Welcome to Vamos, a hidden gem nestled in the heart of Apokoronas on the Greek island of Crete! This traditional Cretan village has a rich history, stunning landscapes, and a welcoming local community. However, its strategic location near modern facilities and a unique English butcher sets it apart from other destinations. So, please grab a cup of coffee, sit back, and let’s dive into the magic of Vamos.
A trip down history lane
Vamos, a village with an intriguing past, boasts roots that date back to the 12th century. The village has seen it all throughout the years, from Venetian rule to Ottoman occupation. This rich history is palpable as you meander through the narrow alleys, admiring Venetian architecture and the beautifully restored stone houses.
As you wander, you’ll come across the Church of Agios Nikolaos, a shining example of Byzantine art. This impressive structure features an octagonal dome and a beautiful 13th-century fresco. It’s easy to lose track of time, taking in the breathtaking beauty of this sacred space.
The heart of Apokoronas
In the Apokoronas region, Vamos is the epitome of Cretan charm. With the majestic White Mountains as its backdrop and the shimmering Mediterranean Sea just a stone’s throw away, the village is perfect for those looking to immerse themselves in the natural beauty of Crete.
But it’s not just about the landscape. Vamos is also a hub for the neighbouring villages, offering many amenities, including supermarkets, bakeries, cafes, and even a health centre. So, everything is within reach if you need anything during your stay.
A touch of English in the heart of Crete
If you’re looking for a taste of home, look at the English butcher in Vamos. This shop, run by an affable Englishman, Jon, is a godsend for expats and tourists alike. With a wide range of meats, including succulent sausages and mouthwatering bacon, you’ll find all your favourite cuts here. Pair them with fresh, local produce from the nearby farmer’s market. You’ll make a delicious meal that’ll satisfy any homesick cravings.
The best of both worlds
One of the many perks of Vamos is its prime location. The village is a stone’s throw away from some of the most charming local villages in the region, such as Georgioupolis, Gavalohori, Kefalas, and Almyrida. Whether you’re in the mood for a scenic walk, a leisurely bike ride, or a short drive, exploring these quaint spots is an absolute delight.
Gavalohori, a village rich in history and tradition, is home to the Folklore Museum of Gavalohori, which showcases the local craftsmanship and way of life from centuries past. In Kefalas, you’ll find a cluster of well-preserved historic buildings and churches, perfect for an afternoon of exploration. And if you’re a beach lover, Almyrida, with its golden sands and crystal-clear waters, is the place to be.
Peace of mind with Chania Hospital
While no one ever wants to think about needing medical attention on holiday, it’s always a relief to know that help is readily available if necessary. Vamos is just a 45-minute drive from the bustling city of Chania, where you’ll find Chania Hospital. This state-of-the-art facility provides top-notch healthcare services, ensuring that you and your loved ones are in expert hands should the need arise. With its team of experienced doctors and nurses, Chania Hospital is well-equipped to handle emergencies and provide comprehensive care. So, you can relax and enjoy your time in Vamos, knowing you’re always close to excellent medical support.
Savouring the flavours of Crete
Food is central to Cretan culture, and Vamos is no exception. The village is home to several delightful tavernas, where you can indulge in the island’s delectable cuisine. From freshly caught seafood to local cheeses and olive oil, your taste buds will thank you for this gastronomic journey.
Be sure to try some of the village’s signature dishes, such as “dakos,” a barley rusk topped with tomatoes, crumbled feta cheese, and a drizzle of olive oil. Another must-try is “gamopilafo,” a creamy rice dish cooked in meat broth – a true Cretan delicacy. And, of course, no meal in Vamos would be complete without a shot of “raki,” the local firewater.
Embracing the local way of life
With its warm and hospitable locals, Vamos is the ideal destination for travellers seeking an authentic Cretan experience. The village’s friendly inhabitants are always eager to share their customs and traditions, making it easy for visitors to feel at home.
Throughout the year, Vamos hosts various cultural events and festivals, such as the Jazz in July Festival, an initiative of VAMOS-Art and Thought.
This annual event brings together renowned artists and jazz enthusiasts from all over Greece, placing Vamos and, by extension, Apokoronas firmly on the map of Greek jazz festivals. After eight years of continuous presence and featuring numerous significant artists, Vamos has undoubtedly become the ultimate jazz destination of Crete! These events provide a fantastic opportunity to witness and participate in the local way of life, from enjoying mesmerising music performances to mingling with the community.
Visiting Vamos offers the perfect blend of history, culture, and natural beauty, all within easy reach of modern facilities and amenities. With its English butcher and proximity to Chania Hospital, this traditional Cretan village is a haven for those seeking the best of both worlds. So, if you’re planning a trip to Crete, include Vamos in your itinerary. You will not regret the visit!