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Gramvousa & Balos Day Tour (Rethymno)

Immerse yourself in the natirual beauty of West Crete with a visit to the pirate island of Gramvousa and the Balos lagoon!

An intriguing history surrounding by azure waters! This is an opportunity to see the rare geological formations of the Western coast of Crete, combined with a visit to the island of Gramvousa, famous for its pirate castle and the lagoon of Balos across from it.

Highlights: Gramvousa island, Balos Lagoon

Starting point: Pickup is only conducted in designated locations around Rethymno Starting time: 07:20am


After we pick you up from various locations around Rethymno we will drive through West Crete until we reach the Kissamos port. From there we will sail to the port on Gramvousa, passing by the huge cave believed to be the ancient shipyard of Tarsanas. At the end of the Gulf you will notice an impressive geological phenomenon cause by catastrophic earthquakes that took place more than 2000 years ago. 

After approximately 1 hour, the boat arrives at the port of Gramvousa. On top of a steep rock on the highest point of the island, lays the Venetian castle built during the late 16th century. Surrounded by a wall that still stands today, it has a rough triangular shape and is rumored to house hidden pirate treasures from the previous centuries. It is well worth the 10 minutes hike it takes to get there.

You will have plenty of time to explore the island and swim in its coast before we board the boat that will take us to the Balos lagoon. Fantastic azure waters fill the lagoon creating an rare amalgamation of serenity and ild natural beauty. Make sure to have a camera with you and take photos that will make even your most well-traveled friends jealous!

A few hours later we will board the boat back to the port of Kissamos and eventually return by bus to the designated spots you were picked up from.

What's Included

  • Pick up/Drop off with air-conditioned luxury bus from select spots in Rethymno
  • Visit to Gramvousa
  • Visit to Balos
  • Pre-recorded guiding on board
  • English & German Speaking Guide

Not included:

  • Boat tickets to Gramvousa and back (28 per adult, 13.5 per child)
  • Municipality fee (1  for adults, free for children)
  • Personal expenses, extra beverages or meals
  • Customary tips to your driver and escort

Important notes
  • Duration: 11 hours
  • Pick up/Drop off is conducted only is select spots around Rethymno. Depending on your location, you will be advised on the time and place after booking.
  • On Tuesdays the guide provided also speaks French, while of Sundays Russian is available
  • Remember to bring the following items: sunscreen, sunglasses, hat, camera, swimsuit and beach towel
  • You are advised to bring appropriate shoes for the hike up to Gramvousa Castle
  • Rubbish disposal as well as removing seashells from the beach is prohibited
  • The Municipality and both fee are paid on the spot with cash
  • Food and refreshments provided in the vessel are not included in the price.
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