Car Rental Chania
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Why rent a car in Chania?
Chania is a great place to explore. Historic, picturesque, and less crowded than Crete’s other big city, Heraklion, it offers history, delicious cuisine, and a truly relaxed pace of life. Having your own ride will let you also travel to secluded beaches, natural areas, and mountain villages all across Crete.
Top ways to enter Chania
- Chania Airport: Also known as Chania Airport Daskalogiannis after a Greek rebel who hailed from the area, Chania Airport serves more than 3 million travelers every year. The summer months are especially busy when the airport is served by more than 25 different airlines. The airport is about 14km (8.7 miles) northeast of Chania’s city center.
- Heraklion Airport: By far the largest airport in Crete and the second-busiest in Greece, Heraklion Nikos Kazantzakis Airport sees more than 8 million travelers every year. The airport is about 145km (90 miles) east of Chania and the distance between the two can be driven in two hours.
- Athens Airport: Serving Greece’s capital, Athens Airport is the busiest in the country. It is around a 6 to 7-hour ferry ride from Athens to Chania and you should ask your rental car provider if they permit taking the vehicle on a ship. Alternatively, you can pick up a rental car after arriving in Chania.
- Santorini Airport: Serving the Greek island of the same name and also known as Thira Airport, it serves more than 2 million passengers annually and, like many other Greek airports, is especially active during the summer months. It takes about 3 hours to go from Santorini to Chania by ferry, but ask your car rental provider if they allow taking a car on a ship. It’s also a good idea to look up ferry timetables beforehand as the service is less active during the winter months.
Useful city facts
- Enjoying a subtropical Mediterranean climate, Chania has some of the nicest weather in Europe. Summers are warm with an average temperature of 26.7°C (80°F) in August, the warmest month. There’s also very little precipitation in June, July, and August. Winters are mild and more humid with an average temperature of 11°C (55°F) in January.
- Chania has seen many different rulers over the centuries. First inhabited by the Minoan civilization, it was later also under Dorian Greek, Roman, Byzantine, Arab, Venetian, and Ottoman rule. Every group of people who have inhabited the area has left their influence in Chania’s architecture, customs, and cuisine.
Top destinations and activities
- Chania Municipal Agora. A local market, Agora is the place where farmers from around Chania come to sell their vegetables, meat, and seafood. Nowadays, many stalls focus on selling souvenirs for tourists, but you can still meet locals whose families have been doing business here for centuries. Located next to Chania’s Old Town, the market is very easy to find and access.
- Etz Hayyim Synagogue. Located on a small side street near the Chania’s harbor, Etz Hayyim is the only surviving place of worship of the Romaniote Jews who once called Crete their home. A beautiful ancient structure, nowadays the synagogue hosts community events that are also attended by local Christians and Muslims.
- Chania Cathedral Trimartiti. Built in the 19th century during the Ottoman times in Crete, this eclectic church is a mix of Byzantine, Venetian, and French influences. One of the most picturesque buildings in Chania, it is also famous for the paintings of different saints that can be seen inside the church.
Traffic and parking tips
- There are no highways on Crete (nor on any other Greek islands).
- Unless specifically indicated otherwise, the speed limits are 90 km/h (55.9 mph) on roads outside populated areas and 50 km/h (31 mph) in populated and built-up areas.
- Many gas stations might be closed on weekends and public holidays.
- It is illegal to use a mobile phone while driving.
- The legal alcohol limit is 0.05% for experienced drivers and 0.02% for novice drivers. Exceeding these limits can lead to steep fines and a license ban. Exceeding the limit of 0.08% is a criminal offense and can lead to up to two years of imprisonment.
- The insurance documentation and car registration need to be in the car whenever you’re driving.
- If you’re the driver, you need to have your passport or ID card with you at all times.
- The general emergency number, like elsewhere in the EU, is 112. The police number is 100, the ambulance number is 166, and the fire brigade number is 199.
There are no toll roads in Crete. There are a number of toll roads, tunnels, and bridges on the mainland of Greece. Many travelers find them very hard to navigate and some choose to avoid using the toll roads altogether because of the very complex system that is in place. Different toll roads are administered by different private companies and so there is not a single, nationwide (or even region-wide) toll system in place.
For most toll roads, payment can be either made with cash at toll gates, by credit card, or with coins at an automatic toll machine. For some roads, an electronic transponder might be used to pay for using the toll road. Some rental cars might be equipped with such an electronic transponder. However, because of the aforementioned different toll road systems that are in place, this payment method might work for some toll roads but not for others. Plan your route in advance and ask your car rental provider about the best way to pay for the toll roads that you plan to use.
Ideas for a day-trip
- Samariá Gorge. One of the most beautiful places in Crete, Samariá is not only an impressive gorge as the name suggests but also a natural park inhabited by rare and protected species like the Cretan wild goat. Welcoming, but with a touch of wilderness about it, it is a perfect place for long hikes. Samariá Gorge is about 42km (26 miles) south of Chania and can be reached by car in about 1 hour and 15 minutes. If you drive through the area, you’ll reach the village of Agia Roumeli with its stunning coast and turquoise sea.
- Botanical Park of Crete. Only open from March through November, the botanical park at the foothills of the nearby White Mountains has both endemic Cretan and exotic foreign plants. Nearly devastated by a wildfire in 2003 the traces of which can still be seen at some places, the park has recovered remarkably, again being home to many plant and animal species. Located just 18km (12 miles) south of Chania, it can be reached in about 25 minutes.
- The beaches. Like most places in Greece, the number one reason why people visit Chania is the beach. The good news is that no one leaves disappointed. The large Nea Hora Beach on the outskirts of Chania is fun and full of things to do, but if you’re craving a more special experience, the pristine Elafonisi Beach is also easy to reach by a rental car.
Most popular rental types and cars
The most popular rental car type in Chania is the mini, followed by economy and compact. The most popular rental cars are the Toyota Aygo, the Fiat Panda, and the Suzuki Swift.
- Glyka Nera. Another place of stunning natural beauty, the Glyka Nera beach is not easy to get to, but the effort is absolutely worth it. Inaccessible by land, you’ll have to first drive to the villages of Sfakia or Loutro and then take a boat (rumor has it that it’s also possible to reach Glyka Nera by foot, but you’ll have to find a local who’ll show you the route through the cliffs). About 75km (46 miles) south of Chania, Sfakia is about a 90-minute drive away.
- Heraklion. The capital of Crete is one of the most beautiful and unique cities in the Mediterranean thanks to its impressive history and beautiful architecture. Just as exciting as visiting the city is the drive from Chania. The 144km (89 miles) drive along the coast is spectacular. Stop halfway in the town of Rethymno to visit its beautiful Old Town and then drive to the impressive gorges nearby.
- Ierapetra. Boasting the title of the southernmost city of Europe, Ierapetra is not as large or busy as Heraklion or Chania, but its beaches are actually even longer and more golden. Should that not be enough of a reason to visit, anyone will enjoy the site of its old Venetian fortress. It takes a tad more than 3 hours to travel from Chania to Ierapetra, and you’ll cross most of Crete along the way.
How can I save money on my rental car?
These are the tricks that can help you to get a great car rental deal in Chania:
- Compare the rates of different rental car providers
- Book your rental car well in advance
- Plan your route before you go
- Know your fuel and mileage requirements
- Visit during the month when the rental prices are the cheapest. According to our data, visiting Chania is the cheapest in January when renting a car is about 72% cheaper than the yearly average. Come and explore Crete in wintertime, the weather is nice year-round!
Top 20 Cities near Chania
Athens Car Rentals from $11.24 per day268.0 km / 166.5 miles away
Heraklion Car Rentals from $8.43 per day95.8 km / 59.5 miles away
Thessaloniki Car Rentals from $9.80 per day564.1 km / 350.5 miles away
Rhodes Car Rentals from $7.32 per day367.3 km / 228.2 miles away
Corfu Car Rentals from $9.18 per day586.7 km / 364.5 miles away
Santorini Car Rentals from $22.21 per day153.7 km / 95.5 miles away
Mykonos Car Rentals from $10.01 per day237.2 km / 147.4 miles away
Kos Car Rentals from $10.79 per day299.0 km / 185.8 miles away
Zakynthos Car Rentals from $5.79 per day381.8 km / 237.2 miles away
Kefalonia Car Rentals from $6.55 per day433.9 km / 269.6 miles away
Samos Car Rentals from $10.13 per day344.0 km / 213.8 miles away
Preveza Car Rentals from $6.50 per day481.8 km / 299.4 miles away
Paros Car Rentals from $14.82 per day186.3 km / 115.8 miles away
Kalamata Car Rentals from $8.84 per day255.8 km / 158.9 miles away
Naxos Car Rentals from $18.73 per day203.9 km / 126.7 miles away
Lesvos Car Rentals from $21.70 per day447.8 km / 278.2 miles away
Chios Car Rentals from $14.76 per day359.2 km / 223.2 miles away
Skiathos Car Rentals from $15.38 per day409.3 km / 254.4 miles away
Kavala Car Rentals from $16.03 per day600.1 km / 372.9 miles away
Patras Car Rentals from $24.01 per day378.9 km / 235.4 miles away
Top 20 Locations near Chania
Chania Airport Car Rentals from $11.62 per day
Chania, Downtown Car Rentals from $8.43 per day
Chania Hotel Delivery Car Rentals from $11.62 per day
Chania Old Port Car Rentals from $11.62 per day
Heraklion Airport Car Rentals from $8.43 per day95.8 km / 59.5 miles away
Milos Airport Car Rentals from $19.32 per day132.8 km / 82.5 miles away
Santorini Airport Car Rentals from $22.21 per day153.7 km / 95.5 miles away
Sitia Public Airport Car Rentals from $31.72 per day180.4 km / 112.1 miles away
Paros Airport Car Rentals from $14.82 per day186.3 km / 115.8 miles away
Naxos Airport Car Rentals from $18.73 per day203.9 km / 126.7 miles away
Syros Airport Car Rentals from $23.71 per day222.1 km / 138.0 miles away
Mykonos Airport Car Rentals from $10.01 per day237.2 km / 147.4 miles away
Kalamata Airport Car Rentals from $8.84 per day255.8 km / 158.9 miles away
Athens Airport Car Rentals from $11.24 per day268.0 km / 166.5 miles away
Karpathos Airport Car Rentals from $15.46 per day271.6 km / 168.8 miles away
Kos Airport Car Rentals from $10.79 per day299.0 km / 185.8 miles away
Samos Airport Car Rentals from $10.13 per day344.0 km / 213.8 miles away
Chios Airport Car Rentals from $14.76 per day359.2 km / 223.2 miles away
Rhodes Airport Car Rentals from $7.32 per day367.3 km / 228.2 miles away
Patras Airport Car Rentals from $24.01 per day378.9 km / 235.4 miles away
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Top 18 Suppliers for Chania in 2019
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