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The Arosmari Village – Vamos Crete

Staying in the Arosmari Village gives you a true taste of life in a Cretan Village. It is a small country hotel for adults and couples only and it is just a 45 minute drive from Chania Airport, and about 10 minutes to Kalives the nearest little beach side town. We were only able to spend a week here but we were still able to combine seeing some of the wider area whilst also having some time to relax in this wonderful retreat.

 

Vamos-Crete-001There are 10 individual cottages each lovingly restored by the owner, Nikos. You will find a number of semi-detached and detached cottages either scattered amongst the beautiful gardens or just across the road from the reading room, pool and gardens. The furthest cottages are no more than a 2 minute walk. We decided to stay in ‘Oregano’ which is situated next to Nikos’ Mother’s home. Every day she would greet us with a friendly smile or wave as we either arrived or departed from our cottage. I understand she has lived in the village for most of her life and is very well respected amongst the locals. The completely brilliant concierge, Trish, is on hand daily to help plan your tours and recommend the best places to eat. There are some organised events but we never felt pressured to get involved in them. We did, however, enjoy the Friday night musical event in the amphitheatre lead by Nikos himself and his fellow musicians. It was an enjoyable evening spent with other fellow guests and finished off with some delicious Cretan cuisine prepared by Ruby – the ‘head chef’. The gardens are beautifully tended by Trish’s husband, Mike the gardener. Here amongst rose bushes, jasmine and lavender you could sit and relax leaving behind the stresses and strains of everyday life. In the evening the setting changed as the light faded and a mass of candles were lit all around the gardens. It was so romantic.Vamos-Crete-004

Vamos-Crete-002Our cottage, whilst simply furnished had been extremely well restored and nothing had been overlooked. The bedroom was beautiful and the bed very comfortable, which can be unusual these days, and there was a lovely lemon tree growing near our little balcony where we could help ourselves to a fresh lemon every morning. We also had a delightful terrace area off our lounge with grape vines growing all around where we would sit and relax with a drink or two admiring our surroundings.

Every morning we would wander through the gardens to the breakfast area to be greeted by the lovely Ruby who had prepared fruit, home baked bread jams and honey. If you preferred bacon, eggs sausages then this was freshly prepared to your taste. If like me, you favoured the cereal, yogurt with fruit and honey, then this was equally delicious.

Vamos is a typical Greek village with some fine taverns serving a range of Cretan food at reasonable prices, although wine quality does vary. It also has an excellent little bakery and a friendly and helpful tourist office. There are a number of beautiful local walks, 7 in total, although we didn’t manage to experience any of these on our short trip. If you enjoy cooking and are interested in Cretan cuisine then you can book a traditional cooking lesson where you cook, taste and prepare local recipes. We enjoyed a wonderful day walking through the Samaria Gorge. For this we decided to take a private transfer to Omalos where we commenced our walk before all the tourist buses arrived. After 6 long hours we arrived at Agia Roumeli on the Libyan sea where you can either take a refreshing swim in the sea or enjoy a well-earned drink, like us, before catching the ferry to Hora Sfakion for your return transfer. This is a very tiring day walking over rough terrain but definitely worth doing even if you do find muscles that you never thought you had. Again though, the private transfer paid dividends as it collected us, and beat the larger buses to the main road, saving at least 30-40 minutes on the return journey.

Vamos-Crete-003Overall, if you are looking for a place to unwind, whilst experiencing the totally uncommercial side of Crete within an adult centric environment, then this is the place to come, only, take it from us, try to make it two weeks!Vamos-Crete-005

 

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