West Crete beaches



Falassarna Beach
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Falassarna beachFalassarna beachThe exotic beach of Falassarna is located 59km west of Chania city and almost 17km west of Kissamos, at the western base of peninsula Gramvousa. At the northern end of the beach, there are the ruins of the ancient Greco-Roman city of Phalassarna.

Falassarna Bay hosts some of the most famous beaches in Greece, which has been awarded as the best beach of Crete and voted as one of the 10 best beaches in Europe several times in the past. Falasarna spans a large area and consists actually of five consecutive beaches, with the two most central being the favorite.

The sand in Falassarna is whitish, making the watercolor tropical. Indeed, if you're lucky and be here on a day that is not blowing from the west (rare in west Crete) you will be enchanted by the beach and its turquoise waters.

The main beach of Falassarna is called Pachia Ammos (i..e Coarse Sand). It is an exotic beach with a length of 1km and a width of 150m. This beach attracts the most visitors in the area, but because of its length, it never seems too crowded. The beach offers umbrellas and a few snack bars and cafes, where you can get food and water. There are also services for water sports and beach volley courts.

There is another long beach north of the main beach having a length of 800m, identical to the main beach, which is separated into several smaller beaches. This bay is divided in half by a sand dune and a few rocks. The beach is quieter than Pachia Ammos and offers no facilities. Nearby, there is the chapel of Agia Paraskevi and a spring with fresh water.

Further north, near the archaeological site, there is a small cove facing to the south. It is pebbly and the seabed is rocky. It is a good choice when the winds blow from the west or you seek isolation. South of Pachia Ammos, at Livadi, there is another long beach that has a sandy shore and rocky seabed. It is a very good choice for fans of snorkeling. Livadi is surrounded by a very important wetland with ponds, which host many birds in winter. Even southern, near the small harbor of Limeniskos settlement there is a small pebbly beach, which is a good choice if you do not want to stay remote.

The area around Falassarna is magnificent and is a protected nature reserve. If you have time and are looking for something romantic, you can wait for the sunset, which is considered the best in Crete. How could this not be the best, when being in such an amazing landscape and there is no obstacle between the beach and the horizon? When it gets dark, you might be lucky to visit one of the several beach parties organized in Falassarna during summer.

One drawback about Falasarna is that it looks west and is usually wavy. However, this is desired by windsurfers. There are also reports that the surrounding greenhouses pollute the sea with fertilizers and trash, which, if being true, is a real shame. If you do not have the means to get to Falassarna, you can catch the bus from Chania or Kissamos.

Ancient Falasarna

Ancient Falassarna or Korykos was the main port of Polyrinia and flourished in the 4th and 3rd centuries BC. The ruins of Polyrinia are located 6km south of Kissamos. It is named after the local nymph Falassarni. Falasarna had its own coin, with a woman on one side and the letters ΦΑ on the other. In the ruined city, north of the beach, you can still see the city walls, ruins of the Acropolis, remains of houses, ancient tombs, and a stone throne, which is believed that be dedicated to the God of the Sea, Poseidon. Today, the ancient port is located on the shore, probably to an elevation of 6-9 m caused by the strong earthquake of 365 AD. Also, a part of the city seems to be immersed in the sea.

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Additional Info

  • Location: Chania Prefecture, West Crete, Kissamos Area
  • Sea water color: Turquoise
  • Sand type: White Sand, Rocks in places
  • Depth: Normal
  • Sea surface: Usually wavy
  • Crowds: Normal
  • Facilities: Accommodation options nearby, Food / water nearby, Umbrellas / beds, Sports, Lifeguard, Showers, Blue Flag
  • Other Information: Ideal for snorkeling / spearfishing
  • Accessibility: Paved road

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