Start a trip by ferry from Athens to Heraklion, the capital of the famous Crete and discover a city rich in history and at the same time fascinating and modern!
The city of Heraklion apart from the fact that it is the largest city in Crete’s island is also one of Greece’s major urban cities! Throughout the centuries many cultures have influenced the city and this is evident from the important landmarks and imposing sights.The great period of Minoan civilization await the traveler to explore the unique Knossos Palace, which lays 5km south of Heraklion, as well as the archaeological site of Festos and make a passage back to the past! An extremely fantastic experience for the visitor is to start walking in the heart of the city from the fishing harbor close to the modern port where one can see the Koules fortress in the old Venetian port which along with the fortification walls are among the most significant sights and city’s landmarks! During the walk in the center of Heraklion the visitor will see Ottoman fountains, historic churches and many other treasures of the Minoan Civilization.
However, Heraklion is not only the past but also a modern town with vibrant nightlife , plenty of greek taverns with live greek music , music bars and a well - developed commercial center with plenty of stores and intense cultural character with plenty of cultural music events and theatrical performances. For all this and much more, Heraklion remains a special destination worth exploring so don’t waste time and book your tickets in advance!
Ferry schedules from Athens/Piraeus to Heraklion
The ferry schedules from Athens to Heraklion are daily and run throughout the year. Ferries to Heraklion always depart from the port of Piraeus from 2 major Greek shipping companies and all crossings are night departures at 21.00 (9 pm), while during the summer season departures are increased with some midday departures as well!
Ferry time from Athens to Heraklion
The ferry time for your trip from Athens to Heraklion is usually 9 hours, while in summer with a midday departure the duration can be reduced to about 7 hours.
Ferry distance from Athens to Heraklion
The ferry distance between the port of Piraeus in Athens and Heraklion port is 173 nautical miles (around 320km).
Types of vessels from Athens to Heraklion
The types of vessel operating on the route from Athens port of Piraeus to Heraklion, are large conventional vessels with many facilities on board, lounges, bars, cabins, playground etc.
Considering that the crossing is an overnight trip we would recommend booking a cabin for a more relaxing trip.
Useful tips for your trip from Athens (Piraeus) to Heraklion
- The port of Piraeus is very crowded as during the peak season is usually full of travelers with several departure gates. We suggest you be at the port at least 1 hour and a half earlier before departure for check-in and boarding procedure, especially if you have a vehicle
- On our Piraeus and Heraklion pages you can find all the necessary advice on how to get to and from the ports
- The port of Heraklion is a very popular destination and the tickets are selling out fast during high-season. If you are planning to travel in this period, make sure to book your tickets well in advance to find availability in cabins and space for the vehicle
- Visit Knossos Palace as well as the archaeological site of Festos
- Visit the other cities in Crete, as Chania and Rethymno