Cretan Adventures is the specialized company in the area of outdoor activities and alternative forms of tourism, on the island of Crete in Greece and is licensed by the Greek National Tourism Organisation (supervised by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism) under the Register Number: 1039 E 6061 00773 01, since 2001.
Cretan Adventures is the inspiration and initiative of two brothers, Fondas and Manolis Spinthakis, which decided to share their passion, experience, knowledge and love for Cretan nature and active holidays with people that like to taste the "real Crete".
Fondas Spinthakis - born in 1970 in Crete - holds BSc (Hons) in Mathematics and is an Alpinist. He is Mountaineering and Rock-climbing Instructor of the Greek Mountaineering Federation, and has climbed extensively in the Peruvian Andes, in the European Alps and in other areas around Europe and Greece.
With more than 20 years of experience on the mountains, he has worked as program coordinator in many adventure camps for teenagers and children and has cooperated with adventure companies, offering more than 9 years of professional guiding on the mountain ranges of his island.
Manolis Spinthakis - born in 1978 in Crete - holds BSc
(Hons) in Sports Management and has solid alpine skills,
including ascents on the highest summits of the
European Alps and Greek mountains.
He is an experienced instructor of mountaineering and rock-climbing, capable skipper of offshore sailing boat and has experience of animating adventure camps for teenagers and children. He has worked at the Sports Department of the organizational committee "Doha2006" for the 15th Asian Games in Doha, Qatar as well as at the IT Department of the organizational committee "Rio2007" for the 15th Pan-American Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil as he has great knowledge of the Olympic Games "Athens2004" organizational committee where he was working as Results Manager in Archery sport.
Their family dates back many generations, all from different areas of Crete. They are both familiar with the land and are supported by a group of expert Cretan hiking guides that have been selected for their character, knowledge, achievements and experience, among the best mountaineers, speleologists, cyclists, ski and sport instructors, historians and naturalists. Together they form an extraordinary team of local guides that provide high quality services, assuring absolute safety in every outdoor activity.
Cretan Adventures organizes outdoor activities and excursions (from daily to 15-day programs) that include all land services and facilities (accommodation, meals, transports etc), covering the most interesting and beautiful routes and areas of Crete and other islands and areas in Greece . We have planned our programs in such a way to cover everybody's interest for Cretan and Greek nature, history and landscape.
Testimonials - What people say about Cretan Adventures:
“Your excellent guiding helped me to discover the
loveliness of Crete, an island of sun, gorgeous coastline
and commanding views. You encouraged walkers and shared
your expertise and passion for the culture and the geography
of an island I hope to return to because it was so pretty
and enjoyable. Thank you for making the walk so pleasant
and the discoveries so varied.
Best to you and keep me informed so that I can consider travel options in the
“Fondas, was a superior guide on the island of Crete. As a native of Crete, his knowledge and background was outstanding. Fondas has been leading multilingual, multisport tours in Crete for several year. The major routes we covered he has done dozens and dozens of time. What was particularly noteworthy is when my wife had an allergic
reaction, he took care of the situation in a professional matter. What could have been a very bad incident resulted in my wife not being hurt and
recovering sufficiently the next day to resume the trek. This made all the difference in our experience. As a mountaineer in the State of Colorado and beyond, technical expertise can be acquired
through time, but caring truly comes from the heart.”
Judy & Brian Kelly
“Fondas you have shared a piece of Crete and yourself
that will long be remembered. Thank you for all the fun,
for all the guidance through this “foreign” land,
for helping me see this beautiful island. I have appreciated
your good nature and charm. It has been nice to be taken
care of by someone aware of our needs and so accepting
of our odd ways.”
“Fondas Spinthakis was our tour guide on our recent
hiking adventure on Crete, Greece. We spent eight days
exploring the coastline and interior Crete, visiting historic
ruins, hiking mountains and gorges, and swimming the Aegean
Sea. Fondas is a skilled guide with experience in not only
the history of Crete but also in organizing group activities
so that each person can experience the adventure at their
own pace and skill level. He was up-beat and cheerful throughout
the trip, keeping the energy level of the group positive
and the trip very interesting.”
Lesley J. Keenholts
“A friend and I were lucky to be able to join Fondas
and a few others on a hiking tour of the island of Crete.
I was delighted to have guides who were informative about
the area, who bent over backwards to take care of our needs
especially when our luggage was stuck in England while
we were in Greece. The food during the trip was out of
this world thanks to the Greek people themselves and the
guides assisting us in our choices. We got a real feel
for the native area and enjoyed our company. A great trip,
I have already recommend friends who are thinking of heading
to Greece to experience all the fun we had.”
“Fondas Spinthakis is an outstanding tour guide
because of his safety awareness and accommodations to lead
various skilled trekkers. Through his courteous demeanour
he directs and plans effectively thus making your vacation
trip one to remember. I had the pleasure to enjoy a wonderful
trekking experience in Crete. I highly recommend Mr. Spinthakis
as a tour guide for an educational and enjoyable experience.”
“Fondas, many thanks to you for being an excellent
host and guide. I appreciate very much your professionalism,
sense of humour and ability to work with all different
types of people.”
“Fondas, thank you for our hiking trip. We had a
great time visiting Crete. If you need a climbing partner
in US call me.
It has been a great time exploring Crete. You have a wonderful
homeland, thanks for sharing it. Please accept Chris’ offer
to climb with him or visit when in the NY/NJ area. It would
be good to show you our White Mountains!”
Chris and Peg Buck
“Dear Fondas, thank you for sharing your island
home with us this week. We had a wonderful holiday and
the walks were excellent!”
Julie and Graham Pollock
“Fondas, thank you for making our trip so much fun!
We had a wonderful time in Crete and we learned a lot from
you. Good luck in your future and let us know about your
hiking programs in Greece. We will always have Gigilous.
Well done! Ya mas!”
Karen Kahl and Suzanne Seegmuller
“Thank you so much for sharing with us your beautiful
island of Crete. We really appreciated your knowledge of
Greece and Crete, your patience and your wild sense of
humour. It was such a pleasure meeting you.”
Jeff Townsend, Sheila Cepeda, Laine Durfel
“Thank you for a fabulous trip and to show Crete
into us – what wonderful memories. You are an excellent
guide and really enjoyed the experience. Thank you so much
to keep us happy.”
Marlene Peters, Jamie Levine, Jane Grastorf
“Fondas, thank you for looking after us all on a
fantastic trip. We enjoyed your humour, love of Crete and
fine guide work. We have very nice memories of the week
and thank you again for sharing part of Crete with us.”
Bettina Boxall, Helen May
“Wanted to drop you a quick note to let you know that we had a wonderful time in Crete. Methodios is a terrific guide and everything went as smooth as can be. We really enjoyed staying in the villages - it was a great experience. Methodios did a great job showing us authentic Cretan foods, stories, history, and culture - as well as a great organizer and guide. We all loved each day - the biking, hiking and especially the river walk. My boys also loved the rock climbing but particularly the climbing and jumping off the rocks into the crystal clear water - we all loved the beach at the end of the hike in the gorge.” Suzanne Owayda and family
“Fondas & Manolis, we wanted to say how much we enjoyed our 2 days with Cretan Adventures. Nothing could have prepared us for how wonderful and exciting the river walk was - it was like walking in paradise. Meth was an excellent guide and with his caving experience gave us a great insight into the wonders of the Cretan Geology - taking us to the source of the river brought the whole adventure together.
The children just loved the waterfalls and Christopher especially enjoyed the canyoning. All in all it was so much more than we expected. Our day sea kayaking was also great fun - although the wind made it quite challenging on the way over to the island - the way back was like going on a speed boat - FANTASTIC FUN! Yanis was a super guide - his good English meant that we were able to benefit from his excellent knowledge of Cretan history. His idea of us visiting the Aquarium was a stroke of genius! The Aquarium itself is obviously reasonably new and we all thoroughly enjoyed the end to the day. Rod's day mountain biking and hiking was without the rest of the gang but he thoroughly enjoyed the spectacular scenery and the company of the other American members of the group. Once again, many, many thanks for our holiday experiences - you can be certain that on our next visit to Crete we will be in touch to organise another Cretan Adventure.” Rod, Ann Marie, Rebecca & Christopher
“Dear Fondas, Manolis and Alice, we are well at home and the daily routines have taken over again. Eli and I like to thank you for this wonderful week and as I told you, we may make these tours to an annual habit. We very much enjoyed your company which made these days for us to a long lasting memory. We wish you all the best for the future and, hopefully, we meet again.” Horst & Eli
“Dear Alice, Manolis and Fondas, the group had a meeting last Friday and everybody felt very happy with their experience in Crete. By the other hand I received many emails from the people of the group telling that they have enjoyed the trip very much and they have been in a good hands hiking with Alice and Manolis. Personally I would like to visit Crete again. Eight days is not enough time to know the island. At the same time, I'm very grateful for your attentions and good organization (dietary requirements, typical Cretan dinner, patience of the guides, etc.).”
Victoria on behalf of UNIO EXCURSIONISTA DE SABADELL
you must know, that I, Katrin and most of the students came back so full of impressions and something new in our mind which I can't express in words (at least not in English...). I think that some of the pictures can do that much better!
For myself, I can tell you, that I was deeply touched by all the impressions I've got of your country, you but also of my students! Thank you so much for all you brought to us. I know that this is your job, but I've rarely seen someone who fits his job better than you do! Best guide alive!!!
Hopefully I can convince some friends of mine or even my new school in Munich to do such a trip in the very near future. Hiking in Crete can be addictive, can't it?
Hope to meet you again!” Robert on behalf of Frankfurt's European School
“In September 2009 my wife and I took the Self-guided West Crete hiking trip with Cretan Adventures. The trip completely met—and even exceeded—our expectations for a wonderful experience of Crete. All arrangements were handled efficiently, from the time we were met at the Chania airport to the last day of the eight day trip. The directions for the hike were clear and complete. We were also impressed by the detailed maps and photo guide that helped avoid any confusion about routes or other arrangements. The hotels selected by Cretan Adventures were all excellent, with friendly and helpful hosts. We also appreciated the daily contact with Cretan Adventures by mobile phone, another means of avoiding any confusion or problems. Fondas Spinthakis (General Manager of Cretan Adventures), who provided personal assistance, is extremely knowledgeable about this beautiful island, its history and natural features. His professionalism and attentiveness made a great contribution to our rewarding experience of a fascinating and beautiful region of Crete. We would highly recommend Cretan Adventures to anyone wanting to explore this rich and historic island.” Carlton and Susanne Stoiber, Washington, D.C.
“The entirety of Crete! We LOVED the gorges, the beach hikes, the climbs to the monasteries. It was the most amazing trip the 11 of us have taken as a group, and for many, the best we've ever had. Pretty much the right expectations. The European and our definitions of "hiking" are off a bit. Some of the terrain was harder than we are used to in our hiking around the Cascades and Olympics. There was a good bit of "scrambling" which I think is part for the course there. There was more exposure than many of us were used to, but most worked through that and ALL had a fabulous time. (What's NOT to like about swimming in the Mediterranean after a hot day hiking through a gorge or over a mountain pass?). Thanks to the staff for your work with us on this trip. I met Frandos Spinthakis in Iraklio and had a great conversation with him. NICE guy! He helped me arrange a day trip while I was there and was very helpful during our hiking trip. I called him a couple of times to answer questions that a couple of my group members had. He was on-the-spot for us.” Susan Sullivan, Vancouver, Canada