Crete, Greece, 13 - 22nd June '17
A JOURNEY TO YOUR SENSES
DESTINATION: Greece, Crete, Chania,
DATES: 13 - 22nd June '17
PRICE: Starting @ R34 499 per diver sharing / R29 799 per non-diver sharing in a 4* hotel
PACKAGE: International flights out of Johannesburg, domestic flights to Chania, road transfers, 8 nights accommodation,
breafkast as specified & 8 dives
ADD-ON: Malta, Sicily, 3 - 11th June and / or Athens, Greece, 11 & 12th June '17
BOOKINGS: Full flight fare and 50% of land-based arrangements in order to secure. Balance due latest 14th January '17
Crete is the largest island in Greece and the fifth largest island in the Mediterranean Sea. It is located in the southern part of the Aegean Sea separating the Aegean from the Libyan Sea. A visit to Crete means you get to admire the remnants of brilliant civilizations, explore glorious beaches, impressive mountainscapes, fertile valleys, steep gorges, beautiful Venetian mansions, the fountains and elaborate churches as well as its rich gastronomic culture. Our trip takes you to Chania (also speclled Haniá). . . .
Chania is the 2nd largest city on the island of Crete and also the capital city. It is a a place where different civilizations have flourished throughout the centuries, including the old and the new cities - the old town being an integral settlement with visible boundaries set by the Venetian walls surrounding it. The old town is built around the Venetian port - an area where Venetian buildings and later Turkish elements compose a unique architectural style. Its design was made by Venetian engineer Michelle Sammichelli. The Lighthouse is located at the end of the rock protecting the port from the north. It was built in 1570 by the Venetians and reconstructed in 1830 by the Egyptians and from there on preserves its current state.
QUICK FACTS ABOUT CRETE, CHANIA
Chania is also one of the oldest cities in Crete, with a rich and tumultuous history. Today it is the second most populated city on the island, a city which has preserved its traditional architecture and most of its monuments from Venetian and Turkish times. The Venetian harbour with its lighthouse and the old town in the centre have bestowed on Chania the reputation of the most picturesque city in Crete, welcoming thousands of visitors each year. Think about the old Venetian harbour of Chania as the gemstone on the most priceless jewel of western Crete - it will amaze you whenever you visit it.
On the east of Palea Poli is Splantzia (or Plaza) district built on the former Turkish district. Here you will see among others Aghii Anargiri church, the only Orthodox church which had the permission to operate during the period of the Venetian and Turkish occupations. You will also see the Sintrivani square. Neoria (or Chiones) district on the northeast side is located in the area of the former port of the city and of the Venetian ship yards of 14th and 16th centuries from which it also took its name. Kastelli district is in the center of Palea Poli (Old Town) west of Neoria. It is the exalted location of the Byzantine citadel where “palatso” (palace) of the Venetian commander and the lodgings of Pashas of Chania were later built. Venetians used to call the area Castello Vecchio.
On the southeast of the old city lies the Hebrew district or else Ovraika. It reminds us the times when the developing Hebrew community of Chania was obliged by the Venetians to move to a delimitated area called judeca where two synagogues were operating. On the borders of Ovraika, in Chalides Street, you will see the Folklore Museum of Chania and Aghios Fragkiskos church (14th century) which houses the Archeological Museum of Chania. On the north side is the Turkish bath (chamam). In the south side of Ovraika and on Skridlof Street lies the so called Stivanadika (from stivani, the Cretan boots). Among the shops selling leather items and souvenirs survive some traditional shoe ateliers.
Some attractions: The harbour wall to the Venetian Lighthouse / Naval Museum (Maritime Museum) / Archaeological Museum on Halidon Street / Monasteries / Samaria Gorge / Venizelos Graves / Tabakaria (ld leather processing houses / Rethymno, Crete's other Venetian town / The Therissos Gorge / Kolymbari and its monastery / Falassarna beach / Gramvousa & Balos / Elafonissi and villages en route.
**click on the map to enlarge**
DIVING IN AND AROUND CHANIA: As the largest of the Greek islands, Crete has exceptional diving opportunities and is an incredible place to learn more expert-level techniques, including night diving, deep diving, cave diving, and wall diving. The variety of terrain and options makes this a fantastic destination with plenty of incredible sights, including half-submerged Greek remains, a Messerschmitt fighter from WW2, and the incredible El Greco cave. The diving opportunities on the island are fantastic.
WEATHER & THE BEST TIME TO DIVE: The weather starts to warm up from May, with the warmest months being July, August & September. Toward the end of October temperatures start dwindling in preparation for the European winter months. Rainy seasons are highest between the months October - April. Water temperatures in May are around 22° while they climb up to 28° during the peak tourism months of July / August & September.
CURRENCY: The office currency of Greece is Euro, but retailers accpet all major forms of credt card payments as well.
LANGUAGE: The language spoken in Chania, which is Greek, is one of the oldest languages in all of Europe.
GETTING TO CHANIA:
Johannesburg - Dubai: departing 22:20pm and arriving 08:20am
Dubai - Athens: departing 10:05am and arriving 14:05pm
Athens - Chania: ** two flights per day - schedule not yet available
Chania - Athens: ** two flights per day - schedule not yet available
Athens - Dubai: departing 16:00pm and arriving 21:35pm
Dubai - Johannesburg: departing 23:20pm and arriving 05:30am
* Malta, 3 - 11th June (stay 7 nights)
* Greece, Athens, 11 & 12th June (2 nights)
Day 1 (12th June)
* Fly Johannesburg to Dubai, departing 22:20pm and arriving 08:12am
Day 2 (13th June)
* Fly Dubai to Athens, departing 10:00am and arriving 14:05pm
* Fly Athens to Chania - time to be confirmed
Days 2 - 10 (13 - 21st)
* Stay Chania for 8 nights
* Diving between days 3 & 9
Day 10 (21st June)
* Fly Chania to Athens (time to be confirmed)
* Fly Athens to Dubai, departing 16:00pm and arriving 21:35pm
* Fly Dubai to Johannesburg, departing 23:20pm and and arriving 05:30am
Day 11 (22nd June)
* Arrive Johannesburg at 05:30am
* Return economy flight JNB / CRETE / JNB
* Airport taxes
* 8 Nights accommodation as specified including breakfast & tourist tax
* Max 8 day dives with weights & cylinders
* Scheduled return transfers
* Items of a personal nature
* Meals & drinks not mentioned
* Tips, service charge and government taxes on local purchases (21%)
* Equipment rental
* Night dives, land tours
* Spa services, telephone calls, mini-bar purchases
* Travel Insurance, diving and medical insurance
4* RESORT ACCOMMODATION, CHANIA
This Resort lies in front of one of the most beautiful beaches of Chania, on the island of Crete, with a breathtaking view of the endless blue Cretan sea and Thodorou island. It is an adults-only hotel, specializing in offering romantic services to couples! It is located nine kilometers west of Chania’s city centre, on the northern coastline beside the golden beach of Agia Marina. Supermarkets, shops, restaurants, cafes, bars and beach clubs are all in walking distance. Read more . . . .
Deluxe seaview rooms: The standard rooms are twin or double bedded and can accommodate up to three adults. They have a balcony or terrace and can be booked with either land or sea view. The room has a mini fridge, free safe deposit box, Led TV with national and satellite channels, telephone with direct line, free wi-fi internet connection and ADSL internet port. The bathrooms are marbled with bathtubs, bathroom amenities, hairdryer and telephone.
Facilities: Spa / indoor swimming pool / sauna / outdoor jacuzzi / on-site restaurant / taverna / for art lovers "Mare Gallery", the largest gallery in Crete, is located in the hotel and its entrance is free
Diving: Diving takes place through a number of locally based Chania dive centres, and includes return hotel / dive centre transfers
DIVING CHANIA, CRETE
AGIOS ONOUFRIOS AREA: At Agios Onoufrios area is a long vertical wall with possibility of more than 5 different dives, interesting marine life,many sponges and a lot of microlife.Minimum depth 12 meters, maximum 32 meters is a divesite suitable for all levels of divers.
AIRPLANE WRECK: At maximum 40meters depth and on a steep cliff lies the body of an airplane. With very interesting marine life around the dive area, its a dive that fulfil any divers expectation. Prerequest nitrox certification.
BRITISH WRECK: he name Minnewaska comes from the American Indian word meaning clear water. The ship was built in Belfast in November 1908 and It was 183 meters long constructed as a passenger steamer. During the first world war the ship was used by the British military to transport troops. On the 29th November 1916 the ship was leaving Souda the troops onboard when she struck a mine laid by a German submarine UC23. Hold below the water line she started to sink Captain Gates steered a course to the nearest land to try to beach the ship in the area of Marathi. One section was too deep to salvage and it is this 50 meter long, 10 meter wide section that can be seen by divers today at a depth between 12 and 20 meters.
CAVERN: A spectacular dive site. Enter the cavern in a depth of 14m and be amazed of the huge chamber with the natural light that comes from the opening in the roof!!!! With maximum depth of 22 meters and minimum of 12 is a dive for all level of divers.
BAT CAVE: Perfect for begginers in cave diving .Using artificial light into the cave makes it perfectly safe.Maximum depth 7 meters.
DEEP SHIP WRECK: A trimix dive in a fantastic catgo ship wreck. In maxmimum depth of the dive at 90meters and minimum 63, with lenght of 138 meters , lot of marine life surrounding ,the wreck is a huge piece of history of Chania and a very demanding dive that will fascinate any trimix diver!
DRAGON NEST: An amazing dive site!!! Swim through huge rocks, enter the tunnel and have a unique experience. Maximum depth 22 meters minimum 12 meters is a dive for all levels of divers.
ELEPHANT CAVE: In Drapano cave is the famous Elephant cave. At depth of 9 meters is the entrance of the cave. As diver swim through the cave it starts to become swallower, and at the end meets the big chamber which is full of gorgeous stalagmites and stalactites that leaves the most demanding diver speechless.
LIGHTHOUSE WALL: More experienced divers can marvel at “The Wall”, a cliff with a vertical surface tens of metres deep. At the bottom of the sea off the beach right in front of the ruins of ancient Itanos, there is an entire ancient city, and with your mask you will be able to admire this magical sight! Diving depth ranges between 10 - 35m
MACHERIDA: Ideal for first timer divers, and those who want to do a refresher dive. With maximum depth of 13 meters ,with great variety of sponges ,microlife,fishes and protected from the weather conditions is suitable for relax divers
SEAL CAVE: A completely closed spring cave is waiting for you to explore it!! As diver swim through the cave, will notice the fresh water mixed with salt water creating the halocline effect!At last five meters is only fresh crystal clear water with great vivibilityThe diver is surfing to the main chamber of the cave, which is full of stalactites and stalagmates. Minimum depth 5 meters, maximum 18 meters suitable for advanced divers.
SPOT LIGHTS: Small, easy caverns, perfect for begginers in cavern and cave diving. In combination with open water dive makes an unforgetable experience!!!!!!Minimum depth of 12 meters,maximum 18 meters.
THEATER: A beautifull complex of caverns with a big tunnel and smaller differnt chambers . Plenty of sponges and soft corals in addition with the microlife, creating a spectacular dive site.Suitable for all the levels of divers.Maximum depth 15meters minimum 6 meters.
* Prices are based on current exchange rates and will be revised on the date of final payment.
* Prices are subject to change in exchange rates, flights and airport taxes, accommodation and diving rates.
* Airport taxes will be finalised on the day that final payment is due.
* Inclusions and exclusions are subject to change
* Deposit is non-refundable if suppliers have aleady been paid.
* Balances are due 90 days prior to departure.