About Platanias

Information about the Municipality of Platanias

About Platanias

Platanias village is located in the coastline of western Crete, 11 km from Chania town. It belongs to Municipality of Platanias which is regionally largest municipality area in western Crete extending from the beach until the peaks of Lefka Ori, the White Mountains.

 The name for the village comes from the huge plane trees  which the village was full of years ago. The plane tree grows in the places where is water, which is valuable also for the farmers. So, even before the tourism came to Platanias, the village was considered as a rich village due to the water sources.


 

 

Nature

Drakiana

Follow the Drakiana signs from Mylos tavern and after 3 km you will end up in a beautiful place called Drakiana. On the way you will see plenty of orange and other citrus trees as well as avocado and nut trees. Especially spring is colorful in Drakiana when the citrus trees are blooming and many of them are still carrying their fruits at the same time! Next to the Drakiana tavern besides the tiny Keritis river you will find a small picnic area with huge plane trees.

The village is surrounded by the olive groves with charming walking paths running up and around the small hills. Unfortunately there is not available an exact map of the area but that makes it even more adventurous… Just remember to take a bottle of water with you!

 

 

 

Agia Lake

The lake is located in the village of Agia, 9 km west of Chania. The lake is actually an artificial lake based in an old swamp and receives water from the underground springs and the river Xekolomeno. The lake used to have a water pump which was used for watering the farms near by. The factory is no longer working, but the visitors can still see the old facilities.

Today the Agia lake hosts a large variety of species of the flora and fauna of Crete. It is considered as a very significant refuge and nesting place for many migratory birds. The ecological importance of this wetland is reflected through the international treaties that protect it.

Walk around the lake or have a drink or snacks in one of the cafeterias by the lake and enjoy the peaceful nature.

 

 

  • Agia Lake

  • Spring in Crete

 

Beaches

 

Platanias Beach

Is one of the most popular beaches on the west side of Chania. The beach is approximately 2 km long starting from the border of Agia Marina and reaching out to the Keritis river. The beach is sandy/stony and not so shallow. Platanias beach is a public beach meaning that you are free to choose the best spot for you! You will find several small beach tavernas and bars along the beach which also rent out sunbeds and umbrellas. During the summer months you can find different water sport activities as well. If you prefer a more quiet atmosphere, choose the west part closer to the Keritis river.

 


 

Gerani Beach


On the west side of Platanias is the beach of Gerani which offers a peaceful spot for people who wish to have more privacy. The beach consists of sand and partly small stones. Smaller hotels have a few sunbeds and umbrellas for rent but you have plenty of places to set up your own too.

 


 

AFRATA Beach

When the North wind is blowing strong, the small Afrata beach could be a good option for swim. Actually just the road from Kolimbari to the village of Afrata is an exciting experience! For snorkeling this tiny pebble bay is also offering more action underwater comparing the sandy shores. A restaurant by the beach serves simple meals and refreshments and has a few sunbeds with umbrellas.

  • Calm beach
  • Snorkeling
  • Pebble bay

 


 

 

Villages

 

Vatolakkos

Vatolakkos is a lowland village of the hinterland, only 15 km away from Chania. It is one of the richest and most productive villages of the prefecture of Chania, located in an area that is full of orange trees. The main occupation of the permanent population is certainly agriculture and farming. 

During the German occupation, the Nazis besieged Vatolakkos as well. They arrested villagers who resisted, and executed them along with other locals from the surrounding villages, on the 1st of August, on 1941, at the bridge of the River Keritis, situated at the village of Alikianos.

Manousakis Winery is in Vatolakkos and if you are interested for a wine tasting, we can help you!

  • Orange trees
  • Keritis River
  • Winery

 


 

Lakkoi

The traditional village of Lakki you will find on your way to Omalos. The stone houses are all on the steep slopes surrounded by the olive groves. Here it's not unusual that the they have snow during the winter. The cafes and the local tavernas of the village are built so the visitors can sit to taste the local cuisine and relax watching the landscape, at the same time.

  • Nature area
  • Beautiful View
  • Kafeneio's

 


 

 

Omalos

The village name comes from been on a plateau, Omalos meaning even, plain, referring to the flat surface. The village is surrounded by the White Mountains with peak altitude of 2453m, Omalos is at 1250m. Here you will find the entrance of the famous and stunning Samaria Gorge, 18 km long. During winter time Omalos is often covered by snow and sometimes the roads are closed due to heavy snowfalls. You must try in one of the local taverns lamb meat and their own produced cheese together with traditional mountain “chorta” greens from the mountain hills.

  • Start of Samaria
  • Amazing Plateau
  • Mountain Tea

 


 

Vouves

Vouves is a fertile village at Kolimbari, part of Platanias, located 26 km west of Chania. The village is widely known for the wine it produces, which is abundant and of excellent quality and taste, because in the past, the entire area was an immense vineyard. Nowadays, the biggest amount of the vines has been replaced by olive trees.

In August, the Wine Festival is organized. It is a thematic event, dedicated to the long tradition of viticulture in the village and it is famous for the excellent quality of the locally produced wine that is offered free to thousands of visitors, who honor the village of Vouves every year with their presence.

  • Wine Festival
  • Countryside
  • Cretan traditional lifestyle

 


 

Voukolies

Voukolies is quite a big village with many inhabitants. The village holds a lot of history and is good at keeping traditions alive. Voukolies is especially famous for the Holy Friday market. So if you are here during easter make a visit to the village. The market has become a place of reunion for relatives and friends from the surrounding villages and today it represents a special festival for Crete. Back in the day it was an excellent opportunity for women to meet their future husbands.

If you are going to Voukolies have a seat in the traditional "Kafeneion" that Mrs Katerina owns. Try one of her sweets and a cup of greek coffee.

  • Famous Bazaar
  • Smaller square with coffee shops
  • Traditional village

 


 

 

Maleme Beach


How about an evening walk by the Maleme beach? Follow the paved sidewalk from the end of Gerani beach and enjoy the sunset on one of the benches by the sea. During the daytime the beach of Maleme is still calm even though it offers beach services as sunbeds and umbrellas for rent. The beach walk offers restaurants, bars and fish taverns.

 


 

Tavronitis Beach


Looking for more authentic atmosphere? Why not to try the pebble beach in Tavronitis? Under the Tamarisk trees you will find a nice shadow during the hot summer days and you will reach very local and relaxed feeling. Tavronitis is only a few kilometers after Maleme and before Kolymbari.

 


 

Ravdoucha

The small village Ravdoucha is just by the peninsula Rodopos. It's famous for how peaceful and quiet it is. The beach of Ravdocha is stoney and without any umbrellas or sunbeds here you must find your shade with a little help from mother nature. The road down from the village to the beach is really something, just a bit narrow at some points. Just take it easy and enjoy the view.  At the beach you can do some really good snorkeling and for lunch there are fish taverns that you must try.

  • Fish Taverna open daily
  • Snorkeling
  • Pebble lagoon

 


 

Meskla

The village of Meskla is at the root of the White Mountains on a altitude of 200m next to the river Keritis. There is a small hidden gorge, Sarkina that not even locals are so aware of. It can be a little bit tricky to find it being hidden big trees. The gorge is only one hour of easy walking. You will end up where you begun sense it's in a circle. Don't miss the stunning views this village has to offer. 

  • Children Friendly
  • Nature Area
  • Gorge

 


 

Zourva

 

Between the villages of Meskla and Therisso, you will find up in the mountains the small village of Zourva. Just a few houses and of course a restaurant at the top with stunning view. Marias Taverna serves you traditional plates from her own hands. Try out the lamb shops, staka, lamb in oven and greens (chorta) from  the mountains.

  • Open daily
  • Nature area
  • Fresh Air

 


 

 

 

Therisso

The village of Therissos is 16 kilometers from the city of Chania, built at an altitude of 580 meters, on the foothills of the White Mountains. Therissos has nowadays only 100 permanent residents but it definitely worth a visit because the natural environment of the region is simply breathtaking.

Driving up the road from Chania to Therissos is an unforgettable experience, as the road passes through the lush and unique beauty of the gorge that is 6 km long. Near the entrance of the Gorge, at the location “Three Churches”, you can see the old stone made bridge, called “Kamara”.

  • Great Lamb chops
  • Beautiful Ride
  • Hiking

 


 

Deres

This village is famous for its rich nature due to all the small river surrounding it. It's also very famous for the riding center that has been operating in the last 20 years. They have different tours for all ages and levels. See the beautiful village from the back of a horse.

 


 

  • BOTANICAL PARK

    20 hectares of land a park

  • BOTANICAL PARK

    THE BOTANICAL PARK & GARDENS OF CRETE GREW FROM THE ASHES OF THAT DEVASTATING FIRE

  • BOTANICAL PARK

    a paradise for hundreds of plants and animals

Botanical Park of Crete

To get to the park you must pass through the village of Fournes and continue up the mountain, there are many signs showing you the right way along the road. Just at the feet of the White Mountains you will find with nearly 20 hectares of land a park that is filled with fruit trees from all over the world, herbs, medicinal and ornamental plants. A park that really stands out and shows you the beauty of Crete and how fruitful the land is. The botanical gardens formation and the areas microclimate makes it a paradise for hundreds of plants and animals! In this paradise you will also see a burnt 100 year old olive tree, a memorial from the fires in 2003, it tells the history and the origin of the park. It was founded by four brothers who had a dream and wanted to share with us what they believe is heaven on earth.

The best time to come during the hot summer months is early in the morning, staying clear of the midday heat and ending your visit with lunch at the restaurant. All the products are local and organic, and the view is fantastic!

Don't forget to take your camera with you, there are many pretty pictures to be taken.

 

  • Children Friendly
  • Open daily from 09.00 -18.00
  • Cost: Adults 6€, Children 4€ (from 6 y/o)

 

Traditional fisherman boat

Spot them in Kolymbari harbour

KOLYMBARI

The village is along the coastline here you will find traditional fish taverns and a few coffee shops. The village is very quiet and peaceful. However there are some big 5 star hotel complexes that will impress if you visit. 

Kolymbari has a small and picturesque fishing harbour with traditional fishing boats. Have lunch or dinner at one of the taverns to eat delicious seafood freshly caught . At the top of the hill just after the harbour visit the monastery “Moni Gonias” and learn more about the life there.

What you shouldn't miss is the local market that comes to the village of Kolymbari every friday. It starts at 8.00 until 14.00 here you will find just about anything but most of all fresh vegetables, fruit, cheese and fish from small local farmers and fishermen. We highly recommend you to attend and it's much easier to get here then when it's held in Chania city. 

 

Laiki - Market

The “Laiki” is also something that is worth a visit. It is a market that movies around, on fridays it comes to the village of Kolymbari. It's very easy to go there by bus and you don't have to deal with the busy streets and traffic that Chania city has. At the Laiki you will find the very best fruits and vegetables straight from small farmers yard. Beautiful flower, fresh fish, mountain greens and other local products. The market also has shoes, clothes and bags among with lots of other things. The atmosphere is wonderful pay a visit to this local experience.Opening hours are 8.00-14.00.

 

For you that like to discover more of Platanias we recommend to join one of out trips:

EASY 1/2 DAY-BIKE TOUR - Deres - 45 EUR

Crete is a true El Dorado for cyclists. See it's fantastic nature by bike, a great activity for the whole family.    DETAILS OF YOUR TRIP The days starts at the meeting point from where you will be taken by minivan up to the village Nea Roumata. Here you find beautiful green landscapes, cycling through chestnut groves and ending up reaching the village Deres. In Deres you will be let in on some secrets of the cretan lifestyle at the kafenion. Here you get a chance to ask and learn things about the cretans. A short ride further down we will meet some history from the Byzantine, Venetian and the Turks when you get to discover the Castello. You will experience a great feeling of peace and harmony as you are cycling downhill, a real nature experience. Passing small farms with all types of farm animals along the road, seeing the picturesque countryside of Crete. Cruising downhill through olive groves and orange gardens you reach the north coast at Tavronitis, here a minivan will bring you back to where you started your day. Notice! Please inform us your gender, height and children's age when you have booked a bike tour. Suitable for: parent & kid tandem, baby seats.   

EASY FULL DAY BIKE TOUR - Paleochora - 72 EUR

Join up for a full day bike tour to see the beautiful south of Crete, ending up back on the north side. This tour takes you from cost to cost with wonderful mountain views.      DETAILS OF YOUR TRIP In a minivan with the bikes on a trailer we ascend to Crete's most unspoilt mountain regions. This is an easy-medium full day tour and not suitable for all ages! Minimum age is 12 years old. Expect good surfaces with a few easy uphill passages. At the starting point the bikes are unloaded, you get your helmets and an experienced guide will accompany you downhill into the coastal areas. The group will be using minor asphalt roads and well-maintained agricultural roads with only soft uphill passages. It is not a competition but a fun adventure. The service van follows the group throughout the day. The group starts its downhill ride from the middle of the island through a breathtaking landscape with picturesque gorges right down to the south coast. With clear weather you can even spot the southernmost point of Europe, the Greek island of Gavdos. Following is the lunchtime break in the village of Paleochora and a rest on its sandy beach. Get ready for the afternoon experience of unspoilt villages in Crete's most remote corner. A speedy downhill ride through the Sassalos Gorge leads you back to the North Coast and the Bay of Kissamos. Notice! Please inform us your gender and height when you have booked a bike tour. Note: Riders should not be afraid of speedy downhills or suffer from vertigo- we total 2000 downhill meters! Minimum age is 12 years old.

VERY EASY 1/2 DAY BIKE TOUR - Meskla 45 EUR

No matter age or experience on bike you can join this beautiful cycling tour through wonderful small cretan villages and magical countryside nature.    Details of your trip - Meskla This is a very easy tour suitable for all ages. You bike on smooth straight roads with easy downhill passages. A service van follows the group and there is a stop for coffee and snacks halfway through. The starting point for this very easy bestseller tour is a colorful church surrounded by giant plane trees in the lush, green valley of Meskla. The strip leads you at a calm speed into the Cretan version of the Garden of Eden. Grapes, mulberries, oranges, lemons, figs, kiwis, lotus-fruit and avocados calling out to be picked and tried. The ride through flower-scented villages and a stop in a small kafenion makes this trip truly a remarkable experience.   Notice! Please inform us your gender and height when you have booked a bike tour. Suitable for: parent & kid tandem, baby seats.

Discover Platanias Countryside

Cooking Class - Terra Crete - 98 EUR

Experience the Cretan gastronomy, learn to create healthy dishes, cook with us. A fun and interactive cooking class for any level of experience. Join our cooking classes, a truly hands-on experience with individual working stations, and get the chance to learn new recipes from Crete and Mediterranean.   Let's cook like a Cretan! Based on authentic recipes and using fresh ingredients from the Cretan land you will be taken on a unique journey of flavors and tradition. Cretan diet well known for the simple and natural ingredients its healthy effect and the secret to a longer life.  With traditional recipes and fresh local ingredients along with Terra Creta quality products, we will take you on a unique journey of flavors and tradition. Learn with the experts how to be creative with a delicious result. All classes are hands on, interactive and full of cooking techniques and tips, as well as nutritional education. After our class you will leave with a new set of skills and notes of authentic Cretan recipes and you will know how to confidently prepare them in your own kitchen at home. There are plenty of laughs, delicious food, local wine and a chance to meet new people while learning how to cook Cretan dishes for family and friends. Our chef will guide you through all of the recipes, so you can enjoy all of your tasty creations with a glass of wine at the end of the class. Cooking experience and olive oil tour are 4 hours in duration.You will start at 11:00 am with refreshments and a chat about the cooking and the olive oil use. The actual cooking starts 11:20 until approximately 13:20 and dine till 14:20.After the lunch we'll have a relaxing and extremely educative olive oil tour from the olive tree to the production in the olive mill and bottling.

Safari Tour 1 - The White Mountains 85 EUR

Combine a unique guided Jeep tour in White Mountains of Crete with panoramic views,  traditional Cretan villages, learn  the history and  the traditions of the Island, and find out all about the lifestyle of a Cretan shepherd by exploring an original shepherd’s hut. Enjoy the unique view of Chania from above 1350m and meet the wildlife of Crete by the help of our 4x4 Jeeps, driven by expert English speaking escorts.   DETAILS OF YOUR TRIP Tour 1-Explore the White Mountains of Crete The amazing off-road adventure starts after crossing the valley full of orange trees, avocado’s and vegetables gardens. Climbing up the foot of White Mountains and passing through Cretan villages getting the feeling of mountainous Crete you arrive to the coffee stop to enjoy your morning break. Coffee or mountain tea will be offered for free to our guests enjoying the village life far away from mass tourism. Continuing our tour following the off road route up to the shepherd’s hut  “Mitato” far away from touristic areas, where only a 4 wheel driver can approach, you will enjoy the magnificent panoramic view of northern Crete and, If we are lucky ... eagles and wild goats will show up and give us a very good reason for some extra photo stops. A small rocky road will lead us up to our trip’s highest point 1350 meters in altitude in the heart of White Mountains of Crete, where you will find out all about the lifestyle of a shepherd, where the famous Cretan “Graviera” cheese was produced and explore an original Shepherd's hut "Mitato". On the way back you will enjoy the best panoramic view of Chania from above until we arrive at Therisso village and working up an appetite we visit a small traditional family Cretan tavern where we will be welcomed by the owner, to introduce us to Cretan cuisine with plenty of food, wine and warm Cretan hospitality. After the lunch break we will follow the road through the amazing gorge of Therisso that will lead us back to Chania.

FromEUR 85
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Safari Tour 2 - Explore the Secrets 89 EUR

See the beautiful landscape of Crete and try our olive oil, see how it's produced and try our tasty wine at a winery. Learn a few Cretan secrets for a long life.  DETAILS OF YOUR TRIP Tour 2. Explore the Secrets of Wine and Olives Starting our Day trip Safari to Cretan culture we visit an Olive Mill and then a winery for an informative tour in the Cretan secrets for a long life! We visit an ancient olive tree which is 3000 years old and an exhibition on the history of olives. Working up an appetite we arrive at a small village tavern, where we introduce you to Cretan cuisine with plenty of food, wine and warm Cretan hospitality. On the way up to Mesavlia we cross the gorge of Deliana with its picturesque creek nestled amongst lush vegetation. There will be plenty of opportunities to take photos of sheep and goats on our way to the cavernous chapel of Ag. Paraskevi, where we will make a short stop. On the way back we pass through Cretan villages and Olive grooves.

FromEUR 89
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Olive Oil - The Cretan Gold

Olive Oil-The Cretan Gold

International scientific research have demonstrated that olive oil is the secret to the long and healthy life of old Cretans. Also mainly fried food exclusively prepared with olive oil is not only healthier but just simply tastier!

In Crete olive trees have co-existed with the island's inhabitants for thousands of years making important history together and  a unique culture. Abundant archaeological evidence bears testimony to the significant occupation of the inhabitants of Crete with Olive Trees and olive oil ever since prehistoric times.

Today, olive trees, a population of about 40 million, extend their ash-green figures to cover one fourth of Crete's total surface, forming the island's  natural forest. They offer Crete their valuable olive oil that has nourished, healed and been the drive of survival for Cretan people for thousands of years.

In the past few years, Crete produces an average of 100 000 tons of extra virgin olive oil, which is significant source of income and an essential part of the diet of the inhabitants of the island. Currently, Cretans consume about 25 kg of olive oil per person a year, being at the top of the world in per capita olive oil consumption!

 

 

The Oldest Olive Tree

The oldest olive tree can be found in the beautiful and picturesque village of Vouves. It's probably one of the oldest olive trees in the world and it still amazingly enough produces olives! The tree is estimated to be at least 3000 years old but believed to be as much as 5000 years old. The tree is 12m meters in perimeter and a real beauty. Pay a visit to the museum that is right next to the tree, the entrance is free

Chania

Chania


The picturesque Chania is the former capital of the island and nowadays the second largest city in Crete. The old town and the Venetian Harbour are giving to Chania a very unique Venetian character. The visitors of Chania are attracted by the beauty of the scenic narrow streets, the imposing lighthouse at the entrance of the small harbor and all the amazing monuments which create all together  the magic of Chania.
The Chania downtown is divided to the new and old part and the actual city center is quite small. Modern shops and most of the services (like banks, bus stations and offices) are found from the newer part where most of the shops are following the traditional Greek opening hours (open Mon-Sat 9-14 and Tue, Thu and Fri 17-21). Most of the restaurants and cafeterias are located in the older part where the shops have usually longer opening hours as well.

Chania is vivid all year around but especially during the summer months you will find nice small events and  happenings as well as live music in some restaurants. Sit down in one of the cafeterias in the harbour, visit the street market “laiki” to feel the local atmosphere or enjoy the warm summer night in the open air cinema… 

 

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    From EUR 89
    Book Now!
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DESTINATION PLATANIAS

- WE PLAN & YOU ENJOY!