As the spring has arrived I´ve start to see the backpackers again. I do see them in winter too, but obviously the weather is much nicer now for the backpackers or cyclist.
Why to take always just a fixed hotel room? I agree hotel offers certain comfort, but if you have little bit of an adventurous mind why not try camping instead? I noticed the flights have come a lot cheaper, now it can make sense to book just flights and leave the hotel open. If you like to rent rooms, you will always find rooms with reasonable prices certainly in the south coast of Crete (often 25 e a night) out of the top season (July and August)...
I have met families with children crossing countries and even just Crete by bicycles, once even a family with two kids who were both still in diapers.
Crete is a wonderful island to discover by rental car/motorbike, bicycle or by foot. You can sleep in some quiet beaches and there are several camp grounds available with all services. Excellent option if you have a small budget!
Certainly the BEST time to discover the island is before July or after August, plenty of room and easy to camp and the campsites are still all open (some of them are open all year around at least Ierapetra/Koutsounari, Rethymon, Agia Galini, Paleochora). You can find campsites basically in each side of the island, except south-east corner.
If you are curious to rent a camper, that is also possible! There are few rental businesses for this purpose in Crete, one who´s campers I see quite some is called Miketours. If you got curious, google it out!
Welcome to discover Crete maybe in a new way for you :)