Driving in Crete- What to be Aware of

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Driving in Crete- What to be Aware of

Crete is altogether an excellent vacation destination. Our island is one of the biggest in Greece and driving in Crete will be for sure a task that you have to do in order to explore our island’s deserted beaches, remote romantic areas and so many others. Platanias Ariston Executive hotel has compiled a useful list on the things that you need to be aware of when driving in Crete. This useful guide will make your vacation more stress free and you will also avoid mistakes that can harm your precious vacation memories.

Driving In Crete: The essentials.

When driving in Crete you have to use common sense. What applies to your home country will 100% apply to Greece as well. That means that you have to always obey traffic signs, traffic lights, double lines, intersection laws and give the right of way to the lane that has priority. If you bear in mind those essentials – just like you do everywhere in the world- you will be safe driving in Crete as well.

Driving in Crete- Chora Sfakion road
Driving in Crete- Chora Sfakion -South Crete- Miguel Virkkunen Carvalho Road To Hora Sfakion Winding road down the mountains he

Be extra careful during the night time.

You have to give extra caution during nighttime. Obviously drinking and driving is strongly prohibited and although illegal , we have seen locals disobey this rule so you have to be careful of other road users as well.

You have to also be extremely focused on remote areas as road quality might not be perfect and especially on some picturesque villages that you will certainly see during your vacation in Chania, lighting may not be present on every small road that you follow. This by any means doesn’t mean that driving in Crete is a dangerous task, but you will definitely have to pay a little more caution than usual, especially during night time.

Through our experience all these years we have found out that pick up trucks tend to have minor accidents more often. You have to pay extra caution when seeing pickup trucks loaded with cattle, animal food or whatever because the load may fall off at some point and damage your rental car . The same rule obviously applies to big heavy trucks and lorries you may see when on vacation in Crete.

Speed Cameras.

Greek Police, in order to make our roads safer, have established some speed cameras throughout our main road network. Those speed cameras can capture who is speeding on the highways and then punish you with a hefty fine, even if you are a tourist with a rental car. We strongly advise you to never overtake in places that you shouldn’t do and never drive more than the designated speed limit.

As a rule of thumb, the speed limit to the highways (Green road signs) will be close to 80-90 klm maximum depending on the area, whereas on the motorways (blue road signs) the speed limit may be as little as 60 in some cases. This means that as a driver in Crete you have to always consult the traffic signs and adjust your car’s speed accordingly to that. Obviously this is not a money/ fine issue but it is a matter of public safety and respecting the laws.

Speed Cameras Crete
Driving in Crete- Be careful of the speed cameras! – davepakuPoint to Point Speed CamerasCC BY-SA 2.0 

Comply with public services.

Especially during the busy summer months police activity is strong. It is very common to see police on the road, regular police road checks and other public services being alerted 24/7. You have to also comply with police authorities and stop to the policeman signals if this happens to you on any road in Crete.

Also, when you see an ambulance, police car, or fire truck with its lights flashing and sirens on you have to step over to the emergency lane in order to let the freely pass. In any other cases it is prohibited to use the emergency lanes because they are designated for specific emergency circumstances.

Police car in Greece- Greek public service-
Typical Greek Police Car when driving in Crete- Greek Public Services- Maxim ReniţaGreek Police Jeep PatriotCC BY-SA 4.0 

If in doubt, remember to ask for help.

We , at Platanias Ariston Executive Hotel understand that you are a tourist and at some stage you may get lost, have doubts or think that you are in a precarious situation. You have to always remember that Greek public safety services are here to help you, so we insist that you seek help when needed, even if this is consulting a parked police car, asking directions or road assistance. Public servants will always be there to help you, and we also insist to save our public services numbers on your phone just in case you need them someday. We wish you a bon voyage!

Vacation in Chania - Platanias Beach - Platanias Ariston Executive Hotel
Vacation in Chania – Platanias Beach – Platanias Ariston Executive Hotel