Must Visit Beaches in Crete

I had a phenomenal time in Crete. I planned approximately 0 things before I got there, I only had a hostel booked for 2 nights at that was all. I knew nothing about the island and had nothing to expect either, and man was I pleasantly surprised.

Crete might be one of my favorite places on this planet now, no exaggeration. (It just took way to much mental effort to spell that word, wow)


OKAY, so Cretian beaches, here we go.


- FIRST -

getting to them.


1. Rent a car

This is for sure your best option. When I arrived on the bus from the ferry port, I walked to my hostel. The lady was so kind and tried to show me the bus schedules and all of the beaches, but I quickly realized if I was going to do all of the cool things she was showing me, I could not be at the mercy of a Greek bus.


Luckily there are a TON of rental car places and most of them were less than like 15$ a day.

*MAKE SURE YOU HAVE AN INTERNATIONAL DRIVERS LICENSE* this is a must in Greece.


2. Buses

Your second option, as I mentioned above, are buses. They have a line called KTEL that goes pretty much around the whole island, as well as locally. These always intimidate me, but I know some of you are much braver than I! Feel free to look up schedules and ask for where the stops are, on this website: https://www.e-ktel.com/



OKAY SO ON TO THE GOOD STUFF



1. Falassarna (Phalasarna) Beach

This one is wayyyyy on the west coast, I think it was about an hour drive from Chania, so not horrible (2 hours on the bus). Sadly, when I was here it was SUPER windy but I made do and enjoyed myself.

This beach is HUGE, its super long and there are a ton of places to walk down to the beach. I personally went almost all the way up the road closest to the mountains and pulled into one of the restaurant parking lots. I had almost the whole beach to myself, AND I managed to spill a half of a container of cherry tomatoes into the sea too. (That story is on my IG under "story time" if you're interested)



2. Elafonissi Beach

#stunning it's known for its supposed "pink sand" beaches, but I really didnt see any, what I DID see, was an incredible 2 hour drive through the mountains of Crete, along with some of the whitest sand and bluest water I have ever seen.


Sadly for me, this entire day was really windy and I hadn't quite figured out how to read the wind map yet. The wind was coming from the northwest I thought, but when I got to the south, it was just as windy so no luck there but in the water, you can't feel the sand whipping into your skin so #itsallgood


I was planning on sleeping in my rental car here this night and heading back early in the morning to go back to Chania and then on to Heraklion, BUT there really wasn't much around to be honest. On the way back there are plenty of restaurants that seemed nice in the little villages, and I'm sure there were hotels too but I decided to go back to a little more civilization.



Iguana Beach, Crete at sunset


3. Iguana Beach

This beach is the one I ended up sleeping at. It was pretty bustlin' and seemed like the place to go for most of the locals and tourists in Chania. I could hear a few night clubs and I watched an incredible sunset here too.



4. Stavros Beach

This is where I went the first day by myself and loved every minute. It was a 20-minute drive from Chania and stunning. The huge mountain backdrop is such a stunning setting and blocks a lot of the wind too!


The water here was super clear, there were several restaurants to choose from and there was plenty of both public beach and chairs to go around! When I first got there I was one of maybe 10 but at around 3 when I left it was pretty full. It seems like a beach that mostly locals go to!


I would recommend the restaurant thats tucked kind of behind the rest if you walk down the street a little, in the culdesac. I don't remember the name but MAN the food was very well priced with amazing portions and such good service.


Other VERY worthy mentions that I didn't have time to go to but you should try are:

Balos Beach

Gramvousa (Island) Beach

Kedrodasos Beach

Sitia Beach

Irapetros Beach

Plakias Beach


also when I was driving near Falassarna, there was a beach on google maps called "small pink sand beach" that was actually super cute and remote and technically private, plus if you drive from there to Falassarna you can pass by some other beautiful and private beaches! Cheers, please enjoy them for me, I miss them already.


To learn more about any of them, visit https://www.cretanbeaches.com/en/