Kamari Beach is situated roughly 7km west of Rethymnon, close to Gerani village, at the entrance of Vederi Gorge. The coastal highway linking Chania and Rethymnon runs adjacent to the beach and over the Gerani bridge.
The beach is relatively compact, featuring pebbles and rocks in certain areas, making it a favourite among snorkelers. Despite being exposed to frequent northerly winds, it offers some amenities such as a few umbrellas, taverns, and rooms. Additionally, a quaint harbour and the charming Panagia Kamariani church can be found nearby.
A short distance south of the beach, one can find the sealed entrance to the Gerani cave, a significant archaeological site in central Crete, discovered unexpectedly during the construction of the main road. Moreover, visitors can explore the scenic narrow streets of Gerani village and visit the St George church along with several smaller churches.
Situated at the eastern edge of the expansive Episkopi beachfront, Petres beach, or Stones beach, is a 46km journey east from Chania and 13km west from Rethymnon. The beach owes its name to the majestic Petres Gorge that concludes at this point. The area is dotted with facilities such as accommodations, eateries, and even a diving school. The Vythos cove, positioned north of the other areas, offers umbrellas and a less sandy terrain. The rocky underwater landscape makes it a hotspot for fishing and snorkelling. However, the frequent northern winds can cause the sea to become wavy.
Koumbes, situated 2km west of Rethymnon’s center, is the only beach on the city’s western side. The beach offers stunning vistas of the impressive Fortezza fortress, located several hundred meters to the east. Koumbes derives its name from the Turkish word ‘Kubbe,’ which translates to ‘dome.’ This expansive beach, adorned with sand and fine pebbles, has seen significant growth in recent years, and its development has become a top priority for the Rethymno Municipality. This growth has led to numerous improvements, including the addition of walkways and similar enhancements along the coast.
At Koumbes, visitors can avail themselves of all necessary tourist amenities, such as lifeguard services, umbrellas, showers, changing rooms, and water sports. The area also boasts numerous hotels, accommodations, restaurants, taverns, snack bars, and cafes. Access to Koumbes from the city center is convenient, either by bus or on foot. Walking takes no more than 20 minutes.
The Episkopi beach, nestled 45km east of Chania and 14km west of Rethymnon, is a charming locale situated in a fertile valley with sprawling lowlands. It borrowed its name from the nearby village, Episkopi, which lies 2km south. Although the place is not widely known among Greeks, the Vardinoyannis family, one of Greece’s wealthiest business families, traces their origins to here.
The beach stretches for 3.5km and is flanked by the Mouselas river on the west and the river flowing through the Petres gorge and beaches on the west. Characteristic of most North Crete beaches, Episkopi is sandy, shallow, and typically wavy. It is well-equipped with numerous hotels, eateries, taverns, bars, and all necessary amenities. The western section of the beach offers lifeguard services, showers, changing rooms, umbrellas, snack bars, water sports, and more. However, due to its considerable length, one can also find quieter spots, especially towards the eastern end near the Petres bridge.
Rethymno and Chania are connected by a main road running parallel to the beach, making access easy either by car or bus. Regular bus services operate from Chania and Rethymno cities. Accommodation options are available in either the local region or in the village of Episkopi. Nearby attractions include the village of Argiroupolis, known for its springs and lush greenery, and Lake Kournas. Episkopi, translating to Diocese in Greek, was indeed the area’s Diocese during the Byzantine Period. However, the ancient Episcopal church of St. Nicholas is now in ruins.
The golden sands and crystal clear shallow waters of Rethymno city’s beach, located a mere 500m east of the city’s core and adjacent to the Venetian port, are truly captivating. The well-organized beach is conveniently located near the city’s amenities and is the westernmost edge of Rethymno Bay’s 13km beachfront that extends eastwards to Skaleta. Despite being constantly bustling with activity, the expansive beach never feels excessively crowded. The city’s seafront road, Eleftheriou Venizelou Str., which runs parallel to the beach, provides an idyllic setting for evening strolls.
The beach offers numerous services including umbrellas, lifeguards, beach bars, showers, changing rooms, and water sports. A noteworthy fact about this beach is the presence of the loggerhead sea turtle (Carretta carretta) that nests here. Therefore, don’t be surprised to encounter roped-off areas; these are spots where eggs have been discovered and are safeguarded from swimmers. With over 400 nests annually, Rethymno Gulf ranks among Greece’s three most significant loggerhead sea turtle nesting sites.