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Heraklion Archaeological Museum
Vacation Travel Guide

One of Europe’s most important museums has five millennia of Cretan history on display, including the exceptional Minoan exhibit.

View over 5,500 years of pottery, artwork, tools and weapons when you visit Heraklion Archaeological Museum. Plan to spend time in the Minoan exhibit, which is widely acknowledged as being the best of its kind in the world. Discover Neolithic tools and statues, objects traded with the Egyptians and notable Roman artworks and frescoes too.

Heraklion Archaeological Museum began in 1883 as a small collection of antiques, but the proliferation of archaeological finds in the area meant that the collection quickly grew. The current building was completed in 1940 and houses over 15,000 artifacts spanning a history of 5,500 years. It is one of the largest and most important museums in Europe and is most notable for its extensive collection of Minoan artifacts. Be sure to see it during your visit to Crete.

The 23 rooms lead you on a chronological journey through the history of Crete. Start in the Neolithic period to see ancient tools and a Neolithic fertility statue. Observe that the tools and artwork become gradually more sophisticated as you make your way through the ages. Objects traded with the Egyptians and colorful frescoes taken from the walls of palaces are among the many relics that capture the imagination. Look for the snake goddess statue as well as the Arkalochori Axe, a fearsome-looking weapon used in religious rituals. All objects are grouped by the place that they were found, so you can get a good sense of what each area was known for.

Make sure you visit the separate Minoan collection, one of the most impressive displays of its type anywhere in the world. See the fabulous colorful frescoes and the miniature statues of gods and animals that the Minoans were famous for. Notice beautifully decorated pottery as well.

Heraklion Archaeological Museum is located in the center of Heraklion in Eleftherias (Freedom) Square. During the summer the museum is open daily; check the museum's website for other seasonal opening hours. There is a charge for entry.

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Top Hotels Close to Heraklion Archaeological Museum

Lato Boutique Hotel
Lato Boutique Hotel
4 out of 5
15 Epimenidou Street, Heraklion, Crete Island
Free cancellationReserve now, pay when you stay
The price is CA $51 per night from Jan 22 to Jan 23

Located in the heart of Heraklion, this boutique hotel is within a 10-minute walk of 18 Anglon Square and Heraklion Archaeological Museum. Heraklion Port is ...

4.4/5Wonderful! (975 reviews)

"The staff was friendly and went out of their way to help make my stay more comfortable. I have the ability to travel even during these trying times. I would highly recommend this hotel."…"

Reviewed on Oct. 31, 2020

Lato Boutique Hotel
Olive Green Hotel
Olive Green Hotel
4 out of 5
Meramvellou & Idomeneos 22, Heraklion, Crete
Free cancellationReserve now, pay when you stay
The price is CA $60 per night from Jan 22 to Jan 23

Located in the heart of Heraklion, this eco-friendly hotel is steps from St. Titus Church (Agios Titos Cathedral) and Heraklion Archaeological Museum. Heraklion ...

4.8/5Exceptional! (292 reviews)

"Loved the sleek design of this hotel, the push to adopt eco-friendly practices, the bath products (we ordered more shampoo and body wash from the company upon our return, as we loved the mini ones so much), and thought the location was great. Super comfy bed. Only wish we stayed another night or ..."…"

Reviewed on Oct. 15, 2020

Olive Green Hotel
Capsis Astoria Heraklion Hotel
Capsis Astoria Heraklion Hotel
4 out of 5
11 Eleftherias square, Heraklion, Crete Island
The price is CA $61 per night from Jan 16 to Jan 17

This family-friendly Heraklion hotel is located near the airport, just steps from Eleftherias Square and Heraklion Archaeological Museum. Heraklion Port is 0.8 ...

4.1/5Very Good! (739 reviews)
will stay again for sure

"Was one of the best hotel that i ever visit"…"

Reviewed on Aug. 22, 2020

Capsis Astoria Heraklion Hotel
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

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Popular places to visit in Heraklion Archaeological Museum

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Heraklion Archaeological Museum

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Best Lodging Options Near Heraklion Archaeological Museum

Lato Boutique Hotel
Lato Boutique Hotel
4 out of 5
15 Epimenidou Street, Heraklion, Crete Island
The price is CA $51 per night from Jan 22 to Jan 23
Lato Boutique Hotel
Olive Green Hotel
Olive Green Hotel
4 out of 5
Meramvellou & Idomeneos 22, Heraklion, Crete
The price is CA $60 per night from Jan 22 to Jan 23
Olive Green Hotel
Capsis Astoria Heraklion Hotel
Capsis Astoria Heraklion Hotel
4 out of 5
11 Eleftherias square, Heraklion, Crete Island
The price is CA $61 per night from Jan 16 to Jan 17
Capsis Astoria Heraklion Hotel
Marianthi's House-Archeological Museum,Iraklion
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Heraklion, Crete
Marianthi's House-Archeological Museum,Iraklion
Aquila Atlantis Hotel
Aquila Atlantis Hotel
5 out of 5
2 Ygias Street, Heraklion, Crete Island
The price is CA $68 per night from Jan 22 to Jan 23
Aquila Atlantis Hotel
ΜINOTAVROS - Cozy City Apartement
ΜINOTAVROS - Cozy City Apartement
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ΜINOTAVROS - Cozy City Apartement
Minotavros Cozy
Minotavros Cozy
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The price is CA $92 per night from Jan 17 to Jan 18
Minotavros Cozy
GDM Megaron Historical Monument Hotel
GDM Megaron Historical Monument Hotel
5 out of 5
9, D. Beaufort Street, Heraklion, Crete Island
The price is CA $108 per night from Feb 1 to Feb 2
GDM Megaron Historical Monument Hotel
Domus Ariadne
Domus Ariadne
3.5 out of 5
43 Ariadnis, Heraklion
Domus Ariadne
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.