The beaches in Falasarna are not just exceptional; they are among the places which you must visit at least once in your life. The bay with the tropical-color waters and white sand and surrounded by a green wild landscape is located 59 km west of Chania and 17 km west of Kissamos. The coastline is very long and actually consists of five consecutive beaches, the two most central of which are the most favorite for most people. The main beach of Falasarna is called Pachia Ammos and it is an exotic and wide sandy beach 1 Km long. The sand there is very white and as a result the sea water has a tropical color. Falasarna also a famous Cretan destination thanks to its ecological preservation as part of the Natura 2000 network. Due to its variety of flora and fauna with outstanding natural beauty you will find this stunning beach to have the best sunset in West Crete.
Descending the charming mountain road into Falasarna you will experience a 180 degree breathtaking panorama of mountains and sea punctuated the two principal beaches divided by a few sand dunes. The south beach (Pachia Ammos) is longer and wider than its adjacent cousin to the north. The other two more beaches are further south; a sandy beach with rocks on the bottom, and a small beach next to the little harbor where most windsurfing and kitesurfing activities take place. Although it seems to be a deserted beach, it attracts people who try to find peacefulness, a little dose of simple life and stunning views. To the north of the main beach in Falasarna there is a long beach of 800 meters, almost the same as the central, separated into individual smaller beaches. This beach is quieter than Pachia Ammos and is not organized. Nearby you will see the church of Agia Paraskevi with a source of fresh water flowing next to it. At the northern end of the beach lie the ruins of the ancient Roman city of Falasarna. There, next to the archaeological site there is a small bay facing south. The coast has pebbles and the seabed is rocky.
Falasarna is ideal spot for surfing, both for beginners and advanced. It is not windy enough for kitesurf and windsurf, except if you are a beginner. If you’re advanced you have to go to Falasarna Port spot.
Medium Months: June, July, August, September, October
Best Direction: S, SW
Main Direction: N, NW, S, SW
Wind Factor: 04-10 knots (2-3 bft), 11-16 knots (4 bft), 17-21 knots (5 bft), 22-27 knots (6 bft)
Main Wind Direction: Side Shore, Side Onshore, Offshore
Falasarna has wind usually only in winter and spring with South (side shore) or Southwest (side onshore) winds. The South winds are quite gusty but usually ridable. The wind frequency is low, 4-5 time every month during winter and the wind speed is from 4-7 Bft.
During summer time it is full of tourists and the prevailing offshore North wind is extremely gusty (it comes through the mountains) and usually is not strong enough (3-4 bft), so the main beach of Falasarna cannot be used for windsurfing of kiteboarding. But there is a small bay (Falasarna Port) near the port of Falasarna where the wind is not so gusty and it is ideal for wind/kitesurf.
Quality: Crystal Clear
Depth: Average (deepens gently and incrementally)
This beach is ridable mostly during winter and spring. Generally it is not a windy place but when the Southwest wind is there it is perfect for wave riding. Here, the waves never stop! The water for the South (side shore) or Southwest (side onshore) winds that we usually have in winter and spring is from choppy to very big waves (>3m) depending on the wind direction and speed. The waves don't break progressively and there is a large shore break area. The sandy beaches with waist high are a perfect playground for the first steps in wave riding. Everyone can have fun in the crystal clear waters with safety, from the young kids to adults.
When the wind is W, NW, there are waves from 0,5 m to 2 m high. The spot is a beach break with sandy seafloor and waist to shoulder high deep water. Few rocks in the water close to the beach. if you're be here on a day that is not blowing from the west -rare in west Crete- you will be compensated by the amazing turquoise waters.
Unfortulately, there are reports that the surrounding greenhouses pollute the sea with fertilizers and trash.
Bathers Period: July, August
Kid Friendly: Yes
The big and famous Falasarna beach, “Pachia Ammos” (i.e. Coarse Sand) is an exotic beach with a length of 1 km and a width of 150 m. This beach hosts the most visitors of the area, but because of its length it never seems crowded. It is a wonderful, fine, white sandy beach. This fantastic place is ideal for families with kids.
Arrival on Falasarna:
Arrival by Car, Moto, Camper Van: Falasarna beach is located 54 Km west of Chania and 15 Km west of Kissamos (Kastelli) town. It is located in the western part of Cape Yramvousa. Travel there by car taking the National Road from Chania through Kissamos, there after following the road signs over the low mountain highway to Falasarna. It takes about 45min to get there.
Arrival by Bus: Daily buses to the beach from Chania and Kastelli are also available.
Access to Crete:
Arrival by Airplane: Millions of visitors come to Crete every year from all over the world directly by plane, especially by charter. The three international airports on the island, in Heraklion, Chania and Sitia are linked to hundreds of other international airports. The largest low cost companies have regular flights to Crete and the most important international airlines organize charter flights. If you take your own equipment, it’s best to reserve this in advance.
Airport at Heraklion: It is the primary airport on the island of Crete and the country’s second busiest airport after Athens International Airport. It is located about 5 km east of the main city center of Heraklion, near the municipality of Nea Halicarnassus. It is a shared civil/military facility. The airport is named after Heraklion native Nikos Kazantzakis, a Greek writer and philosopher. Nikos Kazantzakis Airport is Crete’s main and busiest airport, serving Heraklion, Agios Nikolaos, Malia, Hersonissos, Stalida, Elounda and other resorts.
Airport at Chania: Located on the Northwestern part of the island, the airport is also known as the “K. Daskalogiannis” Airport. This international airport is situated near Souda Bay, on the peninsula of Akrotiri, serving the city of Chania (14 km away). Moreover, it is a gateway to western Crete for an increasing amount of tourists. It is a joint civil–military airport. It is much smaller and far less busy than Heraklion airport. The airport is connected with many countries (about 30) from Europe and Asia especially in summer season and with flights connections in Greece and Cyprus whole year.
A new public airport in Sitia: it is a small community airport in the region Bonda of Sitia Municipality, on the eastern part of Crete, located 1 km north/northwest of the city center. The facility is serving the city of Sitia, currently only with a small number of domestic flights, mainly to/from Athens International Airport Eleftherios Venizelos with an internal flight. The flight time from Athens to Sitia is 55 minutes. Also from Rhodes Island, with stops Karpathos and Kassos flight time and 120 minutes. Fly from Alexandroupolis during 105 minutes, from Preveza to over 100 minutes and from Heraklion during 25 minutes.
Inland airport at Kasteli: There are long term plans to replace Heraklion airport, which is too close to the city, by a new inland airport at Kasteli, southeast of Heraklion. It is a small airport located at the edge of Heraklion. It has basic facilities and a small parking lot.
Almost all scheduled international flights transit through Athens (which take about 45min) where you must take a scheduled domestic flight to Chania or Heraklion. These are quite frequent (around 6 to 8 times a day to Chania and more to Heraklion). During the months of July and August there are flights from Thessaloniki to Heraklion and Chania (they take about 90 minutes). The airport at Heraklion also has daily flights to Rhodes which takes 1 hour. From April till early November charter airlines fly directly to Heraklion and Chania from many European airports.
Arrival by Ferry/Boat: If you are already in Greece and specifically in Athens, you can continue your journey to Crete not only by plane but even by ferryboat from Piraeus. Athens airport offers good public transport connections to the city center as well as to the port of Piraeus. The three biggest ports of Crete, Heraklion, Rethymno and Chania have dozens of luxury ferry boats linking them with Greece’s largest port, Piraeus, on a daily basis. You can also go from Piraeus to Crete to Agios Nikolaos or Sitia Ports and from Thessaloniki to Heraklion.
The regular ferryboat service from the port of Piraeus to Heraklion and Chania is that ships depart every evening around 8.00 or 8.30 (times vary a little depending on the season) and arrive very early morning (generally between 5.00 or 6.00 am). Avoid weekends and especially the beginning and end of holidays. If you want a cabin it is often safer to book in advance.
Ferryboat from Peloponnese: South Peloponnese (Gythion, Neapolis or Kalamata) and Kythira Island is connecting to Kastelli/Kissamos (45 km west of Chania). Timetables are rather erratic (and very difficult to find) but it is an option if you want to spend time on the Peloponnese or simply avoid Athens.
Ferryboat from Cyclades and Dodecanese: From April to October you can also get boats from Cycladic Islands to Heraklion and Agios Nikolaos. There are daily catamarans (hydrofoils) to Santorini and the trip takes about 2,5 hours. Also Rhodes, Karpathos, Kasos and Milos from the ports of Sitia, Agios Nikolaos and Kissamos.
Since there are no roads along the southwest coast there is a ferry line with connections between Paleochora, Sougia, Agia Roumeli, Loutro and Hora Sfakion (Sfakia). There is also a connection with the islet of Gavdos, Europe's southernmost point (Cape Trypiti).
Ferryboat from Italy: Several shipping companies connect Italy (Trieste, Ancona, Bari, and Brindisi) with the mainland of Greece (Patras and Igoumenitsa). It is preferable to book your passage in advance in the summer season.
Arrival by Car, Moto, Camper Van: Be careful when driving in Crete; despite the fact that most roads (including the new National Highway) are full of twists and turns through mountains, Cretans usually drive aggressively, fast, and on the edge of safety. In rural and mountainous areas (which is almost everywhere), there can be goats, sheep, donkeys, and stray dogs on the roads.
Overland to Greece: Traveling to Greece overland has virtually stopped since the disintegration of former Yugoslavia. The alternative through Hungary, Romania and Bulgaria takes so long that it is not worth thinking about unless you want to visit these countries. The only option if you want to come by car or bike is by ferry from Italy.
For those who don’t have their own means of transport, there is of course always the possibility to rent a car or a camper which will allow you to explore the island on its modern network of roads. Taxi services are another way to get around Crete, but can be quite expensive.
Arrival by Bus: Most of the bus services are run by KTEL (around 200 intercity modern buses of all sizes) conducts hundreds of routes daily, thus linking the major cities of the island with all the settlements, but also with the rest of Greece within a framework of combined transportations. Public transportation is fairly frequent and timetables quite trustworthy. Bus drivers usually divert from their marked routes to enter little villages if asked to do so. Bus services along the north coast and towards the south coast are excellent, reliable, frequent and cheap.
Cretan bus stations are very simple for the most part, except for in Heraklion which has two major bus stations (one for buses going in town and one for KTEL run buses).
On foot: Although Crete is the largest of all Greek islands; you can get around on foot. Especially the countryside in the western part of Crete offers some rough country walking and there are good paths between Chania and Chora Sfakion. These go via forests with cypress, evergreen oak and cypress, various gorges and of course olive and orange groves. This part of Crete is good for walking holidays.