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Crete 2019 Summer Holiday Blog

Cara from our Portadown Office travelled to the beautiful resort of Hersonissos on the Greek island of Crete at the start of September
Staying at the fantastic 5* Aldemar Royal Mare hotel, here are some of the highlights of her holiday!

The hotel was situated in an ideal location for us, about a 30 minute stroll into the livelier resort of Hersonissos and a short taxi ride into the beautiful Old Town.
We flew with Jet 2, who, as always, were fantastic.

The hotel itself was spectacular. We were lucky enough to get upgraded to a VIP room with a shared pool which gave us our own private area to sunbathe and cool off from the hot Cretan sun!
There was a choice of 3 outdoor pools which was great as it meant no fighting for sunbeds and there was a generous supply of umbrellas for when the heat got a bit too much!
If we didn’t fancy lying by the pool the hotel’s own private area of the beach was just a short stroll from reception.  There were sunbeds lined across the shore and again plenty of umbrellas if we needed the shade. There were 6 restaurants to choose from along with a snack bar. There was a choice of Italian, Greek, Asian & Mediterranean cuisine. Our personal favourite was the Asian restaurant as the food and service were both outstanding. We even got a free dessert with our dinner! There were also 4 bars to choose from. Every Friday evening the hotel hosts a pool party down at the pool bar with a DJ playing until midnight. It catered for all range of music taste with hits from ABBA, Westlife and also more modern music for the younger crowd!
Checking in and out of the hotel was made very simple. We were given a few bits of information about the hotel along with a map and then us, along with our luggage were shown to our rooms and given a little tour. Upon checking out, reception rang to our room to ask what time we would like our baggage brought up for us – very efficient indeed! Getting around the resort itself couldn’t have been easier. If your room was a bit further from reception or you were a little less able to walk around, golf carts were on hand to bring you to and from reception if needed.
Overall, the hotel was outstanding. Nothing was too much bother and the staff were always very welcoming and did everything with a smile on their face.
This was a theme we found anywhere that we went. Whether it was into a mini market or the local restaurants, the Greek people were always so friendly and always so grateful for your custom.

On to things to do in Hersonissos. Firstly, around the hotel there was a lovely coastal walk which we discovered brought us round to a little lagoon – style area of the sea where you could go out and swim (as the sea was too rough in the main area of the beach). It was a lovely walk to do just after lunch or before dinner (but make sure to bring plenty of water and suncream!)
In Hersonissos Old Town, there were lovely little traditional Greek Tavernas which served local Cretan cuisine and also a range of Mediterranean dishes. We really loved Zacho’s Taverna. The main host was great fun but also ran a tight ship at the same time so everything ran smoothly! There were also a few boutique shops and lovely bars dotted around the Old Square. It was a really relaxed atmosphere which we really enjoyed for a couple of nights.
In the livelier Hersonissos New Town, it was a completely different atmosphere. Plenty of bars, restaurants & nightclubs are to be found here along with lots of shops. Plus there are 2 for 1 cocktails everywhere! Down near the Port of Hersonissos there were a few fantastic restaurant. We really enjoyed Zaeri’s which was set right along the front of the harbour and provided some amazing views!
There were a lot of day trips offered in Hersonissos, some of which included:

  • Trips to Koutouloufari, Stalis & Sissi
  • Trips to Santorini
  • Water city (only 5km form Hersonissos) – Crete’s largest water park
  • The Samaria Gorge
  • The Palace of Knossos

We didn’t do any excursions this time around as we were just going for a week of relaxation, but hopefully one day we’ll go back for a bit more of an active holiday!

All in all, it was a truly fantastic holiday. For anyone searching for a choice of relaxation or a few days of excursions and exploring history or sightseeing, this is a perfect choice.
There are  hotels to suit any taste and budget, but I would strongly recommend anyone looking for that extra bit of luxury to check out the Aldemar Royal Mare.

Check out some of the photos from this wonderful holiday!

If you have any queries, questions or simply want to check out a few of our offers for Crete in 2020 get in touch today
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