Crete is no stranger to Thalassophiles. Apart from being Greece’s largest island and the 5th largest island in the Mediterranean, Crete is a sacred place for wave worshippers, sea seekers, history-hungry travellers and food devotees. This is thanks to its spectrum of spectacular beaches kissed by crystal-clear water, historic sites and gold-standard restaurants, that offer up local fare whipped up from time-tested recipes passed down from generation to generation.
Here’s our #RadarList of some of the restaurants in Crete to check out when you’re there.
Turn back the clock at Agreco Farm, a farm-slash-restaurant that will give you a glimpse of traditional Cretan life through its traditional farming and cooking methods. Set in Rethymnon, the 17th-century lodge is hugged by a vineyard, olive groves, organic gardens and a mini zoo, making it a perfect spot to dive deep into Cretan heritage and to host a wedding, which the venue is well-known for. Guests can enjoy farm-to-fork Cretan dishes made with homegrown produce. Farm tours are also available and they come with an array of activities, like pressing olives, baking bread and milling wheat.
For local bites packed with a rich history, stop by Bougatsa Iordanis for Greeks’ favorite delight, bougatsa. The flakey pie is made with fillings, like custard, cheese or spinach, and can be seen throughout Greece. If you’re in Crete, one of the best places to enjoy this phyllo-layered goodness is at Bougatsa Iordanis in Chania.
The little bakery has been serving bougatsa since 1924. To this day, it carries on serving the Cretan breakfast that it began serving at its inception. It is a popular morning treat amongst tourists and locals alike.
Got a date? Earn some extra points by taking him/her out to this seaside haven in Rethymno. Enjoy the front-row view of the blue Aegean Sea while taking delight in an extensive menu of Greek as well as Italian and Japanese dishes Prima Plora Οrganic Restaurant & Wine Bar has to offer. Although seafood is thrust into the limelight here, the restaurant also pays equal attention to sourcing some of the best organic produce and wine to take seafront dining to new heights.
For those who wish to stay away from gimmicky and pretentious dining spots, saunter over to Restaurant Creta and delve into their extensive selection of Greek and traditional Cretan dishes. With its location right by the azure sea in Stalida, guests can enjoy wave sounds and breeze kisses as they dine. The best time to visit is during sunset so come for sundowners and stay for the mesmerizing view.