About Crete

About Crete

With its 5,000 year history of civilization friendly people, clean seas and average 315 days sunshine per year Crete is an idyllic place for a holiday home or permanent residence.This island - the largest in Greece separates the Aegean from the Libyan sea, marks the boundary between Europe and Africa . Majestic mountains rise up in the centre - the White Mountains , Psiloritis and Dikti. Its plateau's are split by deep gorges and end up in fertile valleys. The scenery is constantly changing. Its villages are surrounded by greenery, olive trees, orange groves, vineyards and early vegetable market gardens.

Old stone farm houses, monasteries and villages are perched on mountain ridges, castles and chapels forgotten on steep slopes. Shores, lined with forbidding rocks, often inaccessible, also endless sandy or pebbly beaches.


Crete is renowned for the variety of its vegetation and wild-life in its chestnut, oak and cypress forests. Not to mention its palm forests (at Vai and Preveli). Medical herbs and fragrant shrubs, laudanum, dittany, marjoram and thyme, grow in rocky areas and mountaintops, where it is also the home of the "Kri-kri" or Cretan goat.


Crete is the largest Greek island and the fifth largest in the Mediterranean . It is also the most Southerly habitable island within the European Union ensuring an agreeable climate.


 


The major settlements :

  • Chania
  • Rethymno
  • Heraklion
  • Agios Nikolaos

 

Some of the finest sandy beaches in Greece are located on the north coast. The total population of the island is around 536,980 (1991). There is no heavy industry on the island and, apart from tourism, locals engage in livestock rearing (predominantly sheep and goats) and produce high quality olive oil from the ubiquitous olive. The Cretan property market is quite different when compared to most other European countries, one example being the general lack of 'For Sale ' boards. The reason is Cretans are too proud to let people know, that they are in need to sell their property.


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