Crete is the largest island of Greece, known for its hospitality, culture, and nature. In the heart of this beautiful corner of the Earth is the district of Rethymno. The north coastline meets with the Cretan Sea, while the south coast mingles with the Libyan Sea.
The economy of the Rethymno district is based on tourists, who come to enjoy the beauty of the island, known for its amazing beaches. In this article, I will disclose the nine best beaches in Rethymno.
9 Must Visit Beaches in Rethymnon
Preveli is one of the best beaches in Rethymno. It has clear and chilly waters and gold and a bit of pebbly sand. The beach is at the end of a gorge from which a river comes down to the sea waters. Around the banks of the river grows a forest of palm trees. The whole area is a Natural Reserve.
You can get to the beach by car or by shuttle bus. The road stops at the monastery of Prevely, and from that point, you must walk down the hill. You can arrive at Preveli by boat from Plakias beach. If you decide to hike, make sure you start your day early because the sun gets hot around noon. Additionally, do not forget to bring your hiking shoes because going downhill with flip-flops is tricky.
There is a bar at the beach, where you can buy water, coffee, and snacks. There are no umbrellas or natural shade, so I advise you to bring your sun tent and suncream!
Agia Galini Beach
About fifty kilometers away from Rethymno is Agia Galini. It is a quiet and calm beach, awarded the blue flag. This flag symbolizes that the beach has waters of exceptional quality. Agia Galini is a gulf protected from the winds, which means that the waters are always calm. It is also one of the beaches in the Rethymno district that are wheelchair accessible.
The parking near the beach is small, and you might not find a free spot easily. There is a bigger space at the entrance of the village. You can leave the car there and reach the beach after walking for about 5 minutes.
Agia Galini is nice and calm; the best environment for families with young children. They have organized with umbrellas and sunbeds that you can rent for the day. At the taverns, cafes, and restaurants of the village, you can taste traditional food and experience Cretan hospitality.
Plakias village has a 2 km long beach known for its wild beauty. Like Agia Galini, Plakias was also awarded the blue flag for the quality of the waters. The beach is sandy, and the waters are warm and clear blue. When the wind blows, the waters get wavy. One should check the weather before coming here unless you enjoy playing with the waves.
The small village has a supermarket and shops from where you can get food or small souvenirs. You can also have lunch or dinner in one of the taverns that are near the shore. The beach has a part organized with sunbeds and umbrellas that you can rent for an affordable price. There is space on the beach for those who prefer to stay away from the bars and the crowd.
The beach is well organized for people with disabilities as there is an access ramp for wheelchairs and changing rooms for people with special needs.
Triopetra means three rocks and took its name from the rocks that overlook the beach on the one side. This imposing geological miracle attracts all visitors’ attention who never miss the opportunity to take nice pictures on the spot.
Triopetra is one of the longest beaches in the Rethymno district. It has nice sand everywhere, and the waters get deep a couple of meters from the shore. The beach is open to the wind, which means that on windy days the waters get wavy.
There is space to park your car near the beach. You can have a meal at one of the many taverns nearby, and you can lie on the sunbeds placed at the beach by the bar owners. It is a top destination for relaxation, especially on days with a gentle breeze.
Agios Pavlos Beach
It takes an hour’s drive to get from Rethymno to Agios Pavlos beach. It has crystal clear waters and sand with a few pebbles here and there, and it is an example of the wild beauty of Crete. You can admire the view of a romantic sunset from the beach.
Above the beach, there is a picturesque church and a café-restaurant with a nice view. At the beach, you can find some umbrellas, but most of its space is open. There is also a small free parking area. You can also get to Agios Pavlos with the Suttle bus (KTEL).
Don’t forget to check the sand- dunes.
Bali beach is a tourist destination. The beach is very busy, full of people, cafes, and bars. It has a fun park in the water, where kids can enjoy playing in the giant inflatable playground.
The beach is recommended to families with small kids as well as for those who like lively environments. However, if you are the kind of person who prefers to enjoy nature and calm, then Bali might not be the best choice for you.
Schinaria (Skinaria) Beach
A nice one-hour drive to Rethymno, through the beautiful Cretan landscapes, takes you to Schinaria beach. Comparing it to Bali, this one is very calm -the perfect place for those who want to enjoy nature.
There is thick sand all over the beach, and the waters are clear and clean. During windy days the waters get wavy; it is a good idea to check the weather before going there.
The parking area is small; if you find it full, you can park your car at the sides of the road.
One of the best beaches in Rethymno is Damnoni. It is a long sandy beach that attracts many visitors every summer. It only takes a few minutes to drive there from Plakias beach. The beach has an organized part with umbrellas and sunbeds, but most of the space is free. There is also a watersport center which offers equipment and training for different watersports.
You can come to the beach by car or by boat. Several companies offer cruizes around the coastline of Rethymno, and most of them make a stop at Damnoni.
During the summer months, the beach can get very busy. It is advisable to arrive early at the beach to choose the best spot and enjoy your day at Damnoni.
Rethymno Beach (city beach)
It is usually not expected to find a good beach in a city, but I can assure you that the Rethymno city beach is good. It is 13 km long -the longest beach in Crete, next to the Venetian Castle of Rethymno. Even though many people seek the comfort of the sea waters at this beach, it never looks very crowded because it is so long.
It has golden sand and shallow warm waters. It is easy to access it if you choose to stay in one of the hotels in Rethymno city. The beach is well-organized -beach bars, cafes, restaurants, and everything you might need.
At the beach, you can see areas marked with rope. These are the spots where tortoises of the Careta-Careta breed lay their eggs. It is advisable to stay away from their nests because human activity might break the eggs and thus interrupt the reproduction chain of this precious friend of the Aegean Sea.
The beach has a ramp for wheelchairs, and it is fully accessible to people with disabilities.