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Hotels in Chania Greece

Hotels / May 11, 2016

Red roofs and whitewashed walls dominate the mazy alleyways of Chania, an exquisite port town on the northwestern coast of Crete. Steep lanes stretch uphill from the harbour, leading visitors through delightful expressions of Venetian and Ottoman architecture, past dozens of charming tavernas and cafes. It is a place to relax and explore at leisure, with many interesting sights and sounds filling the Chania labyrinth. It’s also the gateway city to the sublime beaches of Chania Bay, and some strips of sand are within walking distance of Old Town.

The authentic atmosphere of Crete and its culture can be found inside Chania, especially along the rustic streets of Old Town. Splantzia Square and Dikastiria Square are excellent places to join the locals in the evening when the terraces and benches come to life. For Byzantine architecture check out Chania Cathedral Trimartiti. Our Lady Catholic Church dates to the 16th century while the Venizelos Family Tomb offers unrivalled views across the city. Chania’s premier attraction is its port, which is unchanged since Venetians ruled the city. Among the iconic photos stops are the 16th century lighthouse and the Grand Arsenali building.

Almost all of Old Town can only be seen on foot. It feels like there’s a secret to uncover down every narrow lane, from monastic remains to hidden bars, atmospheric souvenir shops to the Etz Hayyim Synagogue. Chania International Airport has expanded rapidly in recent years and offers many flights to the Greek mainland, as well as to destinations across Europe. Buses to the harbour take 30 minutes and leave from outside the new terminal building. Most of Crete is connected to Chania by air-conditioned buses, and there are regular ferries to Athens on the mainland.

Chania was ruled by the Marquess of Montferrat in the 13th century, but he decided to sell the city to the Venetians. Many of the waterfront buildings are typical of Venice while those up the hill come from a period of Ottoman control that started in 1645.