The Nikos Kazantzakis airport or Heraklion International Airport first opened in March 1939 and was named after a local Greek writer and Philosopher Nikos Kazantzakis. The airport is the main airport servicing the island of Crete and is located about 5km east of Heraklion city centre. It is the second busiest airport in Greece, after Athens International Airport. There is currently a huge project underway to move the airport to a new site at Kastelli, this is a €1 billion project and is expected to be completed in 2015. This new airport will replace the existing airport, and will cater for up to 10 million passengers per year.
More About Heraklion Airport
Crete airport car rental can be hectic during the summer months, with flights landing at similar times and everyone queuing for their car. The best advice we can give you is to have your rental car pre-booked for Crete and to send one of your group out to get in the queue asap for the car, otherwise you could be waiting an hour when all you want do it get on the road! The car rental desks can be found in the arrivals hall, and the car rental companies include Auto Union, Avis, Budget, Europcar, Hertz, Holiday Autos, Olympic Car Rentals and Sixt rent a car. Car Booker compares all these brands to ensure that you get the best price for your rental car.
Crete is the biggest of the Greek island and a very popular holiday destination, particularly in summer time when you have a large number of charter flights going to and from the airport which include transfers as part of a package. However, if you choose not to rent a car and you are not part of a package tour, then you have a few choices to getting to your destination from the airport; bus or taxi or shuttle. No trains operate from Heraklion airport. Resort Hoppa operates from the airport to the popular resorts of Hersonissos and Malia. A taxi to Heraklion costs about €12 (see this link for all other destination prices)
Crete is bigger than you think, the coastline is more than 1000kms with expanses of soft sand, warms waters and endless sunshine but you will need a rental car if you want to explore. Beaches should be top of the ‘to do’ list. For a busy fun beach try Malia, or for quiet go to Aghios Nikolaos or Rethymnon beach. This mountainous island is perfect for adrenaline junkies with lots of opportunity for rock climbing, biking, canoeing in the gorges – check out the famous Samaria Gorge. Also, not to be missed are Knossos, Ayios Nikolaos, one of the prettiest towns with twin harbours, or Hania with its Venetian harbour and great shopping, eating and museums.