Sitia - Vai - Toplou

This day trip leads you to eastern part of Crete through the town Sitia, monastery of Toplou and to the beach of Vai with its unique palm forest.
The first stop is – Toplou Monastery or Monastery of Panagia Akrotiriani is one of the most impressive, historic and beautiful monasteries in Crete. It is a true bastion and a living museum of the island’s monastic history. The monastery with its belfry, 33 meters high, stands in almost desert landscape with huge wind turbines turning in the background – this is one of the first wind farms in Crete. Toplou Monastery looks like a small fortress surrounded by a 10-metre-high wall.
Setting off from Toplou you follow the road to Vai – one of the most special places of Crete. It is known not only for palm trees, but also for golden-sand beach. The Vai forest is protected by the Forestry Service, the European Union and the relevant conventions. You will have a great opportunity to walk around those amazing palms, to enjoy the sunbathing and swimming in the crystal clear waters of the very east of the “paradise”.
Leaving Vai you are going back to Sitia, beautiful coastal town with its own steam of life. The wide palm promenade is lined with inviting cafes and tavernas – is a perfect place to chill out. Sitia is well known for its local confectionery specialties and its excellent wines from the grapes growing in the surrounding hills, not to mention its international award winning olive oil.