Contact Information

Image describing the Forth building

Foundation for Research and Technology - Hellas (FORTH)
Institute of Astrophysics

Director: Prof. Vassilis Charmandaris

Tel: +30-2810-394200     Email: info [at]

Postal Address: 
Institute of Astrophysics - FORTH
N. Plastira 100
GR-70013 Vassilika Vouton

How to reach IA

The Institute of Astrophysics is physically located 1.4km outside the main FORTH campus. It is on the 2nd floor of the Department of Physics of the University of Crete. The campus of the University of Crete is about 8km to the southwest of the city of Heraklion, near the village of Voutes.

There is a regular bus service from the city or the airport to the University (bus #11, direction Panepistimio/PAGNH or bus #8 direction ITE/FORTH). A detailed map with driving directions is available at the Department of Physics visitor information page.

Additional information on how to contact the members of IA-FORTH, as well as detailed maps of our facilities, are included in the phonebook of the Institute (PDF file).

A Google map of the Heraklion metro area, with all relevant locations marked, is also available here

How to move around in HERAKLION

Distances - approximately, from the center of Heraklion:

  • 5 km to Heraklion International Airport
  • (or ~20 minutes on foot) to the Port
  • 6 km to the Minoan Palace of Knossos
  • 10 km to FORTH

Moving by Taxi:

The use of a taxi is a convenient and relatively inexpensive means of transportation in Heraklion. Taxis in Heraklion are colored silver. You may find a lot around in the city streets. You may find them also waiting at the airport, the port, the bus stations, in the Lions square, as well as at  Eleftherias' square (or "Platia Eleftherias").

Moving using Public Transportation:

There is a frequent public bus service from Heraklion-airport to the center of town as well as from the center of town to FORTH and the Univ. of Crete as well as to other destinations. An itinerary and timetables of lines is available here. Ticket vending machines are located next to most main bus stops. You may also buy tickets from most kiosks around the city. Even though one may also but the ticket inside the bus (at higher price) it is advisable to buy your ticket prior to getting onto the bus.

Transport from the Airport to the city center.

There are two ways to reach the city center, that is Eleftherias Square (Platia Eleftherias),  from the airport. Details are available in the following paragraphs and map.

Aerial view of "Kazantzakis" Heraklion Airport (HER) with the location of arrivals, as well as the taxis and bus stop marked.

By Taxi: cost ~15 Euros 

The taxis are available to the left just as soon as one exits the arrivals building. Just follow the signs.

By bus: ticket 1.10 Euros 

To reach the bus station one needs to exit the arrivals building go to the right to reach the road and then turn left and walk 100m on the narrow sidewalk to reach the bus station (see red curve on the map). All busses (except of bus #5) stop at Eleftherias Square. The bus ticket can be purchased via the automated machine 24h/7 (see photo) or at the ticket office (open until 23:00). One may also buy the ticket in the bus from the driver for 2 Euros (RFID credit cards for contactless payments are also accepted).  You may download (right-click) the image bellow for a higher resolution areal view.The current price of the bus ticket from the airport to the centre of town is 1.10 Euro (one way) or 2.00 Euro if purchased on the bus. The current (May 2024) price of the bus ticket from the airport or from the centre of the town to FORTH is 1.70 Euro (one way) or 2.50 Euro if purchased on the bus.


There many options for accommodations in Heraklion which can be explored using

A number of hotels offer reduced rates for visitors of FORTH. These are:

To obtain the FORTH rates, which are likely but not 100% certain lower than what offers, you need to contact each hotel directly and mention that you are a visitor of FORTH.

All hotels meniotned in the above list are within walking distance to the city center with easy access to  public transportation. Please check this Google map to obtain a useful perspective. 


There are very many good restaurants in Heraklion. If one avoids the ones displaying photos of their plates, it's hard to go wrong. A number of restaurants with very good food are proposed here by the Director of IA-FORTH, all within ~10 min walking distance from the city center. You may use Google Maps to locate them, as well as Tripadvisor to read reviews.

  • Petousis - Excellent traditional cretan cuisine
  • Kouzineri - exceptional high quality steak house
  • Peskesi - more elaborate/original cretan dishes
  • Plani - small restaurant with a small yard offering traditional greek/cretan cuisine 
  • Koukouvagia - more elaborate greek/cretan selections
  • Ippokampos - excellent seafood selections just by the old port
  • Paralia - excellent seafood selection just by the old port
  • Mare coffee bar & food - breakfast/lunch/dinner coffee/drinks by the seafront


The following are strongly recommended:

How to reach HERAKLION - CRETE

By air :

There is a considerable number of flights daily (~10 depending on the season) connecting Heraklion International Airport ("Nikos Kazantzakis", airport Code: HER) with the Athens International Airport "Eleftherios Venizelos" (ATH). There are also direct connections from Heraklion to various Greek islands as well as to major European cities. Aegean Air (which also operates Olympic Air) is the major carrier to Athens.

  • Aegean Airlines, Dimokratias 11, Tel. +30 2810344321, 2810344321, 2810344761
  • Sky Express, Heraklion Airport, Tel. +30 2810223500, 2810223500, 2810282828

The distance from the airport to Heraklion center is approx. 5 km.

By sea:

There are two ferry lines connection daily between Athens (Departure from Piraeus Port) and Heraklion:

  • Minoan Lines (Departure at about 21:00, Arrival at 6:00)
  • ANEK Lines (Departure at about 21:00, Arrival at 6:00)

During the summer, Minoan Lines and ANEK lines also introduce daily routes to/from Athens typically departing around 11:00am, but these are not available every day.