functioned as the Catholic Church of St. Francis; part of the Venetian Monastery.
A fine example of ecclesiastical architecture, this museum exhibits pottery, vases, jewellery, sculptures, coins and fine mosaics.

 

Maritime Museum

 

The two storey museum is housed in what once was the Firkas Fortress; barracks of the Venetian naval garrison to Chania and a store room for various military and naval equipment.

On exhibit are old maps, model ships, marine instruments, photos of warships and an impressive exhibition on the Battle of Crete.

 

Byzantine and Post Byzantine Museum

 

This collection is housed in the former church of San Salvatore of the Franciscan Monastery and is located on the west side of the Firkas Fortress. The collection is small but fine and well organized and exhibits wall paintings, icons, coins, pottery and sculptures.

 

Folklore Museum

 

Located on Halidon Street, the Cretan House Folklore Museum is a fine example of a 19th century Cretan house and exhibits household items and custom crafts (embroidered words, tapestries, bedding, crockery and cutlery.

 

Orthodox Cathedral

 

The Church of Trimartyri stands proudly on a large square (known as ‘Plateia Mitropoleos’) half-way along Halidon Street.

This is a Neoclassical church which was constructed between 1857 and 1860 dedicated to the Virgin of the Three Martyrs; the patron saint of Chania.

 

Turkish Mosque

The Turkish Mosque lies eastwards along the harbor front from the old harbor to the marina. Built in 1645, this oldest Islamic structure on Crete, has not functioned as a mosque since 1923 and is now used as an exhibits hall and is thus open during period exhibits which a regular in the summer months.

 

Catholic Church

The Roman Catholic church is located along Halidon Street. This dates back to the early 19th Century and is a pretty cluster of structures accessed by a vaulted and mystical passageway.

 

Jewish Synagogue

 

Located just off Kondylaki Street in the old town, this synagogue was once the center of the Jewish religious and cultural life In Chania. A building of historical and religious significance is today it is a functioning synagogue.

 

House of Venizelos

The area where the house of the Venizelos family is built, at the homonym plateau of Halepa, was bought by Kuriakos Venizelos in 1876. The construction of the house was completed in about 1880. The morphology of the house of Venizelos is similar to the other nearby houses of Halepa.

Today the house is preserved as it was after the renovations of Elefhterios Venizelos, who transferred the hall on the ground floor and left the bedrooms on the first floor. Nowadays, the house hosts the Elftherios Venizelos Foundation.

 

The Graves of the Venizelos Family

On your way towards airport you will find signs to the Eleftherios Venizelos Graves – a historical site with wonderful views to the old Venetian harbor of Chania. Also there you will find a choice 3 coffee shops for you to enjoy.

 

Falasarna Beach


Visit the well-known beach of Falassarna (North West Crete). At this incredibly long beach with cool and deep waters you will also find paragliding, windsurfing, kite surfing and other watersports.

 

Elafonisos


Visit the lagoon like beach of Elafonisos and stop at the Cave of Agia Sofia and the Monastery of Chrysoskalitissa along the way (South West Crete).

 

Balos lagoon


Balos lagoon and Gramvousa islet – a full day trip (take a ferry, available daily, from the port of Kissamos).

 

Samaria Gorge

 

This is the well-known gorge of Samaria, where thousands of visitors come to Crete and hike this gorge. This is a 16km (mainly downhill) hike – a whole day event. You can do it on your own by use of the local bus service from Chania central bus station or by organized tour.

 

Therisso Gorge


This is a unique gorge as it is one that you drive through to reach the historical village of Therisso where there are several taverns and a resistance museum.

 

Lake Kournas


The only freshwater lake in Crete! A good small trip to take with the family to enjoy the wonderful views to the mountains, lake and the sea. Walk around the lake, paddle-boat, feed the ducks and have a snack/lunch at one of several cafes/taverns.

 

 

 

 

How to get here

 

From Chania airport, follow signs to Chania center. As you exit the gates of the airport grounds, you turn left at the first intersection. Follow this straight road until you reach a traffic circle. At this traffic circle, you turn right (following signs for Chania).

 

At the next traffic circle you come to, continue straight, following signs for Chania center. On your right hand side, you will soon pass the ‘Eleftherios Venizelos Tombs’ (historical site). Continue along the road which will soon become a downhill with bends descending to sea level. Continue to the end of this road. Here you will see the sea in front of you. Take a left turn onto Eleftherios Venizelos Street. You will shortly see Irida Hotel on your left hand side.

 

Note: Complimentary parking is available for guests along the front of the hotel as well as at a private lot along the side of the building.

 

From Souda port

 

As you leave the port of Souda, follow the road straight outside the port.At the first traffic lights you will encounter, go left, then follow a right turn and go straight ahead on Souda Avenue. On your way you will not turn anywhere, you will follow the Irakleiou Street and then you will find Nearchou street. Go down Nearchou street and find the central Tzanakaki street.

 

At the end of it on the traffic lights go right and then at the second traffic lights go right again. Follow this road - El.Venizelou street- and at the end of it you will see hotel Irida on your right.

5 minutes walk

  1. Koum Kapi

10 minutes walk

  1. Old Municipal Market (‘agora’)
  2. Halidon Street
  3. Skrydlof Street
  4. The lighthouse (‘faros’ in Greek)
  5. The Venetian Arsenali (Ta Neoria)
  6. Firkas Tower
  7. Municipal Art Gallery of Chania
  8. Public Gardens

Museums

  1. Archaeological Museum
  2. Maritime Museum
  3. Byzantine and Post Byzantine Museum
  4. Folklore Museum

Churches, Mosques and Synagogues

  1. Orthodox Cathedral
  2. Turkish Mosque (Hasan Pasha)
  3. Catholic Church
  4. Jewish Synagogue (Etz Hayyim)