Vlites beach, a well-sheltered spot situated in the grand Souda bay, lies about 5 km to the east of Chania city and holds the title of the longest beach in the bay. This expansive beach takes shape north of the Moronis River’s mouth, extending northwards to the Souda Bay War Cemetery.
The sandy seashore is ideal for kids due to its typically tranquil state and shallow waters. Previously, its closeness to both the Souda Naval Base and Souda’s commercial port led many locals to avoid swimming in its waters. However, chemical analysis has confirmed the water’s cleanliness, assuring that swimming at Vlites beach is entirely safe.
Agios Onoufrios, a serene seaside village located 8km north of Chania and close to Kounoupidiana, is a hidden gem worth visiting.
The beach of Agios Onoufrios is quiet and sandy, and well protected from the winds, as it is located in a deep bay, along with a picturesque small port. Although not well-organized, it’s a popular spot for locals who come for the picturesque landscape and traditional taverns. The only downside is the fuel tanks located northwest of the beach, which break the peaceful atmosphere.
Despite this, the beach is equipped with sunbeds, parasols, showers, changing rooms, and a lifeguard service. For sports enthusiasts, there are two volleyball courts available. Overall, Agios Onoufrios is a great destination for those looking for a quiet beach away from the crowds.
The seaside village of Kalathas is located 12km northeast of Chania city, in a natural bay at Cape Akrotiri, which is open to the north winds. Current Kalathas is a relatively new village, which has been inhabited by residents of Chania who wanted to live away from the city centre.
The beach in front of the village is beautiful, with fine sand and shallow crystal clear water. Opposite Kalathas, there is a small island which you can easily reach by swimming.
The beach is very well organized with umbrellas, water sports, restaurants, hotels, lifeguards, mini markets, etc.
West of the main bay, beyond the rocky end, there is a secluded sandy bay. This is not organized and is ideal for those who do not like crowded places.
Tip: If you continue towards the far right of the beach, you will find a rather remote beach with usually hardly any people should you wish to avoid the crowded part of the beach.
Situated at the eastern edge of the scenic port of Chania, in front of the historical Bedouin district, is Kum Kapi Beach. This location was once inhabited by African economic migrants who lived in rush-made huts during the Ottoman period, having initially arrived on the island as slaves. Presently, the only visible structures are a long coastal street lined with cafes and nightclubs, with no huts in sight. The area derives its name from the Turkish phrase Kum Kapisi, translating to the Gate of Sand, which was a gate on the Venetian Walls adjacent to this sandy beach.
Kum Kapi Beach stretches for approximately 1km to the east beneath a pedestrian road. In previous years, the beach was a popular swimming spot in Chania, but the deteriorating quality of seawater led to swimming being banned. Recent developments in the biological cleaning infrastructure of Chania city have improved the water quality, making it safe for swimming according to the city’s Water Supply and Sewerage Authority. However, Kum Kapi Beach remains unorganized and is still not trusted by locals.
To the west, the ocean meets the road’s wall with no beach in between. On the east side, a strip of sandy beach is formed where most people swim. Further east, a beautiful cove is formed, although locals still avoid swimming there.
Kouloura Pond, Halepa
In the Halepa suburb of Chania, next to the Agia Kyriaki chapel and beach, you’ll find Kouloura – a small rocky pond. This spot is a favored “pool” amongst Halepa residents, each of whom has a unique tale to share about the place.
Tersanas is a charming coastal village situated 13km northeast of Chania, tucked away in a small cove on the west side of Cape Akrotiri. While it serves as the harbour for the neighbouring village of Chorafakia, Tersanas is a well-developed area and a popular holiday destination.
The beach at Tersanas is nestled within a natural harbour that faces southwest. With its white, fine sand and crystal-clear shallow waters, it’s a small beach that can get crowded, especially on weekends. Visitors can take advantage of the available sunbeds, umbrellas, showers, and snack bars. Its calm waters and proximity to tourist facilities make it perfect for families, and there are buses from Chania that stop at Tersanas.