6 Best Beaches in Crete

Crete, the largest island in Greece, boasts a variety of fantastic beaches that are perfect for lazy, summer days. Whether you prefer a bustling shoreline or a secluded cove, this island has it all. From watersports enthusiasts to those seeking relaxation, there’s a stretch of sand for everyone. Let’s dive into our guide to the best beaches in Crete.

Elafonisi Beach

Think pink beaches are only found in faraway destinations? Think again! Crete’s Elafonisi Beach is a jaw-dropping sight with its pastel pink shells scattered across the sand. Spend your day floating in the shallow lagoon waters, sipping on drinks from beach bars, and perhaps even trying windsurfing. Although it can get crowded on weekends, the stunning beauty of this remote lagoon is worth the visit. Families will appreciate the shallow waters and the option to explore quieter spots beyond the main beach and lagoon.

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Crete's Elafonisi Beach_best beaches in crete

Balos Lagoon

Balos Lagoon is like stepping into a tropical dream. It’s tucked away in the northwest corner of Crete and you can get there by car or boat. The water is a stunning blue, the sand is super soft, and there’s a Venetian Castle on the island. It can be reached by car through a track road from Kissamos or by excursion boat from Chania Town and Kissamos. Don’t forget to pack yourself a picnic, as there aren’t any places to buy food or drinks.

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Balos Lagoon Beach _Best beaches in Crete

Falassarna Beach

Set on Crete’s western coast, Falassarna  is a large sandy beach within a close drive from Kissamos town. One of the finest beaches in Crete, there is plenty of room to spread your towel, superbly clear water and see-forever views. Behind the beach, a sloping hill is dotted with a handful of tavernas. This fantastic place is ideal for families with kids due to its organized facilities and soft sand. It is also nice for windsurfing and in fact, there is a windsurfing station there in the summer months. Above the beach, there is the archaeological site of Ancient Falassarna.

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falassarna beach_best beaches in crete


A once laid-back fishing village that was discovered by hippies back in the 1960s, the legendary Matala – not far from Kommos Beach – is no longer a well-kept secret, so it’s best-visited off-season. The gentle waters of the Messara Bay are flanked by honeycomb-like sandstone cliffs and mysterious caves. Explore its incredible landscape before grabbing a bite to eat at one of the restaurants overlooking the water.

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Matala Beach_Best beaches in Crete


Preveli Beach is something special. It’s on Crete’s southern coast, backed by the craggy cliffs of the Kourtaliotiko Gorge and jungly riverbanks lined with lush, towering palm trees. Access to this beach is a climb down a steep path and a real thigh-burner on the way back up. Waiting for you at the bottom, however, are pure white sands and the clearest of waters that are ripe for snorkelling. Otherwise, the location is wonderfully remote, with just a few snack bars in summer and a taverna near the car park. It’s also worth checking out the Preveli Monastery nearby – it’s a cool spot to explore.

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Preveli Beach_Best beaches in crete

Vai Beach

Vai Beach, on the northeastern side of Crete,  is famous for its palm trees –  in fact, it’s surrounded by the largest palm tree forest in Europe, consisting of 5,000 trees! The sand is soft, the water is mirror-clear, and it’s just a really chill place to hang out. Take a walk through the palm grove or find a quiet spot on one of the secluded bays nearby.

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Vai Beach_Best beaches in crete

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