on CMessaras valley in Central Crete is not only a home to some of the best Cretan wines but a cradle for the world-famous myths – a myth of about abduction of Europe and a myth of the Minotaur and Labyrinth.
Whirlwind mountain road takes us down to ancient Gortyn – the legendary birthplace of Europe. God Zeus abducted princess Europa in a form of white bull and right here, in Gortyn, their union took place. Gortyn - the former Crete’s Roman capital, an archeological site nowadays, alongside number of ancient temples, is also known for its oldest Christian church on Crete and its unique code of law.
Exotic-sounding vilana, kostifali, vidiano are only some of the Cretan indigenous grape varieties. Wine making in Crete can be traced down to antiquity and quite few Cretan winemakers have managed to produce excellent, award-winning wines. On of them – the renowned family-owned winery where we will enjoy the winetasting and learning the wine production.
Lunch in a truly authentic small family-owned village tavern.
The legend says that the Labyrinth cave in is the very same labyrinth of the Minotaur – half man, half bull. Minoan King Minos asked Deadalus to build a prison for the beast, to be hidden. So, he made a Labyrinth. Nowadays, the visitors can have a glimpse of the cave and well imagine the maze of labyrinth through the guide’s story.
Highlights of the Tour
On the final note we love taking our visitors to Zaros village – an attractive village famous for its spring water, which are now bottled and sold all over Crete. An opportunity to recharge with a cup of well-brewed Greek coffee.
The roundtrip from Heraklion takes about 2.5 hours; it is a full-day tour.