Beaches near Smárion, in Heraklion region

Here is list of closest beaches to Smárion

  • 9.5 km
  • Gouves beaches
  • Sand
  • Shallow
  • Blue

Kato Gouves, often referred to as Gouves, is a sought-after holiday destination nestled 18km east of Heraklion, at the base of Mount Ederi. Historically, the valley of Kato Gouves was a fertile ground for vegetables, olives, and cereals, cultivated by the inhabitants of Ano Gouves. Today, it’s been transformed into a tourism hub, featuring numerous hotels. Unlike the bustling resorts of Malia and Hersonissos nearby, Gouves offers a tranquil vacation experience, making it an ideal spot for families and the elderly. The sandy beaches here are loved by families, and are conveniently close to all necessary amenities.

Gouves beach is well-equipped with facilities such as umbrellas, sunbeds, lifeguards, water sports, and diving centres, alongside showers and changing rooms. The sea, featuring fine sand and shallow waters, is exposed to the common north winds. As a result, there are several small piers and marinas in the vicinity where you can enjoy a swim, shielded from the waves. The coastal road of Gouves runs parallel to the coastline, simplifying the task of locating your perfect beach spot! Enjoy an evening stroll on this road while admiring the sunset. The road also boasts numerous cafes and restaurants, offering panoramic sea views. Furthermore, Gouves’ main road houses a number of supermarkets, shops, pharmacies, clinics, and ATMs.

One must-visit spot is the Church of St. Constantine, nestled in a quaint pine forest adjacent to the sea. Its picturesque seaside location makes it a popular wedding venue, especially for couples from Heraklion. If your visit falls on a Saturday, you’re likely to witness a traditional Greek wedding or baptism. Beyond the shoreline, 2km to the north, lies the village of Ano Gouves. Its narrow streets, churches, and coffee shops exude a traditional charm. Further north, you can explore the Cave of Agia Paraskevi near the village of Skotino. To the east, Mount Ederi stands tall, home to radars used by the Americans for the operation of the erstwhile US air base in Gournes.

  • 9.8 km
  • Aposelemis beach
  • Sand
  • Shallow
  • Blue

The Aposelemis River, situated 19km east of Heraklion, between Analipsi and Gouves, is a significant wetland in northern Crete. The pond that forms near the shoreline serves as a natural habitat for various migratory birds and rare species. The river’s outlet gives way to a beautiful sandy beach with shallow cool waters. Although it’s in close proximity to large hotels and tourist spots, the beach lacks organization compared to other top beaches in the vicinity, with only a handful of umbrellas and sunbeds available.

There are two alternative routes to reach the beach. One option is to drive towards the beach of Analipsi and then follow the coastal road heading west. After traversing a few meters past the region’s rocky shores, you’ll arrive at the extensive Aposelemis beach. Alternatively, you can take the coastal road of Kato Gouves to its eastern end, where the road veers right and runs along a hotel’s walls. Aposelemis beach is directly across from this hotel, adjacent to Gouves’ soccer field.

  • 9.8 km
  • Gournes beaches
  • Sand
  • Shallow
  • Blue

Located 16km east of Heraklion, between Kokkini Hani and Kato Gouves, lies the tourist resort of Gournes. The area of Gournes, originally a separate village, is now part of a 23 kilometer stretch of unified beachfront that begins in Vathianos Kambos and ends in Malia. The fertile plains of Gournes are abundant with vegetable crops and olive groves.

The name ‘Gournes’ is derived from the Latin word ‘urna’ which means water troughs for livestock. However, there is another theory suggesting that the name comes from the Minoan larnakes (urns) that were found in the area.

The beaches of Gournes, like most on Crete’s north coast, are exposed to north winds. The beachfront is dotted with small artificial piers constructed to absorb wave impact and to preserve the sand. This has resulted in the formation of several sandy coves between these piers. The area’s long beach, located on the west part of Gournes, is well organized with lifeguards and umbrellas.

As you head east, the coast becomes rockier and you’ll come across a small torrent. A kilometer further east, you’ll find the former American Airbase of Gournes, which was abandoned in the early 1990s. Despite the derelict buildings, the area is home to the International Exhibition Center of Crete, the Centre for Marine Research (HCMR), the City Hall, and the Aquarium. There is also a small port and the longest beach of Gournes, a beautiful sandy stretch that extends to the beaches of Gouves. Particularly noteworthy is the well-organized municipal beach of Gouves, located west of the Old Base boundary.

During your visit to Gournes, don’t miss the chance to see the old church of the Annunciation in the old village and the picturesque church of Agios Ioannis Pezetis with its ancient frescoes. An excavated Minoan settlement and cemetery nearby have revealed many vases, figurines and seals. One of the most popular attractions in Gournes is the Cretaquarium. Once the largest aquarium in southern Europe, it continues to attract thousands of visitors daily and is located within the former U.S. base.

  • 9.9 km
  • Kokkini Hani beaches
  • Sand
  • Shallow
  • Blue

Situated 15km west of Heraklion and to the west of Vathianos Kambos, Kokkini Hani is a thriving resort, nestled amidst numerous crops grown in the region’s fertile plain. Its name, meaning “Kokkinis’s Inn,” harks back to the early 1900s when an inn run by a man named Kokkinis provided a resting place for weary travellers en route to Heraklion.

The resort boasts numerous beaches, safeguarded by artificial mini piers. Characterized by sandy shores and shallow turquoise waters, these beaches, though located in front of hotels, are open for public access. The resort is replete with shops and restaurants, and the beaches are well-equipped with umbrellas, lifeguards, and water sports facilities, providing all the necessary tourist infrastructure. In comparison to Malia and Hersonissos, Kokkini Hani’s nightlife is rather subdued.

Close to Vathianos Kambos, on Kokkini’s eastern side and near the coast, lies the small archaeological site of Niros Villa. This mansion from the Late Minoan Times served as the dwelling of a high-ranking Minoan priest, presumably overseeing the local Minoan harbour. Open to the public, this site offers visitors a glimpse of the architecture of a Minoan religious structure from 4000 years ago. Excavations at the villa have unearthed several large bronze axes – the emblem of the Minoans, along with jars, offering tables bearing raw clay, and a host of other smaller artefacts.

  • 10.4 km