The island of Crete is at its best in September! The weather is simply perfect, there are almost no rains, and the temperatures are high but it gets milder at night and extremely pleasant.
September is also the best month to enjoy the sea. After months under the Cretan sun, the water is warm for long swimming sessions.
Read on to discover all the fantastic things to do in Crete in September.
Disclaimer: Posts include affiliate links to products or services. I might earn a commission if you make a purchase.
Why You Should Travel to Crete in September
ARE YOU PLANNING YOUR TRIP TO CRETE LAST MINUTE?
Be sure to book accommodation and tours in Crete ahead of time to ensure availability!
📍 Top tours in Crete:
– Full-day Samaria Gorge trek (#1 tour in Crete!)
– Boat cruise to Balos Lagoon & Gramvousa (another top-selling tour!)
– Boat Trip to Spinalonga with swim stop (most popular in Agios!)
– Ticket to Knossos Archaeological Site (top tour in Heraklion)
– Day trip to Elafonisi (a must in Chania!)
🛌 Top picks for places to stay in Crete:
– Lyttos Beach (top beachfront hotel in Hersonissos)
– SanSal Boutique Hotel (in Chania old town with a pool!)
– Grecotel Lux Me White Palace (the best resort in Rethymnon)
🚗 Looking for the best way to get around Crete? Check rental car rates for Crete now!
💳 Use WISE as a digital card and top-up from the app no matter where you are. Wise is one of the best cards for overseas travel!
The biggest Greek island of all enjoys a fantastic position in the southern portion of the Mediterranean. September marks the end of summer in the rest of Europe, with cloudier skies and colder temperatures.
However, September in Crete is still summer!
It’s certainly true that you won’t find the scorching heat that’s typical of August, but the temperatures are high, and going to the beach or enjoying outdoor adventures is a common thing to do on the island.
What’s the Weather Like in Crete in September
Located quite south off the coast of mainland Greece, and even rather close to the northern coast of Africa, the weather in Crete is warm and dry in September.
Officially, September marks the end of our hot summers. However, on the island, days are still rather long and very warm.
The sun is still enough to give you a fantastic suntan but be careful, the sun rays are still quite strong and if you don’t use any USV protection, it could turn into a painful experience.
At night, temperatures go down a bit making it absolutely pleasant, for instance, It’s possible to dine out by the sea without the need for a jacket.
Crete Weather in September
During September, temperatures don’t usually climb above 30°C (86°F). The cooler evenings are a welcomed relief. It’s also possible to have a few showers, very needed after an extremely hot summer, but rains don’t usually last for more than a few hours.
All these make the island more enjoyable during September than in July or August.
A long, scorching summer with frequent heatwaves has just gone by, so sea temperatures remain quite high and super pleasant (about 25°C / 77°F).
This makes our sea perfect for families with small kids who are being introduced to the sea for the first time!
⛴️ Check out ferry ticket fees and schedules
In the mountain areas of Crete, the temperatures can be a bit cooler than by the sea.
Remember that the southern coast is directly affected by the North African climate, so it’s even warmer and dry. You can check the average temperatures in Crete here.
Does it Rain in Crete in September?
There can be a couple of occasional showers in September but rain is not a typical feature of Crete’s weather during autumn. You might encounter a light shower that will be gone after just a few hours.
This exceptional rainy day is more common in western Crete, Chania tends to receive more rain than other regions due to its proximity to the White Mountains.
Crete Holidays in September
Crete is one of the most popular European summer destinations also for its long summer.
Although many tourists choose to spend their holidays in Crete in September, there’s a decline in crowds because many children go back to school in September all over Europe, and families don’t travel that much.
September is a great month for older couples, families with small kids, and young adults with a more limited budget. As a matter of fact, prices for flights, car rental, and accommodation start going down.
It’s also quite easy to get hold of a discounted package holiday.
Flight schedules to the island can see a reduction towards the end of September, but most companies (even low-cost ones), travel to Crete regularly well into October.
Basic Info About Crete
Crete is a Greek island located in the southern part of the Aegean Sea. It’s Greece’s largest and the fifth-biggest island in the Mediterranean.
The northern coast faces the Sea of Crete while the southern side of the island is bathed by the Libyan Sea.
What’s the Landscape Like in Crete?
A large part of Crete’s landscape is made of high mountains and very rugged terrain, there are deep and long gorges, plateaus, and caves, but also soft valleys, rivers, lakes, and some of the most spectacular beaches in the Mediterranean.
Crete is divided into four different prefectures or regions, from east to west they are Lasithi, Heraklion Rethymno, and Chania.
The capital is Heraklion, followed in importance by the cities of Chania, Rethymno, Ierapetra, and Agios Nikolaos, the capital of the Lasithi region.
Crete is a mountainous island with deep gorges and rugged cliffs, different mountain ranges divide the land into two very different areas, the more developed north coast, and a pretty isolated southern portion.
Its widest point is 60 km, while it’s only 12 km wide at its narrowest. Driving from the west coast to the extreme east can take from 4 to up to 6 hours.
>> Check out here all the ways you have to reach the island of Crete
What to Pack for Crete in September
Summer is still in full swing during most of the month. Days are long and quite hot, while on most nights it’s just a bit cooler.
All in all, you will need the same clothes you would pack for a summer holiday, just add a light jumper or jacket, and a raincoat as you might find the occasional shower.
Expect to go to the beach a lot, or to do quite a few outdoor activities, pack a couple of swimming suits, flip flops, sunscreen, and a hat. Sports clothes will also be necessary if you plan to hike through any of the gorges on the island.
Swimming shoes turn out useful when visiting pebbled beaches while these particular hiking sandals are not only ideal to explore the mountains or for long walks, but they will turn out to be a must… for all your trips!
Best Things to Do in September in Crete
These are only a few of my favorite things to do in Crete in September, take a look…
Going to the Beach
Going to the beach remains one of the top and most popular things to do in Crete in September.
These will be crowded, just not overcrowded as they usually are in August.
The remote eastern coast is a great area to reach in September, the temperatures are usually higher than in the rest of Crete, and it virtually never rains in September.
Experiencing the Mountains
Taking a trip to the mountains, or even deciding to book accommodation far from the coast, is a great way to experience a different, less touristic, holiday.
It’s also a great idea to stay in a traditional village. It will give you a whole different perspective and it can prove a very relaxing getaway.
There are several mountain ranges in every region of the island. There are valleys, plateaus, gorges, and well-marked paths that you can follow.
A mountain walk is an opportunity to get close-ups of the local plants, herbs, and flowers.
This unique tour (which is truly fantastic!) introduces you to Crete’s unique landscape while exploring seven authentic villages in the Apokoronas area. It gives you the chance to discover how local producers make cheese, tsikoudia, and more along the way.
Visiting a Museum
There are several great museums to visit in Crete and, of course, they are less crowded during September than at the peak of summer.
You can explore the Archaeological Museum of Heraklion as well as the Museum of Natural History, or you can pay a visit to less traditional museums, such as Lychnostatis Open Air Museum in Hersonissos, or the fantastic Homo Sapiens Museum close to the Lasithi Plateau.
Discovering the Archaeological Sites
Cradle of the Minoan Civilization, the island is home to some of the most stunning archaeological sites in Greece.
Other archaeological sites worth a visit scattered on Crete include the important Archaeological Site of Lato, close to Agios Nikolaos. The flourishing city-state of Lato that thrived during the Dorian period was also a rival to the city of Olous.
Olous is today a sunken settlement, it’s in the area of Elounda and you can check it out from the coast on clear days.
In the region of Rethymnon, the Ancient Site of Eleftherna is also worth a stop, while its small museum is one of the most modern exhibitions on the island.
Giving a Try to Water Sports
Believe it or not, the island is windier in August than in September, something that we really appreciate as the wind helps mitigate the scorching temperatures.
In the area, you can try different activities for which the wind is simply a blessing, including surf and windsurfing.
Stand Up Paddleboard (SUP) has become truly popular and it can be enjoyed all over the island, especially in smaller bays where the wind is not an issue.
However, always ask around, there are more and more places offering SUP experiences all over Crete as well as many other water activities.
Joining an Organized Tour of Crete in September
There are hundreds of tours you can join when visiting Crete, some of them extremely popular, others lesser-known but still full of value.
It’s not easy to suggest which one you should choose, there are different factors to take into account when recommending such activities, including your budget, the place where you’re staying, and the kind of activity you’re interested in.
These are some of Crete’s top-rated tours, featuring visits to classic landmarks and beautiful beaches and cities:
- Tour of Knossos: This is probably the best-rated and most convenient tour of Knossos Palace.
- Safari in the mountains: Don’t just choose any Safari… go for a professional company offering the safest and newest cars and the most experienced drivers.
- Day trip to Elafonisi: Reaching Elafonisi is a common day trip from Chania, especially when you rent your own car. Those coming all the way from Rethymnon or even Heraklion might enjoy a guided tour with a diver.
Embarking on a Road Trip in Crete
Driving in Crete is one of the best experiences you can pick for an unforgettable vacation. It was the way we used to tour the island before we moved here and, for me, it remains the most exciting kind of trip.
Crete is the perfect road trip destination, offering a safe highway for less-experienced divers, as well as some of the most breathtaking mountain roads for intrepid adventurers.
Since road-tripping in Crete is what I love doing the most, I’ve written the following guides to help you plan a road trip, prepare an itinerary, and to pack the right things in your car:
- Tips for driving and renting a car in Crete
- Planning a road trip in Crete
- Crete itinerary for 3 (or fewer) weeks
- What to pack for a road trip in Crete
Which car rental service is the best to choose?
If you want to rent a car for your trip and look for the best service, I am here to help you! Consider choosing Discover Cars, an international car rental booking service present worldwide. This way, you will find the best car for your trip wherever you are!
Trying Your Hand at the Local Cuisine
The local gastronomy of Crete, based on the tasty Cretan and Mediterranean diets, is among the main reasons to explore the island.
Local flavors, genuine ingredients, and seasonal products guarantee a result full of flavors, always fresh, and incredibly healthy.
Replicating the recipes of the Cretan table once back home is one of the best souvenirs you can invest in when visiting Crete.
September is a great month to discover herbs and wild greens. And it’s even better to participate in the grape harvest.
Accommodation: Where to Stay in Crete
I’ve written several accommodation guides to the island, for hotels, villas, and rental homes. It includes affordable hotels, family accommodations, luxury resorts,s and -truly- a lot more.
Head here, if you want to understand which area in Crete is best for your holiday style.
- Rental homes and villas in Chania
- Rental homes and villas in Agios Nikolaos
- Rental homes and villas in Rethymnon
- Rental homes and villas in Heraklion
If you prefer hotels and resorts, check out these accommodation guides to Chania, Heraklion, Agios Nikolaos, and Rethymnon. Would you like to visit Crete in September? Let me know in the comments below.
Hey! Don’t Leave without Pinning! Pin these Picture-Perfect Things to Do in Crete in September for Your Next Trip!
You might also want to read these other Crete travel blogs:
- Unmissable Things to Do in Hersonissos: A Complete Guide by a Local
- 52 Incredible Things to Do in Lasithi Region for a Top Vacation in Crete
- An Unforgettable Visit to Toplou Monastery in Lasithi, Crete
- Trip to Crete in October: Top Things to Do in Crete in Fall
About my blog:
I moved to Crete in 2016. During these years, I learned much about the island.
In Crete, I juggle being a solo mom, hosting culinary tours, and writing for several travel blogs.
I’ve written for Greek Reporter, published travel guides about Greece, and had more glasses of frappe than any regular person could ever handle.
BOOK YOUR TRIP!
Plan ahead to get convenient offers and deals
I might earn a commission if you make a purchase through any of these links and at no extra cost to you!
Thanks for supporting my constant commitment to creating thorough free content!
FLIGHTS: Find the best rates on airline tickets.
FERRY TICKETS: Book your ferry tickets here.
TRAIN & BUS TICKETS: Compare fees here.
ACCOMMODATION: Find affordable hotels and rental homes here.
CAR RENTAL: Get a car hire quote.
TOURS: Find the best local experiences.
TRAVEL INSURANCE: Don’t leave without travel insurance.
LUGGAGE STORAGE: Store your bags for the day.
CREDIT CARD: Wise is accepted worldwide, and fees are small.