Elafonissi Beach (Cretan Caribbean)
Very Beautiful Crete beach on the south west corner of Crete. Legends says that pink hue of the sand took its colour from the blood of the Turkish massacre of 850 women and children discovered hiding from them on the small island in 1824. More about Elafonissi
click on pictures to enlarge
Crete beach, Gramvousa and pirate island
Beautiful beach and scenery excellent photo opportunities. From Kastelli by boat you cross the Bay of Kissamos, passing by the ancient Shipyards of Tarsanas and onward to the fabled Pirate Island of Gramvousa. There is an opportunity to climb to the top if the Island to get the most amazing, clear views from the ancient Venetian Castle . Also see the fabulous lagoon of Balos with its pristine sands and crystal clear waters.
At the far Western end of Crete is the beautiful quiet sandy beach of Falasarna (can be quiet windy). A little further north are the ancient ruins of Falasarna. There is a small pebble beach in a sheltered bay opposite the ruins, and just to the right of this in shallow water is a shipwreck, fascinating for snorkelers.
This Castle was built in 1371, during the four and a half centuries of Venetian rule. In 1669 Crete was conquered by the Turks, who remained there until 1898.
During the period of Turkish occupation there were many revolts, one such taking place at Frangokastello on 18 May 1828. The resultant bloody battle, involved 800 Turks and 700 Cretans.
A strange phenomenon is said to occur here on a morning each year, between 17 and 30 May, just before sunrise. A shadowy column of armed black figures leaves the ruins of a nearby church and proceed to march along the castle walls. These figures, (known as "dew men"), only appear for 10 minutes, and are believed by the locals to be the souls of the dead Cretans.
This occurrence has been investigated by scientists, who could only explain it as some extraordinary mirage originating in Libya, almost 250km away. To the locals this seemed impossible, as the distance is surely too great, and the dates correspond with the anniversary of the battle. More about Frangokastello
Situated on the south coast, steep steps down to the beach from the car park. Spectacular lagoon that lies between the end of a steep gorge and the sea. There is a small cantina on the beach, boats in the lagoon and walks through lush tropical vegetation next to the river along the gorge.