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Beaches near Giannioú, in Rethymno region

Here is list of closest beaches to Giannioú

  • 2.7 km
  • Preveli beach
  • Sand
  • Normal
  • Blue

Nestled approximately 35km to the south of Rethymno and 10km east of Plakias, you’ll find Preveli Beach, also known as Lake Preveli or Phoenix. This gem lies where the majestic Kourtaliotikos Gorge meets the flow of the Grand River (Megalos Potamos). Recognized as the most celebrated beach in southern Crete, it has been a summer haven for countless visitors and was a preferred spot for hippies in the ’60s and ’70s.

In this oasis, a lush colony of Theophrastus palm trees flourishes along the banks of the Grand River, evoking a tropical paradise. The river culminates in a 500m long lake before joining the sea, providing year-round water. You can saunter under the canopy of the palm and other trees, following the river as it ascends through the stunning canyon, and take refreshing dips in the cool pools within the gorge.

In 2010, a major fire devastated this tropical paradise, but remarkably, the palm grove has mostly rejuvenated. At the river’s exit, a beach of pebbles and sand stretches out, where the seawater remains refreshingly cool due to the river. A striking heart-shaped rock adds charm to the eastern section of the beach. Since the area is protected, the beach remains unspoiled, with no parasols.

Venturing to Preveli Beach:

Two main routes lead to Preveli, either from the west or east. One option is driving from Plakias towards the Preveli Monastery, and 1.5km beyond the Kato Monastery of Preveli, you’ll find a spacious car park. Here begins the path descending to the beach. This parking spot offers an extraordinary viewpoint from the towering cliffs to the west, perfect for capturing stunning photos. It’s a 15-20 minute walk to reach the beach, but be prepared for a strenuous climb back up.

An alternative route to avoid the steep ascent involves driving along the paved road to nearby Drimiskiano Amoudi and taking a brief 5-minute walk to Preveli. However, this route doesn’t offer an impressive cliff-top view. You can also opt for a boat ride to Preveli from Agia Galini and Plakias.

The beach owes its name to the nearby historic Preveli Monastery, a male-only monastery established in the 16th or 17th century, dedicated to St. John the Theologian. The old and new monasteries, known as Piso and Kato Monastery respectively, are situated in the vicinity. The former, now deserted, is located just south of the ancient Preveli stone bridge.

  • 2.9 km
  • Skinaria beach
  • Fine Pebbles, Rocks in places
  • Normal
  • Turquoise

Located 33km south of Rethymno and 3km south of the village of Lefkogia on Crete Island, you’ll find the small, serene beach of Skinaria (or Shinaria). The beach is situated in the eastern part of the broader Plakias area. Skinaria boasts soft, grey-beige sand and fine pebbles, complemented by the crystal blue depths of the sea. The sea bed is primarily rocky, though the northern part of the beach features sandy terrain.

The area is teeming with life, both terrestrial and marine. Freshwater ponds dot the beach, fed by springs from the Kouroupa mountain. These ponds have fostered lush vegetation around them, giving the area a tropical landscape feel. The local inhabitants claim that the marine life is as vibrant as the terrestrial, and indeed, Skinaria’s seabed is one of the richest on the island. It is home to an abundance of marine creatures, including huge morays, blackfish, and octopuses. Furthermore, the water’s clarity is remarkable, often exceeding 40m horizontally, making it a popular spot for scuba diving centres in Crete.

The beach offers minimal organization, with a local tavern providing a few umbrellas and refreshments. On our last visit, umbrellas and sunbeds were complimentary with a refreshment purchase. Access to the beach is via a narrow, 2km road that begins in Lefkogia. Along the way, an awe-inspiring cylindrical cave can be spotted within a rock on your left.

  • 3.0 km
  • Ammoudi beaches, Plakias
  • White Sand
  • Normal
  • Turquoise

Located 32km south of Rethymno and 4km east of Plakias, you’ll find the beach complex of Ammoudi. Access is available via a paved road from the village of Lefkogia. This road leads you directly to the first beach, Ammoudi, recognizable by its distinctive green slippery rock. The beach has a slight organization, with available amenities such as umbrellas, nearby taverns and rooms, and even a scuba diving centre. Its thick white sand, rocky seabed, and bright green waters make it ideal for diving and snorkelling. There’s also the option to find shade and camp under the many tamarisk trees located next to the beach.

Heading west from Ammoudi, a dirt road begins that will take you towards Damnoni, passing by towering cliffs and impressive rocks. Just 200m west of Ammoudi, along this dirt road, you’ll discover a parking plateau that offers an unrestricted view of Damnoni. Here, you’ll see an enchanting miniature sandy beach, featuring turquoise waters and a unique rock in the sea. Known as Klisidi, this beach is an attractive choice when not crowded, though this is rare during peak season.

Adjacent to Klisidi, you’ll encounter the stunning nudist beach of Small Ammoudi or Ammoudaki. This small beach is popular among nudists for its turquoise waters and exceptional white coarse sand. It also has a small canteen offering umbrellas and sunbeds. On the beach’s west side, you can swim in a marine cave, where the sunlight turns the water a vibrant blue. You can easily walk on the sandy seabed. There’s also an underwater hole connecting Ammoudaki with Klisidi, allowing you to travel between the two beaches with just a dive. If you wish to reach the Ammoudi beaches on foot, simply walk east of Damnoni until you reach Ammoudaki.

  • 3.0 km
  • Drymiskos beaches
  • Rocks in places, Sand
  • Deep
  • Blue

Beyond the charming village of Drymiskos, a sequence of coves unfurls into a series of beaches spanning 3 km, collectively known as Drymiskiani Gialia (Drymiskos Beach). Rocks and reefs segment these beaches, providing an exciting snorkelling experience. The area remains largely undiscovered due to its more challenging accessibility compared to other locations in the South Rethymnon prefecture. The most well-known section of Drymiskian Beach is Amoudi, the westernmost beach where the paved road from Preveli beach ends. Ammoudi serves as the starting point for a brief trail to Preveli beach, where most visitors park their cars.

Venturing eastwards from Amoudi along the paved road, one can discover numerous serene sandy beaches, perfect for solitude and naturism. At the heart of Drymiskian Beach, Kefala’s beaches are marked by a distinctive black, tooth-like rock jutting from the sand. The best beaches in the area can be found on either side of this rock. Continuing further, one reaches the less crowded Anatolika beaches, also known as East, renowned for their deep, clear waters. From Anatolika, the journey can be extended to the Kerames beaches, the first of which is Gialopotama. While most beaches lack trees, large rocks provide ample shade throughout the day.

  • 3.5 km