A gorgeous selection of South Cretan beaches awaits just a short drive from Agia Galini and Paralos Irini Mare.
The ancient port of the Minoan city of Phaistos, Matala became a legendary seaside refuge for the flower generation in the '60s, who found sanctuary in the caves overlooking the beach. Today it remains one of the highlights of Crete's south coast, about 27 km away from Agia Galini.
Escape the crowds by following the signposted trail that leads to the sandy Red Beach, a spectacular cove just a 20-minute walk from Matala.
Another peaceful beach with sparkling deep green waters and magnificent rocky seabed lies 23km west of Agia Galini, past the village of Sachtouria. Nestled in a sheltered bay, it provides basic amenities such as umbrellas, sunbeds, and pedal boats, ideal for a day at the beach with the family.
Take a dip in the crystal blue waters of Agios Giorgos, a pebbly beach separated in two bays by a rocky outcrop, a short 6 kilometre-trip from Agia Galini. The beach took its name from the chapel of Agios Giorgos (Saint George) famous for its wall paintings.
A 2-kilometre-long swathe of deep golden sand, backed by sand dunes and cliffs topped with tamarisk trees, Komos is a paradise for nature lovers. Protected sea turtles Caretta Caretta nest on the beach from May to September. A dreamy sunset also awaits you there - get the best snapshots from the backyard of the little chapel on the top of the hill.
Near the village of Akoumia, about 29 km from Agia Galini, you'll find the long sandy beach of Triopetra (Three Rocks). It took its name from the photogenic sea stacks to the left of the main beach. As it is open to the ocean, it's guaranteed to offer a refreshing dip.
This startlingly beautiful beach is located at the exit of the namesake Agiofarago (Gorge of Saints). It's reachable by boat from Agia Galini, or by an easy 30’-40’-minute hike through the gorge. We recommend driving to the beginning of the gorge, a 36 km drive from Paralos Irini Mare, to experience the spectacular scenery along the route, with its narrow, vertical walls, the large caves that provided shelter for the hermits, and the chapel of St. Antonios. You can drink fresh water from its well.
At the end of the road, Agiofarago beach, with its fine pebbles and calm, clear blue waters, awaits you for a cooling dip.