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Stalida (Stalis)

Town description

Stalis borrows its name from the Greek verb stalizo, signifying a place of rest. Historically, it served as a resting point for shepherds and their flocks.

Positioned 30 kilometres to the east of Heraklion, Stalis, also known as Stalida, is nestled between Hersonissos and Malia, approximately 3 kilometres from each.

The Fusion of Hersonissos, Stalis, and Malia

Due to heavy tourism influx, Hersonissos, Stalis, and Malia have merged into a singular, sprawling coastal resort. The continuity of this 10-kilometre resort is particularly noticeable when journeying from Stalis to Malia via the coastal route.

Stalis’s Evolution into a Tourist Hotspot

In the 1980s, alongside a general upsurge in Cretan tourism, Stalis transformed into a popular holiday destination. Prior to this, it was primarily a beach where locals from the village of Mohos enjoyed their summer vacations.

The Unique Layout of Stalis

Stalis, being a newer development, lacks a typical village structure. Instead of a central square, the area is characterized by a coastal road with shops, tavernas, and hotels lining both sides.

The Tranquil Nightlife of Stalis

Unlike its lively neighbouring resorts, Hersonissos and Malia, Stalis offers a more family-friendly atmosphere with a calmer nightlife. However, it does possess a variety of bars and cafes for those seeking entertainment.

The Division of Stalis

The Hersonissos-Malia main road bisects Stalis, creating two distinct sides: the coastal Stalis and the upper Stalis. This busy road only has one set of traffic lights at the intersection leading to Mohos and the New National Road.

Safety Measures in Stalis

Due to the high vehicular traffic, pedestrians need to exercise caution when crossing the main road. There are several underpasses available for safe crossing. It’s essential to pay heed to the accurate underpass heights as some signs might indicate incorrect measurements.

Amenities in Stalis

Stalis is well-equipped with restaurants, tourist shops, travel agencies, car and motorbike rental services, and minimarkets. While banking services are available in Hersonissos and Malia, Stalis hosts several cash points.

Connectivity and Transportation

Regular buses run from Stalis to various locations including Heraklion, Hersonissos, Gouves, Malia, and Agios Nikolaos, offering an easy exploration of the north coast of Crete.

Things to do in and around Stalis

Numerous activities await tourists in Stalis. From beach walks and historical church visits to exploring neighbouring towns like Malia and Hersonissos, or partaking in traditional village festivities. You can also embark on a journey to explore the Minoan Palace or take day trips to archaeological sites or nearby islands. Other attractions include the Lassithi Plateau, the birthplace of Zeus according to legend, or taking the scenic “Bulgarian Path” to the village of Mohos.

Beaches in the neighbourhood of Stalis

Stalis itself boasts a highly frequented beach, featuring smooth, golden sands and pristine waters. The beach is equipped with sun loungers, umbrellas, and snack bars, making it an ideal location for family outings.

Although Crete’s north coast can sometimes experience windy conditions, Hersonissos, particularly the beach situated west of Cape Sarandaris, often provides a sheltered spot with tranquil seas for swimming.

Malia, located to the east of Stalis, stands as one of Crete’s favoured beach destinations among the younger crowd. With its lively bars and bustling nightlife, it offers an array of entertainment.

Matala, a beach located on the south coast, gained fame in the 1970s as a campsite for hippies dwelling in the cliff caves. This stunning beach can be reached via a pleasant hour-and-a-half drive through picturesque villages and scenery.

Agia Galini is another beloved beach located on the south coast, about an hour and a half drive from Stalis (Stalida) and just over half an hour from Matala. This pebbled beach boasts cool waters, thanks to the proximity of the Platys River, making it a popular choice among beach-goers.


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Most frequent asked questions

What does the name “Stalis” mean?

“Stalis” originates from the Greek verb “stalizo,” which signifies a place of rest.

Where is Stalis located?

Stalis is situated 30 kilometres east of Heraklion, nestled between Hersonissos and Malia.

What are the neighboring towns of Stalis?

The neighboring towns of Stalis are Hersonissos and Malia.

When did Stalis become a popular holiday destination?

Stalis became a prominent holiday destination during the 1980s.

What characterizes the layout of Stalis?

Stalis features a coastal road lined with shops, tavernas, and hotels, and lacks a typical village central square.

What is the nightlife like in Stalis?

Stalis offers a tranquil nightlife, making it more suitable for family vacations.

What safety measures exist for pedestrians in Stalis?

Pedestrians in Stalis can safely cross the busy main road using several underpasses.

What amenities can I find in Stalis?

Stalis is equipped with restaurants, tourist shops, travel agencies, car and motorbike rental services, minimarkets, and cash points.

How can I get around from Stalis to other locations in Crete?

Regular bus services run from Stalis to locations like Heraklion, Hersonissos, Gouves, Malia, and Agios Nikolaos.

What are the recommended activities in and around Stalis?

Activities in Stalis include beach walks, historical church visits, exploring neighbouring towns, participating in traditional village festivities, and taking day trips to archaeological sites or nearby islands.

What are some notable beaches near Stalis, and what do they offer?

Stalis beach is known for its smooth sands and family-friendly environment. Hersonissos beach, west of Cape Sarandaris, is typically sheltered and calm. Malia is popular among younger crowds for its lively nightlife. Matala, famous for its hippie history, provides stunning scenery. Agia Galini, a pebbled beach, offers cool waters due to the nearby Platys River.

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