There are dozens of excellent vacation destinations in Greece and the Greek isles, but one that is often overlooked is the small community of Malia. The town lies on the north coast of the popular island of Crete and has a population of just over 6,000. It’s just about 20 miles east of the island’s capital city of Heraklion. Most travelers head to Malia due to its historical archaeological findings and because it actually has quite a swinging nightlife for such as relatively small place.

Palace of Malia

One of the most popular attractions here is the Palace of Malia, which was originally built during the middle Bronze Age. However, in the late Bronze Age the palace and several other structures were flattened when the area was devastated by an earthquake. Residents rebuilt the place and the ruins of it and the courtyard can still be seen today.

The palace wasn’t actually discovered until 1915 when a Greek archaeologist named Hadzidakis came across it. Seven years later, Greek scholars and Athens’ French School excavated the site. After ongoing excavations, it was found that a Minoan town surrounded the palace. Visitors can explore some of these areas of the ruins and there are also walkways located above some of them. Some of the rooms of the palace have been identified as meeting rooms, workshops, and a residential area with an ancient bath.

But while some tourists are interested in the ancient history and culture of Malia and the surrounding area, you’ll find that many young people come for the present. This is because the town is one of the best holiday resorts on Crete and there are plenty restaurants, hotels, shops, nightclubs, and bars to choose from. It’s certainly one of the most popular vacation destinations in Europe, but many North Americans are unaware of it.

It’s especially a hotspot with British vacationers and is often compared to both Magaluf and Ibiza. Many young adults flock here to check out the numerous entertainment events and popular disc jockeys. The town is certainly hopping at night and there are also plenty of things to do during the sunny hours of the day. The three-mile long beach is also a hub of activity and a place where you can enjoy several water sports such as parasailing, water skiing, jet skiing, swimming, and snorkeling or simply relax.

The accommodations are made to suit a wide range of vacation budgets as are the restaurants and bars etc. The local cuisine is quite delicious as Greece is certainly known for its food. You’ll find a wide assortment of kebabs, grilled meats, cheeses, and of course moussaka. There are also international restaurants in town where you can enjoy Indian, Chinese, and Mexican dishes. Fast food such as fish and chips and hamburgers can also be found.

You can take a few trips from Malia to some of the surrounding communities as Mykonos, Heraklion, Piraeus, Athens, and Santorini aren’t really that far away. Malia has plenty to offer, but just remember that it’s popular with young adults and some people may want to find a hotel a little further away from the bars and nightclubs.


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