The big blue of the Aegean Sea unfolds before you. With a refreshing beverage in hand and a delicious snack, you relax on the deck after having had a peaceful sleep in your comfortable cabin. In ANEK Lines’ Internet Corner, you can find information about the city where you’ll dock. One of the most beautiful in Crete: Chania. The announcement is made over the loud speaker, you disembark, and you’ve arrived!
From the modern port of Souda you’ll find Chania’s old town spread out around you, full of options for accommodation, food and fun. It’s built upon the ruins of ancient Kydonia and is an incredible mosaic of the different cultures that have passed through here over time. The heart of the city beats in Sintrivani Square. There you’ll admire the former Monastery of Saint Francis that today houses the Archaeological Museum of Chania. At the Venetian port you’ll find the picture-perfect Venetian lighthouse, the castle and the Küçük Hasan mosque. Stand for a moment and imagine: in the old days the big ships that arrived here anchored at a distance, and the goods and passengers were transported ashore with large boats.
East of the mosque you’ll see the famous shipyard, that was renovated and rebuilt as the Grand Arsenal, that now houses the Centre of Mediterranean Architecture. On the western edge of the port, at Kountourioti Beach, you’ll find the Nautical Museum of Crete. On the western side, where there was once the Franciscan monastery of San Salvatore, you’ll find the Byzantine and Post-Byzantine Collection of Chania.
To get a taste of authentic Cretan tradition make your way to Sifaka Road, behind Neoria, the historic road of knife craftsmen. Then there’s the old Turkish district of Splantzia, and the Venetian churches of Saint Rocco and Saint Nicholas. Continuing your stroll you’ll reach Miaouli Beach, better known as Kum Kapi, and its many cafes and bars. Nearby is the aristocratic suburb of Halepa, with its neoclassical buildings that once hosted the consulates of the Great Powers, and the house of Eleftherios Venizelos.
The walks in Chania town are endless. And along the way you’ll stop for a leisurely coffee, a meal, a drink and then continue your stroll. It’s the best way to get into the rhythm of this lively and cosmopolitan city that you, like so many others before you, will love!