Spinalonga Island – Boat trip  tour

The historical Spinalonga island is a tour for the whole family that can’t be missed. Visit the last leper colony in Europe and experience the history.

At Spinalonga we will have a guided tour around this famous island, which is just a distance of 850m. Originally, Venetians fortified the islet in 1579, by building a fortress with 40 cannons and they are actually the best-preserved walls in Europe.

It used to be a leper colony from 1903 until 1957. Lepers, there could have a better life, medical help, and economic support. The ruins of the market street with the shops, the hospital and many small houses in which lepers lived isolated, can still be seen.

On our way back on the boat, we are having a stop on the beach “Kolokytha”. There you can enjoy swimming.

Before we take the road back to Heraklion, we will visit Ag.Nikolaos. A town with 14.000 inhabitants which is built on the side of the Gulf of Mirabello. In the center of Agios Nikolaos is the lake Voulismeni, probably created by an earthquake. There, we can have a coffee break or a walk around the lake, which gives you a great view from above, over the center and the harbor of Agios Nikolaos. Next to the lovely harbor are shady tree-lined streets filled with shops gives you the opportunity to do some “serious shopping”.

the historical spinalonga island in Crete

More history with the island of Spinalonga

Spinalonga may be a small island-fortress situated at the northern entrance to Elounda bay, at a strategic purpose that secures management over the natural harbor of Elounda. AN ancient fortification existed on the location of the defense which will be seen nowadays, for the protection of the port of the traditional city of Olous.

These ancient fortifications had been seen and recorded by travelers of the sixteenth century before this Venetian defense was designed (1579-1586).

The island was known as Kalydon in Antiquity. once the Venetian conquest, it absolutely was named Spina Longa, which suggests “long thorn” in Latin, and was later corrupted to Spinalonga.

Spinalonga was given to the Turks by an accord in 1715, fifty years once the autumn of Handax (city of Heraklion). Throughout the Turkish rule, a settlement was bit by bit designed on Spinalonga, by Muslim families United Nations agency wanted a secure living space, fearing to get even attacks by the Cretans.

The last nevertheless saddest chapter within the history of the tiny island was written once the withdrawal of the Turks. Up till the Turkish rule amount, individuals littered with Hansen’s sickness (leprosy) weren’t confined in special institutions; they sometimes resided close to the entrances to the cities and lived off of charity offered by voters and guests. In 1909, however, Spinalonga was remodeled into a leper colony and continued functioning in and of itself till 1957.

So from 1903 until 1957, the island became a leper colony. Approximately 400 people inhabited the island over the half-century.

Leprosy, the oldest known disease to man, was one of the most feared and reviled diseases. Although largely associated with unsightly deformities affecting the face and limbs, it can, in fact, take years for visible signs to manifest themselves.

the historical spinalonga island in Crete

Type of excursion: Boat – Full Day

Should take: Comfortable shoes, Hut,

Sun protection, Camera, Bathing Suit

Return to hotels: 18:00 – 18:30

Not included – pay on the spot:

Spinalonga entrance fee: 8.00€

Additional information

Ticket TypeAdults, Children (4-9,99) years old, Infants (0-3.99) years old


  • BUS transfer from and to your hotel.
  • Boat ticket
  • Professional guide (EN, RU, FR, DE, PL, IT, NL, CZ) *available after request

Not Included:

  • Spinalonga entrance fee: 8.00€
  • BBQ Meal: 6.00€

the historical spinalonga island
the historical spinalonga island in Crete
the historical spinalonga island in Crete
the historical spinalonga
The Historical spinalonga island
the historical spinalonga island in Crete
the historical spinalonga island in Crete
Agios nikolaos, Crete

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