Ierapetra





Ierapetra is based in the south east of Crete, and is the most southerly town of Europe. The dry, warm winter climate attracts many visitors in winter, some of whom stay for the entire winter. The town has a lovely atmosphere, if somewhat muted and rural. There is no mass tourism here comparable to that on the north coast, but you’ll find many expats from Britain and Germany living in Ierapetra and the surrounding areas.

Ierapetra

Sights in Ierapetra: It’s definitely worth taking a look around Ierapetra’s charming old town. There are many small alleys, some of which are too small for cars, and it’s easy to get lost.

The Mosque of Ierapetra  Old Town Street in Ierapetra

The ‘must-sees’ of Ierapetra are the mosque, the fishing port and the 17th century castle. There is also a small Archaeological Museum (€2 in 2008, open 8.30 to 3pm, closed Mondays) in the old town. The most famous exhibit in the museum is the 1.5m Madonna of Ierapetra. This 1st century stature is well preserved. The Madonna was discovered by a local farmer, who also uncovered many ancient vases, sarcophagi and pots.

The Castle of Ierapetra  The Beach of Ierapetra

Accommodation in Ierapetra: There is no campsite or hostel in Ierapetra. The nearest campsite can be found 8km to the east. You can reach it by taking the bus for Sitia. It’s a fairly average campsite, complete with a small show and simple restaurant. Cheap rooms can be found in Ierapetra around the old town and near the bus station. I stayed at the Hotel Coral in the old town and I can recommend it – we paid €25 for a double room with bath, TV and so on in 2007.

Castello is a good, cheap restaurant in Ierapetra that can be found on the waterfront close to the old town. The Café and Teahouse Cactus sell a huge range of organic teas from around the world for around €2 a cup. There’s also a bookshop, called Fasma, which has a good selection of English books.

Buses Ierapetra: There are 6 buses daily to Iraklio with a stop in Agios Nikolaos. There are another 6 buses in the other direction to Sitia. The bus station is 1.5km to the north of the old town.

Chrissi (Hrysi) Island: Chrissi is a 5km long island a few kilometres offshore from Ierapetra. Chrissi is uninhabited in winter. It’s also a nature reserve. The island makes for a wonderful day trip, with good hikes and great beaches. All through the season, from May to October, there are daily boats from Ierapetra to Chrissi. You can buy tickets at any travel agency, at the port or directly from the ship.

Mirtos: Mirtos is a small, quiet village 16km west of Ierapetra. It has nice dark-sanded beaches and cheap accommodation. There are six buses daily from Ierapetra. The more remote seaside villages further East (Karatokambos, Arvi and Tsoutsouros) are unreachable by bus. All of these places have simple rent rooms, beaches and a scattering of tavernas.

 

Koutsouras: A small town 20km east of Ierapetra. Koutsouras has been discovered by the tourist industry and is being developed. It’s well worth coming here in spring to see the Valley of Butterflies – you’ll see a magical sight of millions of butterflies. The Ierapetra-Sitia road passes through Koutsouras. Not far from here is Pandeleimonas village which has a famous Byzantine church, one of the oldest on Crete.

 

Crete Guide
PLACES
Eastern Crete
Ierapetra
Sitia
Vai
Agios Nikolaos
Kritsa
Elounda
Zakros
Central Crete
Iraklio
Knossos
Hersonissos
Malia
Rethymno
Panormo
Bali
Moni Arkadi
Georgioupolis
Plakias
Preveli
Agia Galini
Matala
Kalamaki
Pitsidia
Lendas
Western Crete
Chania
Platanes
Agia Marina
Kolymbari
Kissamos
Paleochora
Sougia
Samaria Gorge
White Mountains
Imbros Gorge
Chora Sfakia
INFORMATION
Where to go on Crete?
Transportation
Accommodation
Climate Crete
Figures Crete
Money and Prices
Food on Crete
Menu Crete
Drinks on Crete
Fauna of Crete
Flora of Crete
Snakes in Crete
Dangerous Animals
Troubles on Crete
Sport on Crete
Cretan Diet
General Advice Crete
Caves on Crete
Islands around Crete
Other Greek Island