Chersonissos(updated August 4, 2007)
Chersonissos is a beach resort at about 25 kilometers east of Heraklion. The place was originally the port of the village with the same name, which lays a little further inland. The official name of the current Chersonissos is Limin Chersonísou, in which Limin means port.
Chersonissos is the place where most young Dutch travelers who visit the island stay. Every year, there are many tens of thousands of them. The entire local middle class is set to tourists and the Dutch nightlife. Englishmen can be found in the nearby Malia. In Chersonissos there are many hotels and apartment buildings. In the vicinity are many big resorts built to be able to accommodate all the tourists.
In Chersonissos you can find anything a tourist can wish, unless you want rest and culture. There are dozens of shops, restaurants, terraces, bars and other entertainment. There are cars, scooters and quads for hire and excursions can be arranged in dozens of different places in the village. There is an abundance of internet cafes and arcades. Along the beach you can rent jet skis and you can make a trip on a 'banana' or fly behind a boat using a parasail.
There are several beaches in Chersonissos. One lies right at the boulevard (Agias Paraskevis street) from the center and is quite narrow. The other beach is a little more to the west; this beach is a little wider but in the summer terrible crowded. Even more to the west are larger beaches which are generally among to the big tourist resorts. Just east of Chersonissos you can find thee free accessible, Star Beach Waterpark. Here are a variety of activities on the water, but you can also bungee jump, for example.
To cool down in the summer you can find lots of terraces along the boulevard at daytime. Here you can go for snacks or a beer or something similar, usually for a reasonable price. Often there are also large televisions which will be broadcast sports, such as Formula-1 or English football. By the evening the terraces change into restaurants. From about six o'clock you can go there for a hot meal. Greeks are used to eat late, so until eleven you can still join. In the meantime, it is nearly impossible to relax on the boulevard. In front of almost every terrace waiters try to talk you inside. At night exactly the same happens, but on the other side of the street, where the entertainment is set. There are several big clubs, but also some smaller cafes. Everything is focused on the Dutch market and therefore the clubs often seem the same to those found in the Netherlands. The music choice is the same as the music which you can find in the Dutch charts. Clubs bear names like: Amnesia, Aria, Bio Bio (TMF), Camelot, Cameo, Fox Pub, 'T hof van Holland and New York.
In the cultural sphere, there is virtually nothing to do in Chersonissos. There is an old church and on the rocks at the fishing port lays an ancient mosaic floor. Because of the easy access you can travel by bus to virtually anywhere in Crete soon from Chersonissos.
In the hills above Chersonissos a number of smaller towns can be found. You can walk up to them. From east to west you'll find Koutouloufari, Piskopiano and Ano Chersonissos. You can best reach the villages from the east of Chersonissos. Just follow the path which is signed with a sign 'traditional housing. At the end of this road you'll find Koutouloufari. From Koutouloufari you can walk in a westerly direction to Piskopiano. Ano Chersonissos you'll find further to the west. All roads toward the sea end in Chersonissos. You can of course also go to these towns by taxi. This'll cost you a few euro's a taxi. The villages are all full of tourists, but are slightly calmer than Chersonissos. From the roof terraces from restaurants in Piskopiano you have a great view of Chersonissos.