The best beaches in Crete

Who I am
Valery Aloyants
@valeryaloyants
SOURCES CONSULTED:

wikipedia.org, lonelyplanet.com

Author and references

You are about to leave for the splendid island of Crete, or are you planning your vacation?
Well, I have collected for you the most beautiful beaches that you just cannot miss.

Crete offers a variety of beaches that can easily rival the most beautiful in the Caribbean.

The beaches of the northern coast are the most crowded and equipped with bars and restaurants, the southern coast offers less frequented beaches with crystal clear sea.


Best Beaches of Crete:

Balos Beach

La Balos Lagoon is one of most beautiful beaches of Crete, considered a true paradise with a beach of fine sand and Caribbean sea, transparent and turquoise waters.


To reach the Balos lagoon there are two options, either by car or by boat.

The first option is the most fascinating even if not very comfortable, you have to take a stretch of dirt road overlooking the sea (about 7 km) the route is not the simplest but just go slowly and in about 30/40 minutes you will reach the beach. without problems. Once you arrive at the car park, you can enjoy a breathtaking view, but you have to walk another 20/30 minutes to reach it beautiful Balos Lagoon.

If you go by car, I suggest you leave early and bring water even for the return which can be more tiring and above all avoid slippers or flip-flops. Remember that you pay a symbolic toll of € 1.

To go by boat to the Balos lagoon, we leave from Kissamos, but we arrive late at around 11 and the stop does not last long, about 2 hours.


Distances from the main places (allow about an hour more for the rough stretch of road):


  • Chania - 45 km (50 minutes);
  • Rethimno – 100km (90 minuti);
  • Heraklion – 180km (150 minuti);
  • Gole di Samaria - 70 km (80 minutes);
  • Elafonissi- 50km (70 minutes);

Elafonissi Beach


Elafonisi is perhaps the most beautiful beach in Crete, with a tropical charm with transparent sea and pink sand.
In front of the Elafonisi beach there is a small island connected to the mainland by a strip of sand.
The beach is equipped with a series of umbrellas that can be rented at a good price, € 7 for an umbrella and two sun loungers. Obviously there is also a part of the free beach.
The Lagoon is famous because the caretta caretta turtles lay their eggs there.
Being the most beautiful, it is always crowded, even in June, so it's better to go early to be able to enjoy this natural paradise as much as possible.

Distances from the main places:

  • Chania - 72 km (80 minutes);
  • Paleochora (port for Koyfonisi) - 30km (60 minutes);
  • Kissamos - 40km (60 minutes);
  • Heraklion – 200km (180 minuti);
  • Gole di Samaria - 80 km (120 minutes);

The Falassarna Beach


Falassarna is another wonder of nature, fine sand and a crystal clear sea. It is located on the west coast 59 kilometers east of Chania.


The white sand and spectacular crystal clear waters attract a large number of tourists, including many surfers, as big waves form when there is wind.


The beach is well organized with umbrellas and sunbeds to rent, there is also a bar and a tavern. Unlike Balos and Elafonisi, the road to reach Falassarna is much easier
An advice: do not leave the beach before sunset in Falassarna is a real show!

Distances from the main places:

  • Chania - 48 km (50 minutes);
  • Rethimno – 110km (90 minuti);
  • Falasarna - 50km (50 minutes);
  • Heraklion – 190km (150 minuti);
  • Gole di Samaria - 75 km (90 minutes);
  • Paleochora - 58km (80 minutes);

The beach of Vai


La Vai beach it is located on the east coast of the island of Crete, in the province of Lassithi, 6 kilometers from the village of Palekastro and 24 kilometers from the town of Sitia.

La Vai beach is one of the places not to be missed, famous for its palm forest, the largest in Europe. Golden sand and transparent sea are the strong point of this "tropical" paradise.

La Vai beach it is suitable for water sports and diving, it is possible to rent umbrellas and sunbeds and there are bars and restaurants.


Here, too, try to arrive early in the morning, around 9,30 when there are still few people and the beach is even more beautiful.

The beach of Preveli


La Preveli beach it is located on the southern coast of Crete, at the end of the Kourtaliotikos Gorge, in the province of Rethimno, 35 kilometers from the city and 10 kilometers east of Plakias.

The beach of Preveli is unique, fascinating and suggestive the palm grove with the fresh water river. The beach is not equipped, there are no umbrellas and sunbeds, but there is a palm grove where you can shelter from the sun. However, there are some bars and taverns where you can refresh yourself.


To reach it, take a stretch of dirt road and once you have parked the car, you have to go down a long staircase. For the lazy there are also boats that depart from Plakias.

Stavros Beach


Another beautiful beach, is located at the northern end of the peninsula north of Chania,
The view is unique, since the beach is set in a small bay, the sea is clear and has incredible colors, a splendid blue lagoon sheltered from the wind and currents.

Besides being a beautiful beach it is also very easy to reach, about 15 minutes from Chania.

Distances from the main places:

  • Chania - 15 km (15 minutes);
  • Rethimno – 70km (60 minuti);
  • Various monasteries - 15km (20 minutes);
  • Heraklion – 150km (130 minuti);
  • Falasarna - 60 km (60 minutes);

Chrissi Island

Chrissi Island it is a desert island with a spectacular sea, a dream beach and a landscape that is very reminiscent of the Caribbean.
Together with the famous beaches of Elafonissa, Falassarna and Balos Chrissi Island it is another lovely place not to be missed if you are on holiday in Crete.

The island can be reached from Lerapetra, where ferries leave at fixed times, the crossing is short and pleasant. There are also two bars for catering and you can rent sun beds and umbrellas.

Visit Crete

If you are planning your trip to Crete and are looking for information on where to sleep, read the post on the island of Crete.

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