Rethymnon tour: between East and West

4 / 5












Rethymnon tour is a fascinating self-guided audio walking tour in Rethymnon city in Crete. Discover credible and original stories written by top local professionals. Take your tour now and enjoy it instantly on your smartphone device.

Rethymnon: between East and West is a tour through space and time. It begins with the purchase of Crete by the Venetians in 1210 and culminates in the struggle for union with Greece in the late 19th century. As you walk from the Venetian harbour to the heart of the city you are constantly reminded of the town’s tumultuous past. Fortifications preserve the memory of the bloody conflicts between the Venetians and the Ottomans for control of Crete and the Mediterranean. Mosques and churches glorify the generals, admirals, bishops, artists, and pirates that once fought and triumphed (or perished) here.

Every building has a story to tell. The Kara Musa Pasha Mosque was initially a Venetian monastery dedicated to Saint Barbara but upon the city’s conquest, the Ottomans replaced the roof with a dome and added a minaret. Today the complex houses the Byzantine Antiquities Department. The Valide Sultana Mosque was named after the mother of the Sultan Ibrahim I who undertook the conquest of Rethymno but was too mentally unstable to rule, so his mother took charge of the government. The Rimondi Fountain was a gift to the city by a Venetian administrator, who wished to gain some favour in the afterlife and ensure the survival of his memory among the local populace. The Fortezza seems impressive with its thick walls and its seven bastions but in reality it was never effective; financial difficulties led to a fatal simplification of the initial design and opened the way for the city’s capture by the Ottomans after a brief 23-day siege.

There is even a distant connection with Miguel Cervantes, the celebrated author of Don Quixote. The Spanish writer fought in the Battle of Lepanto (1571) and in his writings he mentions Uluç Pasha, a Roman Catholic from Italy who was captured by the Turks, converted to Islam and rose to become an Ottoman admiral and ruler of Algiers. Along the way he managed to capture and plunder Rethymno a few months before his participation in the battle of Lepanto, opposite Cervantes.


Christoph Löhr

The author has studied classical archeology in Munich, Athens and Berlin. He works as a travel guide in Greece since 2003.

See all by Christoph Löhr


Venetian Harbour, Rethimno, Crete

Arkadiou, Rethimno
  • Self-guided audio tour in English for your smartphone (Android & iOS)
  • An activation link to access your audio tour
  • Offline content with an offline interactive map to avoid roaming charges
  • Live Guide
  • Smartphone or headphones
  • App not compatible with Windows phones
  • Food and drinks
  • Hotel pick-up and drop-off
  • This is a downloadable self-guided audio tour for your smartphone. No live guide will accompany you. No VR / AR is included
  • After booking, you will receive an email with further instructions on how to access your audio tour. Please check your email spam folder as well
  • An Android or iOS smartphone is required
  • The audio tour is not compatible with Windows Phones, iPhone 5/5C or older, iPod Touch 5th generation or older, iPad 4th generation or older, iPad Mini 1st generation
  • Please ensure you have enough storage space (100-150 MB) 
  • Book per device to be used, not per participant
  • Non refundable once activated.
  • Internet access might be unavailable & mobile signal may be weak. So please download the audio tour on your smartphone prior to your visit in order to enjoy it offline
  • Use your headphones to best enjoy it
  • Ensure that your smartphone is fully charged prior to your visit

Venetian Harbor, Fortezza, Archaeological Museum, Old city of Rethymno


4 / 5

stars based on 3 reviews

  • I
  • I

    Even though the computer generated voice was annoying at times (eg it reads “A.D” out as “add”), there were so many interesting landmarks to listen stories about, that we overall enjoyed our visit and our audio tour. Much more than a simple wikipedia article. The map was also useful.

  • A

    Very organized and easy to follow walking tour that worked perfectly.

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Why take a self-guided tour?

This is a self-guided tour based on the award-winning storytelling concept developed by Clio Muse and the fascinating narratives prepared by our handpicked destination experts.

You can enjoy each multilingual tour by using your smartphone or tablet at your own pace even if you are offline. The interactive map on your screen will guide you step-by-step as you explore all points of interest along your route. Each stop comes with a selection of our signature stories allowing you to tailor the tour experience to your personal interests and schedule.

After downloading Clio Muse app, you can access this tour and activate it any moment you wish and also repeat it any time. To best enjoy our multimedia self-guided tour (comprising maps, video, audio and text) we recommend the use of headphones.

This tour is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 4.0. image/svg+xml