Tourist’s guide to Rethymnon – a colorful city on Crete in Greece

Rethymno, sheltered by lush vegetation, with secluded lakes and sandy beaches, is located in the western part of Crete. For many tourists, it remains a mystery – on which sea is the resort? The fact is that on some maps Rethymno is washed by the Aegean Sea, and on others – by the Cretan Sea. Both ponds belong to the Mediterranean. Thus, Rethymnon (Crete) is a typical Mediterranean resort in Greece.

Rethymno, Crete

Photo: Rethymnon, Crete.

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general information

Rethymnon Lighthouse, Crete

The relief of the resort is mostly mountainous. The distance to the island’s capital, Heraklion, is approximately 80 km. Rethymnon is home to about 20 thousand inhabitants. The national currency is the euro.

The first mentions of Rethymnon in Greece date back to the 4th-3rd centuries BC. Very quickly, the settlement turned into a rapidly developing policy. This was largely facilitated by the successful location of the village – at the intersection of major trade routes. In the second half of the 4th century BC the city fell into decay. The reasons why this happened are unknown. For eight centuries, the situation remained deplorable, only in the first half of the XIII century Rethymnon regained its former splendor and glory. This happened thanks to the efforts of the Venetians.

For centuries, fierce wars have been fought for the right to own a paradise on the island of Crete in Greece. Of course, this affected the appearance of the modern resort. The architectural and cultural traditions of many nations intertwined here. Tourists travel to Rethymnon to visit interesting places and unravel the secrets that the settlement hides.


Venetian Fortress Fortezza, Crete
Fortezza Fortress

The main attraction of the city of Rethymno is the Venetian fortress of Fortezza. Initially, the fortress was conceived as a defensive complex against pirates, and consisted of four bastions. Inside the fortress were warehouses, the Bishop’s palace, the house where the rector, barracks, a temple and even a theater lived.

Interesting fact! Fortress Fortress is so massive that it is often called the largest Venetian building.

Rimondi Fountain, Rethymno
Rimondi Fountain

Opposite the main castle gate is the Archaeological Museum, founded at the end of the 19th century. His collection features exhibits from various eras – from the Early Minoan to Roman.

You should definitely visit the Rimondi Fountain. The attraction consists of three estuaries made in the shape of lion heads. Water from the mouth of each lion flows into three reservoirs, which are decorated with four columns. There is a fountain in Platanu Square.

On a note! In Rethymnon on Crete in Greece, many houses are still decorated with portals in the Renaissance style. If you want to plunge into the atmosphere of romance, take a walk in the Venetian port of Rethymnon. This is a favorite vacation spot for locals.

In more detail, what to see in Rethymno is described in a separate article .

Rethymnon on Crete

Photo: Rethymnon, island of Crete.

Rethymnon beaches

The resort in Greece has a Mediterranean climate – summers are hot and without precipitation, the average temperature is about +30 degrees. The beaches of Rethymno are filled with tourists in the second half of May and empty only in September. Water warms up to +27 degrees.

Interesting fact! Many Rethymnon beaches have been awarded the Blue Flag for their clean water and high level of infrastructure.

Rethymnon city beach

The equipped recreation area begins not far from the Venetian port, the coastline is 13 km long. What attracts tourists? Fine, soft sand and crystal clear water. Along the beach runs the city street Eleftherios Venizelos.

Rethymnon city beach

The beach is beautifully furnished. On the shore there are showers and changing rooms. There are playgrounds, as well as rental equipment for water sports.

It is important! Hire an umbrella and two sun loungers costs 5-7 €. You can eat in the tavern, the cost of a dinner for two is about 30 €.

The city beach of Rethymnon in Crete is one of the few places in all of Greece where turtles lay their eggs, these areas are fenced and protected.


It is located 35 km from Rethymnon (south) and only 5 km from Plakias (east). The beach is very popular, the beach is equipped with sun loungers and umbrellas (only near the hotels), there are changing cabins, showers, cafes and restaurants. There is a diving school and a riding school. You can rent equipment for water sports.

Damoni Beach

The coastline runs near the village, and the beach forms a picturesque valley, protected by mountains. Tourists can book rooms in hotels located directly on the beach.

Good to know! In the western part of the beach, which is less organized, a river flows. Here you can find secluded coves with cliffs. The east coast is quiet, calm and adjacent to the beach of Ammoudi.

Baja beach club

A beach club located near Rethymno, 10 km from the city center. Regular buses regularly come here. The stop is called – Baja beach. The coastline is 12 thousand m2. Infrastructure is represented by sun loungers, an umbrella, showers, changing cabins. The seabed is rocky, so children are better off suggesting a swim in the pool.

Beach Baja beach club

Entrance to the territory of the beach club is free, you only need to pay the rental of a deck chair:

  • 3 € – wooden;
  • 7 € – with a mattress.

For large companies there are tents, the rental price depends on the size – from 60 to 80 €.

Beach pool Baja beach club


  • two pools – adult and children’s;
  • waterslides;
  • water skiing;
  • beach volleyball and tennis;
  • playground;
  • discos and theme parties are held.

On a note! On the territory of the beach club you can celebrate a birthday.

Guests can visit the restaurant on the beach, the windows of the restaurant overlook the sea, however, the prices in the restaurant are quite high.


It is located 18 km from Rethymnon (east), the distance to Panormo is 3 km. The beach is small, sandy and pebble, the water here is cool, as the Gerapotoamos River flows nearby, forming a deep lake near the beach.

Geropotamos Beach

The beach is equipped with sun loungers and umbrellas, the snack bar has soft drinks. There are few vacationers on the beach, so tourists come here who prefer solitude and silence. On the river bank there are many birds and animals.

It is important! Getting to the beach is easy – it is located next to the Heraklion-Rethymnon highway. Convenient descent leads to the shore. If you are traveling by bus, ask the driver to stop near the beach.

Near the beach there is the village of Margarites, where pottery is made, you can visit the mountain village of Melidoni, several old churches.

Spilies beach

The beach is located next to the Rethymno-Heraklion highway. If you go in the direction of the capital of Crete, you can meet a sign. There is no sign on the road from the capital. It is best to get there by car. The water is clean, there are practically no people on the shore. There are sun loungers and umbrellas on the beach, a small tavern. The descent into the water is pebble, gentle. The cost of one deck chair and umbrella is 5 €. The prices in the tavern are very affordable, and the food is very tasty.

Spilies beach

It is important! There are a lot of stones on the beach and on the seabed, so this place is not very suitable for families with children.

A huge number of fish live among the stones at the bottom, so people come here to dive in a mask and snorkel.

Prices for room and board

Room at three-star hotel Hotel Ideon
Hotel ideon

Throughout Rethymnon there are hotels from budget to luxury. The choice of hotel depends on your personal preferences. Hotels in the old part of the city are suitable for tourists who like to have fun, noisy and spend time in night clubs. Second-line hotels are less noisy.

The minimum cost of a double room in a three-star hotel is 84 € per day. On average, accommodation in Rethymnon hotels will cost 140 € per night.

A room in the apartment can be rented for 46 € per day. On average, the cost of living in an apartment will cost 85 € per night.

The best hotels according to users on

Hotel Blue Sea Hotel Apartments
Blue Sea Hotel Apartments
  • “ Blue Sea Hotel Apartments ” – located 1 km from the city center, a minute walk to the beach, users rating – 9.4;
  • “ Fortezza Hotel ” – located in the historical part of the city, the road to the beach takes only 4 minutes, user rating – 8.7;
  • “ Hotel Ideon ” – is located in the old town of Rethymnon, you can walk to the beach in 4 minutes, user rating – 8.6.

A full meal for one person in an average restaurant or cafe will cost from 5 to 12 €. Dinner for two in the restaurant costs from 22 to 40 €. The budget option of food – in the McDonald’s restaurant chain – from 5 to 7 €.

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There are no shopping centers and outlets in the resort town in Greece, but there are many boutiques and original souvenir shops. Shopping in Rethymnon is best started in the old part of the city, following the promenade in the direction of the streets adjacent to it.

Good to know! The main shopping street is Solido. A large number of stores with perfumes, jewelry, clothes, shoes, books are concentrated here.

st.  Arkadiou in Rethymnon

There are also many shops on the streets:

  • Arkadiou – runs parallel to the beach;
  • Ethnikis Antistaseos – starts at the city park and stretches to the port;
  • Sophocli Venizelu – runs along the coast;
  • Kountourioti – runs along Arkadiou Street.

Fur products can be purchased at Hermès Furs and Royal Shoring stores. European brands are represented in the Votre boutique. Original souvenirs can be picked up at Treasure Island on Ethnikis Antistaseos Street, and a large selection of jewelry is available at Aquamarine on Arkadiou Street. Fresh food is best bought in the market, work schedules need to be learned in advance from advertisements at bus stops.

Royal Store Shoping
Royal Shoring

Good to know! From Rethymnon, as a souvenir, be sure to bring olive oil, honey, cosmetics based on olive oil, antiques, ceramics, porcelain, jewelry.

Prices on the page are for May 2018.

Weather and climate. When is it better to come

Air temperature in Rethymnon

Throughout Rethymnon, Greece has a Mediterranean climate. It is hot and dry in summer, there is practically no rain. Daytime summer temperatures range from +28 to +32 degrees. In winter, it is noticeably colder – no higher than +12 degrees. In summer, water in the sea warms up to +27 degrees, and in winter cools down to +17 degrees.

The climate of the flat and mountainous parts of Rethymnon is very different. In the mountains in winter, air temperature drops below +0 degrees, snow falls. The plain part of the resort is protected by the Venetian fortress, so the wind cannot penetrate beyond its walls. Due to this, the central part of the resort is always warm and there is no wind.

Sea water temperature

It is important! The peak of the tourist season is in June, however, the best time for a beach holiday in Rethymnon is July and August. At this time, the water in the sea warms up to a comfortable temperature of + 24- + 26 degrees. Hot weather is tolerated quite easily, since the island is blown from all sides by winds and is located north of the equator.

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Rethymnon (Crete) – a mysterious place on the map of Greece, full of contrasts and secrets. Noisy taverns, cafes and fishermen, tackling gear and catch, peacefully coexist on the embankment. Ancient houses harmoniously woven into modern buildings. Rethymno gains a special flavor in the evening, when thousands of lights are lit, night clubs and discos begin to work – life is in full swing around the clock.

Useful video for those who want to visit Rethymnon: beach, food and prices at the resort.

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