RETHYMNON

45 minutes east along the northern coast is the lovely town of Rethymnon and its lovely, charming old town, complete with narrow, winding footpaths, a Venetian castle and Byzantine ruins.

We got there right as the sun was setting, golden light reflecting off the town's castle and lighthouse, the crashing waves of the rising tide loud as we walked around the fortress's exterior wall along the sea. Walking through the town after dusk was the perfect setting for a delicious dinner and date night in Crete.

Ready to head home, walking back to the car, we noticed a crowd gathering. Joining up to see what the fuss was, pretty soon Cretan music filled the air and we were treated to an amazing performance of traditional Greek dancing. It was a really lovely moment – shoulder to shoulder in a crowd of onlookers, a cool breeze in the air, children scurrying underfoot trying to squeeze up to the front to get a better view, the sea in the background twinkling with the reflection of streetlights, oxblood velvet costumes embroidered with golden thread, and the sound of a hundred people cheering, laughing and clapping along. It wasn't long until spectators were invited to join in and it was as if everyone in Rethymnon was dancing together.