Best Beaches in Crete
As the largest and most southern of the Greek islands, Crete is renowned for its pleasantly warm temperatures on both land and in its surrounding waters. Whether you are after a safe spot for swimming with the kids, Blue Flag beaches with tavernas galore or a more isolated spot with a good wind for surfing and water sports, Crete has it all. Here are some of the best beaches in Crete to discover on your trip.
Located in the charming Chania region of Crete and surrounded by olive groves, this beautiful stretch of beach is the ideal retreat for you and your family if you want an afternoon in the sun following a spot of lunch on the terrace of Villa Anni. Enjoy warm, azure waters and plenty of room to spread out on this lengthy beach that spans over 1km. A sprinkling of tavernas and villas dot the hills overlooking the beach, and the fewer numbers of facilities certainly keep the crowds away. Take a picnic that you prepared earlier in your villa if you are coming for the day, along with plenty of sunscreen and water. If you are looking for one of the quietest beaches in Crete, this certainly makes the list. Water sports fans are well catered for here with sea kayaking, paddle boarding and banana boating. You’ll also find a handful of quiet coves should you prefer a secluded snorkelling experience.
Arguably one of the most beautiful and lush beaches on the island, if you’re wondering where to go in Crete for beaches, Preveli will wow with its stunning cliffs and swaying palm trees. Set to the backdrop of Kourtaliotiko Gorge, getting to it is not for the feint-hearted, with a steep path to climb down (which is even more challenging to climb back up!), so bring walking boots, as well as your flip-flops. The work is worth the effort though, as you are greeted by pristine-white sands and glistening waters that are perfect for snorkelling and swimming. If you’re into culture and history, the nearby monastery is worth a visit too, offering stunning views overlooking the Libyan Sea. Aside from a taverna located near its car park, the beach is fairly remote, so pack plenty of snacks and drinks if you’re thinking of a long visit.
If you have chosen to stay in one of our luxurious villas in the Agios Nikolaos region, such as Villa Desire, Vai beach is ideal for couples, families and sun-seekers. This glorious beach is often on many visitors’ to-do lists, and features Europe’s biggest forest made up of natural palms, giving it a very tropical, Caribbean-like vibe. If you’re wondering which part of Crete has the best beaches, this surely has to be one of them. As a Blue Flag beach, you’ll find plenty of tavernas and restaurants nearby, where you can indulge in Cretan cuisine and refreshments. As a smaller beach, Vai can get more crowded during peak season, but if you head up the trail to Itanos, an ancient Minoan site, you’ll find more secluded coves where you can swim and snorkel in peace.
Whether you are looking for a day trip on one of Crete’s beaches, feel like taking part in some water sports or just want to relax and top up your tan for a few hours, Plakias beach is certainly one of the best beaches in Crete. Once a fishing village, Plakias now offers a lively scene for families and couples alike, with a mountainous landscape and the Lybian sea caressing its white-sand shores. There’s plenty to keep the whole family entertained with nearby tavernas, rock climbing, a diving school and kitesurfing on offer. Unwind at a beach-side bar with a cocktail while the kids play and splash about in the water. At this beautiful beach, time stands still as you take in the epic views.
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