Shortly after the suburb Peristeras of Ierapetra starts the area of Katharades. This is a series of small beaches just before the famous shores of the village Koutsounari. This is a place with strong winds, ranked among the top places with strong wind blasts on Crete. The bays of the area are not very well known although they are very close to the main road and you will rarely see visitors in the successive bays formed. The place is also known as Paplinou after the old monastery of Panagia Paplinou located in short distance.
The beautiful scenery is formed by the numerous rock shelters with very special rock formations caused by erosion of time in conglomerate soils. The region has faced a mild development during the last years, especially due to some big hotels that have been built near the shore. Thus, along the main road linking Ierapetra and Makrygialos there are few restaurants, mini markets and lodgings.
The beach has coarse gray sand and its bottom has large smooth rocks, but there are also places with sand. Around there are several tamarisk trees providing shade, but there are umbrellas as well. The beach is well organized by the hotels and there is a court for beach volley, sunbeds, showers and facilities for water sports.
Katharades is a good choice for leisure moments. The sea is usually flat and the water cold and quite deep. Access from Ierapetra is very easy, because the main road connecting the town of Ierapetra with Sitia and Makrigialos passes nearby. Thus, you can come here even by the bus connecting these areas.