Moving on east, we come to Pervolakia and Timios Stavros beach.
Pervolakia and Timios Stavros
Three consecutive bays house three small beaches: the two westernmost are known as Pervolakia – Small and Large, whilst that at the east is Timios Stavros (the Holy Cross). Isolated and inaccessible by road (they can be reached on the E4 Walking Trail), they have pebbles and rocks, and are favoured by nudists. Quite undeveloped, they lack shade too.
The next beach we meet is that of Glyka Nera, which in 2003 The Times of London judged one of the twenty most loveliest in Europe.
Glyka Nera Beach
This takes its name (Sweet Waters) from the underground freshwater springs close to the sea (the water is drinkable), and sits at the base of a steep slope rising up some 400 m. The scenery is sensational.
Narrow and small, the almost isolated beach has sand and small pebbles. The land drops away steeply into the deep waters, which are crystal-clear and very cold due to the spring-water. This wells up through the stones and collects in freshwater ponds here and there along much of the strand: the largest have steps down into them so that bathers can enter to enjoy their coolness.
A few tamarisks exist, which offer shade. A café-canteen sits on a rock in the sea : here you can obtain food and water, as well as rent sunbeds and umbrellas. Like others in the area, Glyka Nera is most apt for diving because of the rocky seabed. It is one of the foremost beaches for nudism in Crete.
East of Glyka Nera, on the edge of a small gorge, is the attractive beach of Ilingas.
There are essentially two beaches here at Ilingas (Stunning): both with sand, gravel and pebbles; their clear blue water deepens abruptly. The first, to the west, is the larger: you can park nearby and walk down some steps (3 minutes) to the beach itself. The second, to the east, is more isolated: you will need a boat from Sfakia, or to swim from the first beach. Both are excellent for diving and snorkeling.
On every side exist large caves, open to investigation..
Further along the road to the east, after a kilometer, we arrive at the village of Chora Sfakion, which is wrapped around a natural bay at the foot of the mountain.
- Tips, Suggestions, Iseful info
- History, Culture
- What to do (Activities)
- What to see (Culture, Nature)
- location West of Sfakia town, Sfakia, Chania
- free camping Yes
- nudism Yes - in some areas
- beach type Sandy, Thin Pebble, Pebble
- accommodation Yes - limited choices
- dinning Yes - limited choices
- other facilities
A few sunbeds and umbrellas at Sweet Waters
relevant routes & paths:
Distance: 74 km from Chania, 2.5 km from Chora Sfakion, 1.5 km from Loutro.
By sea: By private or rented boat.
On foot: From Loutro (1.5 km - about half an hour) along the European E4 Hiking Trail.
Distance: 75 km from Chania, 4 km from Chora Sfakion.
By sea: From Chora Sfakion or Loutro by boat.
On foot: Along the European E4 Hiking Trail, either from Chora Sfakion (duration 30 minutes) or from Loutro (duration 60 minutes). The journey from Loutro is difficult.
Distance: 74 km from Chania, 1 km from Chora Sfakion.
By car: To get to the first beach, park your vehicle on the road to Anopolis and then proceed on foot to the beach (3 minutes off). The second beach you can easily reach by swimming from the first.
By sea: To the second beach from Chora Sfakion.
On foot: Along the European E4 Hiking Trail, from Chora Sfakion (duration 15 minutes).