Crete’s beaches are amongst the Greek islands’ precious gems. Bathed by the bright Mediterranean sun and boasting crystal-clear waters, the beaches of Crete make the perfect stage for a dream-like holiday for couples, groups of friends or families with kids. Caressed by the Aegean and the Mediterranean Seas, the Cretan shores invite tourists to enjoy the sun and the sea.
Main beaches in Crete
- Panormos beach: A quiet beach on the northern shore of Crete, to the east of the medieval town of Rethymnon and caressed by the warm waters of the Aegean Sea. A lively beach, it boasts all kinds of facilities and services, which makes it a haven of peace and quiet for couples or families with kids.
- Beaches across Mirabello Bay: On this harbour are some of the most beautiful and peaceful beaches and coves on the Cretan shore: the extensive Mirabello beach; Karavostasi, a sandy beach framed by olive and cedar groves; and Agios Panteleimonas, a white-sand beach that attracts water sports lovers and has many restaurants nearby.
- Bali beach: It owes its name to the village the beach lies in, a jewel of the Greek essence on the island, with calm, clear blue waters of mild temperature. Bali beach has a charming fishing port and offers stunning views of the northern coast of Crete.
- Balos beach: A sandy paradise with turquoise blue water, this beach is great for tourists who prefer a quiet secluded beach in a wonderful natural setting. Balos lies near Kissamos, across Gramvousa. There is a parking area but the beach is 2km away; it can be reached on foot or donkey only.
- Heraklion beaches: The beaches in Heraklion, the capital of Crete, are to be found on the north and south, and offer a wide range of bathing areas, from wild beaches for a romantic day on the sand to more crowded beaches for scuba divers or other water sports lovers. The most popular are Matala, Agia Pelagia, Hersonissos or Malia.
- Agia Galini beaches: In this lovely village by the mouth of the river Platys are some of the most beautiful Cretan beaches. Agia Galini, for instance, is a sandy paradise on Messara Bay. It offers a lively ambience and all the necessary services. A nice spot where nudists will be able to unwind in the sun.
- Vai beach: A secluded beach that is one of Crete’s best-kept secrets. On Mirabello Bay, in the charming village of Mochlos, between Agios Nikolaos and Sitia, there stands Vai, an extensive sand beach at the end of a valley, framed by the largest natural palm forest in Crete. It offers comfortable facilities and services but is still an uncrowded beach, where you can relax with your family or partner.