Chania on the western side of Crete’s north coast offers up dramatic scenery and more than its fair share of great beaches. The perfect base from which to explore the island, Chania sits on a Venetian harbour with inviting tavernas along the quayside.
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The western side of Crete has been blessed with many of the same qualities as the eastern side of the Island. With an abundance of natural beauty, some of the island’s best beaches, sleepy little Cretan villages and places of immense historical interest; this region has a treasure trove of delights for couples and families to explore. There's something for everyone on holidays to Crete, with a wide of choice of great accommodation offering great value and plenty of things to see and do.
Let the kids loose on the long sands on the west side of the island, on holidays to Crete. Falasarna Beach in the north, sits near the ruins of an Ancient Greek city - a lovely place to sit and watch the sun set. Take a boat trip south to the small island of Elafonisi to enjoy the pinks sands and azure lagoon. Explore the Dikteon Caves on the Lasithi Plateau and hike the easier sections of gorges like Zakros – the island is perfect for active family holidays, fun filled beach activity or long lazy days in the sun.
Crete's most impressive mountains can be found in this region. Overlooking Chania Town and containing the staggeringly spectacular Samaria Gorge, the White Mountains offer great opportunities for hiking.
Discover Chania Town. Oozing with character, the town’s picturesque Venetian style harbour is lined with bars and tavernas. Ideal for food lovers and the perfect place to sample some of the finest local cuisine, including fresh fish plucked from the Aegean waters the same day and washed down with some locally produced Greek wine. Nightlife is plentiful and there are shopping opportunities galore, for enjoyable afternoons spent meandering the narrow streets to pick up a bargain or two.
Why not discover the charming resort of Agia Marina? Quietly going about its business, nestled on the north coast just nine kilometres from Chania Town and boasting Blue Flag status and seafront tavernas. The traditional village atmosphere coupled with its close proximity to Chania Town, and of course its great sandy beach, makes this a great place to stay while on holiday in Crete.
Heading east out of Chania Town and on the road to lovely Rethymnon lies another gem of a place to visit - Georgioupolis. This is where you’ll find the longest beach on the island. Nine kilometres of gloriously golden sand and a great selection of watersports to keep you entertained in the sun. What could be better?
Holidays to Western Crete will leave a lasting impression. This is a place that ticks all the boxes. Experience some really great and often much quieter beaches, excellent shopping opportunities, particularly in Chania Town, a beautiful landscape of gorges and mountains, and fascinating ruins dripping in myths and legends. Memories created here are guaranteed to last much longer than the suntan.
If you're planning to tie the knot abroad, then weddings in Greece are the perfect solution for a paradise venue on your special day. Take your pick from a wide variety of idyllic settings in nine of our Greek Islands: Rhodes, Crete, Zante, Corfu, Kefalonia, Santorini, Skiathos, Kos and Parga. Each island offers its own unique atmosphere, from quaint to sophisticated and from modern to traditional. We can provide civil wedding ceremonies and renewal of vows in a variety of locations, which include registry offices, open air venues and stunning hotel settings. For more information and inspiration, take a look at our weddings pages.
The best beaches in western Crete
Paleochora - A great beach in the southwest of the region with a wonderful 'miles from anywhere' feel.
Agia Marina - Agia Marina's long sandy beach with its excellent facilities which include watersports as well as beach bars and tavernas make this ideal for families and couples alike.
Elfafonisi - Once a well-guarded secret, the spectacular beach has become more popular in recent years and can be reached by boat tour or road. Pink coral sands and turquoise waters combine with crystal clear waters. The beach is lined with umbrellas but it is still possible to find a relaxing spot away from the crowds to enjoy this stunning beach.
Gramvoussa – Also known as Balos Bay, is at the tip of Crete’s westernmost peninsula. Improved accessibility and daily boats from Kissamos as well as a dirt road that brings you close to the beach have brought more people here. It’s well worth a visit especially in the quieter months, for its gorgeous pure which sands, lagoons and turquoise waters.
Sougia – One of the best beaches in western Crete. It is a pebble beach, however the 1200 metre- long stretch of beach is next to a small village and is rarely crowded. The sea and the beach are pristinely clean with beautiful surrounding landscape and no beach umbrellas to spoil the view.
Falasarna – Stunning beaches and clear blue seas make this a popular beach. Made up of several beaches, the sandy depths of the sea create bright colours in the waters. This is a great place to stay and watch the sun set, as all the beaches face west.
Our favourites in Crete West - Chania
More destinations in Crete West - Chania
Best time to go to western Crete
In the north of Crete the weather is typically Mediterranean; in the south it's almost subtropical. Spring comes early with average temperatures of 15C/61F in March and 20C/68F in April. Summers are baking hot and dry but with strong sea breezes. July and August are the hottest (and windiest) months - temperatures typically average at 25.9C/85F and can reach 40C/104F. From November to March the weather is cooler and damper, although even in January the average temperature is 12C.
|Max Temp C||Apr||May||Jun||Jul||Aug||Sep||Oct|
|Crete West - Chania||16||19||23||25||25||23||20|
|Crete West - Chania||7||9||11||12||11||9||6|
Things To Do
Crete West Holidays - Excursions
Make your holidays to western Crete extra special and book one of our wonderful excursions. Carefully selected to cater for everyone's interests, here's just a few of our most popular excursions to tempt you:
Samaria Gorge: If you enjoy a challenge and want to get and about in Crete, why not hike the longest gorge in Europe? This is 18 kilometres of spectacular scenery and an experience to be treasured.
Elafonissi: Take a scenic drive through small and picturesque mountain villages, as magnificent nature surrounds you on the way to Elafonissi, one of Crete’s most beautiful beaches.
Gramvousa: You’ll enjoy spectacular views by boat from this pinnacle island fortress and bathe in the pink shored lagoon at Balos and snorkel the crystal waters on this delightful excursion.
Authentic Greece: Explore the amazing villages of Kalives. Gavalochori. You’ll visit the Glass blowing factory at Kokkino Chorio, the Monastery of Karydi and the beauty of this trip is that it covers a lot of fabulous places, all within a short drive of each other.
Palace of Knossos and Heraklion:
See where it all began at the Ancient Palace and explore the cosmopolitan city of Heraklion. No trip to Crete would be complete without seeing Knossos. Be sure to add this to your list of things to see and do.
Rethymnon Beach and Town: This is a great opportuning to take in some of the main highlights of Western Crete. You’ll have some wonderful and lasting memories to take home with you. Visit Rethymnon, Kournas lake, Argiroupolis and Margaritas on one amazing excursion.
Vineyard Picnic: Learn the secrets of viniculture and wine making by the wine maker himself. You will enjoy a picnic under the shade of an oak tree and get to sample some delicious, traditional Cretan delicacies and give Endochora wines of different vintages.
Land Rover Jeep Safari: The ultimate off-road experience and not to be missed. Professional and entertaining drivers will take you for some 4x4 excitement though amazing scenery accompanied by delicious food.
These are just a few of the exciting days and nights out available from your representative in resort. We strongly advise you to confirm your place at the Welcome Get Together as places are limited and we don't want you to miss out.