Best Beaches in Crete
Choosing the 6 best beaches in Crete has not been easy at all, because really, if there is something I would highlight about the island of Crete, it is that it has some of the best beaches I have ever seen in my life. And I’m not only referring to the quality of the beaches in terms of cleanliness and the color of its waters, but also to an arid and wild natural environment that makes them special and unique. And yes, not all these beaches are placed near the best towns in Crete.
Without further ado, let’s get down to business. These are for me the 6 best beaches in Crete:
Falassarna beach, one of the best beaches in Crete.
I don’t know if it was because it was the first beach we visited, but Falassarna beach was one of the ones we liked the most. It is a huge beach with all the services: parking on the beach, sun loungers, umbrellas, restaurants … but still retains all its natural charm. Fine white sand, crystal clear turquoise waters and a spectacular mountain scenery.
For all the amenities it offers, it is ideal for families and, despite that, it does not become overwhelming thanks to its large size, allowing you to move to find your place without anyone bothering you.
A tip: if you go in August and want to reserve a sun lounger, you should go early in the morning. We arrived at about 11 am and they were all already occupied.
And another tip, this time gastronomic: there is a very cool restaurant on the beach, called Playa Paraiso, where they make a finger-licking moussaka.
Seitan Limania Beach, the most original beach on the island of Crete
Seitan Limania is a beach formed by a mountainous gorge that juts into the Aegean Sea. It is one of the best beaches of Crete for its originality and its undisputed beauty.
Unlike Falassarna, it is a small beach where many people are concentrated in a few square meters. On the other hand, instead of fine sand, the ground is more of pebbles, and the water, although of a beautiful and very curious sky blue color, is no longer transparent as in Falassarna.
Warning for sailors: access to this beach is complicated. You have to go down some very sharp curves with the car and park in a small parking lot, although quite busy. We were lucky that a car was just leaving when we arrived.
From the parking lot to the beach, you have to make a somewhat dangerous trek of about 20 minutes, so we do not recommend going with small children or elderly people.
As a tip, take plenty of sunscreen and something to eat. When you’re finally down, you’ll want to stay for a while.
Also, if you like animals, you will enjoy the frequent visits of kri-kris (the endemic goat of Crete), which are quite sociable with tourists and wander around the beach like Peter in search of food.
By the way, be careful with your beach mat, we found that they have a weakness for them!
Beach of Balos, paradise is in Crete
If there is an indispensable beach that you cannot miss in Crete, that is, without any doubt, the beach of Balos or Balos Beach.
It is a bay that is divided into two parts: the lagoon and a beautiful beach of turquoise waters overlooking the island of Gramvousa.
Both parts are separated by a narrow tongue of white sand where you can relax sunbathing and enjoying the scenery. If you want to see an amazing beach and landscapes that will take your breath away, believe me, this is your beach.
In fact, I liked Balos beach so much that I have decided to create a post dedicated exclusively to it, where I tell you everything: how to get there, where to eat, what to take with you…
Elafonisi beach, the “pink” sand beach
Elafonisi beach was perhaps the disappointment of the trip, not because it was not a beautiful beach, which it is, but because of the tremendous tourist overcrowding.
Elafonisi has all the qualities of a paradisiacal beach: large stretches of white sand (and even pink in some areas); calm and crystal clear waters with shallow depth, where you can enjoy a nice dip, swimming or just relaxing on the shore; sun loungers and umbrellas for rent at good prices … only one thing is missing: tranquility. So first book a normal hotel away from all that noise. For example at https://karta.com
We went with very high expectations after reading in several blogs that it was one of the best beaches in the world and, of course, when you go with those expectations to places then what happens happens:
That neither the sand was so pink nor the beach so paradisiacal.
Surely if you go outside the high season it is worth a visit, but if you go in August as we did, I would say that it is not essential.
Kedrodasos beach, one of the wildest beaches in Crete.
Very close to Elafonisi, but much more unknown and wild, is the beach of Kedrodasos.
If you are one of those who prefer to escape the crowds and enjoy a dream beach in a much more exclusive way, I recommend you to write down Kedrodasos on your bucket list.
The advantage of this beach, in addition to its tranquility and its undoubted beauty, is that it has trees that allow you to lie in the shade without the need for an umbrella, something that is much appreciated in the hottest months.
Did you know that Kedrodasos means cedar forest in Greek?
On the other hand, there are two things to keep in mind: that access is more complicated than Elafonisi, as there is a trek of about 30 minutes from the parking lot, and that you must bring your own food and drink, as there is nowhere to buy there.
Kalami beach, one of the best beaches in Crete to relax on.
Kalami is a beach that I discovered a bit by chance, as it is very close to the hostel where I slept my first night in Crete.
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It is a small, family-friendly beach in Souda Bay. This cozy beach abounds in local tourism but on a small scale, even in August.
Apart from its crystal clear and calm waters thanks to its privileged location in the interior of the bay, what characterizes this beach is a concrete walkway that divides it into two parts and from where you can jump into the water.
The only downside, to put it some, is that the beach instead of sand has pebbles, which can be a bit annoying when entering the water. If you have booties, all the better.
Also, if you want to have lunch or dinner after a day at the beach, I recommend a very close restaurant with spectacular views: Σμαραγδή Εστιατόριο (yes, it’s in Greek, but if you put it in Google, you find it).
And so much for my summary with what, in my opinion, are the 6 best beaches in Crete. I hope it has helped you and that you also enjoy one day those that have caught your attention.
And if you have already been to Crete, I would love to know your opinion.