Day trip

Heraklion: Gramvousa & Balos Day Trip Without Boat Ticket

4.3 / 5

58 reviews

Activity provider: PLATANOS TOURS

Heraklion: Gramvousa & Balos Day Trip Without Boat Ticket

Activity provider: PLATANOS TOURS

From US$ 40.70 per person

Discover the westernmost part of Crete on a scenic bus trip to Kissamos. Board the boat to Gramvousa Island and Balos Bay. Dip your toes in the soft white sand of one of the most beautiful beaches you have ever seen.

About this activity

Free cancellation
Cancel up to 24 hours in advance to receive a full refund
Covid-19 precautions
Special health and safety measures are in place. Check your activity voucher once you book for full details. Learn more
Duration 11 - 15 hours
Check availability to see starting times.
Live tour guide
English, Italian, German
Pickup included
Pickup for this option is only from the areas of Malia, Stalis, Hersonisos, Anissaras, Analipsi, Gouves, and Gournes. Pickup begins earlier than the stated starting time and is from your hotel or the closest point accessible by a vehicle. You'll receive specific pickup information in a separate email from the local partner (please check your spam folder).


  • Take a secure bus transfer to Kissamos port on the western part of Crete and join a boat cruise to the Balos Lagoon
  • Hike to the top of the Venetian castle on Gramvousa island and gaze at the incredible 360° views
  • Relax in the Balos Lagoon and swim in the crystal clear waters
  • Enjoy the convenience of included pickup and drop-off service
Full description
Start your day with pick-up from the nearest point to your hotel. Drive towards the west side of Crete in a bus to reach the port of Kissamos Kasteli. After your escort gives you all the necessary information about the cruise, arrive at the port to board the ferry boat to Gramvousa. Your escort will collect the money for the boat tickets from you so you can skip the lines at the ticket offices. At about 10:30 AM, set off for the island of Gramvousa on the ferry, which has a restaurant with self-service meals and snacks. Sit back on a deck chair or in the lounge for the journey of approximately 45 minutes. During the cruise, marvel at the cliff edges of the wildest part of Crete and learn about the history of the island with the onboard commentary played through the speakers in various languages. Upon arrival in Gramvousa, either have a swim or take a hike to the top of the island to the Venetian fortress. Enjoy 2.5 hours on Gramvousa before you continue to the lagoon of Balos, which is 20 minutes away. As soon as you arrive at the lagoon, you'll have a little less than 3 hours to enjoy the area. You may go back to the boat at any time for food or also hire umbrellas if the heat is too intense. In the early evening, board the boat to head back to the port of Kissamos, where a bus will be waiting to return you to your hotel area.
  • Hotel pickup and drop-off
  • Air-conditioned transportation
  • Tour guide
  • Driver
  • Entrance ticket to the Venetian Fortress (optional, €1, paid in cash on site)
  • Boat ticket to Gramvousa island (€16, children 5 - 12 years €8, paid in cash on site)
  • Lunch (€7 per person, optional)
  • Towel
  • Sun umbrellas (available to rent)
  • Photographer on the boat (at extra cost)
Not suitable for
  • People with mobility impairments
Covid-19 precautions
Safety measures in place
  • All areas that customers touch are frequently cleaned
  • You must keep social distance while in vehicles
  • The number of visitors is limited to reduce crowds

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Important information

What to bring

  • Sun hat
  • Swimwear
  • Towel
  • Snacks
  • Sunscreen
  • Water

Know before you go

  • The tour is available only from the areas mentioned in the booking options
  • Pickup is done from specific points near your hotel. After booking, you will receive a separate email with details from the local partner
  • This trip consists of a bus tour and a boat cruise
  • Lunch and drinks can be purchased on the boat or you can bring a few snacks and water with you
  • Walking shoes are necessary for the optional hike uphill to the Venetian fortress
Customer reviews

Overall rating

4.3 /5

based on 58 reviews

Review summary

  • Guide
  • Transportation
  • Value for money
  • Safety

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Good excursion, but with a long trip (5h from Heraklion round trip) with a rather nervous driver on the road with some scares on the way, but an experience which is quite good because balos and Gramousa are islands with magnificent landscapes and heavenly. Warning: remember to bring your food or eat on the boat because there is not much to eat on the islands.

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August 12, 2022

Enchanting places, which of course tourists do not respect as they should, the stop of the ship in Granvousa is too short because with 1 and 15 minutes it is not possible to visit the Venetian fortress well. High cost considering that ferry tickets are not included and therefore it is a simple bus transfer to Kissamos port.

August 5, 2022

We were picked up at the time, and everything is explained by the tour guide (Dagmar), how everything should work, we found that great. Then we took the bus and it was no problem. When you arrive in Gramvousa, you realize that your money is worth it, it was megaa beautiful, the words and the pictures cannot describe this paradise. Really recommendable

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July 14, 2022

Product ID: 288290