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Loutro

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Beach description

Located roughly 71 km south of Chania city on Crete Island, Loutro is a quaint seaside village at the edge of Cape Mouri. This charming village is steeped in history, once being the site of the ancient city of Phoenix and the port of ancient Anopolis. It later served as a winter port for Chora Sfakion, its naturally formed harbour providing safe anchorage for ships even amidst harsh weather conditions.

Loutro makes for an excellent base for exploring the neighbouring beaches, accessible by taxi boat, canoe, or on foot. A small ferry can whisk you away to the stunning Glyka Nera beach to the village’s east. Alternatively, you can opt for a canoe ride or a hike along the E4 trail to the secluded pebbly beaches of Timios Stavros and Pervolaki, with your journey continuing to Glyka Nera. If you prefer to stay within Loutro, the village’s own beach and the extended Keramos beach to the east offer a serene retreat, especially during strong southern winds. These well-maintained pebbly beaches boast calm, crystal-clear waters in shades of deep blue and green. Nearby beaches of Likos, Finikas, and Marmara are also within easy reach by boat or on foot.

Loutro is a haven for those seeking a unique experience away from the bustle of mass tourism. This picturesque fishing village in southwest Crete is devoid of large hotels and swimming pools, crowded streets, restaurants, and beaches, and even cars! The only means of access is by boat or a 1.5-2 hour trek from Chora Sfakion. Daily ferry services operate to and from Chora Sfakion, Sougia, Gavdos island, Paleochora, and Agia Roumeli.

Things to do in Loutro

While in Loutro, you can revel in nature’s beauty by exploring the scenic mountain landscape, valleys, and gorges. Start with a visit to the Koules fort situated above Loutro, then head to the small port of Finikas. The village brims with historic sites, including the Old School, which served as the Chancellor of Sfakia’s seat in 1821, and the ancient Church of Panagia nestled next to it. Marvel at the tall Cretan date palm trees and the ruins of the Castella fort, part of the ancient town Phoenix, and the temple of Apollo just south of the village.

For the more adventurous, a climb to the idyllic village and plateau of Anopolis awaits. This entails a two-hour ascent on a 2000-year-old mule track, culminating in a selection of inviting taverns at the top. You can also explore the Aradena gorge or snorkel in the local waters, home to frequent sea turtle visitors.

Loutro, which translates to “bath” in Greek, was named after the baths discovered in the area, their waters once directed towards nearby Anopolis.