Located in western Crete, in the Chania region, is Falassarna beach. This is an endless, wonderfully sunny strand that is well known for its amazing sunsets. For these reasons it is considered by many to be Greece’s finest beach. However, Falassarna Bay contains a number of smaller, yet very attractive and sandy, beaches. These are all easily accessible from the very old town of Falassarna, to the north.
In western Crete, in the Rethymnon region, are the twin sandy beaches of Amoudi and Mikro Amoudi. The word ‘amoudi’ is a variant of ‘amos’, which in the Greek language means sand. ‘Mikro’ means little. Both beaches are just a short stroll from Damnoni. Mikro Amoudi beach is quite small, but very popular with naturists; as a result it is often overcrowded. Despite this, it is well organised, with rental facilities for sun beds and a good choice of eating establishments, whatever one’s gastronomic preferences. The water is also very clean, and the clear waters make visibility excellent, so this is a great location for snorkelling. Just a short distance down the road is Amoudi beach.
In eastern Crete, about 14 miles west of Heraklion, is Fodele beach. This sandy beach, with great views of the nearby hills and ruins of an old fort, is beside the main road that links Heraklion to Chania and Rethymnon. Just a mile south is Fodele village, reputed to be the birthplace of the renowned artist Domenico Theotocopoulo, more widely known by his nickname of El Greco.
In eastern Crete, in the region of Lassithi, you will find Elounda Peninsula. Here, there are two beaches; one is rocky, and preferred by naturist clubs. The other is a very fine sandy beach. To find these beaches, drive for about ten minutes along a dirt road, which passes by the windmills on the narrow strip of land linking Elounda and the peninsula in front. Where the road runs out, park and continue on foot along the track that brings you downhill to the strand. On the left is the rocky beach. On the right is the sandy beach. Neither beach is equipped with any facilities, but both are quite popular.
In Hersonissos are two very popular sandy beaches attached to the Nana Hotel. The main beach is very large and sandy, and is particularly popular due to its sheltered position out of the path of winds. Water sports fans also flock here to take advantage of the many facilities. As a result, the cost of renting umbrellas and sun beds here is relatively expensive. Adjacent to this is the second, smaller, beach. This beach is fed by fresh water springs, which greatly lowers the temperature of the water but makes it very clean and clear. Beware of the slippery rocks on the seabed! To get to the Hotel Nana beaches by car, continue out past Hersonissos, then look out for the signs directing you to the Lichnostatis Museum. Continue past the museum and just ahead of the Nana Hotel you will see a narrow road that takes you to a pub. Follow that road past the pub, and you will find yourself at the strand.
These are just a few of the best beaches in Crete, a sunny island of Greece.