10 beautiful beaches in Heraklion prefecture
Although we are sure that during your stay at Out of the Blue, Capsis Elite Resort you will want to enjoy every minute of luxury and serenity within the resort, we would like to recommend you to visit the following beaches located in Heraklion prefecture. Some of them are very close to our resort and some other need to be visited by car, boat and/or hiking.
1. Stalis beach
The beach at Stalis is a beatiful sandy beach and its water becomes deeper very gradually, making it a very friendly see for small children. It is about 30 km away from Heraklion. Because the beach is exposed to the weather, on windy days you have to be careful and follow the lifeguards’ advice.The beach at Stalis is an organised one with lifeguards, umbrellas and sunbeds. Some beachside restaurants have special offers combining beach umbrella and lounger hire with lunch or drinks. Lovers of watersports will have no difficulty finding what they are after.
2. Matala beach
Matala is located 71 km southwest of the city of Heraklion. The beach is awarded with the Blue Flag for 2012. The beach of Matala has a length of 300 meters and is with sand and with few rocks on the bottom. The beach is organized with umbrellas, sun beds, showers, lifeguard, first aid, beach volley, water sports. Close to the beach there are many restaurants, taverns, mini-markets. On the north side of the beach you can visit the famous man made caves in which many hippies lived in the 60’s-70’s. The beach of Matala is one of the beaches of Heraklion that you have to visit.
3. Kokkini Ammos Beach
Red beach or Kokkini Ammos in Greek is located 68 km south west of Heraklion city and 800m south of famous Matala. Like the touristy resort of Matala it used to be a favorite destination for the hippies back in the 70′s and has been voted as one of the top nudism friendly beaches in the world. There are two ways to approach the beach Kokkini Ammos. You can either go on foot through the path from the north part of Matala which goes up the hill that stands between them (20 min approximately) or you can take a boat from Matala. This unique coast has a characteristic red colour, taken from the reddish rocks of the region. The beach is isolated, except for a small canteen which is not always open, and no shade is available, so mind to have your umbrella with you. The perfect place for nudists!
4. Lygaria beach
Lygaria beach is very close to Agia Pelagia and it is a beautiful beach with sand small gravel turquoise waters and rocky bottom. The beach is organized with umbrellas chairs shower . Lygaria beach is prefer by the locals for its beauty but also because it is sheltered from the winds. In Lygaria you can find restaurants, tavernas cafes and rooms for rent and hotels. Lygaria beach takes its name from the nearby flower that thrives here. Lygaria beach with her bay is a choice that will surely impress.
5. Kommos Beach
Kommos or Komos beach is located 70 km south west of Heraklion city, between Kalamaki and Matala, in the Messara bay. It’s a favorite destination for free campers, with juniper and tamarisk trees near the beach, offering rich shade to the guests. . There are also some ancient ruins in the area as the beach used to be the port of Phaestos. The beach is mainly unorganized but on a small part of the coast you will find basic services, such as sunbeds, umbrellas and showers. It is a lengthy stretch – over 2km long and up to 40m wide – of deep golden sand backed by natural dunes and cliffs topped with tamarisk trees, which is also a paradise for naturists and most likely will become an official naturist beach. At the southern end is the Kommos taverna, a short walk away from the famous archaeological site. The lifeguard is to be found here, near the umbrellas and sunbeds, as well as toilets and a shower. Towards the northern end of the beach the sea bed is rock shelf, but at the taverna end it is sandy. The sand quality is good and the beach is very clean; if you enjoy snorkelling there are many fish to be seen. Those visiting the beach should be aware that the beach is not only for them but it is also a nesting beach for the loggerhead sea turtle (Caretta caretta) and is monitored each year by Archelon, the Sea Turtle Protection Society of Greece.
6. Mononaftis beach
Mononaftis is a beautiful pebbly beach, 1 km north of Agia Pelagia’s main beach. Its name in Greek means “one sailor” and according to a local story a ship sunk here once and only one sailor survived. The beach is protected from north winds and has coarse sand/pebbles. The water has a characteristic greenish color and the seabed is rocky which makes it ideal for fishing and scubadiving. It is very well organized with umbrellas, sun beds, water sports, and many locals prefer to visit Monanaftis beach
7. Psaromoura beach
Psaromoura might be one of the of the smallest beaches of Agia Pelagia but is one of the most popular ones. The beach is pebbly and is very popular to locals, rather than tourists. The bay is surrounded by edgy cliffs and it is isolated from any noise and road. On the north end there is a large rock which protects the beach from the waves. Till a few years ago Psaromoura was totally unorganized and was one of the most beautiful beaches of Crete. There is only a small shop on the beach which offers ice creams, drinks and sandwiches. The beach provides sunbeds and umbrellas.
8. Ammoudara beach
Ammoudara beach is located 5 km west of Heraklion. It is a long, sandy beach with soft golden sand and crystal-clear waters. The beach has been awarded with the EU Blue Flag for its clean waters and fine organization .You will find areas with sunbeds, umbrellas and a lifeguard, but there are also parts of the beach with no establishments. Cafes, restaurants and beach bars can be found along the beach and windsurfing school and rental is waiting you at the west end of the beach
9. Agiofarago Beach
The beach of Agiofarango (“the gorge of the saints” in greek) is found at the exit of the homonymous , at the southern coast of Crete at a distance of more than 80km away from Heraklion. In order to access the beach you have either to walk through the gorge, an easy 45 min hiking, or by boat from Kali Limenes, Matala or Agia Galini.
It is a pebbly beach, well protected from the winds and calm waters. On its one side a small arch is formed ideal for swimming under it. The beach is not organised at all; the only thing it can offer to the visitor is calmness, a scenic environment and a crystal clear sea. The beach is nudism tolerant.
Accommodation and fod and drink facilities are available only at the nearest inland towns, as Mires.
10. Palaiokastro beach
Palaiokastro is located about 8 km away from Heraklion. It has a beach with pebbles and the waters are deep. Palaiokastro is the favorite destination of families and ideal for those who want to bathe in a place without beach bars. Another advantage of the beach is its place as it is protected by the northern winds.
On the the eastern part of the beach, are found the ruins of the Venetian fortress “Palaiokastro”, meaning Old Castle in Greek, which protected the bay from pirate raids.