Here, on the east side of the Rhodope Cape, between two neighbouring and sheltered bays are to be found two quiet beaches – Diktenna and Aghios Georgios.
A lovely beach with sand alternating with pebbles, and crystalline waters that deepen suddenly. Sheltered, with rocks all around, it takes its name from the ancient temple to the goddess Britomartis, which stood here and attracted many worshippers (you entered on bare feet).
Britomartis was later equated with the goddess Artemis. Minos, King of Crete, conceived a passion for her: in his attempts to woo her, he pursued her for nine months. In her anxiety to escape his attentions, Britomartis threw herself off a mountainside into the sea. But she fell into some fishermens’ nets (diktua), and was saved. For this reason, she then took the name Diktenna, and the mountain from which she cast herself became known as Dikte (it still is!). Today the only reminder of the existence of the old temple are a few scattered ruins behind the beach – some Ionic and Doric columns. In the Archaeological Museum at Chania is kept a headless statue which came from here.
The beach is ideal for relaxation and solitude, as there is no provision for food or shelter, though in other respects it is a welcoming spot. Thus, you must take thought for food, water and whatever else you need, if you decide to visit.
Right next door to the south of Diktynna is a small and sheltered bay, enclosed by tall cliffs, in which has formed a quiet and isolated beach – with sand, pebbles and large rocks both in and out of the sea, which is deep and crystalline.
The beach is at the mouth of a small gorge; some 500 m off is the church of Aghios Georgios from which the beach’s name comes.
. The church is a dependency of the Monastery of Aghios Georgios, built in the 9th century AD: it lies a kilometer or so back inland. Here once were many hermit monks, though they abandoned it, fleeing to Moni Gonias, after the repeated incursions of pirates bent on loot. To protect themselves from surprise attacks, the monks had built themselves in the mediaeval times a tower, which still stands in its cloister.
The beach of Aghios Georgios offers relaxation, but there are no opportunities for food or accommodation. Therefore make sure to think about supplies of water, food and all else you might need for a visit.
At the southeast side of Rhodope Cape is the famous monastery of the Panagia of Odigitria, or Moni Gonias, with a beach of the same name.
- Tips, Suggestions, Iseful info
- History, Culture
- What to do (Activities)
- What to see (Culture, Nature)
- location Rhodopos Cape, Platanias, Chania
- free camping Yes
- nudism Yes
- beach type Sandy, Thin Pebble, Rocky
- accommodation No
- dinning No
- other facilities
relevant routes & paths:
Distances: 45 km from Chania.
By car/motorcycle: From Chania, drive west to Kolymbari and continue on towards the village of Rodopou. From Rodopou, drive up to the monastery of Agios Georgios, where you leave your vehicle. (Because this last section of the road is quite difficult, the use of a four-wheel drive vehicle (4x4) is essential). From there, continue on foot to the beach.
By sea: By boat from Kolymbari or Platanias. From Platanias during the summer, are run excursions with small boats to Menies.
Distances: 44 km from Chania.
By car/motorcycle: From Chania, drive west to Kolymbari and continue on towards the village of Rodopou. From Rodopou, drive up to the monastery of Agios Georgios, where you leave your vehicle. (Because this last section of the road is quite difficult, the use of a four-wheel drive vehicle (4x4) is essential). From there, continue on foot: after 500 meters of hiking through the gorge, you will reach the beach.
By sea: By boat from Kolymbari or Platanias. From Platanias during the summer are run excursions with small boats to Menies.