How do I get to Heraklion from Santorini by ferry?

Port d'Héraklion, Crète

Would you like to take the ferry to Heraklion from Santorini in the Cyclades? Follow the guide, we’ll answer all your questions!

Greece is made up of thousands of islands and just as many jewels to discover. You’ve already opted for the enchanting Santorini, and now you’d like to visit Crete, the largest of the Greek islands? Excellent choice! With its white houses overlooking the caldera and its picturesque villages, Santorini attracts millions of visitors every year. But Crete, an island steeped in history, has nothing to envy. Its natural landscapes are varied and wild, and it’s hard to get enough of its unique atmosphere.

Although both have airports, there are no direct flights between the two islands. Travelling by ferry between Santorini and Heraklion is therefore the best option for avoiding a stopover in Athens. Wondering which airline to travel with? What are the timetables and fares? How do you book your tickets? Here’s everything you need to know before crossing the Cretan Sea by ferry!

Ferry companies linking Santorini to Heraklion

Ferry au port d'Héraklion

Photo credit: Shutterstock – Anton Kudelin

The main ferry companies

Would you like to travel to Heraklion from Santorini (Thira) by ferry? There are currently four companies operating this crossing:

What type of boat do you travel on?

The crossing between Santorini and Heraklion can be made by high-speed ferry or catamaran. These boats can accommodate up to 1,000 passengers and 300 vehicles. What’s more, these ferries feature comfortable interior seating. Or would you prefer to admire the view from the outside deck?

Last but not least, we offer a wide range of onboard services (restaurants, stores, etc.). Availability may vary according to company and season.

⛴️ See ferries between Santorini and Heraklion

Plan a ferry trip with Direct Ferries to Heraklion

Intérieur d'un ferry, Héraklion

Photo credit: Shutterstock – Anton Kudelin

Why choose Direct Ferries?

Like Skyscanner for flights, Direct Ferries is a ferry comparison service. The site organizes more than 1.2 million crossings worldwide every year.

Using a comparator like Direct Ferries means you can be sure of finding the crossing that suits you best, at the best price! You’ll be able to see all the routes offered by the different companies on the Santorini – Heraklion itinerary, at the dates and times you want. Tickets for some airlines go on sale only a few months before departure. Alternatively, you can buy tickets directly at the port of departure, provided you book in advance.

Santorini – Heraklion timetable

The frequency and timetable of crossings between Santorini and Heraklion vary according to the shipping company and the season:


  • Up to 12 crossings per week
  • Daily from mid-April to the end of September
  • Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday: 4:55 p.m.
  • Tuesday and Saturday: 5:15 p.m.

Minoan Lines

    – Up to 7 crossings per week

    – Daily from June to the end of September

    – Monday to Sunday: 5 p.m.
Golden Star Ferries
  • Up to 7 crossings per week
  • Daily in high season
  • Schedules have not yet been released by the site.

Anek Lines

  • 1 crossing per week
  • Saturday: 4:10 a.m.

Please note: Santorini – Heraklion is a seasonal route. Companies operate the crossing daily from mid-April to the end of October, then once a week in November. It is currently not possible to book ferry tickets to Heraklion from Santorini between December and the end of March. Similarly, some crossings may be delayed or even cancelled for weather or company reasons. So be sure to check before you go!

Journey times

The duration of the crossing between Santorini and Heraklion will depend on the shipping company operating it. Seajet operates only high-speed ferries. This allows the Greek company to cover the route in less than two hours on average, as does Minoan Lines.

On the other hand, crossing the Cretan Sea will take 3h15 with Golden Star Ferries, or up to 6h with Anek Lines. Anek Lines is the only company to offer this service in the low season (November).

Ticket prices

Single adult ticket: between €28 and €84 on average.

Ferrying from Santorini to Heraklion can be more or less expensive, depending on the ferry company, the class you choose and your travel dates. Tickets offered by Seajets and Minoan Lines are generally more expensive, as their ferries are faster. Anek Lines, which crosses in 5h55 with a conventional ferry, offers the lowest fares.

In addition, the ticket price will increase if you choose to cross with your vehicle. The supplement will be around €19 if you travel with a two-wheeler, and up to €140 with a small car. With a larger vehicle, trailer or roof box, the fare will be higher.

How do I book a ferry to Heraklion from Santorini?

Ferry à Santorin

Photo credit: Shutterstock – FredP

Please note that the crossing between Santorini and Heraklion is very popular during the summer season! We therefore recommend that you book your tickets well in advance and arrive at the port of departure on time. If you can’t get your tickets in time, the port of Rethymnon in Crete is an alternative to Heraklion.

Ready to book your Santorini to Heraklion ferry tickets?

  • Go to the Direct Ferries website and select your route, dates and times.
  • Indicate the number of passengers and any pets, and whether or not you have a vehicle. If you are crossing with a vehicle, you will be asked to specify its type, make, model and characteristics.
  • Then simply compare the results obtained by date, and select your trip. Depending on the crossing, it is sometimes possible to choose your preferences (cabin, seat, meal, etc.).
  • Finally, once you’ve entered your details and paid, you’ll receive your tickets!

⛴️ See ferries between Santorini and Heraklion