In this review, I will try provide all the information I would have wanted before planning my trip to Crete. It is all based on my personal experience but the more objective information I give should be true at the time of writing (but it’s obviously based on memory – I haven’t double checked!). Don’t forget to check for yourself.
Sometimes I’m dubious of places that have so many good reviews and always pick out the bad ones first. But I have nothing bad to say about this hotel. In fact, it was outstanding, and here’s why:
The Sun City is run by a lovely family who are extremely friendly and welcoming, speak great English and were happy to help with anything we asked for (in fact they greeted us with some great advice on exploring the island – our main priority).
It is ideally situated in Agii Apostoli about 10 minutes out of Hania town centre by bus. It cost us 1.10 Euros each way and comes by about every 15-20 minutes, meaning you’re never waiting more than half an hour to get into town. Hania town has a great central bus station, making it easy to explore the island.
Why not just stay in Hania town you ask? Well, Agii Apostoli has a lovely peninsula and coastline and there were – at my count – around 4 great beaches and a number of nice Tavernas within 10 minutes walk of the hotel. The area appeared to be very safe, couples/family friendly and quiet in the evenings (not ‘nothing happening quiet’ but a relaxed atmosphere certainly).
The hotel and our room were spotless. The rooms are cleaned and fluffy white towels laid out for us every day. The air-conditioning was great, we had an en-suite bathroom, balcony overlooking the sea (in the not to distant distance), we had a lock box in our room which meant we didn’t have to worry about valuable passports etc on the beach. The room itself was spacious and well presented. It had a kitchenette which is ideal if you’re on a budget as there are also two supermarkets within 2 minutes walk of the hotel. It also has a pool and poolside bar.
Now, want to hear the best bit? We had set out to have an independent, adventurous holiday and had planned bus trips for each day to see the best of the Western half of the island. When we got there we discovered the family were happy to organise each and every trip we had independently planned. We thought this service was outstanding and it didn’t cost us a thing (their service, not the trips themselves of course).
For, on average, 5 euros more than you would pay if you made your own way to these amazing places, they sorted it all for us. You get; picked from the hotel, and dropped off at the end of the day, on an air conditioned coach (though all busses in Crete appear to be excellent), often with a guide who speaks your language and gives you a better appreciation of the places you’re going with their intimate knowledge of the area.
This was really liberating for us as we didn’t have to worry about a thing – and that’s important as there’s only one bus a day to some places (if you miss it, you could end up paying a lot more than 5 Euros). Also, if you’re adamant you want to go it alone, they are happy to help you with any planning, and be a friendly voice at the end of the phone if you have any problems.
The hotel is an ideal base for trips to; Hania town, Rethymno town, Limnopolis Water Park, Elafonissi Beach and, our favourites, the must see Gramvousa Island, Balos Lagoon and Samaria Gorge. All of these are easily accessible on daytrips from this hotel. We visited and would recommend them all. I also saw that they did trips to Santorini (the island with the famous white and blue domed buildings) and the Minoan ruins of Knossos (the home of the Greek Minotaur myth). We had ruled out these places as to far to travel in the week we had there so it wouldn’t be right to comment on them – but suffice it to say, you won’t be bored here.
Want the other best bit? It only cost us 24 Euros each per night (2 people at 48 Euros for the room). This is the only time in my life I’ve felt I should have paid more for something – good value is a massive understatement. Prices will obviously vary a little depending on the time of year, who you book through etc.
For those who want to get to the Sun City by bus like we did – which is cheap and easy – here’s what to do: Take the bus from the airport (tickets from a small KTEL booth just outside) to Hania town; leaving the bus station, take a right and in about 100-200 meters you come to 1866 square (actually a rectangle); around the edge of the square you will find another little booth for the local bus service; ask for Agii Apostoli; wait for the number 21 (though I think some other busses go past the hotel, I know this one does). Look out for the hotel on the right after passing a few beaches and if you pass LIDL, you’ve gone too far. Contact the hotel if you have any questions.
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- Also Known As:
- SunCity Hotel Studios Crete/Chania