ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Ecotourism and Agrotourism in Crete

Updated on May 12, 2016
Carolina Crete profile image

Carolina lives on the Greek island of Crete, has published a guide book, and runs a website about living in Crete.

Ecotourism is environmentally responsible tourism, supporting nature, cultural heritage and contributing to the local community, Travellers should be encouraged to minimise their impact on the eco system and support green practices.

Agrotourism - or agritourism - is an expansion of ecotourism in which visitors are encouraged to partake in farming and agricultural activities.

Ecotourism in Crete

The beautiful and diverse island of Crete has much to offer in the way of nature, flora and fauna, archaeological treasures, history, customs and traditions. The old ways of life still prevail in the mountain villages, with Cretans working and living off their land and livestock in many areas.

Although mass tourism and development have made a great (negative) impact on the island's environment (many areas along the North coast in particular, have become over developed), the heart of Crete remains and holidays in the ‘real’ Crete are popular amongst the environmentally aware. Renting a village house or farm helps to support the local community and encourages the preservation of architectural heritage through the renovation of old buildings.

Eco Activities

Crete has much to offer in sustainable tourism through her nature and cultural heritage such as:

  • Gorges, mountains - hiking
  • Flora and fauna – the protection of Crete's abundant wild flowers, and species such as the kri kri (wild mountain goat), the caretta caretta sea turtle and the bearded vulture.
  • The local cuisine. Many village tavernas serve only home grown organic vegetables, cheeses and hand reared meat
  • Visits to local co-operatives, including olive oil factories, folklore museums, craft workshops, wine producers.

Eco Awareness

Preserving Local Resources

Water and electricity resources are stretched to their limit on the island during the peak tourism months of July and August.

Environmentally aware visitors should limit, and not waste, their water consumption. The vast majority of rental properties on the island have air conditioning and visitors should be encouraged to use them efficiently and minimally (close all doors and windows when in use. Never leave the air con on when going out). In the case of solar hot water heating, showers should be taken later in the day when the sun has heated the hot water.

Recycling Flytipping (the illegal dumping of waste) has historically been a large problem in Crete - unwanted household furniture and appliances among other things, would routinely be dumped in the countryside or down a hillside. Fortunately the local municipalities have more recently taken measures to address this problem and provide a heavy waste collection service to citizens. This, along with the education of the younger generations, has helped with the clean up of the countryside.

The local municipalities also encourages the recycling of paper, cans and bottles.There are recycling bins in many locations in all municipalities, but often not in smaller villages. Batteries can also be recycled at electrical and mobile phone shops in the towns.

Agrotourism in Crete

Agritourism activities in Crete, in which visitors can participate include:

  • Orange picking (January to March )
  • Picking and treading the grapes for wine making (September),
  • The making of raki - also called tsikoudia -the local firewater. Distilled from the must of the grapes ( October, November)
  • Olive picking (November to February - depending on local weather conditions and the area)


Base your stay off the beaten track in a renovated house in one of the many mountain villages, or rent a charming cottage by the sea.

Pure Crete provides holidays in houses and villas in Crete, in Cretan villages at the foothills of the White Mountains in western Crete. Some have been restored from dereliction by Pure Crete in co-operation with local families using traditional building methods. Your stay contributes to the livelihood of the local community and supports the local culture.

They offer walking holidays with botanical experts, list local festivals on their website and have an autumn environmental week when you get to see olive presses in action and grapes being gathered for local wine.

The Milia Settlement is a restored stone built settlement in the mountains of western Crete. The owners farm the land around the guest houses and all edible fruit and vegetables end up in the kitchen of the taverna, while their remnants and other plants feed the animals, who in turn provide milk and cheese, meat, leather, wool and manure. Solar energy provides electric power, along with candles for lighting.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • Jennifer Madison profile image

      Jennifer Madison 

      6 years ago from Lohmar

      Thanks for sharing!! I have never been to Crete but this article makes me want to go there to discover the beautiful island. As an "eco-friendly" tourist of course. :)

    • Theocharis V profile image

      Theocharis V 

      6 years ago from Piraeus, Greece

      Excellent Hub! Very informative, well written and about the most beautiful Greek siland. Thumbs Up!

    • Carolina Crete profile imageAUTHOR

      Carolina Crete 

      8 years ago from Crete, Greece

      Thanks for your comment OnlineHub.

      Crete has so much more to offer visitors than package holidays in the busy North coast resorts, which prompted this hub.. about the 'Real' Crete.

    • OnlineHub profile image


      8 years ago from Fresno, CA, USA

      Excellent information about Ecotourism and Agrotourism in Crete. I like reading your article and thanks for sharing it. 5* plus recommendation! You added beautiful pics too :-)


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)