Beaches of Crete

Part Six: Heraklion Area


37. Agia Pelagia Beach

25 km northwest of Heraklion

A former fishing village in a picturesque setting, now suffering from the effects of mass tourism; a narrow beach brimmed with umbrellas and sunbeds; no place where to put your blanket at weekends in summer months; pink toy buckets scattered around, wet sand on sunbeds, overweight daddies, and North European tourists with sunburned faces walking half-naked in the beachfront tavernas; only the name that enchants




38. Fylakes Beach

After the north end of the Agia Pelagia beach along the coast

Access only through the low blue-green water and a path on rocks that leads nowhere; disappointment in the faces of tourists staying in the resorts of Agia Pelagia, and the joy of achievement in the faces of the teenagers and middle-aged men who have managed to swim across





39. Psaromoura Beach

1 km north of the Agia Pelagia beach

A sheltered beach with turquoise water, a commanding view on the top and umbrellas and sunbeds on the bottom; big resort hotels nearby




40. Lygaria Beach

3 km southeast of the centre of Agia Pelagia

Slightly more laid-back than the Agia Pelagia beach, because of smaller resort hotels and tourist villas; paths on rocks for the curious at both ends




41. Karteros Beach

6 km east of Heraklion

A wide sand beach in a row of several east of Heraklion, where the better beaches of the city are; groups of youths at the beach bars; ruins of the Minoan town of Amnisos and the House of the Lilies; the Dia island across the water




42. Limanakia Beach

1 km north of the Roman fountain of Hersonissos

The first of several small beaches north of Hersonissos, a town horribly spoiled by mass tourism; white sand and clear water




43. Sarantaris Beach

2 km north of the Roman fountain of Hersonissos

Small beaches sheltered by low cliffs; sand beaches with umbrellas for tourists and one rocky beach for naturists and gays, often packed





44. Potamos Beach

3 km east of Malia

A better beach than the city beach of Malia and the resort beaches to the west; a crescent of yellow sand around a bay of clear blue water; a breathtaking view of the surrounding mountains; scenic pathways along the coast north of the Minoan palace of Malia and near the Chrysolakkos necropolis