Come, visit a community who shares its soul with tourists without selling that soul to Tourism.
Villa Koukouvayia rests at the perfect apex between the quiet of Crete’s rural villages and the amenities of the larger Cretan towns. Church bells count her hours, roosters call across the valley toward the dawn, but within walking distance from her gate the farming village of Kaloudiana bustles with an excellent taverna, a modern cafe and a traditional kafenio, groceries, a gift shop, and the public-transit bus stop connecting the entire island. Only three kilometers further west is Kissamos, a year-round agricultural town with bakers, grocers, Roman baths & mosaics, Venetian fountains, and Minoan foundations hiding among its narrow streets. Kissamos boasts a robust tourist infrastructure of cafés, excellent restaurants, and beautiful beaches, but as a town whose primary purpose resides in the harvesting of the area’s several million olive trees, Kissamos, retains its authentic character for all to share.
And located on the foothills of western Crete’s northern shore, just above where the Gramvousa and Rodopou peninsulas project dramatically into the Aegean to form the Gulf of Kissamos, Villa Koukouvayia sits close enough to the famous sand-beaches of Crete to see and hear surf, yet far enough to remain isolated from the touristed areas that dot the waterfront. With the Aegean sea before her, the mountains and gorges behind, the Tyflos River Valley at her side, and a charming constellation of villages nearby, Villa Koukouvayia, rests—like the owl after which she is named and who shares her sky at night—in a perfect position to enjoy, undisturbed, the beauty of the wide world of this wonderful island.
And less than a half-hour drive or bus ride from Villa Koukouvayia is Chania, the historic Venetian, Turkish and Greek city offering an array of shops, museums, outdoor theaters, a café-lined harbor, and an historic Old Town of cobbled alleys and walks
Also nearby are the natural areas made famous on countless Greek calendars—a short and beautiful drive to the famous, white-sand lagoons of Balos & Elafonisi or the pink sands of Phalasarna, an hour to the Omalos Plateau & Samaria Gorge’s dramatic trailhead, and a few minutes more to the spectacular cliffs and land-locked villages of the southern coast.
But losing oneself to the charms of Villa Koukouvayia does not mean getting lost or spending half your holiday arriving and the other half departing. Major air transport, car-rental, and ferry hubs are forty-five minutes from Koukouvayia’s gate. Kissamos has a small, 24/7 emergency clinic, and Chania boasts three hospitals, two are advanced private clinics providing excellent care, including emergencies. And despite our rural charm, shopkeepers and most locals speak enough English to help, and will—upon hearing even one Greek word escape your lips in even the most fumbled pronunciation—pat your back and sing your praise.
The authenticity of this welcoming culture, with its quiet, stunning landscapes and the rich, four-season recreational opportunities that it shares, all support explorations by families, friends & friendships, as you step just beyond Villa Koukouvayia’s gates, and into the heart of Crete itself.
Click here to see Villa Koukouvayia’s Location on Crete.
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