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What to do in Gouves.....

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Cardiff
posts: 102
reviews: 31
What to do in Gouves.....

Hi everyone.

We're looking at having a two week holiday in Gouves next year - end of August. We're in out late 20's but we're also thinking of going with my partners parents (early 50's).

We're looking for a nice, quiet resort, but also somewhere where there is enough to do and keep you busy.

Can you tell me if there is much to do in Gouves and also the surrounding area? Would you need to hire a car to do much over there? We're looking at going for 2 weeks and your recommendations for things to do would be much appreciated.

One thing that is on our to do list is visit Santorini as we will be getting married out there in 2013 :-)

Also, I've read in places that the beach is shingle, however in other places I've read that it's a sandy beach. Does anyone know which it is?

Thanks,

Daf

Sale, United Kingdom
Destination Expert
for Crete
posts: 8,088
reviews: 61
1. Re: What to do in Gouves.....

Hi,

Which hotel/apartment are you thinking of booking? Gouves almost has 2 different 'centres' about 1.5km apart. The eastern part from the chapel on has 2 small but perfectly adequate sandy beaches, and has a street with a lot of tavernas and shops, then further west from the chapel it's rocky along the shore until you get near the harbour area, where there is a road up to the 'main street'. Near the harbour there are a couple of sandy beaches, and all along the sea to Gournes, past the aquarium and eventually to Kokkini Hani there are several mainly sandy beaches, some of which are more picturesque than others.

We have been to Gouves several times, including once this year and once last year. For us it ticks many boxes well - good beaches, good tavernas, convenient location, short transfer etc. For both of our last 2 visits it has been noticeably quieter in the tavernas and the town at night, presumably because of the fact that several hotels/apartments have now gone All-Inclusive.

Nowhere in Gouves is more than 10-15 minutes walk from the old highway, where you can get buses to Heraklion one way and Malia (and then Ag. Nik) the other way.

In terms of nightlife, it is definitely more taverna based rather than bars, although there are a few bars on the main street.

If you like walking, there are a number of good excursions around and about, from an easy walk up to 'old' Gouves or along the sea front to Kokkini Hani or towards Hersonnisos, to long walks through the villages behind old Gouves, or up Gouves mountain!

Devizes, United...
posts: 39,282
reviews: 309
2. Re: What to do in Gouves.....

Hi there

Late August is still peak season and I doubt that Gouves will be "quiet". However, as Steve says, it's close to the airport, and handy for buses along the New National Road. Once in Agios Nikolaos or Iraklion's bus stations, you can connect to many other parts of the island. It is better though to rent a car and to be honest, with 4 lots of bus fares to cough up, a car wouldn't be that much more expensive, and gives you total freedom to go and see whatever you want to do, and at your own pace.

Here's a link to this year's bus services, I doubt it'll alter much for 2012.

www.cretetravel.com/Bus_schedules

The proposed trip to Santorini will be very expensive for four people and unless you're prepared to spend a night on the island, you'd have precious little time there to see whatever you need to see. Why not combine Santorini with another Cycladic island for next year's trip?

Sale, United Kingdom
Destination Expert
for Crete
posts: 8,088
reviews: 61
3. Re: What to do in Gouves.....

Quiet is a relative term I suppose. The beaches are busy during the day, but tavernas which I remember sometimes having to queue at in August 4 or 5 years ago were quiet at the beginning of August this year. Last year we went at the beginning of June, when it was no less busy. We know of at least 3 sizeable hotels and apartments which have gone AI this year, and this is making a difference, because unfortunately a lot of people won't venture out when they can eat and drink free in their hotel.

Cardiff
posts: 102
reviews: 31
4. Re: What to do in Gouves.....

Hi guys,

Thanks for your replies, much appreciated as usual. We're looking at Marie Kelly Hotel - anyone stayed there or know much about it? Looks nice to me - also, Steve, do you know which area of Gouves it's in? You mention two sides to Gouves (Western/Eastern) - is there one better than the other?

Sounds like there's a fair bit to do out there. Always a shame about the hotels going all inclusive - we always rather go to the local restaurants.

One other question I've got for you is the noise from the airplanes? We've read some reviews that say it's very noisy, whereas others say it's not too bad. What's your opinions?

Thanks again for your help, we're hoping to book our holiday tomorrow :-)

Daf

Devizes, United...
posts: 39,282
reviews: 309
5. Re: What to do in Gouves.....

Hi again

The noise from jets is negligable - Gouves is beneath the approach to the airport, assuming the wind is coming from the west, but there;s little noise to contend with - all the incoming flights are with the latest Airbuses or Boeings with the new generation of quiet engines and I doubt you'll even notice them.

Sale, United Kingdom
Destination Expert
for Crete
posts: 8,088
reviews: 61
6. Re: What to do in Gouves.....

As it happens, we stayed in Marie Kelly this August. I would recommend it, see my TA review. It is in the Eastern side about 150m from one of the 2 smallish (200m) sandy beaches. Close to M-K there are a number of very good tavernas - for instance, Skorpios (50m) and Philipos (400m) Others recommend Medusa (never been there, 200m) and Mylos (not been there for a few years, 400m). The 'main street' is about 15 - 20 minutes walk away, depending on if you go along the sea shore or take a short cut inland. Here you will find a wider range of S'mkts, shops, bars, restaurants etc. including a marvellous grill house just north of the X roads - waiting for TA to accept location so I can do a review!

Just to agree with GB, plane noise is not an issue unless you are very noise-sensitive. They can be heard, but they are almost always 'coasting' into Heraklion airport so it is not a problem.

Cardiff
posts: 102
reviews: 31
7. Re: What to do in Gouves.....

You've sold it to us :-) Happy to say that we booked a fortnight away in Marie Kelly for the end of August next year. We'll be there for a week with the in-laws as they're arriving a week before us (so they can find the best beaches and places to eat) and we then get a week to ourselves at the end.

Steve, thanks for the recommendations for eating out, we'll certainly be trying them.

GB, thanks for the info on noise, like you said, I'm sure it won't be any problem at all.

Thanks again for you help,

Daf

Devizes, United...
posts: 39,282
reviews: 309
8. Re: What to do in Gouves.....

Our pleasure, have a great trip next year.

Sale, United Kingdom
Destination Expert
for Crete
posts: 8,088
reviews: 61
9. Re: What to do in Gouves.....

Likewise, glad to be able to help. We may even be there ourselves!

Durham
posts: 168
reviews: 21
10. Re: What to do in Gouves.....

Hiya, we have stayed in Gouves the past few years and although not very traditionally Cretan we find it an ideal place to stay, not far from Heraklion and not far from the bus routes. The noise isnt an issue unless you are trying to listen for it. We too have stayed at the Marie Kelly (last summer) and we loved it, we would of stayed there again this but we found a deal elsewhere we couldnt turn down, the tavernas recommended are worthy of a mention altho out fave is Mylos, the bar at the Marie Kelly is great fun and not too noisy, there arent many English style bars there which i find tends to keep big crowds away but theres one or two to keep you happy with a cold Mythos !!....enjoy !!!

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