Headed to Crete and looking for where to stay in Heraklion? Here are our favorite Heraklion hotels, villas, and hostels for every budget so you can plan your perfect Crete getaway.
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Where to Stay in Heraklion on a Budget ($75 USD or Less a Night)
Heraklion has quite a few hostels and budget hotels for travelers looking to keep a close eye on their trip costs.
Intra Muros Boutique Hostel
The hotel is named after the Latin phrase that translates as “within the walls,” and you’ll love how they work to make the space between their walls a home away from home.
Backpackers and group travelers will enjoy this boutique hostel; not only is it strategically located in the heart of the city (and close to most tourist spots) but it also has a nearby bus stop so you can save on transportation expenses. You can also walk to the port if in case you want to ride a ferry and go to other locations and dreamy islands near Crete.
They have dormitories with shared bathrooms available for as low as $13 USD for a night with bunk beds with privacy curtains. You can choose from a mixed or all-female dorm room. A group of 4-6 people can share one room and the cost for a 4 person room is as low as $55 USD and for 6 persons would be as low as $77 USD.
There’s also a shared kitchen equipped with a stove, oven, refrigerator, and utensils. You can cook quick meals here since there is a nearby mini market outside! The service desk is not open 24-hours, but if you inform them of your late arrival then they can arrange someone to meet you at the said time.
Mirabello Hotel is a budget-friendly hotel set in a quiet area but is strategically located close to most of the tourist spots – which makes it an ideal place to stay to save time and of course money. The entire property has WiFi, A/C, heating, and a lift (no hassle to carry one’s luggage from the stairs).
Guests can choose from a single, double, or triple room. Each of the soundproof rooms has a private bathroom, but there is a cheaper room for solo travelers which has an external private bathroom. Those really looking to pinch pennies can choose the shared bathroom option, but as there’s only a difference of a few dollars, we think it would be better to just choose the one with an ensuite bathroom.
The furniture used is mostly wood, and everything is kept minimal. All rooms have a balcony (which is connected to other rooms) and an outdoor table and chairs.
Past guests loved how easy it is to communicate with the hotel – from the time you book and throughout your stay at the property. There is always someone in charge at the front desk to help.
Marin Dream Hotel
The hotel is just a few minutes’ walk to most of the nearby attractions in the heart of the city. The entire property is non-smoking and it has 44 rooms all featuring a balcony, private bathrooms, A/C and heating, safety deposit boxes, minibar plus a small fridge – which all makes it more convenient for guests than other hotels in this price range.
The single room is perfect for someone who wants to stay at an affordable complete unit with private features. Family rooms are also available and they provide 3 single beds.
Not only will your rooms showcase the beautiful landmarks and views, but you can also enjoy their facilities at the Gazebo Restaurant where you can get your breakfast buffet! They serve mostly local treats so you can make the most of your Heraklion experience.
Mid-Range Places to Stay in Heraklion ($75-100 USD a Night)
For those looking to enjoy a slightly more luxurious experience, here are our picks for the best mid-range hotels in Heraklion.
Infinity City Boutique Hotel
Infinity City Boutique Hotel is a very modern hotel that features contemporary style and comfort. The hotel looks a bit narrow due to the building’s structure, but it has spacious and soundproof rooms. It has 6 floors and a total of 21 rooms that have their own balcony with a view of the amazing blue sea plus a private bathroom with complete amenities.
Each room has flat wooden ceilings and tiled floors to match the contemporary and modern style of the hotel Guest love how the hotel design balances style and comfort, with a mini-fridge and other in-room amenities. The private bathrooms are a bit small but not congested, and you will be given free shampoo and body wash (no conditioner and lotion).
You can try their free continental breakfast and have some of their coffee, juice and some tasty croissants. Of course, mornings aren’t complete without eggs, which they make to order.
Atrion hotel is a box-type modern building that lies on the corner of Chronaki Street. It offers one of the best mid-ranged priced accommodations for business travelers. The rooms are finished with warm tones of red plus the color of the wooden furniture in mahogany. There’s also a working desk and a separate coffee table, which makes it a great place for digital nomads to stay.
You can grab your breakfast as early as 7:30 AM and enjoy your first cup of freshly made Greek coffee while you dine.
If you have no plans left for the day and you just want to relax, you can check their entertainment room which has a nice sound system and a huge TV plus, extra comfy chairs. Another place to decompress is on their patio where you can order meals as you relax from the fresh breeze coming from the garden and the sea.
When you are craving Greek food, you can stay for a meal at their Four Seasons Restaurant which offers breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Business travelers can use their free room where you can work quietly and even hold business meetings.
It’s also one of the closest hotels to the old city and has roads nearby which are very convenient for those who brought their cars – they also have a partnership with a nearby lot so you can pay for parking at a lower price per day.
Aquila Atlantis Hotel
This is one of the most alluring hotels for business travelers in Heraklion. Sometimes there are business events of big names companies held here because it also houses the biggest convention center in Heraklion. They have one of the nicest staffs combined with facilities and features that can complete a superb 5-star luxury experience.
Each room has its own ensuite bathroom with a full rain shower head that can make your bathing experience more relaxing. There are also toiletries, slippers, and bathrobes provided to lessen your hassle in packing. They have room choices for all types of guests – from solo travelers to families. Not all rooms have their own balcony so if you want one, then you would need to request that type of room when booking – though most windows have a good view of the city or the sea.
You will notice a lot of sophistication and class in their rooms. They are simple, but you can see how perfectly executed the furniture and the color scheme used are. Daily housekeeping will also keep your rooms spotlessly clean. If you want your towels changed, you can leave them on the bed; if you leave it on the towel racks, then it means you will still use it.
Best Luxury Hotels in Heraklion. ($100+ USD a Night)
Here are the best luxury and boutique hotels in Heraklion for an extra nice vacation.
Galaxy Iraklio Hotel
You will be treated like a king or queen in this luxury 5-star hotel in Heraklion. It is perfectly located within a few minutes from most of the historic tourist locations while offering a resort-type accommodation for you and your family. It has a garden that’s been landscaped with trees and different kinds of plants.
The rooms have a rich chocolate brown theme and you can feel how lavishly they use velvet in most of the linens and sheets. You will love the corner table, they made, which also functions as a work desk where you can store and put your laptop. It makes use of the space cleverly at the side of the bed which is covered with Egyptian cotton linen.
All of the rooms have a uniform theme and as the rooms get bigger the more amenities are added like a sofa or a bigger bathroom with a tub. Sampar Paris bath products are also given to guests.
Breakfast is included, but there’s also an option to include either dinner or both lunch and dinner! They serve delicious dishes in a fine buffet setting as you explore the perfect fusion of Cretan and international flavors.
You can also check their wellness center (open for 24 hours) but they do not actually have a literal spa inside. However, you can check out all of their free amenities like the pools, fitness center, and steam rooms.
Stella Palace Resort and Spa
The pool view of this resort hotel is marvelous – actually, everything about the hotel is! It has its own water park, bars, spa, and so many more world-class features to offer its guests. They have rooms, suites, and maisonettes where you can even have your own private pool or hot tub.
They have 4 restaurants on-site which means you have options on what to eat. Elia serves Greek dishes, Enso offers yummy authentic Asian dishes, La Veranda treats you to an Italian dinner or lunch plus a good selection of wines and lastly, Poseidon, which offers a huge selection in their buffet. A night of fun won’t be complete without checking their different bars where each offers a different ambiance and a different selection of drinks and snacks.
A gym rat will love their fitness center because it has everything you could ever look for when it comes to completing your daily fitness programs. You might not find some of the treatments they offer at their spa elsewhere, because most of the ingredients they use are locally sourced in Crete. Highly-skilled therapists and massage practitioners will take you to a relaxing and heavenly ritual here.
GDM Megaron Historical Monument Hotel
This property was built in 1920 and it is currently classified as a monument. It was originally a farm dedicated to cultivating the aromatic citron fruit. When a disease has spread on the island, affecting many other plantations of citron, the plantation needed to do something. In 2003, they converted the property into a luxury hotel.
Wooden floors and furniture elegantly complete the look of each room. All rooms have their own balcony and feature an ensuite bathroom with Korres bath products. The bathrooms are huge and they have towel racks and organizers to help you store your personal toiletries. There’s also a working desk if you brought your laptop and you need to work.
They offer private transfers and shuttles – but if you want to make it even fancier, they have a limousine you can rent! You surely wouldn’t want to miss dining in their 5th Restaurant, which is located on the topmost floor of the building. It has one of the best views in the entire town and during summer there is a pool that you can enjoy! For some hot coffee, creative cocktails, and other drinks, you can check out their Plaza Café.
If you want to burn off some calories after exploring the different varieties of food in Crete, you can hit their gym at their Health Club. It also offers pampering services and facilities such as a Jacuzzi, sauna, massage, and other treatments. You can visit them on the 4th floor of the building.
Legacy Gastro Suites
Legacy Gastro Suites offer large and luxurious suites perfect for a big group or a family. The name itself will also allow you to understand that their gastronomic selections will be world-class. They aim to preserve the rich traditions of preparation and taste of Cretan cuisine. It is definitely a paradise for foodies!
They offer 12 beautifully decorated suites that are inspired by classy décor and furniture from the postwar era. The inspirations were also taken from 3 great icons of Cretan art and literature. All rooms are complete with a private bathroom and a balcony.
A minibar is also provided so you can prepare your coffee or tea beside the comfortable coffee table and chairs. The bathroom also has a very modern showerhead, which can give you a therapeutic massage.
The best part of it all is their dining experience. What people don’t usually know is that they have very strict standards when it comes to selecting the suppliers of their raw ingredients. They even source out some of the hard-to-find local flavors to give their guests the best gastronomic adventure on the island.
Everything can be ordered in your suite, but they also have a food station inside where you can explore the different flavors and dishes. Breakfast is a la carte and served in your room or the balcony.
Best Private Apartments and Villas in Heraklion
If you’re looking for private accommodations or upscale villas in Heraklion, here are our picks.
Penthouse City Apartment
This apartment is located a few minutes by taxi from the city center and is close to the airport. It is on the top floor of a 3-story building which has its own lift. It offers complete features for a hassle-free vacation for families and couples. The apartment has 2 rooms and it can accommodate up to 6 guests.
You will see sweeping views of the city from the balcony and the living area. The use of glass windows is clever, allowing natural light to enter. There is a kitchen with a minibar and snacks, drinks, and wine here for your disposal.
Like most apartments and villas, toiletries are not included, but towels, slippers, and sheets here are at no extra cost. A washing machine is also available if in case you want to do your laundry. Past guests of the property loved how the host was prompt and very easy to communicate with.
Three Palms Bungalow
This resort-type bungalow features clean and crisp themes that combine well with its minimalist flair. It is also located on top of a hill and you will have wonderful views of the city along with a lovely garden and yard, where a pool and a grill are available during the summer.
However, this is not recommended for guests with kids because their facilities are not well-equipped for younger guests. It can accommodate a maximum of 4 people and it has 1 bedroom. The room is spacious and it has a huge bathroom with a tub and a separate wet and dry area. The beds are comfortable and you will love the blinds they used on the windows – it can totally block the sunlight in the morning. Perfect for couples who want to enjoy Heraklion’s nightlife!.
Villa at Estate Karares
A group or a family looking for the best spacious apartments, suites or rooms should consider Estate Kares. The villa is a great deal for larger groups traveling together; for 6 people it is as low as $134 USD (around $22 USD per head) and for 8 people the prices start around $149 USD (around $19 USD per head). It has 3-bedrooms and it is fully equipped with most of the basic amenities you will need for your trip.
The living area, mini kitchen, and dining area are all beside each other and there is even a fireplace (perfect for cold cuddly Crete winters). You will love the views from the balcony and you can also enjoy it while being seated outside. The bathroom is huge and it includes a cabin shower, a spa bathtub, and a mini dresser with a nice mirror and a comfy chair.
Breakfast is optional and you may choose to buy one on-site for only $8 USD (you won’t regret it). The hosts and the staff will serve you yummy home-made goodness so you can start the day right. WiFi connection is a little bit sluggish in the location due to its remoteness. Overall, this is a contender for the best value accommodation for families and groups.
What to Pack for a Crete Beach Vacation
If you’re planning a trip to Crete, you’ll want to pack all the normal essentials, but here are a few things we strongly recommend bringing that may not have crossed your mind. For more, check out our Essential Crete Packing List.
– A Physical Guidebook – While travel blogs are great, we also definitely see the benefit of having a good paper guidebook in hand to refer to in your on-the-ground travel. We own and recommend the Lonely Planet Greece book as a starter, but you may also want to pick up the Lonely Planet Crete which covers the island more in-depth.
– A water bottle with a filter. While generally, the tap water in big cities on Crete is drinkable, we generally recommend using a water bottle with a purifying filter to reduce your plastic consumption and ensure you won’t drink any funny-tasting water on your stomach that could make your trip unpleasant! We recommend the GRAYL water bottle – it filters water perfectly in an instant so that you can even drink from lakes, bad taps, etc.
– Motion sickness pills. Crete bus rides can cause motion sickness! If you have a weak stomach like we do, save yourself and bring some non-drowsy motion sickness pills.
– Wet wipes, hand sanitizer, TP & other Balkan transit needs. Bathrooms in the Balkans on trains and buses tend to be… how can we say it?… not so well-stocked. Save yourself the disappointment and bring a mini-rescue pack of wet wipes & hand sanitizer.
– Travel safety items. We think Crete is very safe to travel, but at the same time, it never hurts to be prepared! Some people like to carry money belts, but neither Allison or I use these.
Instead, we both carry the same PacSafe anti-theft backpack. It has locking zippers, slash-proof construction with metal mesh hidden in the fabric, and tons of other smart security features — all while being cute and stylish enough to be our everyday bag. We recommend it highly for both male and female travelers, as it’s neutral enough to be unisex. We also strongly recommend travel insurance! Our recommendation is at the bottom of the post.
More Crete Travel Resources
Headed to Crete? We have some great travel resources to help you with your trip. First read our guide to planning a trip to Greece, which covers visas, budgets, vaccines, and much more. We also have a Balkan currency guide which explains how money works in Greece and local tipping customs.
If this will be one of your first trips to the Greek islands, check out our massive Greek Island hopping guide as well as our recommendations for where to go in Greece and when is the best time to visit.
We publish new content about the Balkans almost every day! For more information about traveling to Greece and the Balkans, bookmark our Greece and Balkan travel pages so you can find out what’s new before your trip.
Don’t Forget About Travel Insurance!
I’m sure you’re aware that it’s a good idea to have travel insurance for traveling in Crete, the Balkans, or anywhere in the world!
While Greece is safe, there’s always a risk inherent in everyday travel like theft or injury, so it’s better to play it safe.
Pin this Guide to Where to Stay in Heraklion for Your Trip to Crete
Stephanie has been living in and traveling around the Balkans for the past three years. She’s written for National Geographic Online, appeared on CNN Arabic and in the New York Times, and ridden more Balkan buses than is good for a person.