Rethymno is located in the middle of the island of Crete. It is one of the best preserved Renaissance cities in Greece. The Old Town with its winding and labyrinthine streets, the Venetian port, the Fortezza and the mosques, combine the East and the West architecture artfully. You can appreciate this, both in the Οld town and the villages nearby.
It has been noticed an active involvement of locals and visitors in cycling. The first step has been achieved by developing the basic infrastructure and an alternative tourist development of cycling (20 km. cycling network in the city of Rethymno). The cycling network in Rethymno prefecture includes 22 inter-regional cycling routes, 12 of them connect Rethymno with key attractions nearby. That constitutes the main reason why Rethymno was chosen to organize the World Press Cycling Championship in 2012.
The city of Rethymno is promoting Sustainable Development throughout the whole prefecture, in order to sensitize its population and the visitors.
There are numerous options offered inside the city and the Old town, as well as in the countryside. According to the city’s plan and the study conducted by the Polytechnic Institution of Athens, the cycling network will be expanded. It has been noticed that a large number of people, not only locals, but also visitors are interested in cycling and more specifically in visiting Rethymno’s historic center along with search for cycling excursions in and out of the city (plenty of attractions with great cultural value, eg the Old Town in Rethymno, Eleftherna and Arkadi).
Cycling visitors can explore numerous museums, galleries, archeological sites, monasteries, churches and participate in community’s celebrations and festivals. Guests will also be able to participate and enjoy lots of cultural activities offered all year round such as the Carnival of Rethymno – during winter – and live a unique experience! Parades, parties and music take place in the streets of the city center. The Cretan Diet Festival is an opportunity to taste Cretan dishes and local wines, and the Renaissance Festival is a way to experience events inspired by the Renaissance period in Crete.
A lot of gorges, ancient footpaths, E4 routes and numerous, small, picturesque villages, olive groves with the flowers and herbs of Rethymno, give the opportunity to visitors to know about the rich biodiversity of Crete; its rich flora and fauna.
Beach sports and athletic events are organized every year.
The city of Rethymno, together with “Archelon” – the Sea Turtle Protection Society of Greece – celebrates the first hatchling of the endangered Caretta- Caretta sea turtles every summer.
In addition to this, Rethymno and the whole island offer genuine products of the highest quality, cooked in a simple and healthy way. The ideal climate conditions (more days of sunshine and fewer days of rain), the mountainous hinterland, nature and landscapes, makes the Rethymno region as an ideal destination for cycling.
Rethymno is also ideal for athletic cycling. It has the appropriate infrastructure that cyclists from all over Europe are looking for their athletic preparation during winter and early spring season. Moreover, Rethymno is a well known place for its short distance from the north coast to the south, coupled with the amazing picturesque and natural environment. All the forenamed, along with the famous Cretan diet and the hospitality of locals will reward cyclists for choosing Rethymno.