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Chania's harbour is magnificent. It's easy to see why the Venetians and Turks built their great and beautiful cities here. But it's not just the harbour or the best places to stay in Chania that'll impress you - looking westwards from Chania's harbour you'll see mile upon mile of beautiful, sandy beach, dotted here and there with resort facilities.
Chania's Old Town spreads out from the harbour, along a maze of narrow alleys squeezing between houses. The harbour area has been built and rebuilt so many times it's a fascinating mish-mash of architectural styles and eras, but together the impression is charming.
In addition to the beautiful Old Town, Chania also has an impressive Archaeological Museum, a Naval Museum and several other museums. And loads of interesting churches. And an olive press. All explaining why Chania is one of the best places to stay in Crete for culture vultures!
The Venetian port is one of the local highlights and one of the most picturesque ports in the country. These days the main activity here is people frequenting the little cafes, bars and restaurants, but don't be too worried this is a tourist trap, it's also a popular spot for locals, and it's a lovely place to stroll around in the evening.
Chania has a lively artisans quarter - get your Cretan rugs and blankets, jewellery, art and ceramics at Carmela, your leather on the Leather Street: Odhós Skrídhlof, and your food from the Public Market. And Chania is also known for having some of the best restaurants on Crete.
Chania is also a popular destination for trekkers and walkers because it's the closest large town to Samaria Gorge.
Our pick of the best places to stay in Chania are a charming collection of boutique style properties, mainly in the Old Town and most of which won't break the bank. For those who think they'd rather rent a villa or apartment we suggest you visit our online partner, Booking.com.
For the history
Chania is the ideal base if you want to visit Polyrinia, one of the most fortified towns in ancient Greece. It's also home to a historic market and impressive Archaeological Museum.
- History buffs may find one of the best places to stay in Chania is Metohi Kindelis, an antique Venetian farm converted into manor-house-hotel.
For the beaches
If you're here for the beaches make sure you include Golden Beach on your list, it's often been voted one of the best in Chania, with the golden sands and clear, shallow waters that make for great family beaches.
- One of the best places to stay in Chania for beach lovers is the Minoa Palace Resort and Spa - which is actually just up the beautiful beach from town. More than comfortable, this hotel is boxy, modern and colourful, built around a huge pool - which you may never use, as the beach is so close by and so lovely!
For a boutique break
If you're looking for somewhere really special to stay consider 17th Century Venetian mansion, Casa Delfino. Grand in the great Venetian traditions, but also opulent by modern ones, this 24 room townhouse is right in the heart of the Old Town, so one of the best places to stay in Chania if you want to be in the centre of the action.
Chania on a Budget
- If you want friendly and comfortable in the heart of town, Nostos is a good bet. Rooms are studio style, but some have galleries or balconies looking out onto the harbour. And all starting from less than £50 per night.
- Splanzia Hotel is more traditional, and almost as affordable, with lots of rustic charm. There's a cosy bar and lots of nice features in the rooms, and the courtyard is lovely. If you're looking for value chic, this is definitely one of the best places to stay in Chania.
Chania with your Family
- The choice of two of four bed suites - all which have mini kitchens, make the Pandora Suites one of the best places to stay in Chania for families. Plus the views from the roof terrace are unforgettable. Built in the 1870s this unique property is bright, light and breezy with plenty of traditional charm.
For a holiday villa or apartment
- If you've decided that a villa or apartment would suit you better, then check out the wide range with our online partner, Booking.com.
Still not sure which to book? Browse through our list of all the best places to stay in Chania, or call, or email, one of our gurus for advice. Alternatively take at look at all our recommendations on Crete.
Best Hotels in Chania
Porto Antico 11 rooms from $71Chania (Crete)
Built in 1659 Porto Antico is a stay amidst history. Location, service and price are this waterfront hotel's big selling points. For those looking for a short break in the heart of Chania, or a base for exploring, it offers an excellent compromise between style and affordability.Families - Family suites and even the dog is allowed - plus you're walking distance from the beachValue chic - Excellent value for such facilities -Views - Overlooking the Venetian harbour with romantic backstreets.Local markets - The Old Town's bustling market are a must
Bozzali Hotel 10 rooms from $75Chania (Crete)
Cloistered hideaway on a narrow, bougainvillea-lined lane in one of Chania's quietest enclaves. Ideal for anyone looking for a calm retreat within easy walking distance of its shopping streets and sights. Acclaimed restaurant is a bonus for foodies. What it lacks in mod-cons it makes up in charm.Local exploring - Chania Town is on your doorstep and the beach is but a ten minute walkValue chic - A quaint little property in the heart of town at an inviting priceFoodies - Bozzali restaurant is a favourite with tourists and localsGreat walks - The old Venetian Harbour is within walking distance
Vilelmine Hotel 10 rooms from $77Chania (Crete)
Gracious 19th century townhouse overlooking a palm-lined square and Chania's grand Panagia Trimartiri cathedral. Providing whimsical interiors - four-poster beds and juliette balconies - for visiting couples as well as practical family suites. Excellent value and a great location.Local exploring - Walking distance from Chania's harbour, shops and cafes, and the beachValue chic - Utterly charming accommodation at an inviting priceViews - On the north side overlook the metropolitan town square and the south side overlook the colourful Betolo st.Local markets - Chania's myriad of market stalls, shops and cafes are on your doorstep
Vamos Traditional Village 51 rooms from $83Chania
A shining example of how to do low-impact tourism. Vamos is a collection of locally owned self-catering accommodation in and around a sleepy village. Interiors are comfortable and rustic and many feature private pools. Stunning views of the White Mountains are thrown in too. Ideal for families.Families - Private villa accommodation, perfect for familiesValue chic - Charming villas available at an inviting priceCooking classes - Traditional cooking courses housed in an old olive mill are a popular activityGreat walks - Guided walks are on offer to learn more of the local history, folklore etc.
Halepa Hotel 49 rooms from $84Chania
Secure parking and an easy-to-find location on the outskirts of Chania make Halepa Hotel ideal for couples looking for a night or two close to the airport, or a base for exploring western Crete by car. Period rooms include shiny silks and patterned wallpaper; some include separate living areas.Value chic - Excellent value for period charmLocal markets - The charming market town of Chania is on your doorstepSwimming Pool - Outdoor pool
Ionas Boutique Hotel 9 rooms from $93Chania (Crete)
Tucked away on a pedestrian square full of potted shrubs and flowering trees, five minutes walk from Chania's Venetian harbour, Ionas Boutique Hotel suits couples and single visitors looking for a quiet haven from which to explore the old town. Rooms range from comfortable to luxurious. Good value.Local exploring - Perfectly located for exloring Chania's Old Town. 100 yrds from the harbour.Local markets - Chania's thriving market stalls are within walking distanceFull of character - Transport yourself to ages past.
Alcanea Boutique Hotel 8 rooms from $96Chania (Crete)
It's all about attention to detail at Alcanea. Literally a stone's throw from the harbour, rooms enjoy superb views. Café society is on your doorstep, so hip couples will love it plus there's a trendy bar and sumptuous local breakfast on offer. Chic interiors for the trendy traveller.Sights nearby - Firkas Fortress and Chania Old Venetian Harbour are within walking distance.Sailing - Embark on one of Captain Nick's glass bottom boatsGreat walks - Just a 300m stroll to Nea Chora beachViews - All rooms have harbour views
Splanzia Hotel 8 rooms from $92Chania
A traditional hotel with lots of rustic charm. Elegant rooms have stone floors, wooden furniture, and private balconies. Gorgeous terraces and courtyard. Cosy bar and walking distance to restaurants. Great value in a central location.Value chic - A cool vibe at a great priceSights nearby - Byzantine monasteries of Ayia Triada.Great walks - Samaria gorge.Views - Great views from hotelRecommended by - I Escape
Pandora Suites 14 rooms from $94Chania (Crete)
This townhouse turned boutique self-catering option has fabulous harbour views from the pretty roof terrace. The rooms are light and breezy, and generous with two or four beds. Enjoy the luxury of a mini kitchen for self-catering. Great spot for local exploring, beach and nightlife. Family friendly!Local exploring - Situated right in the old town, within easy walking distance of the port and the main shopping and eating spots.Groups - These spacious and charming self catering apartments, of 2-4 beds, are ideal for groups travelling together.Great walks - Wander the streets of Chania’s Old Town, full of hidden treasures and charming spots.Sights nearby - Check out the historic Venetian Harbour and its famed lighthouse.
Nostos Hotel 12 rooms from $102Chania (Crete)
These colourful and simple self-catering apartments are in the hub of the Old Town of Chania. Good value studio rooms with views of the harbour make for a great base. Do not miss sunset from the roof terrace before stepping out to explore the local restaurants and bars.Local exploring - Ideally located for exploring the historic old town, full of historic buildings, food markets and jewllery shops.Sights nearby - The stunning Venetian harbour and lighthouse can be seen from the terrace and is a short walking distance.Local markets - Just a few minutes walk from the main markets and leather shops of the old town.Seaside - Ideal for a seaside holiday.
Ontas Fatma Hanoum 6 rooms from $133Chania (Crete)
It's all about the vibe at Ontas Fatma Hanoum. No cliché blue and white paint here, but an ice-cream palette that wouldn't look out of place in Havana or Marrakech. Bohemian hipsters feel right at home. The roof terrace and colourful bar are a real draw - as is the food! A unique little find.Local exploring - Set back just two streets from the harbour it is perfectly situated for exploring Chania's Old TownSights nearby - Etz Hayyim Synagogue is just a few steps awaySailing - Glass bottom boats are available to charterGreat walks - Along the popular Golden Beach
Elia Zampeliou Boutique Hotel 8 rooms from $168Chania (Crete)
Small waterfront hotel that stands out from the Chania old town crowd by virtue of slick modern décor, up-to-the minute facilities and a level of professional service that you'd expect from a larger luxury hotel. Ideal for couples after a romantic getaway (children are not accommodated).Romantic Break - Chic rooms, rooms with views and best of all - grown ups only!Views - Views of the Old Harbour and Old Town from some of the bedrooms.Restrictions on children - Children cannot be accommodated at this hotelGreat walks - Along the harbour and Old Town
Monastery Boutique Hotel 6 rooms from $171Chania (Crete)
The ancient arches and stone walls of this former monastery's entrance courtyard belie the slick, minimalist public spaces and bedrooms within. With its own off-street parking (rare in Chania's old town), it makes a fabulous base for explorers. A charming courtyard garden completes the package.Local exploring - Chania Town is on your doorstepDiving - Glass-bottom boat and snorkeling cruises from Chania harbour are a great activityGreat walks - Chania Old Town and its harbour are within viewLocal markets - Chania's markets are within a short walk
La Maison Ottomane 3 rooms from $157Chania (Crete)
Staying in this restored Venetian mansion is more like being a guest in a rather splendid private home than in a hotel. With just three bedrooms, La Maison Ottomane appeals to those looking for a peaceful cocoon in a quiet corner of the old town.Sights nearby - 100yrds to the scenic Venetian Harbour.Sailing - Organise a private boat tourGreat walks - Botanical GardensFishing - Fishing trips
Minoa Palace Resort and Spa 254 rooms from $157Chania (Crete)
A modern North Western Crete resort and spa, surrounded by acres of lush landscaped gardens. The modern rooms boast private balconies overlooking the bay, gardens or pool. There are many dining options from Greek to Italian and the four bars serve up wonderful cocktails.Families - Parents chill by the pool while the youngsters make the most of the kids club, childrens playground and entertainment staff.Total relaxation - Relax to the max with hot tub, hammam, sauna, aromatherapy treatments and hot stone massages.Swimming Pool - Luxury Indoor and outdoor poolsLively - Hip and happening.
Ambassador's Residence 9 rooms from $230Chania (Crete)
A blend of serious style with accessibility for guests with mobility issues - unusual in Chania. Housed in a 19th century mansion, Ambassador's Residence is an amalgamation of old and new - rustic style meets modern amenities with exposed stone and espresso machines. Boasts prime harbour views.Local exploring - You won't find a better location - overlooking Chania's harbour and stumbling distance from its bars and cafesSights nearby - Venetian harbour & Mosque of Kioutsouk HassanLocal markets - Chania's Saturday market is a thriving affairSailing - Charter a private boat for a romantic dinner
Casa Delfino 24 rooms from $197Chania (Crete)
Beautifully restored 17th Century Chania mansion, in the heart of town. Venetian style grandeur, with contemporary opulence in all the unique 22 suites. Intimate and luxurious with fantastic views and a great spa. Walking distance to Chania's best restaurants and main attractions. A charming haven.Honeymoons - The honeymoon suite oozes romance with sumptuous linens, roof terrace boasting panoramic views of the harbour and a jacuzzi tub.Total relaxation - A pampering massage, followed by a steam in the Hammam are sure to work off all that sight seeing stress.Great walks - The harbour is a fantastic spot for an evening stroll, full of activity all the way down to the lighthouse.Local markets - Chania has plenty to offer with tonnes of leather and jewellery shops plus its famed covered food market.Recommended by - I Escape
Metohi Kindelis 3 rooms from $198Chania (Crete)
Beautiful terracotta farmhouse dating from 1650, with central courtyard and lush gardens. Stunning self catering apartments marry old and new with admirable elegance. Fridges are daily stocked with wonderful organic produce from the hotels orchards. Privacy, style and a truly homely feel.Back to Nature - Situated in a secluded walled garden, brimming with flowers, palms and euclyptus trees and surrounded by lush organic orchards.Romantic Break - A wonderfully peaceful couples hideaway, with high walls surrounding private gardens with pool and al fresco dining, heaven!Cooking classes - Join the Tastes of Crete cooking class, on Tuesday and Saturday mornings, followed by a lavish wine filled lunch.Sights nearby - Explore Chania, with its lovely Venetian-era fishing harbour ringed with cafes and tavernas.Recommended by - I Escape