Eating Out in Crete? Check Out These Restaurants
The ancient island has so many splendors available to satisfy your taste buds. Check out some of its unique dining options.
While it’s most famous for the sunshine, beautiful sea, and colorful history, Crete also offers visitors many culinary delights.
Cretan and Greek cuisine, in general, is rich, tasty, and interesting, and there are plenty of restaurants in Crete that perfectly showcase this.
Wherever you may be on the island, you’re sure to discover a fantastic traditional or international restaurant nearby. Here’s our list of some of the most authentic restaurants in Crete.
Best restaurants in Heraklion, Crete
Herb’s Garden is located atop Lato Boutique Hotel, overlooking the Heraklion harbor.
The famed restaurant offers local delicacies prepared with a touch of modern cuisine and accompanied by excellent wines. There are fresh seafood and fish, as well as expertly made meat and vegetable dishes.
Enjoy the sumptuous meals while taking in the breathtaking panorama from the restaurant’s balcony.
Taverna Alekos represents the best of Greek dining traditions within a pleasant old-time environment. The restaurant has a gorgeous garden adorned by vines and fruit and sheltered by an authentic stone wall that is sure to catch your eye.
If you want to feel the atmosphere of a real Greek tavern from the time before tourism was the primary focus of the area, this is one of the restaurants in Crete you absolutely shouldn’t miss.
Best Chania Restaurants
The town of Chania represents a blend of Greek and Venetian cultures, and Lithos restaurant does the same in the culinary world.
The restaurant uses fresh, locally-produced ingredients to create modern dishes based on traditional recipes, all while insisting on treating the food as little as possible.
Along with such delicacies as green risotto with grilled calamari, salmon with quinoa, and tuna tartar, you’ll have the opportunity to enjoy some of the finest Greek wines for a perfect meal.
Akrogiali Fish Tavern
Akrogiali is a family restaurant that deals almost exclusively in fish and seafood delicacies. Here you’ll find dishes prepared from fish that’s caught only hours ago, homemade bread and olive oil, herbs and vegetables from the restaurant’s own garden, as well as a selection of wines produced by the very family that owns the restaurant.
Inside, the tavern’s adorned with fascinating local paintings, but you’ll have a hard time resisting the view of the beach and sea that the balcony offers.
Best restaurants in Rethymnon, Crete
Taverna Katerina o Pontios
When it comes to restaurants in Crete that offer traditional Cretan cuisine, it would be challenging to find a better venue than Taverna Katerina o Pontios.
Those not familiar with what’s hidden inside will be surprised as they approach the restaurant. The front of the restaurant gives the impression of a usual Greek bar or even a flower shop that’s quite unlike other restaurants nearby.
The culinary delights that await are quite exceptional. You can dig into the amazing lamb kleftiko, authentic Greek yogurt, and classic Greek salads.
Within a complex of renovated old Venetian houses is where you’ll find Avli. It comprises a phenomenal restaurant, a wine cellar, luxurious suites, and a shop selling traditional products.
The restaurant’s main feature is the beautifully decorated and colorful garden. It’s an ideal environment for tasting the local, traditional dishes and those made with a new twist.
And if you want to try the famous moussaka, enjoy fresh calamari, goat with honey, thyme, and grapes, or even snails with herbs and vegetables, you won’t find a dining experience quite like this in the area.
Best Restaurants in Other Cretan Towns
Ferryman Taverna, Elounda
Opened in 1974, this family restaurant is famous for the amazing view it offers and even better cuisine. It’s where you can see the gorgeous sea expanse, as well as the island of Spinalonga from a traditional venue.
The restaurant has a serene and intimate atmosphere, and you’ll easily get lost in the delicious dishes while listening to the sound of the mild waves splashing on the shore.
The recipes are based on traditional cuisine but expertly made into unique culinary experiences, using local, fresh ingredients and home-grown herbs and vegetables.
The village of Armenoi is located near Rethymnon and the traditional restaurant is right in its center.
As an interesting feature, Alekos doesn’t have a menu. The customer is instead invited to visit the kitchen to choose one of the dishes. Those with a delicate taste can consult the chef and get a recommendation.
The wonderful dishes have won this restaurant prestigious awards. And once you taste them, you’ll know exactly why.
Taverna Dionyssos, Myrthios
This tavern’s gorgeous location in the mountainous southern edge of Crete provides an impressive view and a unique setting. The expansive terrace overlooks olive trees and the sea beyond, making it the perfect place to have a meal.
There’s plenty of fresh fish on offer, along with excellent Cretan dishes like stuffed zucchini blossoms. If you haven’t tried these fresh flowers stuffed with a mix of rice and herbs, making your way to Myrthios should be a priority during your Cretan holiday.
Sto Scholeio, Anidri
This cafe-restaurant is housed in an old school building, although it looks nothing like it today. The garden is surrounded by trees with the branches reaching overhead and providing a pleasant shade. The schoolhouse is white with red accents, making it stand out among the greenery.
Sto Scholeio has delicious hot and cold dishes on the menu, as well as various desserts ranging from those commonly found in international restaurants to the more exotic, local delicacies such as fig baklavas.
Pelagos, Agios Nikolaos
Pelagos restaurant offers an abundance of local dishes and ingredients, representing the best Cretan cuisine has to offer. Whether you’re up for meat, seafood, or one of the tasteful, lush salads, the restaurant will likely satisfy your culinary needs.
You can go for the more traditional options or try some of the more inventive dishes like shrimps with avocado, salmon with orange sauce, or the restaurant’s excellent beef fillet.
Discover Your New Favorite Cuisine
A visit to Crete will leave no one without strong impressions and lasting memories, especially when the delicious local cuisine leaves its mark. Those that opt for the traditional, less usual dishes will be rewarded with an unforgettable dining experience.