7 days in Crete itinerary – Best things to do when staying in Malia

7 days in Crete itinerary - Best things to do and see when staying

Greece has many islands, but the biggest one of them is Crete. Because of its size, there is a lot to explore while being on this adventurous Island. From chasing waterfall to swimming in between palm trees at Preveli Beach to taking a tour through an olive farm, Crete has it all. Be ready for a good time with lots of adventures during your 7 days in Crete. 

Things to do in Crete

So, you want to go to Crete for 7 days? Good choice, because in 7 days you can do and see all the best things Crete has to offer you.

During my 7 days on Crete, I stayed in a town called Malia. This is a town located at the north coast of Crete. Malia is known for its wild summers because it has lots of pubs and clubs on the strip. However, when the summer ends, Malia is a perfect location if you want to explore the middle part of Crete and after the high season, the prices of the accommodations will drop. A win-win. 

Keep in mind that you can decide to sleep in another town, and you will still be able to follow this 7-day Crete itinerary. Just make sure to get a rental car and you will be able to see all the best things in Crete.

Day 1 - Crete

1. Malia – Old town Malia

The old town of Malia is the old neighborhood. Wander around the streets and get lost in the old and authentic houses. This place is home for many locals, and you won’t find many tourists here. Walking around will help you explore the area.

Malia old town, Crete
Malia old town, Crete


2. Krasi 

Drive your car up the mountains and pay a visit to Krasi, a traditional village with a spectacular highlight. In Krasi you can find the oldest tree of Crete and let me tell you, I wouldn’t be surprised if it was also the largest tree. At the picture down below, you can see people surrounding the tree and this is a great example to show you how large the tree is.
Krasi, Crete
Krasi, Crete


3. Vassilakis Estate – Olive fam

Olives, we can’t imagine a world without them. However, most people don’t know how olives are made and processed. At the Vassilakis Estate you can get a free tour around a family olive factory. The tour is fun and takes about an hour. The people working there are friendly and speak very well English.   
As I said before, the tour is completely free, but if you like you can buy some products at the end to support the family. You don’t have to do it, but I took this olive oil hair mask home with me, and I still use it on a regular basis because of the quality and the lovely smell.   
Vassilakis Estate – Olive fam
Vassilakis Estate – Olive fam

Day 2 - Crete

1. Viewpoint’s road

What I liked about driving in Crete, was the beautiful views I got. Driving itself should be seen as one of the ‘Best thing to do and see in Crete’. There were two viewpoints that I liked the most:  E75, Malevizi 715 00, Greece just above Panagia Beach and Αγία Κυριακή. These places were stunning. But keep your eyes open because maybe you will see other viewpoints.
View roadtrip Crete, Greece
Patsos Gorge, Crete


2. Gorge Patsos

If you like adventure, Gorge Patsos is the place for you! In the summer this place is flooded with water, but when you come around September or October the water will be gone which kind of makes it a little bit easier if you carry a bag with you. However, this Gorge is still a big challenge. You must follow the beaten path and slide down some rocks to reach the end. It took me and my friend about two hours to go from start to finish.
Patsos Gorge, Crete
Patsos Gorge, Crete
Once you reach the end of Gorge Patsos, walk up the road and watch the beautiful view over the lake. This is worth the hike because it is one big adventure. Take a rest and make the exact same way back to the finish point. On the way back you will be faster because you know where to go. 
Patsos Gorge, Crete


3. Matala

After the hike, it’s time to have some relaxing time and Matala is the perfect place for it. Matala is a town known for the Hippies that used/still live there and the colorful buildings. At the beach of Matala you will find some old caves that you can visit where the hippies used live. 
Matala, Crete
Matala, Crete

Day 3 - Crete

1. Viewpoint

Another stunning viewpoint Crete has to offer in your 7 days on Crete is close to Kourtaliotiko Gorge. On this place there are many rocks and a river underneath it. This place is the perfect spot for your next Instagram post.

Location on Google Maps: Kourtaliotiko Gorge

Kourtaliotiko Gorge, Crete


2. Kourtaliotiko Gorge – Part l

Kourtaliotiko Gorge is by far my favorite place in Crete. Within only 10 minutes from the parking lot, you will be surround by the sound of water crashing down the waterfalls. At one point of walking down the stairs you can go two sides, left of right. I recommend starting by going to the left side. Here you will find the top of the waterfalls and some clear puddles. 

Extra information


Location starting point: Kantina Fastfood Kourtaliotiko Gorge

Entrance fee : Free

Kourtaliotiko Gorge, Crete
Kourtaliotiko Gorge, Crete


3. Kourtaliotiko Gorge – Part ll

Like I told before, halfway down the steps you can chose to go left or right. After you have discovered the left side, make your way down to the right side. This is a little bit further but keep walking because it will be rewarded with bright green and blue colors of the water. To be honest it almost looks fake because of how bright it is. But no, it is real, and you are able to swim there. And if you make it to the end of path of rocks, you can swim in between the waterfalls. It is a magical experience.
Kourtaliotiko Gorge, Crete
Kourtaliotiko Gorge, Crete

Day 4 - Crete

1. Istro Beach

After some days of exploring, it is time to have a day of at one of the bluest beaches of Crete: Istro Beach. We came across this beach unexpected and had to stop. I kept pinching myself because water this blue can’t be real. But it was and that’s why I added this to the 7 days crete itinerary because you don’t want to miss this. So, take your swimwear and towel and head to Istro Beach.
Istro Beach, Crete
Istro Beach, Crete

Day 5 - Crete

1. Sisi

Greece has many old fisher’s villages and one of them is Sisi. Sisi has a small harbor for boats to drop their fish and from there it will be taken to the restaurants so they can add the fresh fish to the menu.

Sisi is also a place where you can put on your swimwear and start snorkeling and hopefully see some colorful fish.

Sisi, Crete
Sisi, Crete


2. Plaka / Elounda/ Agios Nikolaos

Every city or island has this one place where you will spot some villas or big cars that cost more than I will ever earn. Crete has these places to, and these places are called Plaka, Elounda & Agios Nikolaos. These three places have pretty beaches and are perfect to drive through with your car. Of course, you can also take a swim but try to avoid these places when booking your accommodation. This can get expensive.
Agios Nikolaos, Crete
Elounda, Crete


3. Richtis Gorge

One of the most fun things to do was hiking to Richtis Gorge. The hike was easy compared to the Patsos George but didn’t make it any less fun. In about an hour you will reach this beautiful waterfall. It’s not big but it is pretty.

Want to know more about Richtis Gorge? Also read Richtis Gorge – Everything you need to know

Richtis Gorge, Crete
Richtis Gorge, Crete

Day 6 - Crete

1. Preveli Beach

A highlight and must do during you 7 days in Crete is taking a swim in between thousands of palm trees at Preveli Beach. This place is stunning and feels like a place that only exists in your dreams. But this beach does exist, and you can explore it by walking down the steps, putting on your bikini and take a swim.
Preveli Beach, Crete
Preveli Beach, Crete

Day 7 - Crete

1. Malia Beach

Spend you last day at Malia beach. This beach offers clear waters, lovely sunbeds for only €5 for a whole day and cute beach restaurants.  After an intense week of exploring, a day of just relaxing will be good for your body so try to enjoy this to the fullest, you deserve it!
Malia beach, Crete
Malia Beach, Crete

How to get around

Public transport – An option to get around is using public transport. However, do know that the transport can be really limited if you want to go far. Is you are staying in one of the larger cities in Crete, you can explore some of the nearby towns by using public transport, but if you want to go waterfall chasing of take a hike, you will have to get a taxi to bring you to the starting point and this can get expensive if you do this a lot. 

(Rental) car – Crete is the biggest island of Greece. Because of the size, I really recommend renting a car. Having a rental car gives you the freedom to explore the island at your own pace and see everything you want to do. And renting a car in Crete is way cheaper than taking a tour or taxi all the time. Driving in Crete is easy and the roads are well maintained. However, sometimes you need to take the beaten path to reach your destination, but if you drive slowly you will be fine.

Rental car, Malia, Crete

Tour- If you don’t want to drive yourself during your time on Crete, you can explore some parts of the island with a tour company. Lot’s of companies offer trips to some of the best hikes on Crete. Just make sure to look for a trip you want to do and book in advance to be sure of a spot. 

Travel costs

Crete is a destination that can easily be done on a budget, but if you’d like, there is always a fancier option. Down below I will list some of the most common expenses per day.


Food     €15 – €50

Ho(s)tel    €20 – 100

Car rental     €30 – 65

Entrance tickets    €0 

Extra information

Food – Crete is a populair destination for tourist and Crete is build for massa tourism in the summer months. This also means that there are many restaurants and you can find them on every corner in the bigger, more known places. And even better, it’s cheap and delicious. 

Hotel – We stayed in a hotel called Stella Maria Hotel. The rooms were small but that was the only down side. However, the hotel had a lot of plus points. It is located on a 2 minute walk to the center of Malia and 7 minutes to the beach. A supermarket is located on a walking distance and something I really liked was the price. The hotel is really cheap in the low season. 

Weather –The weather in Crete really depends on the time you visit the island. The warm sun starts to show and give a lovely warmth from May to the middle of October. I do recommend to visit Greece in one of these months because in the other months it will rain a lot and that will infect you time there. But is you don’t mind a little bit of rain, the low season can also be the perfect time to visit and have the nature all to yourself. So try to finds what suits you the best. 

Words you can use – Local people always appreciate it when you can speak a few words in their language. Here are some words you can use while being in Greece.


Hello   Yássas

Thank you   ευχαριστώ  (Efcharistó)

Good morning   καλημερα  (Kalimera)

Good evening    Καλό απόγευμα  (Kalispèra)

Cheers   γεια μας  (jamas)

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