Before I tell you about the beautiful beach of Elafonissi in Greece I wanted to give you some tips on where to base yourself to get around and see the beautiful beaches in this part of Crete.
Kissamos: the ideal base for visiting western Crete
As for Elafonissi Beach and Balos Lagoon itself I think the best solution is another. Considering that on a purely beach vacation you will probably want to change beaches every day, it is best to find a base from which you can depart each morning to a different one and, possibly, also offer you some evening entertainment with small restaurants and perhaps a little walking.
Kissamos is the ideal location. It lies much further west than Chania and offers a promenade with restaurants and taverns, nothing much mind you, there are no discos or lounge bars like you may find in Chania, however, it is sufficient for quiet evenings. A few more tips on the beaches of Crete:
If you only wanted to visit Elafonissi beach then you might opt to keep Paleochora as your base. It is slightly closer and is on the south coast of Crete.
CLICK HERE to see hotels near this stunning beach, you will be able to find all the hotels near Elfanossi, or another highly recommended choice is to sleep in the unique resort near Elafonissi beach. It is always difficult to find a place but maybe if you move well in advance you can manage to book a night.
Essential to rent a car
Another essential for getting around Crete is renting a car, don’t be surprised if when you pick it up it seems shabby, with the roads of Crete you would concur so any car. You will understand this when you go from Kissamos to Balos via the dirt road. I recommend using this good rental service, I always do very well Discover Cars (CLICK HERE to see the offers).
So, I was saying, from Kissamos you can leave every morning and go to the beach of your choice. The best beaches in this area of Crete are just a stone’s throw away, the only one that is really a bit far away is Elafonissi. For Kissamos I recommend that you stay at the Kissamos Hotels.
Elafonissi Beach, one of the most beautiful in the Mediterranean
We now come to Elafonissi in Greece, the queen of beaches on the west coast of Crete, perhaps the most beautiful beach you have ever seen so far, in fact it is referred to as the Caribbean of the Mediterranean. Actually calling it a beach is almost reductive, it is like a very large and very calm natural pool.
It is a beach equipped with sunbeds and umbrellas at a negligible cost (compared to the costs to which the Italian “bather” is accustomed). The beach is connected by a narrow tongue of sand to the adjacent Elafonissi Island.
If you follow the main sandy path (the one where everyone passes) you will find yourself in the back part of the island, characterized by a succession of numerous small coves one more beautiful than the other. Here peace reigns supreme, there are no equipped areas, you will have to bring your own umbrella or seek shelter in the few shady places possible. However, the scenery and the setting are exaggeratedly beautiful; in some portions of the coves you will even be able to glimpse pink sand. Simply fantastic.
Small tip: I also ventured down the less traveled path, the one that proceeds around the perimeter of the island. I think I made it about a kilometer and then gave up. I thought I would rejoin the coves I was telling you about earlier. Actually the path leads to the lighthouse which is well away from Elafonissi beach.
If you were to take this trail best to do it with company. Although it is an easy trail it is not very well traveled and still there is a small risk of getting hurt. Now, I understand that they will now make costumes with built-in smartphone holders but…as long as they don’t make them be cautious.
How to get to Elafonissi beach
In this case from Kissamos there are two ways to get to Elafonissi, one inland fairly quickly and one, on the other hand, that hugs the entire west coast, you pretty much do it all. At the time
I went the inland road to Elafonissi was closed for works, so I had to do the coastal road twice and in short, a little bit of care has to be taken. The good thing is that you have a chance to enjoy the views which are really fantastic.
Tip: if you go just once to Elafonissi beach I would do it via the coastal road that allows you to savor some of Crete’s landscapes, from the second time onwards go ahead and take the inland road that saves you time.
At Elafonissi beach there are no parking problems, there is plenty of space, although you may want to arrive before others so that you can choose the umbrella you prefer (if you don’t want or don’t have a portable umbrella). It is also important to arrive before others because as well as with Balos Lagoon you will have the opportunity to enjoy this fantastic landscape in peace.
One possible option is to arrange and book a night at the only resort nearby to be on the beach early the next morning. In my case, had it not been for the distance from Kissamos, I probably would have spent all my days at this wonderful beach that is so beautiful that it never gets tired.