Heraklion is the capital of Crete, and its largest city. Travelers can walk amongst ancient ruins, relax on its white beaches, and shop in some of the best designer stores in Greece.
Markets aren’t hard to find in Heraklion. Saturday is the main market day and the crowds can be large, so plan ahead. Also be prepared to barter. Vendors rarely list the price of the goods they’re selling, so bring your negotiating skills. At the markets, you can buy olive oil, herbs, clothes, ceramics, jewelry, and raki, an anise-flavored alcohol that’s popular with the locals. Try the cretan cheese, which is made in this area, and is a staple of Heraklion residents’ diets. Cheese afficianados can find several different varities. From graviera and kefalotyri to anthotyro, mizythra, and staka. Grapes, olives, and juices are also fresh and top quality. Honey is another popular purchase. Some stores sell decorative jars of local honey topped with walnuts and almonds. Stop by Agora, an open air market, and a great place to shop for local produce. Whether you’re on the hunt for a new vase, an outfit, or out for a bite to eat, you’ll find what you’re looking for on the streets of Heraklion.
Ocean Village is a popular shopping district in Heraklion. It’s similar to an American mall with several levels of stores. Shoppers can find well-known designers like Prada, DKNY, Chanel, and Hugo Boss, just to name a few. The items are tax free, but they can be expensive. Besides clothes, you’ll find plenty of high-end perfume, cologne, watches, diamonds, and jewelry. After Ocean Village, head down Platia El Venizelou Street toward Porta Chania. This area is filled with clothing stores, butchers, florists, restaurants, and markets. Unlike Ocean Village, you’ll be able to walk outside along the streets of Heraklion.
Heraklion is no stranger to tourists. As in other vacation destinations in Greece, vendors sell a wide variety of souvenirs. You can find shirts, postcards, and mugs, as well as handmade ceramics, local artwork, spices, and nuts. The scenery around Heraklion is remarkable. Take advantage of the views and take plenty of pictures. You’ll be amazed by the clear blue water and breathtaking sunrises. Another popular souvenir are landscap paintings sold by local artists. Studios can be found throughout Heraklion, and some artists sell their work on the streets. Heraklion is a dream destination for every class of shopper. Bring your money, prepare for crowds, and don’t be afraid to negotiate.
Editor’s Note: The information contained on this page was compiled using real traveler reviews about shopping in Heraklion