Heraklion (Gr: Ηράκλειον – named also as Iraklion or Herakleion) is the largest city in Crete, the capital of the region and the economic centre of the island. Currently the population of the municipality of Heraklion is approximately 170.000 people. It is a very dynamic and cosmopolitan town, particularly during the summer period when thousands of visitors can be seen shopping in the market or visiting the museums and other places of interest. During the last 20 years the city has made also a remarkable progress in the academic and technological fields.Along with the TEI, the University of Crete, a Technological Park, the Foundation Institute for Research and Technology, the Research Institutes for Marine Biology, Molecular Biology and Biotechnology, Electronic Structure and Laser, and Informatics are also located in Heraklion. They all contribute significantly to the economic, social, scientific and cultural development of the city. The city also has an industrial area, a large harbor and an international airport. Heraklion publishes many newspapers, and has several television and radio stations. The many attractive stores and large super markets along with other tourism related activities that take place in the city make Heraklion a most vibrant city that is full of activity and life.
The Heraklion airport (HER), named after the Cretan writer Nikos Kazantzakis, is one of the biggest in Greece and receives approximately 15% of the total tourist traffic of Greece. Heraklion’s airport is about 5km east of the city. Major car-rental companies have desks at the airport. Taxi and public bus are available for transfer from/to Heraklion.
Heraklion also receives a lot of visitors by boat. There are daily ferry trips to and from Peiraeus (Athens’ port), and many weekly ones to and from other islands and towns in Greece. The terminal at Heraklion port is within walking distance from the town’s center and there is plenty of taxis to take visitors to their destinations.
The Crete intra-regional Bus terminal is also located close to the port.