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Private Tour to South Crete: Ancient Gortyn, Monasteries and Matala Beach

An exciting journey from the North to the South!

The route passes through the entire island capturing part of the Psiloritis massif. From the foot of the mountains stretches the delightful beauty of Messara valley, which has been the island's breadbasket for centuries.

During the ride you will hear the information about the history of the island and the sights that you will visit. Then, you can enjoy a walk in the preserved part of the ancient Roman capital of Crete Gortis, which is considered to be one of the most important archaeological sights in Greece. Then you have the unique opportunity to visit 2 of the most ancient Orthodox monasteries on the island: Panagia Paliani and Kalyviani.

Finishing the trip, you will have time to swim in the crystal clear waters of Matala beach and dine in one of the traditional taverns located along the coast.

For pick-up from different location than listed, please, contact us.

per adult from




8 to 9 hours


Hotel pickup available


Mobile ticket

Select Date and Travellers

No tour options available.

  • What's included :
    • Pick-up from your hotel/port
    • Transfer with air-conditioned bus
    • Information about the route and sights during the bus ride
    • Coffee and tasting of Greek snacks from the traditional bakery
    • Water
    What's excluded :
    • Lunch - Provided free time to have a lunch/drink/coffee on your own.
    • Entrance to Gortina: Adult 6€ / person, Child (up to 18 years - free of charge)
    • Entrance fees to museums/sights, other individual expenses.
    • Entry/Admission - Gortyna
  • This is a typical itinerary for this product

    Stop At: Agioi Deka, Gortyna Municipality, Crete 70012 Greece

    After pick-up from your hotel in Heraklion region, the first stop on your way will be the visit of the preserved part of the ancient Roman capital of Crete - Gortis. During the Minoan civilization, it was the richest and fastest growing city of Greece and is also famous for being the place where, in the 5th century BC. and, for the first time, a code of laws regulating life and relations between citizens was created and carved on a stone.

    Duration: 1 hour

    Stop At: Moni Palianis, Venerato, Crete Greece

    According to some evidence, Paliani, is the most ancient monastery of Crete. The Monastery of Paliani, is visited by people from all around the world to see the holy Myrtle tree that flourishes there many centuries. It is advocated that in its branches is hidden the icon of the Mother of God that can be seen only by those who have fate and believe in His divine power.

    Duration: 45 minutes

    Stop At: Monastery Panagia Kaliviani, Mires, Crete 704 00 Greece

    The ancient monastery of Kalyviani is dated back to 14th century and was demolished by the Turks with the monks being tortured because of their strong belief in God. One of the monks that suffered was St. Haralambos and his relics are saved in the monastery. Despite all the disaster that Turks brought, near the monastery was found the icon of Evangelism of the Mother of God, bringing many people to pray in this holy place.

    Duration: 45 minutes

    Stop At: Matala beach, Matala, Crete Greece

    The port of Matala is situated in Mesaras Bay. This place is famous for its caves that are built in the rocks and resemble small residences that were used by the ancients back in time. In the 1960-1970s Matala started to be a very popular destination where Hippies used to meet altogether and spend their time dancing and singing. Matala has beautiful beach with turquoise water, and you can enjoy swimming there.

    Duration: 2 hours

  • Departure Point :
    Traveler pickup is offered
    Pick-up from the Heraklion region. Please, when you book identify your pick-up location. In case you stay in a different part of the island, please, contact us.Airports
    • N. Kazantzakis Airport, Heraklion, Crete Greece
    • Heraklion Port
    Return Detail :
    Hotel Pickup :
    • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
    • Not wheelchair accessible
    • Stroller accessible
    • Service animals allowed
    • Near public transportation
    • Infant seats available
    • Please, provide details of your pick-up location when you book. For the pick-up from different regions of the island, please, contact us.
    • Most travelers can participate
    • This experience requires good weather. If it’s canceled due to poor weather, you’ll be offered a different date or a full refund
    • This experience requires a minimum number of travelers. If it’s canceled because the minimum isn’t met, you’ll be offered a different date/experience or a full refund
    • This is a private tour/activity. Only your group will participate
  • You can present either a paper or an electronic voucher for this activity.
  • For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience.


English - Guide

Age Req.


Fitness Req.


Group Size


Organised by Status MLB Travel Agency

Activity ID: V-121353P3

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