THE 13 MOST AMAZING
BEACHES IN THE GREEK ISLANDS
Disclaimer: Please make sure you are up to date with the government’s latest foreign travel advice by checking out our blog post on travelling to Greece during the coronavirus before booking a holiday. It is also worth noting that, due to COVID-19, some attractions listed in this blog post may not be currently operating.
The stunning Greek islands are home to some of the most spectacular beaches in the world with electric blue water, white sands and stunning views. We've picked 13 of the most amazing beaches in the Greek islands, so you don't miss out on your travels.
1) ELAFONISI, CRETE
The islet of Elafonisi on the southwest of Crete, near Chania Town, is pure magic with pink-tinted white sands and shallow waters, which are safe for kids to hone their swimming skills. Lie back on the sunbeds and gaze up at the majestic mountains beyond, explore the pretty lagoon and tiny coves dotted along the mile-long stretch of sand or spend time relaxing at the beach bar.
2) PLAKA BEACH, NAXOS
The four-kilometre sandy stretch of Plaka Beach is unspoilt territory - while popular with nudists, this coastline is also a haven for couples and boasts calm, clear waters that are perfect for taking a dip in the sea. There is a row of excellent restaurants tucked behind the towering sand dunes. Take a day trip to Plaka Beach from neighbouring Lefkas and Mykonos.
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3) NAVAGIO BEACH, ZAKYNTHOS
Picture perfect Navagio or Shipwreck Beach is framed by towering white cliffs, soft white sands and stunning blue waters. This iconic cove gets its name from a ship that ran aground on the shore years ago, and it's still there to be seen today. You can reach the secluded bay by boat during your Zante holidays and snorkel to your heart's content. Better still, while you're there be sure to get a tour of the Blue Caves.
4) CANAL D' AMOUR BEACH, CORFU
Legend has it that couples who swim the channel of love, or Canal d'Amour, during their Corfu holidays will be together forever and live happily ever after. This beautiful beach in Sidari boasts idyllic canals and coves, accompanied by white cliffs and interesting rock formations. If you want to avoid the rush, make sure to get here early in the morning to take a dip in the turquoise waters undisturbed - bliss.
5) BALOS, CRETE
The stunning Bay of Balos in Crete overlooks the Tigani Peninsula and beautiful white sands, lapped by a turquoise sea. The shallow waters of its lagoon are warm all year round, making it a popular destination for tourists. The easiest way to get here is by boat from the town of Kissamos. You can even spot sea turtles and the protected monk seal here.
6) MYRTOS BEACH, KEFALONIA
The gorgeous Myrtos Beach on the island of Kefalonia offers a sunny escape during the day and an unforgettable Ionian sunset in the later hours. Its bright white sands, fine pebbles and high cliffs make an idyllic backdrop for a swim in its clear blue waters. You can find a beach bar to satisfy hunger pangs or head to the nearby village of Divarata to try some traditional Greek cuisine. Alternatively, the capital of Argostoli has more options.
7) PARADISE BEACH, MYKONOS
Paradise Beach in Mykonos is one of the most famous in the world, and for good reason. This buzzing stretch of sand is located between Paranga Beach and Super Paradise Beach and is brimming with activity both on the sand and in the water. This spectacular spot is also renowned for throwing some of the best beach parties around, with international DJs turning the heat up once the sun goes down. If you want to continue the party, the famous night club complex Cavo Paradiso is located on a hilltop just above the beach with a party-ready pool, restaurant and beach bar - don't forget your dancing shoes!
8) PALEOKASTRITSA BEACH, CORFU
The idyllic resort of Paleokastritsa, on Corfu’s west coast, is made up of six superb beaches all shaded by olive trees. Its clear blue waters are ideal for snorkelling and scuba diving, making it a hot spot for beach-lovers who want a fun-filled day in the sun. Sip a cocktail in one of the many taverns and bars, watch the ships bob up and down in the pretty harbour or take a stroll down to the quaint monastery nearby. For all the things to do and where to visit, check out our pocket guide to Greece so you can tick everything off your bucket list.
9) SIMOS, ELAFONISOS
During the summer months beach-lovers make a beeline for Simos, where you'll actually find two beaches: Megalos (large) Simos and Mikros (small) Simos. Its crystal clear waters are backed by stunning white sand dunes, making it an ideal spot for swimming and snorkelling - and when the wind picks up it's the perfect place to windsurf too. You'll find plenty of sunbeds and umbrellas gracing the sands when you want to sunbathe, and there's a bunch of beach bars and nearby taverns for when you want a refreshment.
10) MASTICHARI BEACH, KOS
The breeze blowing in over the Aegean Sea makes the sandy five-kilometre stretch of Mastichari Beach the perfect spot for kitesurfing and windsurfing on your Kos holidays. Flop on a colourful sunbed or under an umbrella on the white sands and look out at the deep blue sea for hours, with swaying trees providing a natural shade. Nearby you'll find lots of restaurants where you can dine on fantastically fresh fish, as well as a few boutique shops worth browsing.
11) RED BEACH, SANTORINI
Who said beaches had to be golden or white? Definitely not Santorini, where the glossy shores are made up of volcanic reds, blacks and greys. Check out Red Beach, where you can snorkel among the rocks or settle down under a beach umbrella to admire the contrast of the red sands against the cliffs. And remember to pick up some pebbles as souvenirs!
12) SARAKINIKO, MILOS
Sarakiniko Beach in Milos has an almost lunar-like appearance, with volcanic rocks as white as chalk embracing a gulf of turquoise waters. The shallow waters here are perfect for families and swimmers, who spread out their towels on the rocks and get ready for a dip in the cove. Stick around until the sun sets and keep your camera at the ready for when its soft rocky surfaces reflect the moonlight in an ethereal glow.
13) LALARIA BEACH, SKIATHOS
This is what picture perfect postcards are made of — dramatic limestone cliffs, emerald green waters and smooth pebbled beaches. A massive rock forms a natural arch (known as Tripia Petra) over the sea at Lalaria Beach, and according to legend, swimming through it will keep you looking young! You can easily reach the beach by boat from nearby Kastro or Skiathos port. Why not stay on board a little longer and visit the sea grottos of Galazia, Skotini and Chalkini nearby?