Issues To Do in Elounda in 2023 (Full Information for Vacationers)

Hidden away on the japanese coast of Crete, Elounda is a reasonably fishing village which is the proper vacation spot for a soothing seaside getaway.

You’ll love Elounda when you’re in search of a standard Greek resort which isn’t too crowded or commercialized. Nevertheless, that doesn’t imply there’s nothing to do right here. In the event you’re planning on travelling to Greece, then think about including this hidden gem to your itinerary.

Spend your days stress-free on the seaside or bathing in crystal clear water. Discover fairly streets and admire the gorgeous surroundings. The coastal paths are good for strolling, and you may discover the encompassing space and get to know this a part of Crete a bit higher. 

I beloved the genuine Greek really feel of Elounda, the friendliness of the locals we met, and the commonly relaxed ambiance of the village. Furthermore, the view throughout the bay is spectacular. I might have spent my complete week simply gazing out to sea — this is among the most stress-free locations to go to in Greece

On this journey information to Elounda Crete, I’ll listing the very best issues to do, the place to eat, the place to remain, the very best seashores, and how you can get round. 

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Greatest Issues To Do in Elounda Crete

We stayed in Elounda for 7 nights and though it’s a low-key place, we discovered loads of issues to do. We prefer to get out and about exploring however when you like to spend so much of time on the seaside then you could possibly keep longer.

Elounda is the proper base for leisurely walks, and irrespective of the place you’re within the village, you’re just about assured a stunning view of the bay. In the event you love the water, you’ll be delighted with the crystal clear sea right here on the Jap Cretan coast.

Listed below are a few of the greatest issues to do in Elounda, Crete:

1. Discover the Harbour

In all probability the very first thing you’ll need to do once you arrive in Elounda is to take a stroll across the central city. Right here, you’ll discover the picturesque harbour with the whole lot from conventional fishing boats to rowing boats.

elounda crete town harbour

Stroll alongside the harbour to the east and also you’ll go a few of Elounda’s standard tavernas earlier than you come to the principle seaside. In the event you stroll south alongside the harbourfront, you’ll be rewarded with a few of the city’s extra unique eating places overlooking the bay.

2. Stroll to The Sunken Metropolis of Olous

Proceed additional south of the resort and also you’ll come to the Sunken Metropolis of Olous. Olous was an historic Greek metropolis from the Minoan age. Don’t count on to see apparent ruins beneath the ocean, though when you look rigorously you may make out a few of the historic partitions.

Some experiences recommend that Olous sunk attributable to volcanic exercise however others say it’s extra seemingly that it simply sunk slowly over a few years.

For vacationers at this time, it makes for an fascinating place to go to for a delicate coastal stroll outdoors the principle resort. In the event you’re eager on discovering the ruins beneath the water, you possibly can be a part of this enjoyable snorkel journey.

3. Take a Boat Journey to Spinalonga

One of many highlights of our journey to Crete was a go to to Spinalonga. The island is a former leper colony. Victims from Crete (and generally mainland Greece) have been forcibly relocated to the island in an try and cease the unfold of the illness.

Though fairly notorious regionally, Spinalonga was made well-known by the publication of Victoria Hislop’s novel, The Island. The e-book tells the story of the Fielding household which is caught up within the drama of leprosy and Spinalonga island.

It’s truly a terrific learn so when you’re in search of some vacation studying throughout your keep in Crete, I extremely suggest it. The leper colony on Spinalonga was closed in 1957, some years after a remedy was discovered for the horrible illness. 

How To Get To Spinalonga Island

For a very long time, Greek officers most popular to overlook about Spinalonga, however that each one modified when vacationers, impressed by Hislop’s novel, began asking to go to.

Now you can go to Spinalonga for your self by taking a ship throughout from the principle island. This boat journey is very rated and is a good choice to benefit from the island.

In the event you desire to go independently, it prices round 10 Euros per individual or 5 Euros for youngsters. It’s a nice journey and also you’ll get to see extra of the coast as you cruise throughout.

For a shorter crossing to the island, head to the close by village of Plaka. There’s loads of free parking in Plaka close to the boat docks which makes it a simple choice in case you have a automotive.

Boats depart at common intervals from two boat docks so when you’ve simply missed the primary one then stroll a bit additional alongside the harbour and take a look at the opposite one.

It’s a brief 10-minute crossing from Plaka and prices 8 Euros per individual. Boats from each areas begin from round 10 am and run at common intervals all day till round 4 – 4:40 pm.

spinalonga island crete

Exploring Spinalonga Island

As soon as on the island of Spinalonga, that you must purchase an entrance ticket on the small kiosk for 8 Euros. Stroll by means of the archway and also you’ll emerge right into a world of slim lanes and colored homes.

Inside a few of them, you’ll discover shows with info on their former inhabitants. It’s each fascinating and reasonably unhappy, particularly when you’ve learn Hislop’s e-book.

Lots of the buildings have already been restored however extra work is presently underway. As you allow the principle settlement you stroll across the base of the hill and when you lookup you’ll see that there are ruins stretching proper as much as the highest.

Though most guests appear to stay to the principle pathway on the backside, the higher ranges are accessible when you don’t thoughts scrambling up a number of slopes and rocky steps.

I’d suggest making the journey up for some fabulous views again throughout the bay to Plaka and Elounda. You additionally get a birds-eye view of the settlement of Spinalonga.

In the event you’re staying in Agios Nikolaos or need to mix your journey to Spinalonga with swimming and lunch, then there’s a half-day tour out there regionally. Count on to pay round 25-30 Euros for a half-day cruise with stops for swimming and snorkelling, together with lunch.

4. Go to the Windmills

In the event you like strolling, then head south from Elounda harbour and also you’ll come to the saltpans in your proper. Look rigorously into the water and also you’ll see stone squares. Typically individuals confuse these with the sunken ruins of Oleus however they’re truly salt pans.

The saltwater collects within the squares and when the water evaporates, salt is left within the backside. Employees stability on the low stone partitions to scrape the salt from the underside of the squares. An ingenious system.

elounda windmill on crete

Hold strolling and cross the small stone bridge and also you’ll come to the Kolokytha Peninsula. As you cross the bridge, you’ll see the primary windmill.

Because of the form of the panorama, the peninsula types a breakwater which makes Elounda Bay so tranquil. There are three stone windmills right here, constructed to make the most of the wind on this a part of the peninsula.

It is a beautiful space for strolling. In the event you’d prefer to go additional there are a selection of trails which head up and over the hill to some uncrowded seashores.

Greatest Day Journeys from Elounda Village

Listed below are a number of of the day journeys I like to recommend from Elounda.

Go to Close by Plaka

day trip to plaka from elounda

Plaka is a picturesque small village about 5km north of Elounda and it’s effectively price making the journey to take a look round. In the event you’ve obtained a automotive then it’s a simple drive alongside the coastal highway and there’s loads of parking out there in Plaka simply off the principle highway.

For these with out transport, there’s a small vacationer prepare which makes the journey a number of instances a day and there’s a public bus though it solely runs a number of instances a day.

You’ll discover loads of eating places to select from alongside the harbour and Plaka’s fish eating places are significantly standard. Plaka can be a very good place to begin for a go to to Spinalonga Island because the boat journey is simply 10 minutes from right here.

Make a day of it and take a look at the attractive seashores round Plaka and browse the memento outlets across the harbour.

Regardless of its rising reputation, Plaka nonetheless feels historically Greek. Plaka is a vacationer vacation spot nevertheless it’s a lot smaller and quieter than Elounda. Though it’s busier in July once they maintain a music competition in honour of an area musician, Mikalis Papadakis. 

Experience the Little Blue Practice

In addition to offering a enjoyable transport choice between Elounda and Plaka, the little blue prepare additionally offers sightseeing excursions.

You possibly can take a four-hour journey from Elounda into the Cretan countryside. You’ll get to see some conventional villages and there are numerous alternatives to get some fabulous pictures from excessive within the hills.

The prepare makes a variety of stops the place you possibly can wander by means of the picturesque villages, pattern a few of the native delicacies, store for souvenirs and discover fascinating church buildings.

In the event you don’t have a automotive then it’s a wonderful option to get out and about and see extra of the gorgeous Cretan panorama.

The tour prices 18 Euros per individual. The prepare departs from Elounda at 12 pm and returns at 6 pm. Lunch is just not included however the prepare does make a cease at an area taverna the place you should purchase food and drinks.

Discover Agios Nikolaos

Agios Nikolaus crete greece

Agios Nikolaos is roughly 10km south of Elounda and is an effective alternative when you’re in search of someplace a bit extra full of life for a time out.

Right here, you’ll discover a bustling coastal city with loads of outlets, eating places and bars. The harbour space is especially good for strolling and when you comply with it round, you’ll come to the marina.

You possibly can attain Agios Nikolaos in only a few minutes by automotive and we had no drawback discovering on-street parking. There’s additionally a parking lot close to the principle harbour space.

In the event you don’t need to drive then the little blue prepare additionally goes this manner, or it’s a brief hop by taxi. We did see fairly a number of individuals strolling as effectively.

Go to Knossos Palace

knossos on crete island greece

No go to to Crete could be full with no go to to the well-known Minoan ruins of Knossos. Famend as the placement of the legendary labyrinth, Knossos Palace is simply south of Heraklion.

Right here you’ll discover in depth archaeological excavations of the palace which date again to round 2AD. Nevertheless, settlements have existed on this website for the reason that Neolithic interval, round 7000-9000 BC, so it’s an exceptionally fascinating place.

You’ll really want a automotive to get right here from Elounda and I counsel that you simply arrive early as (free) parking is proscribed and it will get very busy. 

The positioning opens at 8 am and in summer time is open as late as 8 pm. You’ll take pleasure in it extra when you go to early or late because the ruins are usually not lined and are thus totally uncovered to the solar.

Get your skip-the-line and guided tour ticket right here. I like to recommend a information for positive, in any other case you received’t actually know what you’re . A information brings Knossos to life!

Put on wise sneakers for strolling and climbing up and down uneven steps and take water with you. Count on to spend at the very least 2 hours exploring, extra when you’re significantly fascinated by historical past.

The place To Keep in Elounda Crete

If you wish to be inside strolling distance of gorgeous seashores, fabulous tavernas, eating places and bars then select to remain in an Elounda lodge inside the principle village space. Elounda itself isn’t very large and you may simply stroll in every single place when you base your self close to the principle seaside or harbour.

For glorious views throughout the bay, I’d suggest staying on the hill overlooking the city. In the event you’re in search of someplace a bit particular, an alternative choice for individuals who need to get away from all of it is to remain at one of many luxurious Elounda inns on the highway to Plaka.

Adrakos Flats

We stayed right here for 7 nights and it’s an attractive family-run condominium complicated. Nice for {couples} because it’s an adults-only facility. Every room has a small kitchen space however the actual enchantment is the balcony or terrace dealing with throughout the bay. The views are completely spectacular.

You’ll want a automotive when you’re going to remain right here because it’s simply outdoors the principle resort space of Elounda however there’s free parking out there.

Adrakos has a preferred restaurant and bar on website and so they even have a big pool, so that you don’t have to drive every single day when you don’t need to. Click on right here for the newest costs and opinions.

Studio with a View

In the event you’re in search of a spot to hire with unimaginable views of the ocean and Spinalonga island. Plus, you’ve gotten entry to the water as effectively, try this condominium in Plaka.

The studio has a balcony with attractive views, mini fridge, a espresso machine and a TV. A fast stroll into Plaka will being you to plenty of genuine tavernas. Study extra right here.

Sentido Elounda Blu

A part of the Sentido Resorts group, Sentido Elounda Blu is the selection for you when you need pure luxurious and rest. It’s positioned on the highway between Elounda and Plaka overlooking the magnificent bay and Spinalonga Island.

Indulge your self by reserving a junior suite which has its personal personal pool. At Elounda Blu, you possibly can take pleasure in a personal seaside with watersports out there or make the most of a few of the many actions provided on the lodge, for example, wine tasting, cooking lessons and aerobics. 

A backyard view room begins from round $155 an evening in September for half board, or e-book all-inclusive from $215 an evening. My sister stayed right here for 10 nights and completely raves about it. On the subject of Elounda inns, it is a nice choice. 

Elounda Krini Resort

In the event you’re in search of a lodge inside a number of hundred metres of Elounda seaside and which will get persistently nice opinions then think about the Elounda Krini Resort.

All of the rooms have balconies and you may select whether or not yours faces the mountains or the landscaped pool space. Rooms are recent and clear with tiled flooring and whitewashed partitions. Count on to pay from round $80 an evening. Click on right here to be taught extra.

Emilia Flats

A terrific funds choice which remains to be near the whole lot is the Emilia Flats. Positioned proper within the coronary heart of Elounda, the residences are simply 300m from Elounda Seaside.

Rooms are fashionable with recent, mild decor. Every room has a kitchenette with a eating space and a patio or balcony. Rooms begin from round $45 an evening. Click on right here to be taught extra.

To seek for extra Elounda inns and residences, click on right here.

The place To Eat in Elounda Crete

Though Elounda is a small city, you’ll nonetheless discover loads of decisions in the case of eating out. Whether or not you’re in search of conventional Greek meze, fabulous seafood or only a good steak, you’ll discover a restaurant or cafe in Elounda which might fulfill your starvation.

Most eating places have menu boards outdoors the restaurant, so take a wander alongside the streets close to the harbour and centre of city and see what appeals most. Don’t overlook to stroll alongside the harbourfront in direction of the windmills as there are some superb fish eating places overlooking the bay.

Listed below are a number of of my favourites.

Rakomelo Cretan Delicacies

Positioned proper on the water with gorgeous views, you received’t need to miss Rakomelo for native Cretan meals. The service is pleasant and the dishes right here don’t disappoint.

Order a desk of mezes (king prawns, calamari, tzatziki, mussels, meatballs and extra), or one of many recent seafood dishes, or salads. This restaurant is a good place to eat in Elounda for teams in addition to {couples}.

Tackle: Akti Olountos, Schisma Elountas 720 53, Greece. Click on right here for instructions.


Kanali restaurant has a singular setting simply throughout the peninsula close to the sunken metropolis of Olous and the windmills. In the event you’re in search of someplace particular with a tranquil ambiance and nice meals then that is the place for you.

Kanali specialises in seafood and the lobster pasta will get rave opinions. Nevertheless, in addition they have a number of vegetarian decisions and a number of gluten-free choices as effectively.

Kanali is open for lunch and dinner. You possibly can name them on +30 2841 042075 to examine particular hours and make reservations. Discover Kanali Restaurant on Google Maps right here.


Okeanis is positioned simply previous Elounda Seaside. In the event you ask locals the place to eat in Elounda that is the place they’ll ship you. It’s informal eating at its greatest and also you’ll take pleasure in top-class service in addition to scrumptious meals.

Okeanis specialises in native Greek and Mediterranean dishes and so they have fairly an intensive menu. Don’t miss their conventional Greek salad. It’s superb.

You possibly can contact Okeanis on +30 2841 044404. It’s open for lunch from 11.30 am to 4.30 pm and for dinner from 6 pm to 11 pm. Discover Okeanis on Google Maps right here.

Cypriana Taverna

This was one in all our favourites whereas we have been in Elounda village. Located proper within the centre of Elounda, overlooking the beachfront, Cypriana gives a large menu together with breakfast, omelettes, pasta, pizza and sandwiches.

Nevertheless, you actually ought to strive a few of their Greek Cypriot dishes — hen gyros, moussaka or souvlaki. It’s good worth, informal eating at its greatest, and so they’re justifiably well-known for his or her pleasant service.

Everytime you’re hungry, they appear to be open – from 9 am to midnight. You possibly can contact them on +30 2841 041752 however simply flip up, no have to e-book. Discover Cypriana on Google Maps right here.

Greatest Seashores in Elounda 

In the event you’re a seaside lover you then’ve come to the appropriate place. The Jap Coast of Crete boasts miles of excellent sand and pebble seashores, a lot of them Blue Flag rated.

Whereas a few of the bigger seashores are standard it’s additionally doable to seek out small stretches of just about uninhabited shoreline. Wherever you select, you possibly can bathe in heat, crystal clear water as you gaze on some completely spectacular surroundings. 

Elounda Seaside

swimming at elounda beach crete island

Proper within the centre of the resort is the Blue Flag-rated Elounda Seaside. Right here you possibly can spend the day stress-free beneath a straw umbrella or floating within the blue water.

In the event you’re feeling a bit extra energetic, join a few of the watersport actions. For the children, there’s a playground and organised actions can be found in the summertime.

Though a whole lot of the smaller seashores on this space are pebbly, Elounda Seaside is gorgeous and sandy so a wonderful alternative when you’re staying close by.

Discover Elounda Seaside on Google Maps right here.

Seashores On The Highway To Plaka

Drive or stroll from Elounda in direction of Plaka and also you’ll go a number of small, pebbly seashores. These quiet coves supply a wonderful different to the extra crowded central seashores. You’ll usually have the cove to your self.

The water is simply as clear and heat and the views throughout to Spinalonga are superb. In the event you’re driving, there are small parking areas at intervals alongside the seaside highway.

Take your water sneakers although, there’s no sand right here and the pebbles are small and uncomfortable underfoot. It’s price it although for the luxurious of sunbathing and swimming in your personal stretch of the bay.

Kolokitha Seaside

kolokitha beach crete greece

We discovered this superb little seaside whereas strolling on the Elounda peninsula. After viewing the windmills, we stored on strolling. Stroll up the small highway/observe to start out with.

Someplace close to the church, this observe ends however you possibly can see the opposite shoreline from right here so maintain strolling alongside the paths in direction of it.

In addition to Kolokitha seaside there are a selection of smaller inlets close by as effectively. Though the locals know the place to seek out it, you received’t discover many vacationers this manner. It’s a simple stroll, uphill in elements however not strenuous when you’re moderately match.

With the ability to stretch out on the sand and bathe within the crystal clear water on the finish of the stroll is reward sufficient although. It’s a mixture of pebbles and sand right here however sufficient sand to make it comfy underfoot. 

Discover Kolokitha Seaside on Google Maps right here.

How To Get To Elounda

By Air

You may have a number of choices for attending to Elounda. If you wish to fly into Crete then probably the most handy airport is Heraklion which is positioned on the north coast of the island.

There’s one other airport on the island, close to Chania within the west however Heraklion is Crete’s important airport and positively the simplest to get to Elounda from.

You’ll discover a broad alternative of airways flying into Heraklion airport. British Airways and Easyjet have every day continuous scheduled flights from the UK and TUI gives constitution flights.

As well as, a number of airways together with, Lufthansa, Air France and Swiss Airways present scheduled flights from mainland Europe.

By Boat

After all, Crete is an island and you could possibly select to reach by boat as an alternative. Ferries depart every day from Piraeus port close to Athens. In summer time there could also be as much as 4 journeys per day. Select to journey in the course of the day or in a single day from Piraeus to Heraklion Port.

The journey takes between 5 and eight hours and nothing fairly beats waking up within the morning as you sail into a brand new port.

In the event you’re travelling in a single day you’ll in all probability desire a cabin to calm down in, however reclining seats are additionally out there. Through the day you possibly can take pleasure in some recent sea air on the deck or calm down in one of many bars or lounges. Seek for ferry routes, instances and costs for Elounda right here.

elounda greece boats in the harbour

Getting To Elounda From The Airport / Port 

When you arrive in Heraklion you’ll have to make your method east to Elounda. The best method is to rent a automotive and drive your self. A great tip is to pre-arrange automotive rent with one of many native corporations in Elounda.

They’ll organize to fulfill you on the airport along with your rent automotive. Typically, on-line opinions are a lot better for these corporations. In the event you desire, the same old European automotive rent corporations are additionally positioned at Heraklion airport.

It’s about an hour’s drive to Elounda so when you desire to not drive your self you possibly can take a taxi. You possibly can take a fixed-price airport taxi for 75 Euros from the stand outdoors arrivals.

One other different is the shuttle bus. You possibly can e-book this through the Easyjet web site even when you’re not flying with them. At 25 Euros per individual, it’s a less expensive different if there are only one or 2 of you in your group.

Additionally it is doable to succeed in Elounda by public bus nevertheless it’s not straightforward. Sadly, there is no such thing as a direct bus so you could first take the bus to Agios Nikolaus. This takes round 75 minutes.

From Agios Nikolaus, it’s an additional 30-minute bus journey to Elounda. You want to keep in mind that the bus service from Agios Nikolaus is just not that common so examine the timetable earlier than you set off.

You’ll be travelling for over 3 hours so it’s not an choice I’d suggest. Nevertheless, if the funds is tight it’s a very low-cost different at 9 Euros.

How To Get Round Elounda

I’d suggest hiring a automotive when you’re staying in Elounda. It makes it a lot simpler to get round. Nevertheless, when you’re simply planning every week of rest within the resort and on the seaside you then’ll be capable to stroll in every single place.

You actually don’t want to depart Elounda village, however it will be a disgrace to not get out and about and see a bit extra of Jap Crete.

After all, there’s all the time the choice to rent a automotive for the day. You’ll discover at the very least a few automotive rent businesses within the centre of Elounda who may also help you out.

Now You Know What to Do in Elounda

Elounda village is the proper place to get away from the crowds and revel in a soothing vacation. Nevertheless, when you’re in search of one thing extra energetic, you’ll discover loads of alternatives as effectively.

Spend time exploring this conventional Greek village, pattern the native meals and chill with a beer or a glass of the native Raki. You’ll rediscover a slower tempo of life right here and also you’re positive to be sorry when it comes time to depart.

For extra on travelling Crete, see our full journey information to Crete, and the highest issues to do in Crete that you simply received’t need to miss!

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