Highlights / General details
Hear tales of previous conquerors like the Byzantines, Venetians, and pirates (for real), and trace the footsteps of aristocrats, sultans, and warriors as you walk the winding streets of this fascinating city. See the colors and taste the flavors that only locals know!
Navigate the labyrinth of Venetian and Ottoman streets like a local.
Visit local craftsmen and artisans as they work in their workshops.
Learn about different local wines at a unique wine tasting.
Sample unique Cretan flavors like traditional Koulouris, Greek coffee, Cretan pastries, and cheese and olives.
Wander through layers of history and cultural influences, listening to tales, myths, and legends.
Local English-speaking guide; Local food and beverage samples; Coffee or soft drink.
Hotel pick-up and drop-off; Additional food and beverages; Souvenirs and items of a personal nature; Gratuities for your local guide.
Hours of operation
Available: Monday - Saturday; Start time at 9:00am.
Approximately 4 hours.
Meeting Point: The Square of the Four Martyrs in the center of modern Rethymnon (in front of the Four Martyrs Church).
Ending Point: Fortezza, the Venetian fortress in Rethymnon, near the Venetian Port.
Go beyond the guidebook and get to know the real Crete! You could read pages of history, but they won’t tell you the stories of Rethymnon like we’ll tell you – that’s a task best left up to locals. This walking tour of the old town of Rethymnon will show you the city the way locals see it. From the classic historical sites to the local craftsmen and vendors that make Rethymnon the city is, we’ll show you everything you need to understand the city the way the locals do.
Given Rethymnon’s long, rich, thousand-or-so years of history, it’s only appropriate that we kicking things off with a bit of this history. The city began to grow after it was conquered by the Venetians, evidence of which can be spotted throughout the city.
You can’t visit Rethymnon without admiring the iconography of the Orthodox church, which is where we’ll head first. Integral to the history of the island, you’ll hear how religion kept the Cretan culture alive despite many different conquerors, like the Venetians and the Byzantines.
From there, we’ll wind our way through Sabbionara, entering the old Ottoman district. Known for its impressive doorframes and mix of histories, here we’ll see the Mosque of Kara Mousha Pasha and St. Francesco Church (now the Byzantine Museum) alongside Venetian mansions, temples turned to mosques, and the “Turkish” school.
Next, it’s time to discover Crete through its incredible flavors. Learn the secrets of the famous Cretan diet, sampling local bites such as traditional Koulouris, a sesame seeded bread ring (similar to Turkish simit), and cheese and olives (naturally), and sip some local wine (which has been cultivated here since 1600 BC!).
Moving on, we’ll continue our personal conquest of Rethymnon by venturing through the most noteworthy streets of the old city, checking out the most important monuments in the historical center. Representing the cultural and aesthetic character of the city, Rethymnon’s fountains, historic homes, and the grand Fortezza are all integral parts of why Rethymnon is the way it is today.
It’s here that we’ll end our walking tour of Rethymnon, and it’s the perfect place to continue your walk through the city or enjoy the beautiful waterfront views. Your guide will be more than happy to make recommendations for what else you can do in the city, especially where to grab more food!
As this is a walking tour, we advise you wear comfortable walking shoes. During summer, don’t forget your sunglasses and, of course, a camera as Rethymnon is sure to amaze you!
Children younger than 6 are permitted at no extra cost, but please make sure you inform our guides of this before you take the tour.
Complete information, including local telephone numbers at your destination, will be included on your Confirmation Voucher.
**All information requested must be supplied or booking is subject to automatic cancellation**