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- Practcally Cretan
There will always be flights in winter to/from Heathrow, as used by business people, some that use for other connections from there.
Heathrow is a more expensive airport for airlines to use than Gatwick, but that is where they get their business travellers who want to go.
Great you have found a connection out from Gatwick, suggest you check again around the Aegean site for return dates from Gatwick, look at other dates, no idea what week exact week days you are looking at. Aegean not the easiest site to view. Think Gerald mentioned something about they are still uploading flight details. Do appreciate it is a pain/impossible maybe to use two airports especially if parking car.
Not sure if Easyjet do flights on weekends Athens-Gatwick-Athens*, they do not appear to do Athens to Chania in winter. *maybe the connections work or not with other carrier and one will have to allow time if checking in hold luggage (suitcase) at Athens.
Will leave someone else to advice on shops etc in Chania over Xmas/New Year, as I might be wrong.
You are correct about a number of UK entertainment/eating places being closed. Due to either people going away or spending time with friends/family.
Have noticed groups of family/ friends block booking places in advance either for a few days or even just set menu on 25th December.
Personally would prefer not to out for set menu on 25th December, a humble meal of fingers would be preferable to me at home (in reality something more special). I am a bit old fashioned maybe but no enjoyment watching other people working on 25th December to fulfil my needs & being away from their family, with exception of quick early lunch time drink in Pub, though pubs are vanishing in the UK countryside