When I first married my husband, we celebrated our wedding with a luxurious honeymoon to the Greek Island of Crete. For years, the memory of that wonderful trip stayed with me as the one truly unforgettable holiday of a lifetime. Our days were spent relaxing in the sun, taking refreshing dips in the sea, indulgent dinners in upscale restaurants and late nights in bars around the island.
When we started a family, I thought that trip to Greece would be our first and only experience in Crete. After some research, however, I realized that Greece could also be a great place for a family holiday. Even young children could appreciate the culture, history, recreation, scenery and cuisine on the island of Crete. In 2012, my husband and I brought our two children to Crete for a week long holiday. While the trip was certainly different from our honeymoon, it was no less incredible. Here are a few of the comparisons and observations I made when returning to Greece as a family.
On our honeymoon, my husband and I enjoyed a small but luxurious villa near to the beaches of Chersonissos. The atmosphere was relaxed and casual, but the nightlife was vibrant. Each evening as the sun set over the water the city came alive with music and young people from around the world. On our family holiday, we enjoyed the same setting but had a different experience completely. The resort we stayed at was family friendly and offered a kid’s club for children to enjoy, but we also had some family trips to the beach. There were several other families staying at the same hotel, providing our children with companions and friends for the duration of our stay.
On our first trip to Crete, we spent hours sipping coffees at small cafes, lingering over long lunches and enjoying incredible fresh seafood for dinner. I was worried that our children would not appreciate the local cuisine, or that we would be forced to rush through our meals and not enjoy them as much as previously. Thankfully, the restaurants on Crete catered to young children with classic meals like pasta, pizzas and sandwiches. There were several restaurants with special children’s facilities and toys to occupy them, something I really appreciated as a parent. The children also loved Greek desserts, and we made a daily trip to a local ice cream shop to enjoy new flavors. It was a wonderful way to spend time as a family, and my husband and I go to linger over those coffees like we wanted!
Traveling to Greece with children is certainly different from a couples or singles holiday, but both are exciting and beautiful trips that you won’t soon forget.