Greek beaches – of course, you’ve heard of these unique places and dreamt of going. The islands and the mainland of Greece are home to stunning landscapes, from red cliff beaches to jet black sand to pink sand to stunning rock formations just offshore. Each of These beaches is something out of a dream, and choosing just one just isn’t possible. We’ve come up with a list of the best beaches in Greece.
1. Elafonisi Beach
Elafonisi, located on the southern side of Crete, is frequently described as Greece’s number one beach. With pink coral sand and shallow clear waters, it’s clear to see why this beach is at the top of our list. Elafonisi is not just a beach, but also a protected area, meaning you won’t find any of the parking lots or big buildings crowding most beach towns. Instead, it’s just you, sun shining down, and the water lapping at your feet as you relax in the pink sand.
2. Navagio Beach
Visit a beach so beautiful, you just have to see it to believe it. Also called Shipwreck Beach because of an abandoned ship decorating the beach, Navagio sits on Zakynthos Island just off the coast of southern mainland Greece. Navagio’s clean, white sand backs into a towering semi-circle of limestone cliffs. The semi-circle opens up to give you access to the most vibrant blue and turquoise waters you’ve ever seen. The only way to reach Navagio is by boat, but many tour groups will take you there for a day of swimming or relaxing.
3. Red Beach
Looking for something different? Head to Red Beach, by Akrotiri on the southern side of the island of Santorini. Red Beach is, as it sounds, red. The red cliffs rise up above the red sand and deep turquoise water of the sea. The red color is due to the volcanic rock, characteristic of much of Santorini’s beaches. While Red Beach is too small for watersports, the beach is a prime spot for swimming and snorkeling.
Read more: An Island-Hopping Itinerary for Greece
4. Plaka Beach
Located just south of the city of Naxos, on the Island of Naxos, Plaka Beach’s vibrant blue waters and soft yellow sand will captivate you. Plaka Beach was once famously a nudist retreat, but now is a favorite beach spot for those who prefer to keep it on, although certain areas are still said to be clothing optional. The beach itself is pretty quiet with not a lot going on, which is perfect if you need an escape from the world.
5. Psarou Beach
Head to perhaps the best beach in Mykonos. Psarou beach is a perfect, quiet getaway, frequently drawing in families looking for kid-friendly fun, and honeymooners looking for a more secluded spot. The shallow waters make it perfect for some relaxing dips in the water. Farther from the coastline, the water is ideal for watersports, including waterskiing and windsurfing, bringing in a crowd of watersports enthusiasts.
6. Kamares Beach
The clearest water you’ve seen is calling you to Kamares Beach. On the northern side of Sifnos Island, Kamares is known for its clear shallow water, making it an ideal place for kids to swim. Surrounded on either side by cliffs, the beach rarely has any waves. With the convenience of all the cafes and restaurants just walking distance to the water’s edge, Kamares is a perfect place to just sit back and relax.
7. Sarakiniko Beach
This unique spot isn’t your typical sand and sea beach. Located on the island of Milos, Sarakiniko is characterized by its white volcanic rocks that jut into the clear sea. The rocks are soft enough and small enough so that it’s easy to climb around, jump off, or just lay back and relax on their surface. With these white rocks in place of a long sandy shoreline also give this beach the nickname “Moon Beach.”
8. Vai Beach
Vai beach sits on the eastern coast of Crete, by the city of Sitia. The blue water and white sand lead the way to the largest palm forest not only in Greece but in all of Europe. Rent some chairs and umbrellas to sit back and relax under the Greek sun. The beach also offers a host of sports, both on the beach and in the water.
9. Perissa Beach
Hang out on this dark sand beach. The southern Santorini beach of Perissa, in the town of Perissa, is a perfect spot for backpackers, anyone looking for a beach party, or anyone just looking to chill out on a beautiful beach. The dark sand and teal water are interrupted by the towering cliffs, which jut out into the water. The little village of Perissa itself is a sleepy coastal town, but the beach is home to all the nightlife and restaurants you need.
Read more: 5 Jaw-Dropping Places to Stay in Santorini
10. Lalaria Beach
This beach looks much more like the setting for an adventure movie than a place where you can actually dip your toes in the sand. Lalaria is only accessible by boat, letting its adventure vibes truly shine through. The beach’s classic white stone arches reach out into the crystal, teal water, while the sand is made up of little pebbles. The beach is best for those looking for an adventure, not a relaxing day in the sun.