The prefecture of Heraklion with a total surface area of 120 km2 is located between the prefectures of Rethymnon and Lasithi.
It is bordered on the east by the prefecture of Lassithi and on the west by the prefecture of Rethymnon, while north lays the Cretan Sea and south the Libyan Sea.
The prefecture has a surface area of 2,641 km2.
The capital of the prefecture is Heraklion.
The ground of the prefecture is for the most part flat and semi-mountainous.
It is the most densely populated prefecture of Crete and the city of Heraklion is the capital of the island.
During the census of population in 2001, the prefecture of Heraklion had 26 Municipalities, 194 Municipal Districts and 460 Settlements.
There are several mountains along with “Dikti” and “Kofina” mountains ranges which are the most important and also some plains. You can rent a car or motorbike from many shops in the city town and other well-developed tourist villages, or you can move around with the buses from all regions of the prefecture.
The city of Heraklion is the capital of the Prefecture and also of the region. It is the largest city center of the island. The city, built at the northern end of the prefecture, has been dominated by many conquerors and the periods of development and decline have been rotated several times, leaving their marks on the city’s characteristics.
So today, the structure of the city is particularly interesting through its contradictions. It combines the traditional with the modern, the old with the new element in a unique way.
During a city tour the visitor is able to see buildings of different time periods, monuments and modern architectural constructions, all situated in this diversified town. The city’s atmosphere has been mainly determined from the Venetian era. The Venetian harbor, with the fortress of Koules at its entrance, located to the left of the current harbor, is a good indication of the magnificence that the visitor will see when exploring the city.
In the city center, the square with the Morosini Fountain, the famous Lions, are the city’s most photographed sightseeing and the busiest hangout for both locals and visitors. Around the square there are many modern coffee bars, as well as traditional cafes where you can taste the traditional sweet “bougatsa”. The surrounding streets have a great commercial traffic with all kind of shops. You will find all the famous brands and all the traditional Cretan products. Close to the Morosini Fountain is the historic church of St. Mark, dating back to the 12th century.
In the same area is situated the Loggia, a Venetian building of the 16th-century where the town hall is housed. There, is also the church of Saint Titus, who is the patron saint of the island. It was founded during the Byzantine period and in the cathedral is kept the skull of St. Titus. A characteristic feature of the city is that it is surrounded by the Venetian walls, which were built in the 15th century. Significant attractions are the bastions of the walls and the gates of entry and exit of the city.
Out of the 7 bastions, the well preserved Martinego Bastion holds the grave of the author Nikos Kazantzakis, who upon his penalty of excommunication was not allowed to be buried in a cemetery. During your stay in the city of Heraklion, apart from the sightseeing of the historical monuments, it is worth visiting the museums (archaeological, historical, etc.), which exhibit real treasures of the cultural heritage of Crete. Music and dance have their own history in Crete.
The rhythm is in the blood of the Cretans and is apparent from the way they speak and improvise the mantinades (Cretan folk songs) in every circumstance. Thus, Heraklion could not be disregarded for its nightlife. The city offers many choices which satisfy every taste. Bars with Greek and international music, music halls with live traditional music, but also with modern rhythms. Certainly, the city’s restaurants serve fine recipes of Cretan cuisine that visitors can taste. The nearby beaches (Amoudara, Amnisos, Linoperamata) are an oasis of coolness after a city tour. Enjoy your stay in Heraklion and experience the unique attractions of the city and of the whole prefecture.
Useful Phone Numbers
|Emergency medical services-Ambulance (EKAB)||166 / 2810 222222|
|Fire Department of Heraklion – Kyprou square
|Venizeleio General Hospital – Knossou av.
|Academic Hospital (PAGNI) – Voutes
Greek Police and Security Services
|Security Department – Rolen 4
|Police Station A Heraklion – El. Venizelou Square
|Police Station B Heraklion – El. Venizelou Square
|Police Station Ag. Mironas||2810 721210|
|Airport Police Station||2810 245585|
|Market inspection Police Station – Tagm. Tzoulaki 2
|Road Τraffic Police Station – Tagm. Tzoulaki 2
|Tourist Police Station – Dikaiosinis 10
|Municipal Police Station – Daskalogiani square
||2810 334181 -5|
|Port Authority of Heraklion||2810 244912
|Forest Fire Prevention Center||191|
|Olympic Airways (Airport)||2810 245644|
|N. Kazantzakis Airport||2810 228402|
|Civil Aviation Authority – N. Kazantzakis Airport
|KTEL bus Heraklion-Lasithi – Port
|KTEL bus Chania-Rethymno – Port
|Post office Heraklion – Daskalogiani square
|Technical inspection of Vehicles (KTEO) Heraklion||2810 380352|
|Road Assistance ELPA (OVELPA)||104|
|Road Assistance EXPRESS SERVICE||154|
|Road Assistance HELLAS SERVICE||1057|
|Road Assistance INTERAMERICAN||1158|
|Vikelaia Library||2810 399269
|Kazantzakis Theatre||2810 242977|
|Archaeological Museum||2810 279000|
|Historical Museum||2810 283219|
|Museum of Battle of Crete||2810 346554|
|N. Kazantzakis Museum||2810 741689|
|Municipal Gallery||2810 399228|
|Municipal Philharmonic of Heraklion and Philharmonic School||2810-341261, 229857|
Emergency medical services-Ambulance (EKAB) = 166 / 2810 222222
Police = 100
Fire Department of Heraklion – Kyprou square = 199
Venizeleio General Hospital – Knossou av. = 2810 368000-29
Academic Hospital (PAGNI) – Voutes = 2810 392111
Greek Police and Security Services
Security Department – Rolen 4 = 2810 282316
Police Station A Heraklion – El. Venizelou Square = 2810 282243
Police Station B Heraklion – El. Venizelou Square = 2810 284589
Police Station Ag. Mironas = 2810 721210
Airport Police Station = 2810 245585
Market inspection Police Station – Tagm. Tzoulaki 2 = 2810 282817
Road Τraffic Police Station – Tagm. Tzoulaki 2 = 2810 282031
Tourist Police Station – Dikaiosinis 10 = 2810 283190
Municipal Police Station – Daskalogiani square = 2810 334181 -5
Port Authority of Heraklion = 2810 244912 or 108
Forest Fire Prevention Center = 191
Olympic Airways (Airport) = 2810 245644
N. Kazantzakis Airport = 2810 228402
Civil Aviation Authority – N. Kazantzakis Airport = 2810 397800
KTEL bus Heraklion-Lasithi – Port = 2810 245019
KTEL bus Chania-Rethymno – Port = 2810 221765
Post office Heraklion – Daskalogiani square = 2810 234468
Technical inspection of Vehicles (KTEO) Heraklion = 2810 380352
Road Assistance ELPA (OVELPA) = 104
Road Assistance EXPRESS SERVICE = 154
Road Assistance HELLAS SERVICE = 1057
Road Assistance INTERAMERICAN = 1158
Knossos = 2810 231940
Vikelaia Library = 2810 399269 & 2810 301543
Kazantzakis Theatre = 2810 242977
Archaeological Museum = 2810 279000
Historical Museum = 2810 283219
Museum of Battle of Crete = 2810 346554
N. Kazantzakis Museum = 2810 741689
Municipal Gallery = 2810 399228
Municipal Philharmonic of Heraklion and Philharmonic School = 2810-341261, 229857