Venetian Fortezza Castle

The Venetian Fortezza Castle is one of  the wonderful tourist destinations in Greece. It is a Venetian stronghold, known as “Castrum Rethemi” which means “old castle”, located on the hill of Paleokastro in the town of Rethymnon in Crete. The popular tourist destination, the Venetian Fortezza Castle, has undergone partial restoration and preservation as a cultural heritage monument. The walls, bastions, and structures of the castle are capable of being explored by guests. The castle holds cultural events including musical performances and theatrical productions along with exhibitions and art fairs. The Fortezza Castle is a remarkable historical artefact and a tribute to the Venetians’ military prowess and architectural prowess.

The present location of the Venetian fortress first emerged as a tiny island separated from the region of Crete. The tiny island was much more similar to the landscape of the Greek Leper Island called Spinalonga. The island was solely connected to the land of Crete through a  narrow piece of land. It silted up wider land formation throughout the years and formed the hill which is now seen today. The hill became part of the land of Crete from that moment. The hill was believed to be a  sanctuary of the Greek Goddess of hunt “Artemis” and the citadel of ancient Rithymna. There was a small community established in the east side of the hill named “Castrum Rethemi” before the Venetian Fortezza Castle was constructed.

The Venetian Castle was later fortified by the Venetian Naval forces between the years 1540 and 1570 as a means of barricade against pirate intrusions. It has been Crete’s asylum and intermediary headquarters between the nearby towns Heraklion and Chania during those years. There were more than 100,000 residents of Crete who were forced to labour to fortify and improve the fortress and thousands of animals were used to aid in the construction.

The fortification of the Fortezza castle created the way to the advancement of Rethymnon into a city. Tourists and local guests’ journey is not complete without stepping into the Fortezza castle. It offers a wide perspective of the city of Rethymnon and its west side coast from the top view. There is a small road surrounding the fortress which provides a holistic angle of the structure from the outside. Transportation is not a problem when visiting the Venetian fortress. The city of Rethymnon is equipped with convenient offers for Car Rental Crete, however, it is best to rent a small vehicle when visiting the Venetian castle since Greek roads are usually narrow and curvy.

Venetian Fortezza Castle

What is the history of Venetian Castle?

The history of the Fortezza Castle dates way back to the 13th century AD, during the Second Byzantine Period when the “Castrum Rethemi” or Paleokastro meaning  “Old Castle” was constructed. It was the time when the Venetians held settlements in the land of Crete. Rethymnon became the Venetian’s headquarters in the middle of Heraklion and Chania. The attack that first destroyed the old castle happened in the early years of the 13th century under the leadership of Enrico Pescatore, a Genoese pirate. Some other significant events happened to Crete during the first half of the 16th century.

There came some need to raise a Fortezza in Rethymnon. There was a threat of Turkish invasion throughout the land and the development of artillery all over the world became rampant as well. The region of Crete took precautionary measures to prevent the terrible outcome of the colonisation of its people. It was resolved to construct walls around Rethymnon through the supervision of architect Michele Sanmicheli. A wall creating a barricade for the entire fortress was constructed in the year 1540 and was completed before the year 1570. However, the Turkish attack immediately took place in the year 1571  under the command of Turkish corsair Ulu Ali, destroying the fortified walls of the city. The Venetians were left with no choice but to leave the city in terror. The Turkish invaders were successful in razing the city of Rethymnon to ashes.

The government of Crete and Venice decided to create an asylum for all the residents of Rethymnon after what happened. It was resolved to develop Paleokastro Hill again with a much better fortification for the people of Rethymnon. There were beyond a hundred thousand Cretans who took part in the obligatory labour and more than tens of thousands of pack animals to work on the Fortezza. However, the fortress was conquered when the city of  Rethymnon fell to the hands of Ottoman Turks in the year 1646. Official reports were released stating that the fortification of the Venetian fortress was not firmly making it easy to trounce. It has low walls and lacks a large number of trenches around it.

There were minimal changes in the design of the fortress during the Turkish colonisation. Some of these changes are as follows, the conversion of the Venetian Cathedral of San Niccol into a Mosque of Sultan Ibrahim Han and the construction of many residential buildings inside the Fortezza. The whole area of the Venetian fortress was occupied by residents until the first cut of the 20th century. However, the settlers of Fortezza started to transfer to other areas of Rethymnon after World War II.

Most of the traces of Turkish occupation in Rethymnon were destroyed after the war. The population grew and the land area of the Fortezza became wider after the war, removing the inward walls surrounding it. The outer bulwark of the Venetian Fortezza Castle remained unchanged until today. Some buildings are being rehabilitated for international tourists and localities to capture the chronological life lived inside the Venetian fortress.

Why was the Venetian Fortezza Castle built on a hill?

The Venetian Castle was built on a hill which serves as a strategic defence against invasions. It was fortified by the Republic of Venice in the 16th century to protect the city of Rethymnon and its port in case of Ottoman strikes. The Venetian Fortezza Castle in Rethymnon is actually situated on a hilltop providing an overlooking view of the city and its nearby coasts. The natural elevation that the hill projects gives the Cretans the advantage against their enemies. It is easy to see possible intruders from a higher ground. It makes it difficult for enemies to get inside the castle at the same time. The sea in front of the Fortezza castle allows Cretan soldiers to spot pirate ships at the earliest time possible as well.

The Venetian castle had been an important fortress for Cretan and Venetian settlers in the city of Rethymnon from the 13th century. Moreover, it had been a safe dwelling place for Ottoman Turks from the time they took over the land up to the 20th century. The rollercoaster of events and the mixture of different cultures in the Venetian Fortezza Castle throughout the years that had passed, has made the castle one of the most visited locations in Crete today. Tourists and local guests truly approve that the Venetian Fortezza Castle is a major landmark in the city of Rethymnon.

Therefore, it was constructed for both defensive and strategic reasons on a hill near the Greek island of Crete’s capital city of Rethymno. The Fortezza Castle was built on a hill in part to provide a strategic vantage point for monitoring and controlling the neighbourhood. The Venetian soldiers were able to see incoming adversaries from the top of the hill, allowing them time to plan an attack. The hill’s height gave the defenders a tactical edge in battle by enabling them to shoot at the attackers from a higher elevation. The Venetians made a tactical choice in mounting the Fortezza Castle on a hill to enable them to construct a powerful fortress that repel assaults and defend their lands in the eastern Mediterranean.

Venetian Fortezza Castle

When is Venetian Fortress open?

The Venetian Fortress is open for public visiting from Mondays to Sundays with business hours starting from 8 o’clock in the morning to 7:15 in the evening. However, the operating hours often get extended during summertime. Tourists are able to locate the castle easily because of its vastness. A well built pavement is constructed around the hill which makes it easier for tourists to have a holistic perspective of the fortress from the outside.

The castle is frequently open from early in the morning until late in the afternoon or early in the evening during the peak tourist season, which is typically from April through October. It opens at 8 or 9 am and then closes at 8 or 9 pm on certain days while opening later and closing earlier on other days. The day of the week, as well as any special events or exhibitions that are going on in the castle, affects specific opening hours.

The Venetian Fortezza Castle exhibits historical structures and buildings which depicts the upheaving history of Crete particularly in the city of Rethymnon. Making it accessible to the public has opened a lot of opportunities for Greece to relay its amazing story throughout the world.

When is the best time to visit Venetian Castle?

The best time to visit the Venetian Fortezza Castle in Rethymnon City depends on the tourist’s personal preferences and the quality of experience they want to encounter in the Venetian Fortress. Tourists are able to visit the castle during the peak season. Peak season normally  starts from the month of May to the month of October. It is expected to see a lot of people during these months. The weather is perfectly warm during the peak season and the prices are rocketing at the same time.

The busiest months within the peak season are July and August. Guests who prefer to experience a little more pleasant weather and a little less crowd must avoid these months. On the other hand, tourists who prefer off -season visitation are advised to stop by at the fortress within the months of November and March. It is expected to see fewer people during these months and lower prices at the same time. The weather is a lot cooler during the off season as well.

However, it is inevitable for some attractions and establishments to be temporarily closed during these months, since there are fewer customers to cater. It is always not a bad idea to check the weather forecast first before going to a certain destination. Tourists are advised to take a glance or listen to relevant  weather forecasts to become really prepared and to pack accordingly for the trip. Booking tickets and accommodations beforehand is a great way to start off the tour in the Venetian Fortress, as the castle usually gets crowded during peak seasons.

What are the tourist attractions near Venetian Castle?

Listed below are some of the tourist attractions near Venetian Fortezza Castle.

  • The Old Town of Rethymnon: The Old Town of Rethymnon is one of the best attractions near  the Venetian Fortezza Castle which tourists must not miss out on. It is located just a few minutes’ ride outside the Venetian Fortezza Castle. It is a beautiful neighbourhood crowded with historical buildings, narrow streets, souvenir shops, and wonderful restaurants showcasing some of the ancient memories of Rethymnon. Tourists who want to indulge in the local ambience of Rethymnon are recommended to set foot on the Old Town and explore the things that it has to offer. It is tagged as a Traveler’s choice in 2022 and ranked as third of the top 52 things to do in Rethymnon, according to TripAdvisor.
    One of its pleased visitors named Dragonfly080808 commented online, “A great experience and spoiled for choice for restaurants and bars. Every gift shop is a hidden gem and they are all open and busy in the evening.”, which indicates how satisfying visiting the Old Town in Rethymno is.
  • The Old Venetian Harbor in Rethymnon: The Old Venetian Harbor in Rethymnon is located just within the Old Town of Rethymnon. The delightful view of the harbour captivates a lot of tourists and even local guests to sit a while and enjoy the stillness of the moment. The harbour offers a fascinating view of the sea and the mountains as well. It has a number of restaurants, cafes, and gift shops along the lakeside where tourists are able to visit and spend time with family and friends. The Venetian harbour in Rethymnon is labelled as a Travellers choice as well. It is ranked as the seventh among the 52 things that most tourists enjoy doing or visiting.
    One of its captivated visitors named Elen F online noted, “A lovely place to walk around, both in the daytime and the evening. The myriad of welcoming bars and restaurants inviting you to stay and take in the lovely views of the harbour.” The Old Venetian Harbor in Rethymnon is truly a treasure in Rethymnon that needs to be preserved throughout the coming years. It showcases an undying history of the Cretan lifestyle centuries ago and teaches people to value the still moments spent with nature.
  • The Archeological Museum of Rethymnon: The Archeological Museum of Rethymnon is a famous museum situated near the Venetian Fortezza Castle. It contains an array of artefacts and showcases the abundant history and culture of the Cretan people. The museum is normally open from Mondays to Sundays with business hours starting from 8 o’clock in the morning to 6 o’clock in the evening. Visiting the museum is ranked as the seventeenth among the 52 things that tourists usually do in Rethymnon, according to TripAdvisor.
    A satisfied visitor named Julie m, commented online, “Very well preserved artefacts Well presented and lots of interesting information provided. Reasonably priced and a great thing to do on a rainy day”. The Archeological Museum in Rethymnon is truly a must-see attraction.
  • Rethymnon Beach: Rethymnon beach is a wide and gritty coast situated in just a few ranges from the Venetian Fortezza Castle. It is popular for its accessibility and epic beauty. Its location is just along the coastal road of Rethymno where tourists and locals of the city are able to stop by, relax, and  contemplate. Most tourists visit the Rethymnon beach because of its perfect quality for swimming , sunbathing, and water sports. It is a Traveller’s Choice destination in 2022 and ranked ninth among the 52 most experienced things in Rethymnon, as per TripAdvisor. It is usually open 24/7.
    A water sports advocate named Vio noted online, “A great experience with IKARUS WATER SPORTS Parasailing în Rethymno. A wonderful view over the sea and a professional team. Recommend!”, which suggests that Rethymnon Beach is a great spot for beach getaways.
  • The Rimondi Venetian Fountain: The Rimondi Venetian Fountain is a 17th century fountain built during the Venetian Occupation in Crete. It is situated within the old town of the city of Rethymnon. Its structure depicts a mixture of Venetian and Cretan architecture. The fountain is characterised by three lion heads where waters gush out positioned in between  three Corinthian posts. The Rimondi Fountain served as the water supply back in the early days in Rethymnon specifically dedicated for drinking. The government of Rethymnon and its local people were able to preserve not just the structure of the fountain but its purpose as well.
    The fountain still serves as a water station in Rethymnon for drinking purposes as of today. Tourists are able to fill up their water bottles from the fountain whenever they need to. The fountain is currently situated in the middle of several shops and outdoor cafes in the Platanou square. The Venetian fortress is accessible from the back alleyway of the Rimondi Venetian Fountain which makes it a perfect destination to stop-by after visiting the castle. It is accessible from Mondays to Sundays, starting from dawn to midnight.
  • The Porta Guora: The Porta Goura, known as the Great Gate of Rethymnon, is the sole remnant of the 16th century walls of Rethymnon constructed during the time of the Turkish invasions. It is situated at the south end of the old town which is a suitable starting point in visiting the old city. The Porta Guora is quite close to the Municipal Gardens situated on the right side  where tourists can stop by and enjoy the lovely display of assorted Greek flowers. It has a wonderful playground beside it as well which is ideal for tourists who are travelling with children and with people who are young at heart.
  • The Arkadi Monastery: The Arkadi Monastery is one of the relevant structures in Rethymnon portraying the time when Greece was liberated from Turkish colonisation.  It is a century-old orthodox church located in the midst of Psiloritis’ rural foothills in the southeast area of Rethymnon. The Monastery was constructed during the 16th century surrounded by tall stone walls appearing like a fortress. The monastery holds a tragic story of bravery among some local Cretans in Rethymnon. It was originally used as the meeting place of Cretan revolutionaries, spearheaded by the Abbot clan. Sometime during the Turkish invasion, Cretan locals including children and women who took refuge in the monastery bravely decided to blow themselves inside the monastery rather than yielding to the Ottoman Turks. Their skulls are placed in glass cabinets and displayed outside the monastery to tell the world the story of the courageous Cretan revolutionaries.
    The current residents and authorities of Rethymnon developed the monastery into a lovely baroque church decorated with colourful flowers and painted with lively tints. The Arkadi Monastery is rated as second of the most visited places in Rethymnon, as per tripAdvisor. Visiting hours usually last up to 2 hours but sometimes extend depending on the tour package that the tourists have.
  • The Neratze Mosque: The Neratze Mosque is closely situated in the centre of the old town as well. The mosque is formerly a church-turned monastery constructed by the Venetians in the year 16000 as a dedication to Santa Maria. It was converted into a mosque during the habitation of Ottoman Turks in the land of Crete in the year 1657. It is known for its high ranking minaret, which is 27 metres high. Tours inside the building of the Neratze Mosque are not allowed as of today, although it serves as an important trademark in the land of Rethymnon. Its current purpose is to house musical performances in Rethymnon. Tourists are permitted to stop by at the entrance of the mosque and take photos.
  • The Historical & Folk Art Museum in Rethymnon: It is a two-storey re-established building constructed in the year 1974 during the Venetian residency in Crete. It houses a collection of beautiful folk items and antiquities preserved from the earlier civilization of Rethymno from the 4th century up to the 20th century. The collection includes traditional ways of farming, baking, shoemaking, metal forging, craftsmaking, dressmaking, and many more. There is a fascinating array of Cretan weaponry from historical battles in Crete displayed in the museum as well. Various proofs supporting these exhibits like photographs, maps and other documents are presented in the museum at the same time.  Most of the artefacts come from donations.
    It is situated in the Old Town of Rethymnon which is quite close to other attractions within the old city. Its operating hours start from 10 o’clock in the morning until 3 o’clock in the afternoon, from Mondays to Sundays. The admission fee for a full tour within the Historical & Folk Art Museum in Rethymnon starts with 4 Euro per person.
  • The Church of Four Martyrs: The Church of Four Martyrs, alternatively called the “Tesseris Martyrs” in Greek, is an orthodox church situated at the centre of Rethymno City. It is quite near the Municipal Garden and the Porta Guora in the Old Town. The church was constructed in honour of the four Cretan martyrs who declined to change their faith from Christian believers to Islam in the year 18000 during the Ottoman Turks’ intrusion. The martyrs go by the names Aggelis, Emmanouil, Georgios, and Nikolaos. They were killed near the Goura gate and the present location of the church today. The architecture inside the Church of the Four Martyrs depicts a mixture of Cretan and Venetian design. It is filled with captivating mural paintings and wonderful chandeliers. It is made accessible to international tourists and local guests of Rethymnon free of charge.

What is the best transportation going to Venetian Castle?

The best transportation going to the Venetian Fortezza Castle depends on the tourist’s location and the personal preferences with regards to the type of vehicle to be used. There are four ways to get to the Venetian Fortezza Castle in Rethymnon, namely by car, by taxi, by bus, and by foot. Tourists are able to reach the Venetian Fortezza castle by car. The castle has designated parking slots for tourists visiting by cars. The Fortezza parking space is easy to find which is located at the rear part of the castle closely parallel to the old town. Tourists are permitted to stop by and park for a little while along the coastal road around the fortress as well for quick photo shoots. Another way to get to Fortezza Castle is through a taxi. The city of Rethymnon is packed with automobiles for commuters. Tourists are able to hire a taxi from their specific location to the Venetian Castle.

An individual is able to reach the castle by riding a bus as well. There are operating routes for buses in Rethymnon City  which is dedicated to the Venetian fortress. Tourists are advised to visit the bus station in the city to know about the different routes going to the castle. They are advised to check the website of the local bus company to book a ride ahead of time. The last way to get to the Venetian fortress is by foot. Tourists who are already in the Old Town or nearby locations are able to stroll along the Old town road of Chimaras going to the Venetian Castle. The Venetian castle is easy to locate because of its huge vicinity and elevated location. Tourists are able to reach the fortress by foot since the local roads in the city are straightforward and not confusing.

Venetian Fortezza Castle in Rethymno city

What is the importance of Venetian Castle to the history of Crete?

The importance of Venetian Fortezza Castle to the history of Crete is very exceptional. It first played an essential role during ancient times as a sacred sanctuary for the Ancient Goddess of hunt, Artemis, in Greece. The location has a range of historical antiques and items, such as pottery, coins, and weaponry, that shed light on the island’s past. The castle served as a fortress during the period of pirate invasions and Turkish colonizations as well. The hill of Paleokastro where the old castle was built is considered as a safe haven of hope and a place of faith to the entity they used to worship from ages back. It had been Crete’s main line of defence against various intruders who sought to capture the beautiful land and rule over the wonderful people of  Rethymnon.

The Venetian Fortezza Castle had been Crete’s protector and refuge throughout many centuries. The locals of Rethymnon know full well how important the Venetian fortress is to their abundant history. The Venetian Fortezza Castle is a relic of the alternating rise and fall of the city of Rethymnon in Crete today. It is now Crete’s mouthpiece in telling the world the mesmerising history of the incomparable land of Crete. The Venetian Castle is an important testament to the island’s historical significance and strategic importance during the Venetian and Ottoman periods.

What are the factors to consider before renting a car in Crete?

Listed below are the factors to consider before renting a car in Crete.

  • Documents needed for renting a car: There are two crucial documents that are necessary in renting a car in Crete. These documents are a Driver’s licence and a Credit or debit Card. A driver’s licence is the first most important factor that a tourist must consider before renting a car in Crete. No tourist is allowed to rent a car without having a driver’s licence in hand. The same way that no driver is allowed to operate a car without a valid driver’s licence. A driver’s licence is a document or card permitting a person to drive a motor vehicle. A tourist must have an international driver’s licence like a valid US licence to be able to rent a car in Crete. It is important that the licence is written in English or in Greek for each party to understand one another.
    An individual is allowed to present a passport. Most car rental companies in Crete require tourists to be a licence holder for at least a year in their home country in situations wherein a tourist doesn’t have an English driver’s licence or a prepared translation in hand. It makes the car rental owners more confident with the safety of the tourists and the rented cars at the same time during their travels. Another important document that every tourist needs to have in Crete is a Travel Credit Card. Payment for car rentals in cash is not possible in Crete. A credit card is a little  plastic card released by a bank allowing  its holders to acquire goods or services on credit. Most credit cards from the US or any equivalent countries carry car insurance coverage by default. It means that they already have Collision Damage Waiver insurance or CDW ready for car rental coverage. Another purpose of credit cards in renting a car in Crete is to hold an excess charge during the period when the cars are being rented. Credit cards serve as a guarantee for car owners when instances like car-napping take place. Credit cards are detained when there are situations when tourists get involved with a car accident and decline to pay for the remaining damage.
  • Insurance: Another fundamental aspect to think about in renting a car in Crete is the Car Insurance. The reason behind that is for tourists to be able to adhere to the repair or damage costs brought to the rented car when accidents or collisions occur. Most international credit cards from the US already have CDW or Collision Damage Waiver included in the Car Rental Insurance Coverage in Crete by default. There are car rental establishments in Crete that opt not to add an insurance fee to the rental cost because of it. However, some car rental offices still persuade tourists to add insurance to the car rental cost on top of the insurance coverage they already have on their credit cards. They say it’s not an awful idea, just to be safe and have peace of mind while travelling. There are car rental businesses as well that give their clients the freedom to choose whether to add up insurance charges on their car rental or not.
  • Driver’s Age: The driver’s age is undeniably a vital factor to think about before renting a car in Crete. A lot of car rental companies in Crete oblige licence holders to be of legal age to be able to rent a car. In order to rent a car, the licence holder must be 21 years old or older. However, in some companies the age preference is at least 23 years old. The tourist must be able to ask the car rental company about the age requirement of licence holders before renting a car, either way. Additional charges are placed on top of the tourist’s total rental cost if they are found to be driving under 25 years old.
  • Car rental location: The location where to rent a car in Crete is very important as well. The best place to rent a car for tourists arriving straight into Crete is at the airport. Renting a car right at the airport saves ample time than going to the city to pick up the car. It is more convenient for tourists as well since they are not burdened in carrying heavy luggages and bags and transferring from one vehicle to another while going to the city or to the place of their accommodation.
    There are two major airports in Crete which offer credible car rental services namely, HER or Heraklion Airport and CHQ or Chania Airport. However, most tourists prefer HER when it comes to car rentals at the airport. Some car rental locations other than from the airports are situated in Chania, Rethymnon, and Plakias. Renting a car from these locations doesn’t mean that cars are allowed to be returned from anywhere else. Rental cars must be taken back to the exact location where they are rented, that is why renting a car at airports is very much more desirable than renting in other places. Tourists are able to go straight ahead inside the airport after returning the rental cars without the hassle.
  • Car Specification: The specification of the car itself is another essential thing to think about before renting a car in Crete. These specifications include, the size of the car , the power, transmission type, and the cost of the car to be rented. Car size is one of the things that all tourists must think about in renting a car. Smaller cars are suitable to choose when renting a car in Crete. Highways and pavements in Greece usually have small lanes which makes it uneasy to operate big automobiles while driving. Routes even narrow down in some areas in Crete.
    There are some striking curves in Crete which have one lane. Drivers are expected to get into agreement as to whose car must pass first to avoid unwanted impact. Tourists are advised to pack the most necessary things to come up with smaller and lighter luggages fittable for small cars in Crete. However, there are still bigger cars which are available for renting in Crete. Tourists must choose a car style that is appropriate to their needs and convenience. The only problem with it is driving through narrow roads, most especially in the rigid turns which are quite dangerous.
    Power  is another important factor about car specifications in Crete. The region of Crete holds numerous mountains and peaks. Tourists are expected to encounter bobbing pathways going up and down which require a powerful engine. Powerful cars provide a more comfortable travel experience, even though the roads are not totally sheer. Changing won’t have to be necessary at all times for tourists when they are driving cars with great engine power.
    The next important specification for car rentals in Crete is the transmission type. Most rental cars in Crete are in manual transmission type. Cars in manual type are cheaper compared to automatic ones in Crete. There are automatic transmission cars available in the land but they obviously cost a lot compared to the manual ones. These automatic transmission cars are fewer in Crete which is why it is crucial to have it booked as early as possible. That’s when online booking becomes a vital part of a tourist’s to-do list before even going to Crete.
    Another essential factor when it comes to car specification is the rental cost of the car. A lot of tourists tend to rent cars with an economical price or low rental cost. However, the specification and quality of these cars get proportional to the rental price they project most of the time. The cheaper the rental cost of the car, the lower the standard that it has. The same analogy goes for high priced rental cars. Cars with high rental prices have higher specifications and more convenient features.
    The car rental prices in Crete vary  throughout the year. It is deliberately cheaper when travelling within the months of January and  February. The average rental cost of cars in Crete per day ranges from 15 to 50 US dollars. Tourists are given the freedom to choose which specification suits their budget. Nevertheless, comfort, safety and time efficiency must not be put at stake. These things must not be traded with cost especially when it comes to travelling to a different country.
  • Online booking: Online destination booking has been a life saver for every tourist and travellers nowadays. Online booking is a useful initiative allowing potential clients to personally schedule an activity or event over the web according to their own preference and availability. It has placed so much convenience to the customers because they are able to even pay for it online within the comfort of their own space. Online booking has undeniably become a tourist’s travel buddy. Car rental agencies in Crete have booking systems already running. Most of them are web-based or accessible online.
    There are car rental offices which process booking over the phone as well. However, it is a great advantage if tourists are able to book online because it saves them more time and money. There are many promos and booking discounts online which they won’t find on site. Online bookings offer a real time communication at the same time where tourists are able to be in touch with the agency and easily request for the cars to be ready for pick up. That way the agency is going to have a heads up in preparing the documents, and the tourist won’t have to spend a lot of time waiting for the rental process.

The following points presented above are just some of the most important factors to consider when choosing the Right Car to Rent in Crete. There are a few other things that a tourist needs to bear in mind especially when it comes to car rentals. Nevertheless, every tourist must remember that the best way to have a wonderful travel adventure is through having enough preparation.

How much does a car rental in Crete cost?

The cost of car rental in Crete is based on different aspects. There are factors that every tourist must consider to foresee the cost of car rental that they need to acquire. These factors include the car pick-up location, the type of car, the number of days of the rental, and the number of people to be accommodated in the car. The length of the trip affects the cost of car rental. The average cost for renting a car in Crete for a week is €184 according to Tourists are expected to pay around €11 to €26 for a day trip depending on the type of car being rented. Moreover, car rental cost on a night trip in Crete is pretty high since it is beyond regular office hours. It ranges from €24 to €97. The price of car rental in Crete varies depending on the pick-up location as well.

One of the leading car rental locations in Crete is situated in Heraklion Airport or HER. Its average car rental cost ranges to €16 per day. Another popular car rental location is at Chania airport. The rental cost there is not far from the rental cost in HER. Chania’s car rental cost ranges to €17 a day. The third most prominent car rental location in Crete is positioned on Rethymno Hotel, which is a bit higher compared to the first two locations mentioned above. Rethymno Hotel’s car rental price sweeps to €31 a day.

Car rental cost in Crete depends on the itinerary as well. The further  the destination of the itinerary, the more time or days it requires. The cost of the car rental is ultimately higher as the days go by. One of the top itineraries in Crete is Elafonisi Beach whose average car rental cost ranges from €18  to €145 depending on the type of car used with a pick up location in Chania, Greece. The rental cost gets different if the pick up location is coming  from both Crete and Chania which is €43 to €158, according to . Another famous destination in Crete is Balos Beach. The car rental cost going to Balos Beach sweeps from €18 to €29 depending on the kind of car to be rented. The pick up location of Balos Beach is available in Samos, Greece. Another go-to destination for Crete is Samaria Gorge. The rental location of the gorge is situated in Crete and Chania in Greece. The car rental cost of Samaria Gorge from Crete and Chania ranges from €18 to 175 depending on the type of car to be rented.

There are four most rented car types in Crete which vary in rental price, according to One of these car types is the Compact type which has five doors, a manual transmission, 3 bags capacity and ample space for 5 five persons. Compact type cars usually cost €12.89 per day with a pick-up location from Chania Airport. Another car type that is preferred  in Crete is the Intermediate Type whose rental price per day is €18.34. It usually has 5 doors as well, 2 bags capacity, a manual transmission, and enough space for 5 people. Its rental location is positioned at the Heraklion Airport. The third most rented car type in Crete is the Standard Type. It is a manually transmissioned vehicle, with 5 car doors, 2 luggages capacity, and 5 person seating space. It normally costs €19.62 per day when rented with a pick up location in Chania Airport.

The last type of cars which is mostly preferred by tourists in Crete is the Compact type. It has 4 car doors, 2 luggages capacity, manually transmission, with a 5 seating capacity space. Its rental location is situated in Chania Airport  whose rental price normally reaches €26.11 per day. There are other factors that affect the cost in Crete Car Rental but the things mentioned above are the most relevant ones. Tourists and locals in Crete have come to understand the advantage of recognizing the car rental cost in Crete. It is one of the elements to create wonderful moments in the majestic land.

What is the book about Venetian Castle?

The name of the book about the Venetian Fortezza Castle is entitled “FORTEZZA | The History of the Venetian Fortress at Rethymnon”. It talks about the billowing story of the various invasions and victories in the land of Rethymnon. These mesmerising events which always took place at the Venetian Fortress being the city’s first line of defence. The book discussed the castle’s walls, towers, and gates, as well as how they contributed to the fortress’s defensive qualities. It gives the spotlight on the day-to-day activities of the soldiers, artisans, and convicts who resided and worked in the castle.

The book, written by archaeologist Eleni Sfyroera, gives a thorough history of the castle, including everything from its construction in the late 16th century to its usage as a jail during the Ottoman and modern Greek periods. It was published by the local government of Rethymnon and released on January 1, 1970. The Fortezza book is made available by Rethymnon’s store partner, MW Books Ltd, which is located at Galway, Ireland. However, it is bought online through the Amazon page as well.The book is written by a local librarian from the Rethymnon Public Library named Markos G. Youmbakis. It was later translated to the English language by F.J. Featham.

The book encompasses a holistic illustration of the fortifications made by the Venetian people at the fortress to protect  the inhabitants of Rethymnon. The book shares a glimpse of the abundant history of the land of Crete as well. “FORTEZZA” contains a ton of drawings, maps, and images of the castle and its surroundings that serve as a visual tour of the castle’s past and present. Overall, the book provides a thorough and engrossing examination of one of Crete’s most significant historical sites and cultural landmarks.

Is Venetian Castle in UNESCO World Heritage Sites?

No, the Venetian Fortezza Castle is not listed as a UNESCO Heritage Site. The Venetian castle commonly known as the Fortezza is a historical landmark in the city of Rethymno. It holds a mesmerising history of the fortifications made by the venetian and Cretan people to protect the land of Rethymnon. However, it is not included in the list of UNESCO or United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization as of today. UNESCO is a global institution who decides which historical places are to be placed on the long list of World Heritage Sites around the world. The assessments are based on the site’s valuable impact to the world.

It is recognized as a popular historical and cultural monument in Crete as well as an important archaeological site. The location continues to be a well-liked tourist destination on the island since it has been kept and restored over the years to protect its cultural and historical worth. The historical Old Town of Chania and the archeological sites of Knossos and Phaistos are two other locations in Crete that are included on the UNESCO World Heritage list.

The necessity at which it must be protected and preserved  for the upcoming lineage is one of the factors to be considered as a world heritage as well. There are recorded UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Crete as well. Some of these World heritage sites include the Temple of Apollo located at the region of Peloponnese, the Archeological site of Delphi at Central Greece, the famous Acropolis in Athens situated in the region of Attica, the Mount Athos located in the peninsula of Mount Athos itself, and many more. These sites are chosen for their excellent global value and need for preservation for the next generation to come.

Why is Venetian Castle considered archaeological sites?

The Venetian Castle, known as the Fortezza Castle, is considered as an archaeological site because of its historical significance and the presence of old artefacts and structures on its grounds.The castle was constructed by the Venetians in the 13th century on the Greek island of Crete as a defensive fortress against pirate attacks and invasions from nearby islands. The Venetians constructed the castle in the 16th century as a military stronghold to protect the city of Rethymno and the lands around it. The castle served as a military outpost throughout the Ottoman era. The castle is a significant archaeological site because of its lengthy history, cultural significance, and role in the island’s defence. The castle has undergone numerous renovations and additions over the years, particularly that made by the Ottomans who used it as a jail in the 17th century. The castle served as the setting for several historical wars and events due to its advantageous location and significance as a symbol of authority.

The Venetian architecture and design of the castle, including the bastions, towers, and walls, have been uncovered by excavation operations at the site. The location has a wide range of historical items, including pottery, coins, and weaponry. The discoveries add to the understanding of the Venetian and Ottoman occupations of Crete and provide a window into the island’s past.

The Venetian Castle is a known archaeological monument and a well-liked tourist destination today. Archaeologists have discovered numerous old buildings and artefacts, within the castle grounds, including ceramics, coins, and structural components like columns and arches. The walls, towers, and other buildings that make up the castle are recognised as well as significant archaeological features that shed light on its development and historical use. The Venetian Castle is recognised as an archaeological site of Crete due to its historical importance and the presence of antiquated artefacts and buildings on its grounds, which offer important details about the castle’s development and use over the years.

Is it worth to visit Venetian Castle?

Yes, whether an individual has an interest in history, architecture, or antiquities, or not, seeing the Venetian Castle is worthwhile. The castle is a well-known tourist attraction and one of the most significant structures on the Greek island of Crete.  The castle’s gardens and walls are open to exploration by guests, and they provide breathtaking views of the surrounding countryside and ocean. Ancient artefacts, armour, and weapons are to be found inside the castle along with other displays that shed light on the island’s rich cultural history and the origins of the castle.

The Venetian Castle, with its defended walls, towers, and gates, is a remarkable example of mediaeval architecture in addition to its historical and archaeological value. The strategic setting and significance of the castle as a fortress. Tourists frequently recommend the Venetian Castle as a must-see spot on Crete because of its historical significance, architectural splendour, and expansive views of the island. The history and architecture of Venetian castles leave many visitors in awe, and they find it exciting and educational to explore these buildings. The chance to learn more about the Republic of Venice and its influence on European history is highly valued by visitors as well.

There are a number of reviews online from visitors who have been to the Venetian Castle and endorsing it as an excellent vacation spot. The views from the top of the Venetian Castle are beautiful, and its history is intriguing, according to a review on Tripadvisor. It is a wonderful way to spend an afternoon on the island and the Venetian Castle is a magnificent specimen of mediaeval architecture, according to a Lonely Planet review.

Lonely Planet recommends the Venetian Castle in Rethymno as a must-see location in their guidebook for Crete, mentioning its outstanding architecture, breathtaking vistas, and historical significance. A guided tour of the location is advised as well to understand more about its history and cultural heritage.

The Venetian Castle has received mostly excellent reviews in the past on Tripadvisor, with many tourists appreciating the architecture, panoramic views, and historical and cultural value of the castle. The castle is a little difficult to get to, according to some reviews, but the effort is well worth it for the breathtaking views of the city and sea. Some visitors advise going to the castle during the colder months of the year to avoid the summer heat.

Some travellers have reported that getting to some Venetian Castles is challenging and involves some trekking or a hard climb. Some castles have been criticised for being difficult for people with mobility challenges to access, however, many are making improvements to their accessibility for all visitors.

Harry Anapliotis
Travel Writer and Developer
Harry Anapliotis is a travel writer and developer at Rental Center Crete - Car hire.
Rental Center Crete - Car Hire
Car rental Company
Rental Center Crete - Car Hire is a car rental Company offering services in Crete Island, since 1975.