It is no coin­ci­dence that the beach­es of Crete are con­sid­ered among the best in Greece. Dur­ing sun­ny sum­mer days, there is a lot of enter­tain­ment avail­able for all cat­e­gories of tourists. Whether you’re into water sports, div­ing, or good old-fash­ioned sun­bathing on the beach, Crete is sure to have the right beach to suit your needs.

Crete beaches

Entry relat­ed to loca­tion: Greece

Elafonisi beach

Ela­fon­isi beach is world famous for its exot­ic species. Almost trop­i­cal land­scapes (pro­tect­ed by the islet of the same name), white sand with pink corals and green­ish-blue waters with bright red starfish — what else do you need for hap­pi­ness? The water on Ela­fon­isi is incred­i­bly warm, calm and shal­low, and you can get to the islet through a short ford along a sandy spit.

Kouremenos beach

Koure­menos Beach is one of Crete’s top des­ti­na­tions for wind­surfers. No won­der it’s almost always windy here. The pipe effect cre­ates ide­al con­di­tions for wind­surf­ing. If you want qui­et, then the near­by beach of Hiona is much more pro­tect­ed. This is a beau­ti­ful long sand and peb­ble beach with sev­er­al tav­erns and bars. In the sum­mer, a real com­mu­ni­ty of wind­surfers who come here in vans set­tle down here.

Matala beach

Mata­la Beach is famous for its once-found­ed com­mu­ni­ty of hip­pies liv­ing in caves. But today it is pure­ly a tourist town with excel­lent infra­struc­ture and hotels. Mata­la is indeed one of the best beach­es in Crete, with a fre­net­ic vibe and plen­ty to do. This is a very roman­tic place, with a cock­tail by the sea at sun­set and caves illu­mi­nat­ed at night. Behind the hill of Mata­la is the equal­ly beau­ti­ful Red Beach with red­dish-gold­en sand and nud­ists.

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Vai beach

The palm-fringed Vai Beach con­trasts great­ly with the spir­i­tu­al tran­quil­i­ty of the near­by Toplou Monastery. Lying on the fine sand ear­ly in the morn­ing, espe­cial­ly in ear­ly spring and late autumn, it’s easy to imag­ine being on a Caribbean island. In sum­mer, the beach is filled with tourists, but for sev­er­al hours in the evening, you can still enjoy the peace and tran­quil­i­ty, admir­ing the beau­ty of the sun­set.
wai beach

Myrtos beach

Myr­tos is a charm­ing vil­lage with white hous­es and a long peb­bly beach. Even in August, when Myr­tos is filled to over­flow­ing with tourists, the pace of life here remains slow, and the atmos­phere is pleas­ant and calm. In addi­tion to sun­bathing on the most beau­ti­ful beach of Crete, here you can go div­ing or rent a plea­sure boat. The sur­round­ing coun­try­side has pre­served sev­er­al impor­tant Minoan sites, and on par­tic­u­lar­ly hot days, you can go on an excur­sion to the moun­tains, where there is always a cool­ness.


Anoth­er out­stand­ing beach of Crete is locat­ed just 3 kilo­me­ters from Horafakia. Stavros is an almost per­fect beach sur­round­ed by a calm bay. It is almost always com­plete­ly calm here, and the sandy shal­low shores make Stavros a good des­ti­na­tion for fam­i­lies with small chil­dren. 100 meters from the beach ris­es a steep moun­tain slope with a cave and an ancient sanc­tu­ary. Stavros beach is often crowd­ed, but there are also remote areas where there are few­er peo­ple. In any case, it is eas­i­ly able to accom­mo­date every­one.


The best way to escape the swel­ter­ing sum­mer tem­per­a­tures of Ira­je­tra is to take a boat trip to Gaiduro­nisi (don­key island), locat­ed about 10 km from the coast. The real unin­hab­it­ed island does not exceed 4 km in length, with a beau­ti­ful cedar for­est, excel­lent sandy beach­es, sev­er­al tav­erns and a pic­turesque shell beach. It is com­plete­ly cov­ered in shells from count­less gen­er­a­tions of mol­luscs.

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Franco­gastel­lo beach is con­sid­ered one of the best places in Crete for a relax­ing hol­i­day. It is famous for its fine sand and per­fect­ly clear water, which is con­ducive to scu­ba div­ing. Among the sights of Franco­gastel­lo, it is worth not­ing the cas­tle, where tourists always gath­er. If you want pri­va­cy, head west along the coast­line. There are beach­es in the east, where a kilo­me­ter from the vil­lage there are kilo­me­ters of desert­ed sandy strips sur­round­ed by rocks.

Sweetwater Beach

Sweet­wa­ter Beach in Crete is a long, extreme­ly nar­row strip between rocks and deep sea. It is iso­lat­ed from the land by moun­tains and end­less sea spaces. It was called a fresh­wa­ter beach for a rea­son, but because of the numer­ous springs right on the shore, pro­vid­ing fresh, cool drink­ing water. You can dig a hole any­where on the beach and you will sure­ly find fresh water.


Gav­dos is the largest of the islands off the coast of Crete. Its attrac­tive­ness lies in its rel­a­tive iso­la­tion from most tourist flows. Here you will find a great beach and a small tav­ern where fresh­ly caught fish is fried. The peb­ble beach of Kamare­les is a beach in Trip­i­ti, the south­ern­most point in Europe. These places are famous among divers for their rich under­wa­ter world. Any trav­el­er who comes here must per­form one rit­u­al: he climbs a high rock, where you can sit on the very edge of the con­ti­nent.