Practical Information about Crete

Official language: Greek

Most Cretans speak English and those in the hospitality industry are likely to speak French and German too. Signage, menus and transportation signs are written in Greek and English.


Crete is the most populous island in Greece with a population of more than 600,000 people. Approximately 42% live in Crete's main cities and towns whilst 45% live in rural areas.

Dialing code:

The international dialing code of Greece is +30
Chania Dialing code +30 28210
Heraklion Dialing code +30 2810

Time Greece:

GMT +2

The currency: Euro(€)

Greece is a Member-State of the European Union and uses its uniform currency – the Euro. Greece, as is the case with the other Member-States of the E.U. uses eight coins as follows: 1, 2, 5, 10, 20 and 50 cents (lepta in Greek) and 1 and 2 Euros. The banknotes are issued in the following denominations: 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200 and 500 Euros.

Currency exchange rates are clearly displayed in every bank that accepts currency exchange, while credit card holders may acquire money from the ATMs of the collaborating banks. Greek banks are open for the public from 8:00 to 14:30 Mondays to Thursdays and from 8:00 to 13:30 on Fridays. They are closed on Public Holidays.

Euros can also be exchanged for notes of other foreign currencies at exchange offices that are situated at the airport and certain main ports, in the larger cities, as well as at many tourist destinations. A passport is required when exchanging currencies.


The electrical current is 220 V, 50 Hz.

Typical Greek sockets are represented in the figure below.Adapters and transformers are sold in many stores.


Cretan cuisine is the traditional cuisine of the Mediterranean island of Crete. The core of the Cretan cuisine consists of food derived from natural sources, whereas food of animal origin was more peripheral in nature. In general, people consumed seasonal products, available in the wider local area, which underwent minimal processing or none at all. The traditional cuisine was widespread in the island until the 1960s when, with improving living standards, alimentary patterns changed towards more meat and other animal-derived produce.

Fresh fruit and dried fruits, pulses, endemic wild herbs and aromatic plants, and rough cereals, whose cultivation was favored by the regional climate, were consumed in great amounts and constituted the base of the Cretan cuisine during that period. Dairy products were consumed on a daily basis in low to moderate quantities. Poultry and fish were consumed on a weekly basis in moderate quantities, whereas red meat was consumed only a few times a month. The main supply of fat was effectuated by olive oil, which was used not only in salads but also in cooking, unlike the northern European countries which primarily used animal fat. Another essential feature of the Cretan cuisine was the moderate use of alcohol, mainly red wine which accompanied meals. Finally, the most common dessert was yogurt and fresh fruits, while traditional pastry based on honey had been consumed a few times a week.

Cretan Shopping Hours


Open at 8.00 am and close at 8.00 pm in winter and 9.00 pm from April to end of October. Saturday they close at 6.00 pm and are closed on Sundays and holidays.


Open at 8.00 am and close at 8.00 pm in winter and 9.00 pm from April to end of October. Saturday they close at 6.00 pm and are closed on Sundays and holidays.

All shops (with a few exception)

Shops open around 9.00 am and close around 1.30 or 2.00 pm Monday to Saturday. On Tuesday, Thursday and Friday they are also open from around 6.00 pm to 9.00 pm. Always closed on Sundays and holidays.

Offices (with a few exception)

Most offices keep the same times as shops but they are often closed on Saturday.

Health & Safety

In order to have access to necessary health care, tourists from member states of the European Union (EU) wishing to visit Greece must be holders of the European Health Card (EHIC) or any other legal Community document issued by their competent social security agency.
In these cases, the necessary treatment in Greece is provided by:

  • Social Security Institute Health Units (polyclinics) or doctor’s offices in the region
  • Regional clinics (former rural clinics) or the Health Centres of the National Health System
  • the outpatients’ departments of the hospitals on contract

In order to have access to necessary health care, tourists from countries other than the member states of the European Union wishing to visit Greece must consult their social security agency for information before travelling.

In case of emergency call

European Emergency number 112 from mobile or fixed phones for all emergency services

Police: 100
Tourist police: 28210 73333 in Chania
Fire brigade: 199
Ambulance: 166

Smoking in Greece

As of 1 September 2010, smoking and consumption of tobacco products has been banned in enclosed public places in Greece. Tobacco advertising is also banned. The smoking ban applies to: All work places Hospitals Schools Public transport (including stations), taxis and passenger ships Restaurants, night

Foreign Embassies and Consulates in Greece

Most are located in Athens. There are a few delegations in Heraklion:

Germany 2810226288
Austria 2810222213
Switzerland 2810223379
United Kingdom 2810224012
Netherlands 2810346202
Denmark 2810240582
Germany also has a honorary consulate in Agia Marina near Chania 2821068876

Foreign Embassies and Consulates in Athens

ALBANIA Vekiareli str, 7 Filothei Athens
Tel: (0030) 210 6876200
ARGENTINA Vassilissis Sofias Ave, 59, Ambelokipi Athens
Tel: (0030) 210 7224451
AUSTRALIA Level 6, Thon Building, Cnr Kifisias & Alexandras Ave, Ambelokipi Athens
Tel: (0030) 210 8704000
AUSTRIA Vassilissis Sofias 4 Syntagma Athens
Tel: (0030) 210 7257270
BELGIUM Sekeri str 3 Syntagma Athens
Tel: (0030) 210 3617886
BRAZIL Filikis Eterias Sq, 14 Kolonaki Athens Tel: (0030) 210 7213039
CANADA Ioannou Genadiou St, 4 Athens Tel: (0030) 210 7273400
CHINA Krinon Str, 2A Paleo Psychiko, Athens
Tel: (0030) 210 6723282
CYPRUS Xenofontos Str, 2A Athens
Tel: (0030) 210 3734800
EGYPT Vassilissis Sofias Ave, 3 Syntagma Athens
Tel: (0030) 210 3618612-3
FRANCE Vassilissis Sofias Ave, 7 Syntagma Athens
Tel: (0030) 210 3391000
GERMANY Karaoli & Dimitriou Str, 3 Kolonaki Athens
Tel: (0030) 210 7285111
FINLAND Xatzigianni Mexi str, 5 Ampelokipi Athens
Tel: (0030) 210 7255860
INDIA Kleanthous Str, 3 Athens
Tel: (0030) 210 7216227
IRELAND Vassileos Constantinou Ave, 7 Athens
Tel: (0030) 210 7232771-2
ISRAEL Marathonodromon str, 1 Paleo Psychico, Athens
Tel: (0030) 210 6705500
ITALY Sekeri st, 2 Athens
Tel: (0030) 210 3617260-3

JAPAN Ethnikis Antistaseos str, 46 Halandri, Athens
Tel: (0030) 210 6709900
LITHUANIA Vassilissis Sofias str, 49 Ampelokipi Athens
Tel: (0030) 210 7294356-7
LEBANON March 25th str, 6 Paleo Psychico, Athens
Tel: (0030) 2106755873-4
LUXEMBOURG Vassilissis Sofias Ave, 23A Ampelokipi Athens
Tel: (0030) 210 7256400
MALTA Vassilissis Sofias Ave, 96 Ampelokipi Athens
Tel: (0030) 210 7785138
NEW ZEALAND General Consulate of New Zealand Kifissias Ave, 268 Halandri Athens
Tel: (0030) 210 6874700
NORWAY Vassilissis Sofias Ave, 23 Syntagma Athens
Tel: (0030) 210 7246173
RUSSIA Nikiforou Lytra st, 28 Paleo Psychico, Athens
Tel: (0030) 6725235
SOUTH AFRICA Kifissias Ave, 60 Maroussi Athens
Tel: (0030) 210 6106645
SPAIN Dionyssiou Areopagitou str, 21 Acropolis, Athens
Tel: (0030) 210 9213123
SWEDEN Vassileos Constantinou Ave, 7 Evangelismos Athens
Tel: (0030) 210 7266100
SWITZERLAND Iassiou Str, 2 Athens
Tel: (0030) 210 7230364-5-6
TURKEY Vassileos Georgiou II Str, 8 Athens
Tel: (0030) 210 7263000
UNITED KINGDOM Ploutarchou str, 1 Athens
Tel: (0030) 210 7272600
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA Vassilissis Sofias Ave, 71 Ampelokipi Athens
Tel: (0030) 210 7212951

Documents to travel to Greece


For EU citizens who travel to Greece, no passport is required, just the identity card with latin characters is enough. For the non EU citizens, a valid passport is necessary to enter Greece. In case you lose your passport in Greece, the local police and the embassy of your home country must be contacted. It is recommended to have a photocopy of your passport in order to get the process of replacement quicker.


All citizens of foreign countries, except for the countries of the European Union, the USA, Canada, Australia and New Zealand, need a visa to enter Greece. For more information, contact the Greek National Tourist Offices in your country or go to your embassy in Greece.


A passport can serve like an ID. Apart from the official identity card of your country, other form of identification is the driving licence.

Animals' documents

Animals (pets) require a valid health certificate to enter Greece.

Important Dates

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Venue Interactive Map

Contact Form

Meeting Secretariat
15 Mesogeion Avenue, 1st Floor
GR-11526, Ampelokipi - Athens, Greece
Tel: (+30) 210 7499300
Fax: (+30) 210 7705752

Mrs Georgia Kateriniou
Tel: (+30) 210 7499318