The Cretans are notoriously proud of their island, and for good reason. Crete’s landscape is as diverse as it is enchanting, from its cosmopolitan seaside towns with the yacht-packed marinas to its hidden mountain villages where time seems to stand still. Driving along the coastline is an experience in itself, every turn revealing a beach more beautiful than the last. Like their land, Cretans are rugged, yet renowned for their hospitality, an attribute that traces back to the ancient times, when the thriving Minoan civilisation influenced both sides of the Mediterranean. Equally famous is the local cuisine, a fusion of traditional and modern recipes that introduces a whole new world of tastes.