Chania is a fascinating tapestry of splendid beaches, historical treasures, and landscapes encompassing vibrant sea-side resorts and picturesque villages, where locals share their culture, delightful cuisine and generous spirit of hospitality.
Akrotiri with is charming villages is one of the most popular places for a summer escape in Crete. The most northern point of Crete, the large island is surrounded by stunning blue waters and no end of gorgeous beaches. However, what people sometimes forget is that Chania has just as much to offer travelers inland.
Akrotiri, Chania is home to some of the most beautiful sites in Crete, with cultural history, dramatic landscapes and a plethora of charming towns and villages scattered all over the island.
Some of Akrotiri’s locations are well known, such as the stunning beaches of Tersanas, Marathi, Loutraki and the charming villages of Chorafakia, Stavros and Pithari. However, this area holds plenty of hidden gems, quiet communities that are perfect for experiencing the authentic Crete.
There is a unique culture in the area of Akrotiri that sets it apart from anywhere else in Crete. From the cuisine to how they spend their time with family and their hospitality. There are many ways to discover this way of life, but exploring the lesser-travelled but equally stunning locations on the island is one of the best!
Here at ARENCORES, we’ve listed just some of our favourite towns and villages in Akrotiri that provide the perfect day trip full of things to see and do, to help you have the holiday of a lifetime or identify a property that could be your home in Crete.
It is unsurprising that Akrotiri peninsula has always been a top destination for once-in-a-lifetime holidays, with so many diverse landscapes, charming villages and artistic treasures to discover.
One village in particular that has never gone out of fashion is Chorafakia, with its warm climate, glittering nearby beaches, and untamed mountainous scenery. Chorafakia is located approximately 11 km away from the charming city of Chania and 8 km from the International Airport “Ioannis Daskalogiannis” in-between Kalathas and Tersanas viilages.
With the sunbaked greenery and the extensive olive groves surrounding it, it is easy to realize how it could provide inspiration.
Surprisingly, although Akrotiri peninsula has been named one of Chania’s most popular destination, Chorafakia village itself remains little known among tourists, and therefore, the peaceful and authentic atmosphere is guaranteed. In the village operates a beautiful tavern serving Cretan dishes and numerous traditional cafés and bakeries are dotted around the center.
Surrounded by breathtaking landscapes and embellished by historical treasures, Chorafakia attracts many tourists for its magnificent nearby small, yet of exceptionally beautiful beaches, through which it is possible to enjoy moments of complete and unforgettable relaxation.
Nearby, there are several small hotels, villas and pensions offering an ideal accommodation experience and a small cantina where you can get an ice-cream or something to eat.
Tersanas used to be the harbor of the village of Chorafakia, which is situated a bit more inland and where you find most of the facilities. Close to Tersanas there are two other nice beaches Kalathas (3 km) and Stavros (4 km).
Chania has no shortage of gorgeous beaches, but when it comes to accessible and child-friendly options, the Akrotiri peninsula beaches are hard to beat. One of the best bets for families can be found within a ten-minute walk from Chorafakia village.
The warm, shallow waters of Kalathas and Stavros beaches are perfect for paddling and snorkeling but there’s plenty to keep older children happy, too. Delightful villages, spectacular monasteries, archaeological sites of the Minoan, Ottoman and Venetian era and beautiful countryside are nearby and waiting to be discovered.
A land of incredible natural beauty, fascinating history, and colorful folklore, Akrotiri arguably has something for everyone. From quaint coastal villages to magnificent gorges, historical monasteries and spectacular beaches accompanied by the ever impressive background of the White Mountains Akrotiri is a spectacular place to live. Akrotiri is yet another area in Chania that has to be seen in its entirety to realize its true beauty.
The Akrotiri Peninsula, to the northeast of Chania, is a barren, mountainous stretch of rock covered with scrub. It has a few coastal yet, beautiful sea-side resorts, Chania’s International Airport, a NATO naval base on Souda Bay and three fascinating monasteries: the Monastery of Agia Triada (Trinity) built in 17thcentury, the Monastery of Gouverneto of 16th century and of course, the Monastery of Agios Ioannis (Saint John) of 7th century, which is the oldest in Crete.
The beach settlement of Kalathas, 10km north of Chania, has two sandy beaches lined by pine trees. It is the preferred weekend haunt both for locals and visitors, many of whom own summer and weekend houses nearby.
Three kilometres north of Kalathas is the small beach settlement of Tersanas. Stavros, 6km north of Kalathas, is little more than a dilapidated scattering of houses and an array of restaurants and hotels, plus a famous cove.
Akrotiri is a great destination for both action and relaxation so everyone could find suitable activities to join. Each season has something special to offer like wonderful sunsets, hiking trails in the dramatic landscape, bird watching etc.
Spend the day on the beach, try the local Cretan dishes and enjoy the stunning nature all year around! You can visit the charming, traditional villages close to Akrotiri, among which is the picturesque village Stavros, the beautiful villages Sternes, Kounoupidiana, Korakies, Pithari, Aroni and the magnificent beaches of Loutraki and Marathi-the seaport of the ancient city Aptera.
With its world famous cuisine, fabulous history that dates back to the Minoan times, and unbeatable charm shared between the dramatic mountain peaks of the White Mountains, magnificent gorges, and miles of stunning coastline, Chania could easily be considered one of the most attractive, yet of exceptionally beauty regions in the world.
A stroll in the Old City with its pretty Venetian quarter and criss-crossed by narrow lanes is a like book on the history of architecture. Romans, Saracen Arabs, Byzantines, Venetians, Ottomans and Egyptians ruled and influenced the area from the 13th until the 19th century.
One of the best ways to soak up the essence of this beautiful corner in the Mediterranean Sea is to explore the charming, historic villages scattered along its coast or inside its enchanting, unspoilt countryside. Trek through Europe’s longest gorge, cycle among orchards on Apokoronas peninsula or enjoy swimming to exceptional Blue Flag beaches.
Chania is certainly the most picturesque seaside town in Crete. With its exceptionally well preserved historic and architectural features, making the city unique and attractive for all visitors all year around.
However, step into the “inner Crete” – is a fascinating way to discover Crete’s authenticity, cultural traditions and the natural beauty of this magnificent location.
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