West Crete beaches

Agios Haralabos

Chania

Agios Charalambos
(489 votes)
Agios Charalambos - 3.6 out of 5 based on 489 votes

The adjacent coves of Agios Charalambos and Ammoudi are located next to a hotel exclusively for nudists. They are located 1.5km east of Chora Sfakion and 75km south of Chania, in an area with several adjacent pebbly beaches.

The beachfront consists of 3-4 successive isolated coves, from which only one is accessed by car through paved road and the first beach we meet is called Sfakiano Ammoudi (aka the Sandy beach of Sfakia). A rough dirt road, which in the last section becomes quite bad, leads to the beach. Despite its name (sandy beach),  Amoudi beach is not sandy but pebbly with crystal clear waters, the cleanest of all the beaches of the county. The seabed is quite remarkable with beautiful formations. Left and right of the beach, the rocks rise forming caves in conglomerates grounds, decorated with caper plants. Caves offer shade on hot summer days. On the west side above the beach there is a shrine which overlooks the sea from where the view at Amoudi bay is unique. The most impressive of all, however, is the geological formation called Fokia (Seal). It is a cave on the west edge of the beach , which at its deepest point creates a small beach and has a second outlet to the sea. Because of the two outputs and the easy possibility of escape this cave was used as a nest for sea seals that are still in the area.

On the east side of the beach there is a path through the rocks leading after five minutes to cavernous church of Saint Charalambos honored highly by Sfakiots. Next to the chapel, there is the slighlty organised beach of Agios Charalambos quite organised with sunbeds and a canteen (accessed by car). Saint Charalambos was the saint who protected people from the plague, so they used to build chapels dedicated to the Saint at the entrances of villages. But in Sfakia, where the dominant communication with the outside world was based on the sea, they built the temple on the shores.

The coves and the nearby beach of Filaki are mainly occupied by nudists, actually being the only "official" nudism-friendly beaches on Crete (due to the nudists' hotel). The beaches are pebbly and open to (rare) south winds. They are quite isolated and there are no accommodation services, water sports, sunbeds or lifeguard on the beach. There is only one canteen on the beach that is accessed by car.

The beaches can be reached by car from Chora Sfakion (or on foot), by driving eastwards and taking the road that you'll meet at the right hand almost 150m after the gas station that you meet after exiting Sfakia, heading to Vritomartis hotel. Just down the hotel, you'll meet a cross road. The road to the east (left) heads to Filaki, while the road on the right (west) heads to the coves.

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Additional Info

  • Prefecture: Chania
  • Sea water color: Deep blue
  • Sand type: Pebbles, Rocks in places
  • Depth: Deep
  • Sea surface: Usually calm
  • Crowds: Quiet
  • Facilities: Accommodation options nearby, Umbrellas / beds
  • Other Information: Ideal for snorkeling / spearfishing, Rock shade
  • Accessibility: Paved road
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