Beaches near Pacheía Ámmos, in Lassithi region

Here is list of closest beaches to Pacheía Ámmos

  • 120 m
  • Pahia Ammos beach
  • Pebbles, Sand
  • Normal
  • Blue

Pachia Ammos is a large village situated on the north side of the narrowest part of Crete, 20km east of Agios Nikolaos, on the road connecting Agios Nikolaos with Sitia and Ierapetra. The village is located at the exit of a fertile plain that is covered with olive groves. It has experienced mild development due to its local beach and the sights of the surrounding area. Visitors can find small hotels, rooms, and taverns in the village.

A long beach with sand and pebbles stretches in front of Pahia Ammos, 500m to the east. The beach is open to the north winds, and the sea is usually wavy. However, visitors can stay safe in the well-protected west part of the beach, which is sandy and clean and has umbrellas and sunbeds. For those seeking peace, the eastern part of the beach is an option, but it is unprotected from the waves, and currents carrying garbage due to the village’s location in the southern part of the Gulf of Mirabello. The beach in this area is pebbly and has several tamarisk trees. At the east end of the beach, a stream flows from the impressive Gorge of Ha in winter.

Pahia Ammos is situated on the site of the ancient city Minoa, which was an old harbour. The Institute for the Study of Prehistoric Aegean of East Crete is established here, which conducts systematic excavations in the area and deals with the promotion and protection of antiquities. The most famous archaeological site in the region is the Minoan cemetery and the settlement of Gournia, which is located 2km west of the village. The city flourished in 1600 BC and was built on a small hill. Gournia is located 2km east of Faneromeni Monastery, one of the most impressive monasteries in Crete built on a steep cliff.

Visitors can also visit the Minoan settlement Vasiliki, which is 4km south of the village and flourished in 2600-2300 BC. Vasiliki is considered the precursor of the major Minoan palaces and towns. From Vasiliki, visitors can drive 2km to the east to reach the village of Monastiraki, with the old watermills and the church of St. Stephen. Nearby is the exit of the imposing gorge of Ha, which causes awe from miles away.

Opposite Pahia Ammos you’ll see the small island Konida (i.e. nit, the egg of louse), which can be reached by boat. It is interesting to see how the place’s name has emerged; a few miles to the east (opposite Tholos) you’ll meet the very important island Psira (i.e. louse), while opposite Mochlos you’ll see the islet of Agios Nikolaos, also called Psilos (flea). All bugs together!

  • 1.8 km
  • Kamini beach
  • Pebbles
  • Normal
  • Blue

Kamini, situated near the renowned Minoan settlement of Gournia by Pahia Ammos, is an enchanting location composed of five sequential pebble beaches. Positioned north of the archaeological site, Kamini was most likely Gournia’s access point to the sea, explaining the presence of Minoan structures in the area, such as remnants of rooms, walls, and ship sheds or boathouses. The Gournia necropolis is also found in this area.

Kamini’s natural allure is as significant as its archaeological value. The coastline, adorned with limestone conglomerates and strikingly red soil, presents a stunning display of colors. The area boasts intriguing geological formations, sea caves, rock bridges, and five beaches speckled with fine or coarse pebbles. However, some of these beaches can be difficult to access.

Regrettably, the north winds often bring a disheartening amount of trash from across the Aegean Sea, littering the otherwise pristine landscape. This, coupled with the strong winds, tends to deter visitors. However, when the winds shift to the south, Kamini’s true splendor emerges, with turquoise and crystal-clear waters that truly are a sight to behold.

  • 3.2 km
  • Agriomandra beach
  • Fine Pebbles, Pebbles
  • Deep
  • Deep blue, Green

Agriomandra, a hidden gem of a beach, can be found 24km east of Agios Nikolaos, or alternatively, 3km west of Kavousi village and Tholos beach. This beach, hidden at the exit of the Agriomandra gorge, is only accessible by foot through the canyon. To reach the entrance to the gorge, follow a dirt road that cuts through the verdant meadows west of Kavoussi, known as Lakos Ambelion. A short, manageable trail from this point will bring you to the beach, about a 10-minute walk. Along the way, you’ll notice several petite caves nestled into the rocks, one of which is a stone-built church from the Byzantine era, dedicated to St. John the Theologian. As you continue on, you’ll come upon the stunning pebbly beach with its transparent green waters, tucked away between the protective arms of the gorge cliffs.

The seclusion of the beach, primarily due to its challenging access, makes it the perfect spot for privacy, nudism, and snorkelling. Tamarisk trees provide ample shade and the beach itself was first used as a port by the Venetians, with remnants of their buildings still visible today. In fact, until 1920, goods and animals were transported to Agios Nikolaos from this sheltered harbour due to the lack of roads. You’ll also notice the remains of a tax office and a well once used for water.

The name Agriomandra comes from the Greek words Agrios, meaning wild or savage, and mantra, meaning a pen for animals. The term mandra is often used in Crete to describe open spaces where animals were gathered for shipping. The beach’s alternate name, Agiomandra, is likely a nod to the church of St. John located in the gorge.

If you ever visit, consider a walk north along the steep shore to Tholos. After about 400m, you’ll come across the deserted Sykies beach, named for the fig trees that inhabit the area. Next, you’ll encounter the striking landscape of towering cliffs, reaching their peak height of 250m at the impressive Spathi cape, a locale known to the locals as the Sword of Homatas. Here, a rocky beach with crystal clear blue waters awaits, accessible only by boat. The cape is also accessible from Tholos, being in close proximity to both the Theriospilios Cave and the Chryssokamino ancient site.

  • 3.5 km
  • Gournia beach
  • Pebbles
  • Deep
  • Deep blue

Gournia, situated 17km east of Agios Nikolaos and just 2km west of Pachia Ammos, is renowned for its ancient Minoan town, built atop a small hill. Named after the stone and wooden troughs (‘urna’ in Venetian) found in the vicinity, the original Minoan name of the town remains a mystery.

Nearby, a brief 1km journey north of the archaeological site of Gournia, lies the secluded Frouzis beach. Accessible by car, it sits nestled within a rocky bay, featuring pebbly shores and zero commercial facilities. While the broader area boasts beautiful sea caves and natural rock pools, the beach tends to accumulate litter carried by sea currents. This is also the case for the neighbouring beach, which houses an abandoned camping site.

One of Crete’s most breathtaking natural pools is found near Gournia. This serene rock-bound pond offers an inviting swim, especially when the nearby sea is choppy. The vast cave next to it also provides a fascinating sight.

A trip to Gournia would not be complete without exploring the archaeological site to understand the layout of a small Minoan city. Having thrived in 1500BC, the city has been thoroughly excavated, revealing well-preserved walls, staircases, and streets. The city, centered around a hill housing a small palace, a market, and a temple, appears to have been destroyed by an earthquake around 1450BC, and it was completely abandoned by 1200BC. The Gournia cemetery was discovered in the Sfougaras region, near Kamini.

  • 5.3 km
  • Pilos beach