Should I spend 3, 4, or 5 days in Crete?

Should you spend 3, 4, or 5 days in Crete?

Many visitors spend five to seven days in Crete during their visit. If you're not sure how much time you might need here, we have the answers because there's so much to see and do. This island offers a number of attractions to explore, including the beaches, the restaurant scene, scuba diving and snorkeling, and the museums and landmarks.

Crete is the largest island in Greece. Many people believe it has some of the best beaches in the country. You'll find sandy shorelines that meet striking blue water. There are also cities that are filled with excellent restaurants and a world class nightlife scene.

Do you have 3, 4, or 5 days to visit Crete? Here's our comprehensive breakdown of how much time you might need for your trip along with some suggestions for things to do.


Is 3 days enough time in Crete?

With only three days, you'll probably feel rushed to explore the island. After all, Crete is home to a multitude of sights and attractions, making it an extremely popular destination for tourists. To fully embrace Crete, a longer visit is better. Most travelers tend to schedule about five to seven days to experience the beaches, the restaurant scene, scuba diving and snorkeling, and the museums and landmarks. Nevertheless, if your schedule is limited, we can provide some suggestions to maximize your visit.

How to spend 3 days in Crete

The beautiful beaches await you in Crete, so spend the day (or several, if you can) relaxing on the sand or swimming in the water. There are some of the best beaches in the world on Crete. The areas around Chania have some of the island's best beaches, with one of the most beautiful being Balos. On the northern side of the island, be on the lookout for strong winds, particularly in August, which can make for larger waves. The island is large, so you'll find everything from secluded and quiet beaches to more active and lively places.


A few tour suggestions include:

  • Sea Kayak & Snorkel tours in West Crete ($86)
  • Land Rover Safari: Tripitis Gorge and Beach, South Crete ($104)
  • Boat Trip with Scuba and Snorkeling in Chania ($150)

The delicious food of Crete is one of the main highlights of a trip to the region. Dining out is one of the highlights of a trip. Make sure you take the time to taste as much of it as possible during breakfast, lunch, and dinner at some of this island's best restaurants. And consider a food tour or cooking class. You can easily fit one into your schedule since many are just a few hours or half a day. Local cuisine is influenced by the island's fertile environment and excellent agriculture. You'll find olive oil in most dishes and seafood is a major staple. You'll also find a lot of stews and recipes that incorporate local ingredients.


A few tour suggestions include:

  • Cooking Class and Meal at our Family Olive Farm (the Cretan Vibes Farm)! ($89)
  • Chania Cooking Class-The Authentic Enjoy traditional Cretan meal ($122)
  • Wine and Olive oil Tasting ($133)

Public transit in Crete is easy and efficient. In just a few days, you should be able to get around the island quite easily. There's a decent bus system that travels around the island and offers access to many areas.

Don't miss the Palace of Knossos during your trip to Crete, as it's one of this destination's most well-known attractions. You should make sure to set aside enough time to see it.

This island is very popular for nightlife. After the sun goes down, head out to one of the many popular venues around town. The island has excellent nightlife with clubs and bars found in Chania, Malia and Stalis to Elounda. The area is popular with British tourists and you'll find many bars open until 2 or 3 in the morning.

Scuba diving and snorkeling around Crete is very popular. Spend the day exploring the beauty of the surrounding underwater world. The island is surrounded by clear waters that make for great snorkeling and diving. There's a number of beautiful fish and other sea life that you can see. Be on the lookout for crabs, sea stars, sponges, and even octopi.


A few tour suggestions include:

  • Sea Kayak & Snorkel tours in West Crete ($86)
  • Experience Scuba Diving in Heraklion Crete ($110)
  • Boat Trip with Scuba and Snorkeling in Chania ($150)

Crete is known to be such a beautiful destination, so just exploring and taking it all in should be one of the top things to do on your list. The island has some of the world's most beautiful beaches. The blue waters and striking landscapes make this a world class destination.


A few tour suggestions include:

  • Sunset Jeep Tour in Crete ($91)
  • Boat Trip with Scuba and Snorkeling in Chania ($150)
  • PRIVATE Jeep Safari 4x4 SUNSET with Dinner Area Heraklion CRETE ($127)

Is 4 days enough time in Crete?

Crete is a small island that is extremely popular with tourists due to the many sights and attractions. Four days is probably not enough time on the scenic island. You might feel rushed to see the main attractions of Crete such as the beaches, the restaurant scene, scuba diving and snorkeling, and the museums and landmarks. To thoroughly enjoy the whole island, you'll probably want more time, as most travelers schedule at least 5 or as many as 7 days here. Nevertheless, we have some nice suggestions for your visit below.

Heraklion, Crete, Greece Heraklion, Crete, Greece

How to spend 4 days in Crete

With 4 days in Crete, you'll have a bit more time to enjoy everything that the island has to offer.

Plenty of amazing museums and famous landmarks make Crete a special place to visit. Spend at least one full day visiting the sights that are appealing to you. The island is filled with archeological sites including the famous Palace of Knossos. While most people come to Crete for the natural beauty, in the cities you'll find some great museums and landmarks.


A few tour suggestions include:

  • Knossos Palace Guided Walking Tour ($65)
  • The Palace of Knossos with Optional Skip-the-Line Ticket ($66)
  • Knossos Palace Skip-the-Line Ticket (Shared Tour - Small group) ($76)

Because the nightlife scene is so popular here, you'll want to take full advantage of it more than once. From the bars and pubs to the nightclubs, there's something for everyone. Or, get some tickets to another show at the theatre such as a ballet or opera.

Is 5 days enough time in Crete?

Five days is usually not enough time to experience the scenic island of Crete, so you may find yourself somewhat rushed. You don't want to miss the main attractions such as the beaches, the restaurant scene, scuba diving and snorkeling, and the museums and landmarks, as well as the Palace of Knossos. You'll likely want more than five days, as many tourists set aside around five to seven days for their visit. However, if your schedule is tight, we have a handful of recommendations to make the most of your journey below.

How to spend 5 days in Crete

If you have more than 5 days in Crete, you'll appreciate the added time for everything the island has to offer.

Known for it's hiking, Crete sees plenty of visitors looking to get outdoors. Spend a day exploring the natural beauty and scenery on a nearby hike. The island is filled with beautiful hikes that run along the shoreline or head inland through the island's beautiful landscapes. There are hikes for every ability level that offer spectacular views and an incredible experience.


A few tour suggestions include:

  • Hike Imbros gorge & explore Sfakia with lunch ($172)
  • Imbros Gorge Hiking from Chania ($31)
  • Private Hiking tour in Gramvousa Peninsoula from Kissamos ($33)

There are plenty of restaurants you haven't tried yet, so don't miss another amazing meal at local places for lunch and dinner. Try to go out of your way to find the small, locally owned places that offer the charm and ambiance that can only be found in Crete.

More Info

If you're looking for more information about Crete, we have even more advice to help you plan your journey.

Budget Your Trip is all about finding out how much everything costs so that you can travel cheaper and longer. Created by avid travelers Laurie and Bryan, our goal is to help you plan your next trip on the right budget. With average daily travel costs that are calculated from the budgets of real travelers, plus an analysis of hotel and tour prices, you can find out how much money you need to plan your next adventure. We also have plenty of travel advice, accommodation reviews, and activity suggestions.

Some of the links on this website are sponsored or affiliate links which help to financially support this site. By clicking the link and making a purchase, we may receive a small commission, but this does not affect the price of your purchase.