Best Greek island beaches

By Joanne, Insight Guides

The gorgeous Greek islands boast an abundance of beautiful beaches for all kinds of travellers, from couples seeking a piece of pink sand paradise, to families looking to enjoy safe swimming off golden, sandy shorelines. Here is our pick of the best Greek island beaches.

Elafonísi Beach, Crete

Pink sand beach at Elafonísi, Crete, Greece.

Surrounded by clear, warm turquoise waters on the southwestern side of Crete, Elafonísi is a stunning islet within walking distance of the mainland, that is home to a pink sand beach more than a little reminiscent of the Caribbean. Since it is located in a protected nature reserve, development is strictly off-limits, though it can get pretty crowded – unsurprisingly, given its outstanding beauty – so aim to arrive early to claim your own little patch of paradise.

Egremní Beach, Levkáda

Egremní Beach, Levkáda, Greece.

Accessible only by boat, while ongoing access road construction work continues, the west coast wonder of Egremní Beach, on the Ionian island of Levkáda, is an oasis of multi-hued, crystal clear waters. There are no facilities so you need to bring your own food and drinks, but the dramatic cliff backdrop and out-of-this-world waters make it an unforgettable beach experience, with pretty much perfect conditions for snorkelling. And if you’re looking for a little seclusion, Egremní is far less visited than nearby Porto Katsiki Beach.

Kamínia Beach, Kefalonia

Kamínia, Kefalonia – an important breeding ground  for loggerhead turtles.

Located near the village of Ratzakli and accessible from the Skala road, this broad beach on the south coast of the island of Kefalonia is an important location for loggerhead turtles. These remarkable creatures swim thousands of miles to lay their eggs in Kamínia’s icing sugar-soft sand. To witness the unforgettable spectacle of hatchlings emerging from their eggs, visit Kamínia in August when hundreds of tiny turtles materialise through the sand in the early evening. But it’s not just turtles who feel at home here. This wide sandy beach offers plenty of family friendly-facilities – reasonably priced sunbed rentals and restaurants serving fresh tasty dishes – and the gently sloping sea provides perfect paddling conditions for younger children.

Velanió Beach, Skópelos

Wonderful beach at Velanio, Skopelos, Greece.

Around a 10-minute drive south of Skópelos Town on its namesake island, Velanió is the longest and least developed beach in the area – a stunning 600-metre stretch of fine pebbles with sweeping views across the sea to the island of Evvia, and easily accessible just a few minutes’ walk east from Stáfylos Beach. With its designated nudist area, coves to explore and scenic backdrop of towering verdant pine trees, this is a top beauty spot for naturists and naturalists alike.

Kánoula Beach, Corfu

Kánoula Beach, Corfu, Greece.

Situated near the end of the long distance Corfu Trail walking route and nestled beneath the ruins of Panagía Arkoudíla monastery in the southern reaches of Corfu island, the little-visited golden sands of Kánoula Beach are a heavenly haven for in-the-know hikers and travellers with an interest in culture and history. After exploring the Venetian-style monastery’s romantic ruins and taking in the spectacular views over to the island of Paxí, head down the forested footpath to peaceful Kánoula where you are highly likely to have the whole beach entirely to yourself.

Ornos Beach, Mykonos

Yachts off Ornos Beach on Mykonos, Greece.

A 10-minute drive south of the main town on the island of Mykonos, Ornos is the closest beach to the capital and a popular choice for those who like their beaches to have a relaxed resort ambience – think sun loungers, watersports and a host of family-oriented restaurants and bars, many of which also offer sunbed rental services. Ornos certainly isn’t short of facilities, but its soft white sand is well-maintained, the sea is clear and shallow, and the beach sits in front of a fishing village. Ornos is also a great base from which to explore neighbouring beaches with a series of boat trips.

Ready to take a trip to the beaches in Greece?

Our local experts can help you plan and book unforgettable trips to Greece. Simply get in touch to let us know your ideas for the trip and when you would like to travel. We will then create a personalised itinerary that you can amend until you're completely happy with every detail before booking. Check out our existing itineraries for inspiration, and keep in mind that they can all be tailored to meet your specific needs.
Greece, Islands, Beach, Europe

See more at: Insight Guides
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U.S. Daily News: Best Greek island beaches
Best Greek island beaches
U.S. Daily News
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