Crete

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A cultural Minotaur 

Like many things, location is everything. The strength we draw from our cultural diversity perspective, the heritage and the mild weather of the Mediterranean, sets us apart like no other program in the greater area. Our staff members are a reflection of the island in which we are based, where commerce, science, the arts, heritage and multiculturalism collide with energy and enthusiasm.

Crete is the largest and most populous of the Greek islands, and the fifth-largest island in the Mediterranean sea, after Sicily, Sardinia, Cyprus and Corsica. Crete and a number of surrounding islands and islets constitute the region of Crete: one of the 13 top-level administrative units of Greece. The capital and the largest city of Crete is Heraklion. As of 2011, the region had a population of 623,065.

Crete forms a significant part of the economy and cultural heritage of Greece, while retaining its own local cultural traits (such as its own poetry and music). It was once the centre of the Minoan civilization (c. 2700–1420 BC), which is currently regarded as the earliest recorded civilization in Europe.

The city of Rethymnon

Rethymnon is a picturesque, vibrant city with a youthful population and plenty of opportunities to explore nature. Rethymnon does not have an airport but is located an hour's drive from Chania (on the west) and Heraklion (on the east).  Chania and Heraklion are served by frequent flights (with either Aegean Airlines or Ryanair) from Athens and from a number of European cities. Chania and Heraklion are both major ports and taking the ferry from the port of Piraeus (outside Athens) would be an alternative way to reach Crete. Use public transportation (bus or taxi) from Chania or Heraklion to get to Rethymnon. The journey takes approximately an hour from Chania and around an hour and 30 minutes from Heraklion.  A single-journey bus ticket costs less than 10 EUR while a taxi ride would cost 80-90 EUR.

Accommodation

Rethymnon has plenty of accommodation for students.  You could choose to rent either a furnished or unfurnished flat or to book a serviced apartment.  The cost will depend on the size and condition of the flat you rent.  An amount of around EUR 300, however, seems to be a reasonable amount.  On top of this if you choose to rent an unserviced apartment you have to take care of utilities (electricity, water supply, telephone, internet) fixed and variable costs. The University International Relations Office can assist students looking for accommodation. TIME MBE collaborates with Real Estate Agency Krissa Gi to explore you accomodation opportunities.

Krissa Gi is dealing with house rentals for the last 10 years. It chooses its properties, always trying to seperate the best houses for all categories of clients and in the most appropriate positions. You should inform them about:

  • from when and for how long you are interested in renting your house in Rethymnon.
  • for the time period that you will need it 
  • if you have transportation or pets
  • if you require something furnished or unfurnished
  • the rent amount that you can pay, so that they can find the best choice possible based on the specifications that you give them and in the best position. 

Promptly send them the request application so that they can assist you in the best way possible. You can also register on the site of Krissa Gi through the information note that you will find on the home page, in order to be informed as soon as we submit any new properties. The fee comes to half the amount of a rent + 23% VAT. For more information please contact Mrs Psiharaki.

Banking 

There are plenty of banks in Rethymnon.  If you decide to open an account with a bank located here you will need to prove your student status since bank accounts can only be opened for individuals with a valid Greek tax payer identity number.  

Health matters 

If you are a European Union or a EEA citizen then you should possess a valid European Health Insurance Card (EHIC).  The card, issued by your national health insurance provider, gives you access state-provided healthcare during a temporary stay in any of the 28 EU countries, Iceland, Lichtenstein, Norway and Switzerland, under the same conditions and at the same cost as people insured in that country.  The card is by no means a substitute for private insurance.  Rethymnon has a state-run hospital.  Emergency hospital services can be reached by dialling 166.  Rethymnon has plenty of private doctors and dentists.  

Mobile phones 

Two types of mobile phone options are available: contract or pay as you go.  For either you have to register with a telecoms provider.  There are at least 4 mobile telephone providers with local stores in Rethymnon.  Most mobile telephone companies also provide internet services.

Rethymnon Campus

Humanities, Social Sciences and Education are hosted at the Rethymnon Campus of the University.  The University Campus, known as Gallos Campus, is located 5 km south of the town of Rethymnon, it covers an area of 150 hectares with rich and diverse plantation and can be easily reached by private car or public transportation. Gallos Campus is relatively new (built in late 1990s) and has all the facilities of a modern University Campus: library, computer centre, a fitness centre, restaurant, coffee shops, a mini-market, ATMs and plenty of open air parking space.

Library

The University Library is considered a pioneer among Greek academic libraries in the development and exploitation of new information technologies and documentation networking services. The modern purpose built central library in Rethymnon has one of the largest collections in Greece of printed academic titles and journals as well as digital information sources (e-journals, databases, and other materials in digital format).  The University has been recognized as a research entity by  EUROSTAT for the purpose of having access to EUROSTAT micro datasets.  Check the library site  for details on how to register, the on-line catalogue etc.

Information Technology Services 

e-services are part of the University’s computer and network services which are coordinated by the Computer Centre.  The Centre comprises the following four technical units:  Communications and Networks Centre (UCnet), The Multimedia Lab (mmlab), Data Processing Centre (MisUoC), Systems and Users Support Centre all located in Herakleion.  Rethymnon has a large computer centre with a number of networked stand alone PCs and printers.  Note that TIME requires all MBE students to have access to a computer with Internet capability. Students are expected to register for courses and access course work online.

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