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If you’re looking for the top things to do in Chania, this post will cover everything you need to know!
Chania is a charming city located on the northwest coast of Crete, Greece. This picturesque port town is known for its 14th Century Venetian harbor, sandy beaches, and medieval architecture. This Greek city offers a beautiful mix of enchanting beaches, historical old town streets, and delicious Greek cuisine. Surrounded by the distant white mountains of Crete, this waterfront town is not just breathtaking – there are also many exciting things to do in Chania.
Things To Do In Chania
1. Visit The Dreamy Beaches Surrounding Chania
Chania is home to some of the most beautiful beaches in Greece. These beaches are known for their long stretches of sand and bright blue waters that dazzle in the sunlight. If you don’t want to venture too far, there are charming local beaches close to the centre of Chania. Wherever you’re staying, you won’t be far from a beautiful beach.
If you’re feeling adventurous and want to see some of the greatest sights in Chania, venture out to the southwestern part of Chania. Here, you will find some of the dreamiest beaches in all of Crete. From beaches with pink sand, to beaches lined with large rock formations, you’ll be sure to find something that takes your breath away.
The Best Beaches To Visit In Chania Are;
- Elafonisi Beach
- Astropelekita Beach
- Kedrodasos Beach
- Falasarna Beach
2. Explore The Charming Narrow Streets Of The Old Town
To get a taste of Chania’s charm, medieval architecture, and history, be sure to take a stroll through the Old Town. The narrow cobblestone streets are straight out of a fairytale, with vines and flowers at every corner. Exploring the Old Town is one of the best things to do in Chania. You’ll come across cozy restaurants, local shops, and sweet stray cats (don’t worry, they are friendly!).
3. Enjoy A Waterfront Dinner
One of the best parts of Chania is the enchanting harbor. The waterfront is lined with restaurants that offer a gorgeous view of the Aegean Sea and surrounding mountains. Although the waterfront restaurants can get a little touristy, there are some less crowded spots towards the edges of the waterfront.
Dining at the harbor is one of the best things to do in Chania, so the summer crowds you may experience are worth it. For the ultimate experience, dine at sunset for the best views.
4. Take A Day Trip To Seitan Limania
Venture out to the hidden Seitan Limania beach to experience the #1 most adventurous things to do in Chania. This hidden cove beach is characterized by its turquoise blue waters and surrounding cliffs. It’s important to note that this beach is not a fully accessible beach, since it’s located between two high sea cliffs. The only way to access the beach is to climb down the steep hill of the cliffs. It’s a rocky hike down, so be sure to wear sturdy shoes (no sandals!) and take your time.
The trek down to the beach is absolutely worth it though – it feels like a remote paradise. Swim in the tropical-colored water, cliff jump, or simply lay on the beach. There are also cute mountain goats that trot along the cliffs, and sometimes they even make their way down to the beach to say hello!
How to Get There: Rent a car or taxi from Chania. The drive is only 30 minutes.
5. Go Diving or Snorkeling
Since Chania is right on the Aegean Sea, it’s a great place to do some scuba diving or snorkeling. There are several diving centers and diving boats in town, many of which are very attentive to beginners. If you’re looking to explore the underwater paradise of Chania, be sure to book a diving or snorkeling trip. There’s a wide variety of diving you can do in Chania, including deep diving, wall diving, night diving, reef diving, cavern diving, and snorkeling.
Cost Per Person: Between €60 – €95
6. Take A Day Trip To Balos Lagoon
Balos Lagoon is without a doubt, one of the most beautiful places in Chania. Exploring this bright blue paradise is an unforgettable experience, so be sure to add it to your list. On the boat ride to the lagoon, you can enjoy the views of the sea and the surrounding mountains. Another benefit of taking a boat is that most Balos Lagoon boat tours will also take you over to the Gramvousa island, where you can hike up a large hill for panoramic views of the sea.
How to Get There: The most convenient and memorable way to get to the Balos Lagoon is by boat. Click here to book a round trip boat cruise to Balos Lagoon.
Cost of Boat Ride: €25 – €30
7. Take A Boat Ride On The Aegean Sea
What better way to marvel at the beauty of this city than to see it from afar? Taking a boat ride is definitely one of the best things to do in Chania. Not only do boat tours offer stunning views of the city, they will also expand your knowledge of the town. Most boat tours in Chania have guides who explain interesting historical facts and stories. For any history and nature lover, a boat tour on the Aegean Sea is a must-do activity.
Cost Per Person: Between €20 – €60
8. Explore The Venetian Harbor
Chania’s 14th Century Venetian harbor is one of the most picturesque elements of this Greek town. Along the harbor, you’ll discover a promenade of classic Greek restaurants, cafes, shops, and boats. On the East side of the harbor, there is the Mosque of the Janissaries. This historic mosque was built in 1645 by the Ottoman Turks and is the oldest Ottoman building in all of Crete! Because of its rich history and beauty, exploring the Venetian harbor is one of the most fascinating simple things to do in Chania.
9. Take A Stroll Along The Lighthouse
When in Chania, you can’t miss visiting one of the oldest lighthouses in the world. Although you can’t go inside the lighthouse, the walk along the pier is beautiful enough. This Venetian lighthouse was built in the 14th Century and stands at 21 meters tall. You can see the view of the lighthouse on the water from the harbor square, but I recommend walking along the pier for the full experience. Walking up to the lighthouse offers a unique view of the town and the surrounding waters. It creates a peaceful and romantic atmosphere, making it a perfect thing to do for couples.
10. Hike Samaria Gorge
The Samaria Gorge National Park is a picturesque ravine in Crete. Hiking the Samaria Gorge is certainly one of the most adventurous things to do in Chania. This 16-kilometre (10 miles) hike is a uniquely breathtaking experience. The Gorge is situated between the White Mountains of Crete and is one of the longest canyons in Europe.
- How Long It Takes: Hiking the ravine takes a full day with regular breaks.
- Important Tip: Be sure to pack essential supplies for a full day of hiking, such as a water bottle, hat, snacks, and sturdy shoes.
One of the most enchanting places in Crete, the lovely city of Chania will give you an unforgettable trip. From its natural wonders, history, architecture, and culture, there is no shortage of things to do in Chania.