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History of Heraklion

The city of Heraklion also known as Iraklion is the largest city and also the administrative capital of the island of Crete, in fact it is one the largest cities in Greece.

The ruins of the ancient city of Knossos are located within close proximity of Heraklion, though there is no archaeological evidence of it, Knossos may well have had a port at the site of Heraklion as long ago as 2000 BC.

The present city of Heraklion was founded in 824 by the Saracens after they had taken over the island from the Eastern Roman Empire. The Saracens allowed the port to be used as a safe haven for pirates who operated against Imperial shipping and raided Imperial territory around the Aegean Sea.

Through time the city has passed the Byzantine era, the Venetian era, the Ottoman era and the modern era as part of Greece.

Transportation on Heraklion


The international airport of Heraklion is named “Nikos Kazantzakis” and it is located 5km east of the city. It is the second busiest airport in Greece.


Heraklion is an important shipping port and ferry dock. Travellers can take ferries and boats from Heraklion to various destinations such as the islands of Mykonos, Santorini, Paros, Naxos, Ios, and Rhodes. There are ferries from and to Piraeus, the major port of Greece located in Attica near Athens, the capital of Greece.

Car Rental at Heraklion Approved by the Ministry of Tourism & the Greek National Tourism Organization
Car Rental at Stalis Approved by the Ministry of Tourism & the Greek National Tourism Organization