Crete On The Road

The Sunday Telegraph.

Crete on the Road: the Best Driving Tours around West and Central Crete by Frankie Miles. Frankie is from Villas Crete Holidays and she is very knowledgable about this part of the island.

Read the full Article.

Prices in 2018 starting from €840 Euros per Week.

1 double bedroom, 2 twin bedrooms.

Private swimming pool (10m x 5m & depth 0.80m to 1.50m)

Free WIFI Internet Access.

Sleeps a Maximum of 7 persons.

EOT (Greek Tourist Board) License Number: MHTE 1042K 12 2K 02701 00

Horseshoe Cottage enjoys a privileged and peaceful location in the heart of the countryside, yet only 2kms from the many amenities in the pretty riverside village of Vrisses, and 7kms from the dune-backed sandy beaches near the seaside resort of Georgioupolis which stretch as far as the eye can see. Located on the outskirts of the sleepy hamlet of Maza, Horseshoe Cottage is a delightful stone retreat with glorious sweeping views across the verdant Cretan landscape to the magnificent White Mountains.  A property with immense character and allure, Horseshoe Cottage, and its 3 sister villas, has been lovingly built and furnished by its incredibly friendly and charming owner, Giorgos, on land passed down to him by his grandfather, and are prominently featured in an excellent article in the Sunday Telegraph: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/destinations/europe/greece/10760079/Greek-islands-Crete-family-holiday.html  The 5500m2 plot has been creatively landscaped so that all 4 villas harmonise with the enchanting natural landscape, and each villa enjoys a high standard of privacy and comfort. As the name of the cottage suggests, a stables and paddock are set on one side of the plot and horse/pony riding excursions can be arranged. In addition to the horses, housed at the stables in what is fast becoming a mini petting zoo are Romeo the Reindeer, Katsika the goat, and Elpida (Hope) the sheep - all of whom love to be fed apples and vegetables by the cottage guests - especially Artemis the brown horse!. For larger families or groups who like to holiday together but still value their privacy, Horseshoe Cottage can be booked in conjunction with Maza Cottage which has 2 bedrooms. If desired, home cooked meals can be ordered and delivered to the cottage as just part of the caring but unobtrusive service that Giorgos provides for his guests.

On entering the house through the solid wood doors, a wonderfully relaxed atmosphere is immediately evident. Thoughtful touches see authentic Cretan styling fuse seamlessly with modern amenities. Giorgos has blended traditional furniture made locally by skilled craftsmen, with a selection of hand-picked family heirlooms such as a tapestry wall hanging, a shepherd's crook and hand woven bag, and an ancient iron. Horseshoe Cottage boasts many original features made from locally sourced commodities such as open-faced stonework, beamed ceilings which infuse the air with the delicate scent of cypress wood, stone arches, a stone fireplace, and thick stone walls which keep the cottage pleasingly cool when the outside summer temperatures are at their highest. To ensure a restful holiday many modern comforts have been supplied including: a computer with WIFI internet access; beautiful tiled modern bathrooms, satellite TV, a DVD player, a stereo system with CD player, a fridge/freezer, a microwave oven, a dishwasher, a washing machine, a kettle, a coffee maker, a toaster and sandwich toaster, and air conditioning units in the bedrooms and living area. The a/c units also double up as heaters, and there is a fireplace for the cooler nights early and late season. There is solar powered hot water with a back-up immersion heater, and a private parking area. 

The majority of your holiday time will undoubtedly spent relaxing in the restful Mediterranean garden which features vibrant flowerbeds, cypress trees, and a gravelled area at the rear of the cottage that is planted with fruit trees. Taking centre stage is the good sized swimming pool which is flanked by brightly coloured flowers and surrounded by a well kept lawn. Vying for your attention are the different seating areas including the well equipped barbeque corner and adjacent table and benches, and the swing seat on the south side of the cottage which is the perfect spot to relax with a cool glass of wine from the local winery, particularly at sunset when the majestic mountains take on pink, crimson and golden hues. A large pergola over the main dining terrace provides shade from the hot sun and is an ideal place from which to watch the younger members of the family playing happily on the lawn or in the pool. An array of comfortable garden furniture invites you to do nothing more taxing than sitting back and taking in the panoramic views, either in the brilliant sunshine during the day, or under the breathtakingly clear star filled night sky.

As difficult as it may be to stray from the peace and beauty at Horseshoe Cottage, the central location means that you are wonderfully placed for exploring an area which remains unspoilt by mass marketed tourism. The quaint village square is only 4 minutes walk from the cottage, and features a bougainvillea covered kafenion run by Kostas (highly recommended in the Sunday Telegraph) which serves fantastic appetizing local cuisine and overlooks the Agios Nikolaos chapel, where the interior walls are covered in 15th Century frescoes. The Dourakis Winery, Lake Kournas, and the waterfalls and Roman tombs at Argiroupolis are within 20 minutes drive, the spectacular Imbros gorge and the south coast are less than an hour away, and the Venetian towns of Rethymnon and Chania , with their fishing harbours and weekly street markets, are just 30 and 40 minutes drive to the east and west.

Horseshoe Cottage is an ideal choice for a family or romantic couple seeking a peaceful holiday in an attractive and private rural setting. We are not sure whether it will be the breathtaking scenery, the comfort and privacy at the villa, or the massive welcome from Giorgos and the Maza locals, that you will remember the most, but we are certain that your holiday at Horseshoe Cottage will be unforgettable. 

Villa Accommodation

Ground floor (half a step from the garden and pool terrace, 6.5 steps or a ramp from the parking area): Open plan living room, office, kitchen and dining area, 1 bathroom, 2 twin bedrooms, and 1 double bedroom with en-suite shower room. The front door opens out into the living room/office/kitchen/dining area which has high vaulted cypress wood ceilings. The living area has an elegant wood sofa with bordeaux coloured fabric, 2 matching armchairs, a coffee table, a TV stand with the TV, DVD player and satellite box, a fireplace with utensils, lace curtains, inset stone shelves with an ancient iron and a clock, a dining table and chairs, and a sideboard. One window faces south west to The White Mountains, one window overlooks the garden, and thick double doors open out onto the main outside dining terrace, which is shaded with a pergola and is furnished with a dining table and chairs, and a large terracotta pot. A stone archway leads from the dining area into office/kitchen. In the winter of 2011/2012 the kitchen at Horseshoe Cottage was renovated and extended (not reflected in the current photos but they will be updated soon). A desktop computer with WIFI internet access sits on a wooden desk which has a matching chair, and there are 2 large terracotta pots, and a basket with a selection of books. The kitchen has dark wood cabinets, wooden wall shelves, an electric cooker with a cooker hood, a dishwasher, a microwave oven, a large fridge/freezer, a kettle, a coffee maker, a toaster, a sandwich toaster, lace curtains, and a window to which looks out to the mountains. A doorway from the office area leads into a long hallway which has the doors to the 3 bedrooms, bathroom, and to the rear patio and small arboretum. The main bathroom has grey tiles, a full size jacuzzi bath with a shower attachment, a dark wood vanity unit with a marble top and sink, a large mirror with an overhead brass and glass lamp, a toilet, laundry basket, a washing machine, and a frosted window to the pool terrace. The first twin bedroom which has 2 carved dark wood single beds, 2 bedside cabinets with reading lamps, a wardrobe, curtains, a chair, and a window to the front garden and pool terrace. The double bedroom is the door at the end of the hallway and has a carved dark wood double bed, 2 bedside cabinets with reading lamps, a dressing table, stool and wall mirror, a wardrobe, curtains, an en-suite shower room, and a window which looks out to the front garden and pool terrace. The en-suite shower room has cream and beige marble effect tiles, a corner shower cubicle with sliding doors, a washbasin, a mirror with an overhead lamp, a toilet and a frosted window. The second twin bedroom is on the opposite side of the hallway, at the rear of the cottage and is smaller than the other bedrooms. It has 2 carved dark wood single beds, 1 bedside cabinet with reading lamp, a wardrobe, curtains, and a window that looks out to the mountains, and door that leads out to the rear patio and gravelled areas with fruit trees. The cottage has a path that leads all the way around the property, therefore the bedrooms can access the entire garden and pool area from either the rear doors or through the living room. 

Villa Location

 Only 5 minutes walk from Horseshoe Cottage is the centre of the tiny hamlet of Maza. A wonderful bougainvillea covered tavernas is the centre of village life and is situated next to the tiny chapel of Agios Nikolaos and ruined buildings which an feature ancient olive press. 2.7km from Maza is the village of Vrysses which was built on the River Voutakas in 1925. A number of tavernas have been built under the tall plane trees on the banks of the river. Vrysses is primarily a working village that is rich in agricultural products and is famous for its cheese, yoghurt and honey. There are many shops in Vrysses including 2 bakeries, 2 butchers, 2 supermarkets, a bank, a chemist, a post office, clothing shops, a book shop, a jewellers, and a fantastic cake and ice-cream shop. The beach resort of Georgioupolis is 7km’s from Horseshoe Cottage and it has many kilometres of sandy beaches as well as an abundance of shops, cafes, and tavernas. Set at the mouth of the Almyros River, there is a small fishing harbour and the Chapel of Saint Nicholas which set at the end of a small causeway in the sea just off the beach. Water sports, miniature golf, and horse riding are all available from Georgioupolis, and the younger members of the family particularly enjoy taking a canoe or pedaloe up the river to feed the turtles in the summer months. The lovely village of Alikampos is close to Horseshoe Cottage. Alikampos is set on a terraced hillside. The wonderful chapel of “The Koimeses” is situated in a tranquil spot below the village, overlooking a gorge that is thickly forested with conifers, olive and orange trees. Built in 875A.D. the interior walls are completely covered in impressive frescoes that date from the 14th Century. Also near Alikampos is the Dourakis Winery which produces delicious local wines. A tour around the winery and fresh home-made food are all available. The cottage is perfectly situated to explore both the north and south coasts. The road that leads to the south coast runs through Vrysses and leads to the Imbros Gorge, and then onto the Aradeina Gorge. The Imbros Gorge has higher walls that the more famous Samaria Gorge and takes approximately 3 hours to walk through. The small port village of Chora Sfakion is only 50 minutes from Horseshoe Cottage. Here you can take ferries to Loutro or to Agia Roumeli, the village at the bottom of the Samaria Gorge, or take private boat trips along the south coast and to Gavdos Island - the most southerly point in Europe. Horseshoe Cottage is also only 20 minutes from the lovely beach village of Almyrida which is lined with excellent tavernas, has a scuba diving centre, a chilren's play/activity centre, pedalo rentals, a space with pool tables and electronic game machines, a sports station which rents out windsurfers, kayaks, catamarans, and mountain bikes, Villas Crete Holidays for tourist information, private boat hire, boat trips, horse riding, water-skiing, game fishing charters, private sight-seeing flights in a light aircraft, and guided walking tours and coach excursions. For those of you looking for even more activity, the historic town Rethymnon is only 35 minutes away by car and the stunning town of Chania is only 45 minutes away.


Villa Amenities

Washing machine
Microwave Oven
Fridge / Freezer
Satellite TV
Air conditioned bedrooms
Air conditioned lounge
CD player
WIFI internet access
DVD Player
Mosquito screens to windows
Central heating
Iron and ironing board
Welcome Basket

Number of bedrooms
3 - 2 Twin, 1 Double
Number of bathrooms
Pool depths
0.8m to 1.50m
Pool size
10m x 5m
Type of shade by pool
Sofa bed
Maid service
2 times a week
Distance to nearest taverna
350m : 5 minutes on foot, 1 minute by car
Distance to nearest beach
7km : 2h on foot, 8 - 10 minute by car
Distance to nearest mini market
2.7m : 50 minutes on foot, 10 minute by car
Distance to nearest cash machine
2.7m : 50 minutes on foot, 10 minute by car
How far from airport
50 minutes
How far from nearest large town
35 minutes

Any steps? How many?

6 steps or a ramp from the parking area to the garden/pool terrace, a half step from the garden into the cottage.

How private?

Very private.

Nearest neighbour?



Villa Rental Prices

All prices shown are per Villa, per Week, in Euros. Not per person! These prices include a free welcome pack, a villa information book, twice weekly cleaning, linen and villa towels, representative services, and detailed directions to all of the sights from the popular guide book "Crete on the Road" by Frankie Miles.


From :                    
To :                    
Winter 2017/18 31.03.18 Please Ask
E  840
E 1050
01.06.18 30.06.18 E 1260
E 1785
E 2100
E 1260
01.10.18 31.10.18 E 1050
Winter 2018/19 31.03.19 Please Ask

The above prices shown are in EUROS, per Week. These prices include a Free Welcome Pack, representative services, a villa information book, and detailed directions to all the sights from the guide book “Crete on the Road ” by Frankie Miles.

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