Europe, Greece, travel

Mini Guide to Koutouloufari, Crete

Koutouloufari is a traditional Cretan village set on a mountain slope, 24KM away from Heraklion Airport. In the 16th century people escapes to the mountains to escape the pirates. Here is a mini guide to Koutouloufari, Crete.

When to go

Crete is between 2 climate zones, the largest part of the island falls into the Mediterranean and the south coast falling into the North African. Crete has the same seasons has the UK, so if you go in December / January, expect it to be colder where warm clothing is required and very warm in the summer months.

As our trip was a summer holiday, I went in peak summer which was end of June, beginning of July where temperatures hit between 29 – 38 degrees and trust me, it was BOILING. The closer we got to the sea, the cooler is felt from the sea breeze.

Where to stay

You have a couple of choices on where you would like to stay in Koutouloufari.

If you want some relaxing time, then you can stay further up the mountain slope in one of the resorts in the middle of village with the cobbled alleys and town squares. Or if you like to be in the hustle and bustle and closer to the sea you can stay at the bottom of the bottom near the main strip.

We booked our holiday through a package deal for or flights, accommodation and transfers to and from the airport.

Airbnb is another option for accommodation. There are amazing villas and apartments which can work out a lot cheaper if there is a group of you.

Sign up here to get £34 off your first trip.

What to do

There are many different things and activities to do in and around Koutouloufari whether you are the exploring type or not.

There are a number of beaches along the coast from Heraklion to the eastern edge, some of the most popular are Limanakia Hersonissos & Sarantaris. Most beaches are surrounded by cafes and bars and activities for children.

Water Sports
Water sports is a big thing in Crete, if you fancy being an adrenaline junkie then you can try jet skiing, paragliding and lots more!

If getting into a Land Rover and going on a safari sounds fun? Then they are loads of excursions like this and similar.

There is also a day trip to go to Santorini on a boat. (Fully regret not doing this one)

Star beach
Every heard of Café Mambo in Ibiza? Well think of a beach resort with live DJ’s, foam parties, water slides, bungee jumping and that is Star Beach. It has everything including cheap food.

Entry is free, but you do have to pay for some of the sun beds (in the good spots)


There is a lot of old ancient buildings and museums to see in Crete. If history is your thing, then check out one of the local shops to book a tour.

How to get there

To fly from the UK, flights can differ in price depending on what of year you travel. As with any peak time destination you will be paying a lot more to go when the weather is nice. My advice is to get it booked way ahead in advance.

Once you get to Heraklions International Airport you can either;

Rent a car
Renting a car is a great option for freedom, you can go wherever you would like without the hassle of booking a taxi.

TIP: if you are planning on renting a car, make sure you reserve your booking before for a better rate and to avoid disappointment when arriving in Crete.

Rental Centre office is located in Heraklion airport.

If you would like to take the bus, there is a bus from the airport that will take you to the KETL station which you will then need to take a bus from there. Buses leave the airport very 10 – 15 minutes.

Click here for the bus times to Koutouloufari from the KETL station.

Taxi is the next best option if you don’t get transfers including in your holiday deal. The taxi rank is outside the airport and prices start from 33 Euros.

As I mentioned above, transfer option was the easiest option for us. When arriving at the airport, there was a guy waiting for us to pick us up, he then dropped us to our hotel and collected us when it was time to go home. No fuss, no bother.

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Where to eat

There are so many restaurants with amazing Cretan cuisine everywhere in Crete. Greek food is one of my ultimate favourites and as you can tell, I was in heaven surrounded by olives, tzatziki and bread.

A few of our favourite places to eat were;

Atrium Bar and Café is the place we went to most. Their breakfast was amazing, and as was their evening menu and also super cheap. If you like wine, but wine in a carafe for cheap you need to go here.

Fabrica café is great for traditional style Greek food. I tried my first Souvlaki and it was delicious. On our way out of the restaurant they gave us free shots of Ouzo and Raki.

TIP: If you drink alcohol, then most places will give you free shots, just make sure you give them a good tip.

Mini guide to koutouloufari crete

Mini guide to koutouloufari crete

If you liked this post on A mini guide to Koutouloufari, Crete, check out this:
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  • Reply Margarida Vasconcelos

    Any tips on community-based tourism in Greece? Thank you.

    February 19, 2020 at 11:41 am
  • Reply Mijia Eggers

    The island is so tidy, like many Greek islands. I love the Greek food, special their salad. And, I also like their national liquor as well, good for digestion.

    February 19, 2020 at 2:44 pm
  • Reply Monika

    have been to Athens last year 🙂 Crete is on my bucket list 😀 !! I love greek food !!!

    February 19, 2020 at 6:08 pm
  • Reply Laura

    This is another place in Greece on my list! I’ve been only to Santorini and I’m dying to see more places!! Thanks for this useful guide!

    February 20, 2020 at 7:32 am
  • Reply Cassie Bailey

    I’ve never been to Greece but feel it would be so hard to choose where to go on a trip there – everywhere seems to have so many highlights! Gorgeous 🙂

    February 21, 2020 at 11:15 pm
  • Reply Michelle

    This is such a great post. I appreciate all of the tips you have given and I would love to try my hand at paragliding, especially in Greece! 🙂

    March 4, 2020 at 8:02 pm
  • Reply Darina Confidus

    Wow! It looks amazing! The photo is just super!That is a perfect itinerary! Thanks for sharing!

    March 15, 2020 at 4:08 pm
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