Tourist’s guide to TOP 12 beaches in Crete

Where are the best beaches of Crete – the most popular question among all vacationers of the island. In this article we will talk about which of the three seas washing Crete is best for families with children, where to go for fun, and where the atmosphere of peace reigns. Make your vacation unforgettable – choose the best beaches of Crete on the map (Russian) at the bottom of the page and hit the road!

Beach in Crete

Crete Beaches – General

Crete is washed from all sides by the waters of different waters of the Mediterranean Sea:

  • On the north coast of the island is the Cretan Sea. This is the most favorite place for travelers with children, as it is here that has the most sandy beaches with convenient entry into the water. The Aegean Sea has one drawback – in summer, waves often occur on the northern coast;
  • Beach in the Libyan Sea
  • From the south, Crete is washed by the calm Libyan Sea. The water temperature in it is several degrees lower than in the previous one, and the coast for the most part consists of mountains. There are practically no equipped beaches in this area, and those places where you can relax by the water are covered with fine pebbles or black sand. If waves overtook you in the north of the island, feel free to come to the Libyan Sea – there will be calm;
  • The Ionian Sea surrounds the island from the west. If you belong to those who want to come home with beautiful photos from the best beaches of Crete, this area is for you. The shallow and warm sea stands out among others for its color, or rather, a variety of colors, since at the same time you can see up to 17 shades of water on it. The west coast is also famous for its pink beaches. If there is a storm in the north of the island, then in the Ionian Sea, most likely, too.

The beach season in Crete lasts from May to November. The best time to relax on the island is autumn, during this period the air temperature rises to 27 ° C (in spring + 20- + 24 ° C, in summer to + 31 ° C), and the water warms up to 25 ° C (in spring to + 22 ° C, in summer up to + 27 ° C).

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The best beaches of Crete – we list by name


One of the most beautiful beaches of the island is located in the western part of Crete, on the island of the same name. The calm and clear sea in this place has different depths – both adults and children will find a suitable option. Entry into the water is gradual and safe, there are no stones or slabs nearby, the coast is covered with white and pink sand.

Elafonisi Beach, Crete

The number of people on the beach is large at any time of the year. Most tourists come here by bus, so the peak of visiting Elafonisi is 11-16 hours.

From the infrastructure on the beach there are toilets and changing rooms, paid umbrellas and sunbeds. From public institutions there is only a small cafe (drinks and sandwiches / hot dogs on the menu), there are no organized entertainment centers. Due to the large number of tourists, access to amenities often requires a queue, and many products from cafes diverge before evening. Before leaving, we advise you to stock up on food and water, as well as take an umbrella or tent with you (there is almost no natural shade).

Clear water on the beach of Elafonisi

Important! If you drive to the beach by car, be careful and stock up on time – a narrow, partially unpaved road with frequent traffic jams leads to Elafonisi. There is no organized parking in this place.


Sandy wild beach with wonderful views is also located in the western part of the island. This place is a paradise for lovers of a relaxing holiday and untouched nature. Right next to the sea there is a juniper forest, a little further – hills and black stones, and in the distance you can see massive mountains.

Kedrodasos Beach

There are practically no tourists on Kedrodasos, but this place is popular with locals. Those wishing to enjoy beautiful landscapes should take into account that there is no infrastructure on the beach at all, so you need to take water, food, creams and other things only with you.

The water at Kedrodasos is warm and clear. In summer, a strong wind often blows here, which is why waves rise in the sea. The only shade on the beach is made by junipers, but they are often surrounded by large plates or stones.

Junipers create the only shade on the beach

The main disadvantage of the beach is its inconvenient location. It is located 40 km from the city of Kissamos, you can only get to it by car on a dirt road or on foot (30 minutes from Elafonisi on very rough terrain).


The marble beach got its name thanks to the beautiful caves located near the coast. This is the best place for snorkeling and diving, many tourists attribute it to the list of must-see sights of Crete.

Marmara Beach, Crete

Marmara is a small beach, not designed for a large number of tourists. Only a few dozens of paid sunbeds and umbrellas fit here, an excellent tavern with low prices and delicious food, a boat rental area. The beach is covered with small pebbles, entering the water here is convenient, waves are rare. Very picturesque place.

In a tavern on the beach of Marmara

Note! There are no roads to the island, so you can get here either by boat (regularly leaving from Loutro, 7 km away), or on foot if you are on the right part of the island.

Laguna Balos

This is not just the most beautiful beach of Crete, the lagoon of Balos is a real symbol of the island. Photos taken in this place, where the three seas come together, adorn half of Greece’s magnets and key rings, and the impressions and views that await you here will forever adorn your memory.

Beach in the lagoon of Balos

One of the best beaches in Crete is located in the bay of the same name, so getting here is not an easy task. The only transport that goes to the lagoon is a taxi or a rented car (Important: the road near the beach is paid), but you can also get here by boat as part of the tour.

Small Balos is covered with a thin layer of pink sand, under which there are small and large pebbles. Umbrellas and sun loungers are located throughout its area, which can be rented for a fee. The sea in this place is very warm, but shallow, which cannot but please families with children.

Laguna Balos

The infrastructure on the beach is not developed, but tourists do not come here for this. If you also want to take a photo of the most beautiful beach of Crete, going up to the observation deck, go a little towards the parking lot – here is a greater view and more safe.

Advice! Take along special slippers for swimming or slates, as small stones are found on the coast and at the bottom of the sea. Also do not forget water, food and hats.


Skinaria is the best beach in Crete for snorkelers. Here, not far from Plakias, in crystal clear water, surrounded by steep cliffs, beautiful algae grow, hundreds of small fish live and even octopuses swim. The real attraction of the beach is the diving center, which attracts divers from all over the world.

Skinaria Beach
Snorkeling at Skinaria Beach

Skinaria occupies a small area covered with volcanic plates. There is free parking for cars, an excellent tavern Garden tavern, known for its affordable prices and delicious dishes of fresh products, a small number of sunbeds (2 € / day) and umbrellas (1 €). Sunset at sea is rocky, but safe. There are often waves in Skinaria, so for a vacation with young children it is worth choosing a different beach. Near the coast there are small lakes with fresh water from mountain springs – a better place for picturesque photos.

Shaitan limani

This beach is designed for active tourists, who like climbing the steep hills under the hot sun seems like a good adventure. At the foot of the mountain, a piece of turquoise water flaunts – you can see the Aegean Sea, surrounded on all sides by stones.

Shaitan Limani Beach

This place is not intended for long swims, sunbathing or water activities – people come here for new impressions and inspiration. Do not be surprised if you do not find a cafe or locker rooms here – the infrastructure in this place is absolutely not developed.

Shaitan Limani is one of the few beaches that can be reached by bus. Ticket price – from 3 euros, depart three times a day from Bus Station Chania. The beach is located 22 kilometers east of Chania and is part of the Akrotiri Peninsula.

Important! Be sure to go to Shaitan Limani in comfortable shoes.


This is not just the best beach in Greek Crete, it is part of a beautiful ancient eponymous resort located 50 km from Chania. Here, on the long sandy coast, the Blue Flag of Europe, awarded for its cleanliness, has been adorned for several years. It is here that the joyful cries of young travelers are heard daily, and adult tourists enjoy beautiful sunsets.

Flasarna Beach

The beach is fully equipped for the convenience of vacationers, of which there are many at any time of the year. There are sun loungers and umbrellas, toilets, changing rooms, a volleyball court, and a boat rental area. Nearby are two cafes where you can taste the best dishes of Cretan cuisine.

Getting to Flasarna is quite simple – a bus goes here. If you drive in a rented car, be calm, since the road is direct and asphalt, a small serpentine will be only at the end of the road.

Flasarna Beach View

Sunset at Flasarn is very convenient – sandy and gently sloping. The depth increases gradually and for a long time, therefore it is very popular among families with children. The only drawback of the beach is the water temperature, since it is always several degrees colder here than in other parts of Crete.


This beautiful place with crystal clear water does not fall into the category of the best beaches in Crete for families with children, but it is an unambiguous favorite of lovers of snorkeling and diving. In a deep transparent sea surrounded by three sheer cliffs, there are hundreds of small fish that swim close to the shore, as there are few tourists in this place.

Triopetra Beach

The triopetra is fully adapted to the needs of vacationers – there are umbrellas and deck chairs, a shower, toilets, a large parking lot, several taverns and cafes. The road at the entrance to the beach is convenient (located in the city of Plakias), despite the tortuosity, it is quite wide and safe. Sometimes a strong wind rises here, which spreads small pebbles, but usually it stops within an hour.


Ask a tourist who has traveled to Greece, where Crete has the best beach and sea to hear the coveted “Kutsunari”. Covered with small pebbles, with convenient entry into the water and excellent infrastructure, it attracts hundreds of people every day.

Kutsunari Beach

Getting to Kutsunari, located 7 km from the resort of Jerapetra – is quite simple. Regular buses depart from the city on a regular basis, and you can drive directly to the water by car or taxi on a dirt road.

Kutsunari Beach Tavern

You won’t be bored on the wide coast: there are 3 hotels, many cafes and taverns, a diving club and a water entertainment center. It is very interesting to snorkel, as the calm sea in this region is simply teeming with various water inhabitants. Near the beach is the camping of the same name.

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The beautiful Greek word for a complex of beaches located 5 km east of Paleochora. Here, on a wide and clean coast, every vacationer will find a place to their liking: pebbles or sand, a wild beach without amenities or sunbathing on comfortable sunbeds, the peaceful enjoyment of a calm sea or jumping into the water from stones.

Gialiskari Beach

You can get to Gialiskari by bus or car (the roads are narrow and winding, official parking is paid). The beach is surrounded by mountains and hills, in some places coniferous trees give a natural shadow. The water on the Gialiskari is warm, the approach is gentle, here you can relax with young children. From entertainment: catamarans, boats, jet skis, snorkeling.


A small beach and one of the best – in Crete. High mountains, clear beautiful water and a lot of greenery – such views do not dream even in beautiful dreams.

Karavostavi beach

The deep, but warm sea scares away travelers with young children from Karavostavi. Entry into the water is convenient, the coast is covered with small pebbles. Near the beach there are high cliffs with panoramic views of the most beautiful places of Crete. From entertainment – a tavern and a diving center (there is a submarine bridge and many interesting places for exploration). The beach has all the amenities necessary for a comfortable stay.

Note! Karavostavi is not suitable for budget tourists, since there is nowhere to spread a towel or rug – you need to take sun loungers + umbrellas for rent for 7 euros per day.

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Kokkini, located in the village of Matala, in the south of the island, completes our list of the best beaches in Crete (Greece). Its peculiarity is that the main visitors here are nudists, resting in the shade of trees and enjoying the warm sea waves.

Kokkini Beach

To get to Kokkini, you need to cross the mountain, which is a significant obstacle for many tourists. But those who managed to cope with this obstacle receive a reward in view of the cleanest coast, crystal clear waters and amazing landscapes. There are caves that are interesting for snorkelling enthusiasts, high cliffs with the best panoramas of Crete – for photographers and red sand with beautiful stones around for those who just came to relax.

Important! Of all the infrastructure on Kokkini, there is only a small cafe with high prices, so take everything you need to relax from home.

The best beaches of Crete – this is what will forever remain in your memory. Have a nice trip!

The beaches of the Greek island of Crete described in this article are marked on the map in Russian.

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