Kommos (or Komos) is located 66km southwest of Heraklion, just 2km north of Matala and close the seaside settlement of Kalamaki. It is actually the southernmost and the most isolated part of the huge beachfront of Mesara Bay. Kommos was once the port of Phaestus, so you can still see the ruins of the town, near the beach. You can access Kommos by driving in the road heading to Matala, till you see a sign to Kommos.
The whole beachfront of Mesara is exposed to westerly winds, which mostly blow in the area. Thus, caution is needed because the seabed is covered by a rocky layer, not just sand. The protected sea turtles Caretta caretta nest in the sand of the beach, from May to September.
The northern part of Kommos, Potamos or Potamoserma, is a favorite destination for lovers of naturism, since the times when hundreds of hippies flooded the area. There are only a few tamarisk trees around, not buildings, because Kommos is a protected archaeological area and building is forbidden. Next to the archaeological site, on the south, there is an organized beach with umbrellas, sun beds, toilet, showers, a tavern and a lifeguard. All around there are many trees and huge sand dunes where you can admire the white lilies of sand, which sign the end of the summer. If you want to find a place to stay overnight or to eat, you can walk to the nearby Kalamaki, or drive to Pitsidia and Matala. Moreover, between Pitsidia and Kommos there is an organized camping site.
Wherever you are, the views to Paximadia islets is stunning, especially when the sun sets near the islands. Just opposite the archaeological site, 300m in the sea, you will see a beautiful big rock, which the locals call Volakas. Volakas could not be absent from the Greek myths. Locals say that the stone is the top of the mountain that the blinded Cyclope Polyphemus threw toward the ship of Odysseus in order not to escape. This was after Odysseus, with his companions, escaped from Polyphemus’ cave.
Kommos was the port of Phaestus and was established in about 200BC. It was destroyed by an earthquake several centuries later and was rebuilt on the same location. The archaeological site, which is closed to visitors, includes a Minoan harbor, many public buildings, warehouses, oil presses, shipyards and a large courtyard. Archaeologists have also found remains of a small temple, built on the ruins of an older one.
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See all area beaches on the same map
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