Heraklion is the capital of the Greek island of Crete. It’s known for its beaches, port, and charming culture. While many visitors spend time exploring the historical and archeological sites, the beaches are another huge draw. If you’re visiting Heraklion and want to spend some time beach lounging, here are the top five places to do it.
Kokkini Ammos Beach
Also known as the ‘Red’ beach, this used to be a popular hotspot for hippies back in the ’70s. It’s a popular spot for nude sunbathing and was even rated one of the most nude-friendly beaches in the world. It can be reached by boat or by footpath, but either way, it has a secluded feel that makes it a perfect getaway. The reddish rocks give it its unique name and its lack of shade makes it perfect for sun worshippers.
This beach is popular with nature lovers and free campers for its stunning views and the occasional tree. Visitors enjoy the shade, the nearby ancient ruins, and the sunbeds. The golden sands are surrounded by dunes and the nearby cliffs are dotted with tamarisk trees. Some areas of the beach have amenities like showers, a toilet, and a lifeguard, while the rest of the coastline remains an official naturist site. Also, if you love snorkeling this is the spot.
This beach has been considered one of the most beautiful in Crete. It’s popular with the locals and is known for its pebbly beach and the rugged cliffs that keep the coastline secluded. Part of the cliff juts out into the water, protecting the beach from waves and making swimming much more pleasant. There are sunbeds, umbrellas, and a small stand selling snacks. Otherwise, this beach serves as an oasis for visitors.
This long, sandy beach is known for its crystal clear waters and soft, golden sand. In the past, this spot has been awarded for its clean water, which is loved by locals and tourists for swimming. Part of the beach is free from amenities while the other offers a lifeguard, sunbeds, umbrellas, cafes, and restaurants. There is even a windsurfing school if you’d like to try your hand at this challenging sport.
This beach can be reached by taking a 45-minute hike through the gorge or by boat. The beach is surrounded by rock faces and cliffs which offer protection from the sun and the harsh waves. Water conditions here are mild which helps create a calming atmosphere where visitors can relax (plus they’re crystal clear.) The beach is nudist-friendly so don’t be shy if you want to sunbathe topless. Keep in mind that there are no amenities here so you’ll need to go to the nearest town for food, drinks, and the bathroom.
Heraklion is full of culture, history, and beautiful nature. If you want to spend some time relaxing on a beautiful beach, you’ll have your pick here. Whether you want the full-service treatment with drinks and a sunbed or a secluded hideaway to swim, Heraklion beaches have something for you.