romance writer
Zoe Ashwood travels to Crete!

When my husband and I were discussing potential holiday destinations this year, I was all in for Crete, Greece. First of all, it’s a gorgeous island I’ve visited once before (when I was about nine) and had only nice memories of it, and second, I recently set a whole book there! 

So I was super excited when we actually made all the arrangements and booked our flight and our hotel. This was the first plane trip we took with our kids, and the first real traveling adventure after the pandemic. 


zoe ashwood - crete - sea


I’m going to share some photos with you, along with my best memories and a reading list of what I read during this vacation. My kids are now old enough that they don’t need constant supervision, so I actually had a lot of reading time on my hands! Perfect!



We arrived at our lovely hotel, and I immediately fell in love. It was quintessentially Greek, with white walls, blue doors and shutters, and bougenvillea climbing up in the corners of the courtyard with a nice-sized pool. 

We discovered several beautiful beaches during our stay, and the one that stuck out the most was Preveli Beach on the south side of the island. It has a little palm-lined river flowing into the sea, so you get this stunning combination of really clean river water and the crystal-blue Mediterranean Sea. 




We also visited the ancient Knossos Palace - and Heraklion, the capital, which I was super excited about because it’s there that Freed in Love takes place! I took this video in the old harbor - and here’s another pic of the old fort and the Dia Island (where I put my fictional labyrinth) behind it. It’s just a dry, brown lump of land, but to me, totally interesting.



And for those of you who have read the trilogy - this is exactly what I imagined the tokens from the third task to look like! These clay bull statues are typical of the Minoan culture, which was where the Minotaur and the Labyrinth myths originated. 


Overall, this was one of the best trips I've ever had. The weather was nice, the country is beautiful, and I even saw an octopus while snorkeling on our last day, which felt like a final parting gift from the sea gods, haha.


And here’s what I read while on vacation:

  • Faking With Benefits by Lily Gold - a contemporary reverse harem romance that got me through the flight to Crete (I’m a nervous flier, eek). 
  • Tempted by Fire by Erin Kellison - a great dragon shifter romance with awesome worldbuilding
  • Give Me More by Sara Cate - the third book in her Salacious series, and I tore through it so fast! Loved it as much as the other two.
  • Pack Darling by Lola Rock - an omegaverse reverse harem, pretty gritty at times!
  • Ariadne by Jennifer Saint - I only started this one but haven’t finished yet - I picked it up at the bookstore just before we left because it takes place on Crete!


And if you want to read the series that had me so excited about this trip, start with Cursed in Love!


Happy reading!

xo, Zoe



Hi! I'm Zoe, and I write cinnamon roll heroes, no matter how loud they growl


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