Crete is the largest and most highly populated of the Greek islands with over 600,000 Cretans calling the island home.
Data obtained from Heraklion Airport weather station
Archaeological evidence suggests that Crete has been inhabited since the 7000 BC while various artefacts such as pottery have been found which date back to before the 5000 BC.
You will find a number of festivals running every month of the year in Crete. Every October in the village of Elos you will find the Chestnut Festival, to celebrate the arrival of autumn. Every year the villagers show off the chestnuts which are grown on the trees that surround Elos. There is a lot of music and dancing, and people have the chance to taste a variety of chestnut dishes.
A range of sports take place on the island including hiking, fishing and climbing. Water sports are understandably very popular, giving tourists the chance to try out snorkelling, water skiing and wind surfing. Crete also has its own stadium called Pankritio Stadium which hosts football matches and is currently home to Ergotelis F.C; named after an ancient Olympic runner.
If you are visiting the island with family then let the children cool off in one of the three water parks dotted around Crete, take a trip to the Natural History Museum of Crete where you can discover all about the island, or visit Aquaworld Aquarium which displays sea life local to the area; here you can even get hands-on experience with the reptiles.
July is generally the warmest month with an average maximum temperature of 30 °C and it receives minimal rain during the summer.
Industry in Crete is based on services and agriculture, and even though tourism plays a part the island does not need to rely on it. Like much of Greece, there are many olive groves and oranges, while lemons and bananas have also been grown here. The production of dairy is significant too, with several varieties of cheeses being produced. The island exports timber, wine, olive oil, wool and more.
Crete is served by three main airports, while ferries run to and from the island, mainly connecting Crete with Athens. Moving around the island is relatively easy as there are good road links, although there is a lack of modern motorways. Unfortunately there is no train service on Crete but there are however buses on most roads.
Last updated: 14 March 2014