This year we decided to fly to Chania and explore West and Central Crete as well as our usual haunts. We stayed in Platanias which was a lovely little place full of nice restaurants and almost all centred around the main road and the alleyways leading to the sea with an old village up in the hills with a beautiful sunset view over Platanias.
We took one of several Little Fun Train routes on theor Grand Canyon route taking us to not only beautiful scenery but also an olive oil factory and fresh fruit and wine on the roadside so we had a lovely few hours.
It is cheap and easy to get buses in Platanias so we took the bus to Chania Town. Chania Town is a lovely town with a lot of Turkish characteristics such as the lighthouse making it an interesting visit. There are some lovely craft shops along the many little alleyways, look at the tourist tat on the seafront or have a beer and just watch the world go by. We took the bus the other way to the fishing village of Kolymbia where we had huge, fresh delicious seafood platter.
Platanias and Aghia Marina are very Scandinavian these days but they are really good fun and we enjoyed the Norwegian Country and Western singer who lived in America. In Platanias we discovered a Western Crete vegetarian speciality called Boureki pie. It is delicious
We spent a few nights in Rethymnon. Rethymnon was very quiet in early June and there wasn’t much open. Beachside cafes were mostly deserted so we saw some lovely sunsets but nowhere really to sit and enjoy them. We found a few good restaurants, a very friendly local bar and a very international karaoke bar so we enjoyed our few days but looked forward to our familiar territory, Elounda
In a small place like Elounda you would think you would run out of places to go and things to do but in fact there are many ways to explore pastures new. There are many lovely country walks around the bay where the clear blue sea sparkles into the sun and you can venture up into the hills, where sheep and goats graze and butterflies flutter.
We went for a ride on the happy train which is run by an Englishman called Ziggy. We went through Plaka and up into the hills where there is an absolutely stunning vista of Spinalonga and Elounda below. Our next stop was at a now disused olive oil factory and then into a small village bar. It was a really enjoyable few hours
We went back over to Spinalonga which has a lot of restoration work done in recent years enhancing the experience with more explanation and understanding. We took the ferry back to Plaka so we could explore the little craft shops and visit our favourite restaurants