The Mediterranean amazes with long and perfectly located beaches, but not many of them can boast having white and soft sand. Both the famous south coast of France and the remote bays of Croatian islands are filled mostly with beaches of gravel and stone. One of the few places in Europe where the colors of the sand and the water completely contrast is the biggest Greek island, Crete.
The westernmost point of the island is host to the paradise-like Balos Lagoon. The breathtaking bay is part of the Chania province – it is under one hundred kilometers away from one of Crete’s biggest cities. At the end of the uninhabited island, which, thanks to the creation of a nature reserve, can boast unaltered fauna and flora, you can find a lagoon just like the ones on the Pacific Ocean.
Not only is the water in Balos warm, but also exceptionally clean. Its depth doesn’t surpass one meter, which makes the lagoon child-friendly, too. The color of the water ranges from light blue, through turquoise, all the way to green. The shade of the sand is also amazing – in some places, it seems almost pink, filled with colorful seashells.
Elafonissi is a small island off the coast of Southwest Crete, 75 kilometers from Chania. It is accessible by foot through a shallow lagoon. It is known for its unique nature and is a site of the Nature 2000 list, listed as one of the most valuable sights of Europe. The island hosts a range of endemic species of flora and fauna like turtles unseen anywhere else in the world.
Elafonissi is host to a beach widely considered one of the most beautiful of Europe. It is famous for its sand color, which is slightly pink thanks to small pieces of coral and seashells. The place has sunshades and sunbeds for rent, too. The parking lot, located a couple of hundred meters from the beach, is accessible (from Chania) by a city bus, a rented moped or car.
While on Crete, you should also see one of the islands biggest beaches – Falasarna, located 50 kilometers west from Chania. It is broad and covered with fine, golden sand. It is located in a small