Home » Tours & Cruises » South Crete: Matala, Hippies Caves & Gortyn

South Crete: Matala, Hippies Caves & Gortyn

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Heraklion
April -October
Wednesday & Sunday
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Plans change and it is totally fine! All bookings can be modified or cancelled with a full refund, 48 hours before the departure date with no extra charge. Send your email to [email protected] with your request.

Trip highlights

Gortyn Site in Heraklion Crete
Visit the Archaeological Site of Gortys with a professional guide.
People Swim in Matala Heraklion
Spend a day at the iconic Hippies Beach in Matala.
Caves in Matala Hippies Village Crete
Explore the famous caves by the beach.
Matala Caves View South Crete tour Gortys Matala
Swim in the crystal-clear waters with a view of the Libyan Sea.
street in Matala Crete Heraklion
Explore the Village and get lunch by the sea

Overview

Tour to Matala Hippies Beach & Gortys Archaeological Site

A tour to Matala is a unique experience to meet the beauty of the southern Heraklion Region on a day trip filled with coastal charm and historical wonders. Swim in the crystal-clear waters of the Libyan Sea in Matala. Explore the renowned Caves of the Village, a sanctuary for hippies in the 60's and 70's. Take in panoramic views of the bay, and stroll through the village for shopping or lunch. Matala is a small village located on the southern coast of Crete. It gained fame in the 1960s and 1970s as a popular hippie destination. During this time, it became a symbol of the counterculture movement due to the influx of young travelers and hippies. They were attracted to its laid-back atmosphere, beautiful beaches, and the famous man-made caves carved into the cliffs. Matala Beach, with its crystal-clear waters and unique rock formations, has been a major draw for tourists and locals alike. The caves, originally carved by the Romans as tombs and later used as housing by hippies, have contributed significantly to the village's character and appeal.

Gortyn

Discover the ancient Roman capital of Crete at the archaeological site of Gortyn, dating back to 7000 BC. Gortyn, also known as Gortyna or Gortys, is an ancient archaeological site located in the south-central part of Crete, Greece. It was one of the most important cities in ancient Crete and played a significant role in the island's history. The site contains ruins from various historical periods, including the Minoan, Roman, and Byzantine eras. Gortyn is known for its well-preserved Roman Odeon, which was used for musical performances and political gatherings, and the remnants of a Basilica, which was once an important early Christian church. The site also features a famous inscription known as the Gortyn Law Code, which is one of the most extensive ancient Greek legal texts. It provides valuable insights into the legal system and social structure of ancient Crete. Book now online and get best rates!  
Duration of trip
Total Duration of the tour: 9-10 hours The trip duration varies depending on the location of your hotel.
Mobile ticketing
Simply present your digital voucher to either the guide or the driver, and they will be ready to assist you accordingly.
Pickup - Available
Pick-up and drop-off service are both included in the price of your booking. Our pick-up service covers different points, including hotels and bus stops. After making your booking, we will reach out to inform you about the specific location and time for the pick-up that is convenient for your accommodation.
Free cancellation
In order to obtain a full refund, it is necessary to cancel your reservation at least 48 hours before the scheduled event or booking.
Covid 19 requirements
Currently, there are no specific requirements for participating. However, if the government's COVID regulations mandate any specific requirements, we will contact you to inform you accordingly.

Tour schedule

07:00-8:55

Morning Pick-up:

Participants will be collected from designated pick-up points within the specified time frame. The exact pick-up time will be determined based on the location of your accommodation.

Embark on an unforgettable journey to the heart of southern Crete, where history and the majesty of the Mediterranean blend seamlessly to offer a day filled with discovery and enchantment.

Morning Exploration at Gortys Site Your adventure begins at the ancient Gortys Site, a cradle of Cretan civilization with a history that stretches back over 5000 years. Spend 1.5 hours wandering through ruins that whisper tales of eras gone by, from the Minoan age to Roman times. This archaeological gem offers a unique glimpse into the island's rich past, showcasing remnants of ancient laws, temples, and the life that once thrived here.

Scenic Journey to Matala Next, our comfortable bus will whisk you away on a scenic drive to the mesmerizing town of Matala, a place that captured the hearts of hippies in the 60s and 70s and continues to enchant visitors with its laid-back vibe and natural beauty. Here, you'll have over 4 hours of free time to immerse yourself in the allure of Matala. Dive into the crystal-clear waters of Hippies Beach, venture into the famous caves carved into the cliffs, and maybe even discover the echoes of music and freedom that still linger. Don't forget to treat yourself to a leisurely lunch by the sea, where the flavors of Crete come alive with every bite.

Tranquil Return Journey As the day winds down, settle back into the comfort of our bus for the return trip. The drive back offers a moment of reflection as you pass by the breathtaking landscapes of southern Crete, a perfect time to reminisce about the day's experiences and the timeless beauty you've witnessed.

Join us for a day where history, culture, and natural splendor come together, creating memories that will last a lifetime.

17:00-18:00

Upon the conclusion of the tour, participants will board the buses and head back to their respective points, where they were originally picked up in the morning. The duration of the return journey to each hotel may vary depending on traffic conditions and the individual pick-up locations for each participant.

Extra information

Included
  • Hotel pick-up and drop-off.
  • Travel in comfort aboard our air-conditioned bus, driven by a professionally trained driver.
  • Experienced tour guide to provide insightful information during the bus drive.
  • Licensed guide to make a tour in Gortyna Archaeological Site.
  • All applicable taxes and legal fees.
  • Participants covered by Public Liability Insurance.
Not Included
  • Archaeological Site Entrance: 6€
  • Entrance to the caves: 4€
  • Food & Beverages
What To Bring
  • Hat / Sunglasses / Sunscreen
  • Swimsuit / Beachtowel
  • Comfortable shoes
Know before you go
  • Your tour guide will be there to assist you during the entire day.
  • The beach area in Matala is well organized, featuring amenities such as umbrellas, restrooms, showers, a lifeguard service, first aid facilities, snack bars, water sports options, excursion boats, and more.
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Great experience. The best service I have recieved in Greece. Fully recomendable ++ Special mention to the staff Mania who made our experience the best in class. Thanks
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Thomas Bell | May 2023
What a lovely place! The island is well known for its cosmopolitan lifestyle and this tour is an affordable way to take a taste from Mykonos! We didn't want the day to be over, but it did with overall satisfaction. The ride to Mykonos is by the fastest boat in the Mediterranean and it is so exciting to have experienced also that.
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alice_mitchel1989 | July 2021
I am very happy to my trips in Greece especially going to Santorini. You are so very helpful and GOOD SERVICE! Will surely visit Greece again and contact you again. Thank you very much ISLAND SPY! 💙
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