The Rafina Iraklia ferry route connects Greece with Cyclades Islands. Currently there is just the 1 ferry company operating this ferry service, Hellenic Seaways. The crossing operates up to 4 times each week with sailing durations from around 4 hours 30 minutes.
Rafina Iraklia sailing durations and frequency may vary from season to season so we’d advise doing a live check to get the most up to date information.
The Greek town of Rafina lies on the east coast of the Attica region of Greece. The town, and its port, is on the Aegean Sea coast, to the east of the Penteli Mountains and to the north east of the Mesogaia Plain. The Greek capital, Athens, is 25 km to the west of Rafina which is close to the towns of Artemida and Nea Makri. It is a popular destination for Athenians, due to its proximity to Athens, who drive out of the city to Rafina to eat in one of the town's many fish restaurants that line the harbour. It is common to see the day's catch on display on beds of ice outside each restaurant.
Rafina's port is the second largest in the Attica region, after Piraeus, although this is likely to change by the port at Lavrio which is currently being expanded. ferries from Rafina's port depart to the southern part of Euboea and to most of the Cyclades Islands. Both conventional and high speed ferries operate to the islands with most departing Rafina in the morning.
The small Greek island of Iraklia is located at the western edge of the Small Eastern Cyclades group of islands and only has around 100 inhabitants. The island is characterised by hills, thick vegetation, clear waters with the od shipwreck on the sea floor, and scenic bays which all combine to make it one of the most unspoilt islands of the Cyclades. For nature lovers the island is home to the Mediterranean seal and the marine turtle, Caretta Caretta. The island only has two villages. Ayios Georgios, which is home to the island's harbour, and Panayia.
Perhaps because the island is so small its history remains largely unknown with speculation that is may have been a Minoan settlement in the 2nd century BC, as there is an similar city in Crete. Under Venetian and Ottoman rule, the island paid taxes but it seems that it was the only obligation the Iraklians had.
From the island's port there are ferries available that depart to the Port of Piraeus with a crossing time of between 8 and 10 hours, depending on itinerary. There are also ferry services to the other islands of the Small Cyclades and to Naxos and Amorgos.