Heraklion

Atmospheric old alleys
Massive Venetian walls
The Palace of Knossós

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Heraklion/Crete

A striking view

The best way to arrive in Iráklion is from the sea on an MSC cruise ship. It’s the traditional approach and is still the one that shows the city in its best light, with Mount Yioúhtas rising behind, the heights of the Psilorítis range to the west and, as you get closer, the great fortress guarding the harbour entrance and the city walls encircling and dominating the oldest part of town.
 
Iráklion has superb fortifications, a fine market and atmospheric old alleys to visit when you alight from your MSC cruise. Virtually everything you’re likely to want to see lies within the north-eastern corner of the walled city. The massive Venetian walls, in places up to 15m thick, are the most obvious evidence of Iráklion’s history.

Though their fabric is incredibly well preserved, access is virtually nonexistent. El Greco Park, to the right as you approach Platía Venizélou, is crowded with cafés and bars, while opposite, on the left, are some of the more interesting of Iráklion’s older buildings including the church of Áyios Títos and the Venetian city hall with its famous loggia, both almost entirely rebuilt. Just above this stands the church of San Marco, its steps usually crowded with sightseers spilling over from the nearby platía.

Knossós, 5km south of Iráklio on a low, largely artificial hill, was by far the largest of the Minoan palaces, thriving more than three and a half thousand years ago at the heart of a highly sophisticated island-wide civilization: it’s an excursion not to be missed on any MSC Mediterranean cruise to Greece.

As soon as you enter the Palace of Knossós through its West Court, it is clear how the legends of the labyrinth grew up around it. Even with a map and description, it can be very hard to work out where you are.

Must see places in Heraklion

Discover our excursions

7 resultat hittades

  • KNOSSOS & ARCHAEOLOGICAL MUSEUM

    KULTUR OCH HISTORIA

    IRK08

    Take yourself back to the Aegean Bronze Age for a few hours to discover relics left by the Minoan civilisation that thrived on Crete from about 2,600 to 1,400 B.C.. You will first board a coach and head for the outskirts of Heraklion to reach the archaeological site of Knossos, the one-time seat of King Minos. A guide will show you around the labyrinthine palace complex, which includes the royal living quarters, rooms used for state occasions, a theatre, storage areas and potters’ workshops. Although discovered by a Greek national in 1878, the site only began to be excavated around the turn of the century under the direction of the British archaeologist Sir Arthur Evans. Next up is a visit to the Heraklion Archaeological Museum to continue the Minoan theme. The museum is home to an impressive collection of Minoan artefacts, from terracotta, marble and alabaster idols, through gold, jewellery, ivory and figurines to frescoes and sarcophagi, all of which go to provide a fascinating insight into the artistic flair of this ancient civilisation Enjoy some free time in Heraklion before returning to the ship. Please note: this tour is not suitable for guests using a wheelchair.
    • Begränsat antal platser

    • Svårighetsgrad: Medel – Kan innehålla uppförsbackar, trappsteg, ojämna ytor och/eller längre perioder där man måste stå upp

      Svårighetsgrad
      Svårighetsgrad: Medel – Kan innehålla uppförsbackar, trappsteg, ojämna ytor och/eller längre perioder där man måste stå upp

    • Längd
      5 h

    • Frånpris för vuxenSEK642per person

    • Frånpris för barn 2-13 årSEK485per person

  • KNOSSOS PALACE AND SHOPPING

    KULTUR OCH HISTORIA

    IRK02

    You do not need to have an expert’s knowledge of Greek history or Cretan civilizations to appreciate the fabulous Minoan Palace of Knossos. More than just a collection of stones or ruins, the Palace structure is still visible and visitors can wander the maze of rooms. A British archaeologist, Arthur Evans, who led the excavation of the site in the 1900s, reconstructed the Palace. Pictures on the walls help visitors gain a sense of the scale of the Palace – which was originally 20,000 square metres - and an idea of life here during the late Bronze Age. The Palace of Knossos is built on the ruins of a larger Neolithic settlement and of the supposed 1,300 rooms that made up the five-storey Palace, 800 are left today. After the visit, we will drive to Heraklion for free time exploring and shopping. Please note: guests using a wheelchair are advised that they must be accompanied by a paying helper to provide assistance with getting on and off the coach and that wheelchairs must be collapsible/foldable since the coach has neither a ramp nor a lift. Guests using a wheelchair who would like to participate in this tour are requested to contact the Shore Excursions’ Desk promptly once they are on board so that arrangements can be made.
    • Shopping

    • Rullstols- och handikappvänlig utflykt - Rullstolsburna gäster måste ledsagas av sin egen assistent för att ta sig på och av bussen. Rullstolar måste vara hopfällbara eftersom bussen saknar lift eller rullstolsramp. Kontakta utflyktpersonalen vid Excursions Desk när du stigit ombord på fartyget så att de kan vidta nödvändiga åtgärder i förberedelserna inför utflykten.

    • Svårighetsgrad: Lätt – Kan innehålla ett mindre antal trappsteg, ojämna ytor och/eller längre perioder där man måste stå upp

      Svårighetsgrad
      Svårighetsgrad: Lätt – Kan innehålla ett mindre antal trappsteg, ojämna ytor och/eller längre perioder där man måste stå upp

    • Längd
      4:30 h

    • Frånpris för vuxenSEK512per person

    • Frånpris för barn 2-13 årSEK365per person

  • THE MINOAN PALACE OF PHAESTOS

    KULTUR OCH HISTORIA

    IRK06

    This tour will take you through some of the most beautiful areas of Crete that are characterized by lush vineyards and ancient olive trees. We will drive across the Aghia Varvara Pass to the southern part of Crete to reach the traditional village of Aghia Varvara where we will stop for a short visit. Our next destination will be the Messara Plain where we will explore the Minoan Palace of Phaestos. The Palace, situated in a magnificent location overlooking the Messara Plain and Ida Mountains, is second in importance and size to the palace of Knossos. The Italian archaeologist Frederico Halbherr excavated the Palace at the beginning of the XX century. The earliest settlements on the site date from the Neolithic Period and small settlements from the early Minoan period were scattered over the hill where the Palace stood. Phaestos was the centre of southern Crete, with two harbours, Matala and Kommos. Please note: this tour is not suitable for guests using a wheelchair.
    • Rullstols- och handikappvänlig utflykt - Rullstolsburna gäster måste ledsagas av sin egen assistent för att ta sig på och av bussen. Rullstolar måste vara hopfällbara eftersom bussen saknar lift eller rullstolsramp. Kontakta utflyktpersonalen vid Excursions Desk när du stigit ombord på fartyget så att de kan vidta nödvändiga åtgärder i förberedelserna inför utflykten.

    • Svårighetsgrad: Lätt – Kan innehålla ett mindre antal trappsteg, ojämna ytor och/eller längre perioder där man måste stå upp

      Svårighetsgrad
      Svårighetsgrad: Lätt – Kan innehålla ett mindre antal trappsteg, ojämna ytor och/eller längre perioder där man måste stå upp

    • Längd
      4 h

    • Frånpris för vuxenSEK459per person

    • Frånpris för barn 2-13 årSEK329per person

  • EXPLORING CRETE

    NATURSKÖNA VÄGAR

    IRK03

    Come and pay homage to Dionysus, the Greek god of wine-making and revelry! Leave the port and drive southwards through ancient vineyards that have flourished here since the Minoan period, around 1,600 BC. Our first stop will be at a modern winery to see how wine is produced today and to taste the flavoursome, sherry-like Cretan wine. We will continue exploring the island, travelling through Crete’s picturesque villages before taking a break for photographs at Vathypetro. This Minoan country house and archaeological site is one of the oldest farmhouses in Crete. The tour continues through the island’s hilly countryside which is rich in olive groves and vineyards before arriving at the village of Archanes, just 10 km south of Knossos Palace. Enjoy free time in this lovely village which has been named the 2nd best-restored village in Europe and sample the local food and drink. We will take the scenic route back to the ship via the ruins of the Minoan Palace of Knossos. Please note: guests using a wheelchair are advised that they must be accompanied by a paying helper to provide assistance with getting on and off the coach and that wheelchairs must be collapsible/foldable since the coach has neither a ramp nor a lift. Guests using a wheelchair who would like to participate in this tour are requested to contact the Shore Excursions’ Desk promptly once they are on board so that arrangements can be made.
    • Inklusive snacks

    • Rullstols- och handikappvänlig utflykt - Rullstolsburna gäster måste ledsagas av sin egen assistent för att ta sig på och av bussen. Rullstolar måste vara hopfällbara eftersom bussen saknar lift eller rullstolsramp. Kontakta utflyktpersonalen vid Excursions Desk när du stigit ombord på fartyget så att de kan vidta nödvändiga åtgärder i förberedelserna inför utflykten.

    • Bästsäljare

    • Begränsat antal platser

    • Svårighetsgrad: Lätt – Kan innehålla ett mindre antal trappsteg, ojämna ytor och/eller längre perioder där man måste stå upp

      Svårighetsgrad
      Svårighetsgrad: Lätt – Kan innehålla ett mindre antal trappsteg, ojämna ytor och/eller längre perioder där man måste stå upp

    • Längd
      4:30 h

    • Frånpris för vuxenSEK485per person

    • Frånpris för barn 2-13 årSEK365per person

  • THE VILLAGES OF CRETE

    NATURSKÖNA VÄGAR

    IRK07

    Drive along the coastal road and through the spectacular ravine of Saint George to Kritsa passing some villages on the way. Upon you arrival, right at the entrance of the village, you will find the Byzantine church of Panagia Kera which boasts 700-year old frescoes depicting Biblical stories. Soon after the visit, you will have a little free time in the village before continuing along the northern coastal road to reach the typical Cretan coastal town of Aghios Nikolaos. You will see a small lagoon – Lake Voulismeni – right in the centre of the town; the lake, according to local legends, is bottomless. Walk along the lakeshore or explore the pretty streets and browse the shops selling typical souvenirs. Enjoy free time before returning to the port. Please note: this tour is not suitable for guests using a wheelchair.
    • Rullstols- och handikappvänlig utflykt - Rullstolsburna gäster måste ledsagas av sin egen assistent för att ta sig på och av bussen. Rullstolar måste vara hopfällbara eftersom bussen saknar lift eller rullstolsramp. Kontakta utflyktpersonalen vid Excursions Desk när du stigit ombord på fartyget så att de kan vidta nödvändiga åtgärder i förberedelserna inför utflykten.

    • Begränsat antal platser

    • Svårighetsgrad: Lätt – Kan innehålla ett mindre antal trappsteg, ojämna ytor och/eller längre perioder där man måste stå upp

      Svårighetsgrad
      Svårighetsgrad: Lätt – Kan innehålla ett mindre antal trappsteg, ojämna ytor och/eller längre perioder där man måste stå upp

    • Längd
      5 h

    • Frånpris för vuxenSEK485per person

    • Frånpris för barn 2-13 årSEK365per person

  • CRETE’S ANCIENT TRADITIONS: POTTERY & WINE

    NÅGOT SPECIELLT

    IRK10

    This enjoyable half-day tour offers a chance to touch base with two of Crete’s proudest traditions – pottery and wine making – at the villages of Thrapsano and Peza, both of which lie inland from Heraklion. A scenic 45-minute coach ride to the southeast through Crete’s varied interior will see you reach your first stop, the hillside village of Thrapsano. Life revolves around pottery here, with a main emphasis on making the giant jars known as pitharia, easily as tall as the average woman. You will get to visit one of the workshops and watch potters plying their time-honoured craft. Part two of the tour will then take you to Peza, a village with a long tradition of wine making. In fact, the surrounding region is responsible for producing around 70% of Cretan wine. A visit to a winery is scheduled here, along with a look at the vineyards and a chance to sample some of the delicious produce. The tour then ends with your return to the ship. Please note: guests using a wheelchair are advised that they must be accompanied by a paying helper to provide assistance with getting on and off the coach and that wheelchairs must be collapsible/foldable since the coach has neither a ramp nor a lift. Guests using a wheelchair who would like to participate in this tour are requested to contact the Shore Excursions’ Desk promptly once they are on board so that arrangements can be made.
    • Provsmakning inkluderad

    • Rullstols- och handikappvänlig utflykt - Rullstolsburna gäster måste ledsagas av sin egen assistent för att ta sig på och av bussen. Rullstolar måste vara hopfällbara eftersom bussen saknar lift eller rullstolsramp. Kontakta utflyktpersonalen vid Excursions Desk när du stigit ombord på fartyget så att de kan vidta nödvändiga åtgärder i förberedelserna inför utflykten.

    • Svårighetsgrad: Lätt – Kan innehålla ett mindre antal trappsteg, ojämna ytor och/eller längre perioder där man måste stå upp

      Svårighetsgrad
      Svårighetsgrad: Lätt – Kan innehålla ett mindre antal trappsteg, ojämna ytor och/eller längre perioder där man måste stå upp

    • Längd
      3:30 h

    • Frånpris för vuxenSEK235per person

    • Frånpris för barn 2-13 årSEK205per person

  • FODELE VILLAGE & RETHYMNON TOWN

    STADSUTFLYKT

    IRK05

    Leave the port and drive along the northern coastal road to the charming village of Fodele located in a pretty valley full of orange groves. The village is the birthplace of the famous painter El Greco who was born here in 1541. You can take a short walk through the village before continuing to Rethymnon. With its aristocratic XVI century buildings and fascinating mix of Byzantine and Hellenic-Roman remains, this town exudes a charming air of faded grandeur. Rethymnon is a mixture of Venetian and Turkish influences and is dominated by a Venetian fortress; you will have time to wander the narrow streets, admire the architecture and browse the local shops.
    • Rullstols- och handikappvänlig utflykt - Rullstolsburna gäster måste ledsagas av sin egen assistent för att ta sig på och av bussen. Rullstolar måste vara hopfällbara eftersom bussen saknar lift eller rullstolsramp. Kontakta utflyktpersonalen vid Excursions Desk när du stigit ombord på fartyget så att de kan vidta nödvändiga åtgärder i förberedelserna inför utflykten.

    • Svårighetsgrad: Lätt – Kan innehålla ett mindre antal trappsteg, ojämna ytor och/eller längre perioder där man måste stå upp

      Svårighetsgrad
      Svårighetsgrad: Lätt – Kan innehålla ett mindre antal trappsteg, ojämna ytor och/eller längre perioder där man måste stå upp

    • Längd
      6 h

    • Frånpris för vuxenSEK549per person

    • Frånpris för barn 2-13 årSEK392per person

Utflyktsprogram och rutter kan ändras beroende på lokala förhållanden och/eller oförutsedda händelser med hänsyn till tidpunkten för utflykten. Information om utflykterna uppdateras löpande på webbsidan men vi reserverar oss för ändringar i programmen. Detaljerat program finns alltid att tillgå på fartyget. Vissa utflykter är mycket populära och därför kan tillgängligheten inte alltid garanteras. Observera att vi endast garanterar engelskspråkig guide. Guidade turer på andra språk än engelska beror på vilka guider som finns tillgängliga. Information om tillgängliga språk för guidade turer kommer att bekräftas ombord under kryssningen. Du rekommenderas att boka din utflykt i förväg. Barnpriser på utflykter gäller för barn upp till 13 år.

Greece

Under the protective wing of the gods
Under the protective wing of the gods

It would take a lifetime of island-hopping to fully appreciate the 227 inhabited Greek islands scattered across the Mediterranean Sea.
With sapphire water lapping at rocky coastlines sprinkled with secret coves and sandy beaches, they are the stuff of dreamy travel posters, the very definition of the eulogized Greek summer of sun, sea and sand.



For anyone with a cultural bone in their body a cruise to the Greek islands cannot fail to inspire. Every culture has left its mark, and almost every town or village has a link to the past, whether it’s a delicately crumbling temple to Aphrodite, a forbidding Venetian fort or a dusty Byzantine monastery decorated with exquisite frescoes. 


But the call to cultural duty will never be too overwhelming on a Greek islands holiday. The hedonistic pleasures of languor and warmth – swimming in balmy seas at dusk, talking and drinking under the stars – are just as appealing.
Sprawling, globalized Athens is an obligatory, almost unavoidable introduction to Greece: aside from the show-stopping Acropolis it offers a truly metropolitan range of cultural diversions, from museums to concerts; well-stocked shops; gourmet restaurants and stimulating clubs.