Eastern Crete covers a huge area: a long coastline with varied beaches, several mountain ranges, towns and ancient ruins. Below is a list of some of the best known places of interest to get you started with your visit.
Palaikastro was an important Minoan town.
The old leper colony of Spinalonga located near Elounda is also popular.
Agios Nikolaos houses a nice archaeological museum but it is currently closed for renovations (2015)
Finally Heraklion with its fantastic Archeaological Museum and nearby Mioan palace of Knossos could be worth a day trip.
Voulisma beach (and other nearby beaches in Istro) is very beautiful
Palaikastro: a quiet beach on the East coast famous for wind-surfing
Vai is famous for its palm forest but also rather overcrowded
Mirtos beach in the South-East of Crete: good beach in a laid-back village
Some of the better known walks are the Gorge of the Dead in Kato Zakros, the summit of Karfi on the plateau of Lassithi and the Perivolakia gorge (near Moni Kapsa). A good book for walks in the East of Crete is Crete East The Finest Valley and Mountain Walks
East Crete has three main coastal towns Agios Nikolaos, Sitia and Ierapetra.