Soldier statue at roundabout in Rethymnon
Many cafes squeezed into the very popular tourist spot of the Inner Harbour
Rethymnon was another delightful surprise on Crete. According to the guidebooks, only Chania rivals Rethymnon for the beauty of its architecture. Unfortunately for us, we only had one afternoon and evening there, but we certainly appreciated it in the short time we had.
Us shopping when the stores are closed!
We researched our hotel options before arrival, and were very grateful to the handy and wise TripAdvisor. A hotel high on its list for Rethymnon (at number 3?) was Hotel Leo, which was perfect. It was in an alley way, one street back from the harbour, and was in a tastefully and expertly renovated building that kept its old stone walls and dark wooden furniture, but complimented those with modern conveniences and great lighting and beautiful, plush textiles. The bathroom was a dream. AND…..it was SILENT AT NIGHT! VERY happy campers! One of the best things about travelling in the shoulder season and not booking is that if you turn up at the last minute, you get amazing discounts! (In fact, the savings in our hotels have easily covered the purchase of jewellery! Luckily!)
Nic enjoying the vitamin D on the walls of the Fortezza
We found a great parking spot for our tiny, but underpowered, Fiat rental car, and unloaded our bags. We carried them up two flights (42 steps – John counted) and breathed a sigh of relief when we made it to the top. We went to a fairly new taverna, recommended by the trusty woman on reception, called ‘La Boheme’. The food was of a high quality and was reasonably priced. We spent the afternoon exploring (in not much detail!) the little back streets of the old town, as well as the very touristy harbour – complete with pirate ship (with bloody big skull motif) for evening meals and cruises.
Palm tree at the top of the Fortezza
We enjoyed an afternoon drink by the water at a low key place called ‘Samaria’ before climbing the Fortezza of the town in the evening. The Fortezza is the largest Venetian fortress ever built, but it wasn’t terribly effective in terms of being a stronghold and protecting its community!
More ice cream
A wonderful night’s sleep was had by us both, and we awoke refreshed, wishing we had more days in our holiday to spend in Rethymnon…and Crete in general!
Gorgeous taverna in the old part of Rethymnon