Korakia beach is located approximately 48 km from Rethymno and 39 km from Heraklion. The beach is made up of two small, quiet bays with sand and crystal clear waters. It is one of the lesser-known spots on the northern coast of the island and primarily attracts alternative holiday goers, freedom campers and nudist-friendly bathers. The beach has no amenities and is not organized so make sure to bring everything you need with you. On the west side, there is another sandy bay called Pera Galini. Once popular with locals, this is now a fairly quiet beach with the small chapel of Agios Antonios high on the hill. Keep in mind that Korakia is a challenging beach to reach, that is, however, very much worth the effort for all those that prefer a quiet and secluded paradise. It is best to access with a 4×4 vehicle and not a rental car. Alternatively, you can park your car further up the hill and reach the beach on foot.
Not far from Korakia is the beach of Fodele. Here you can visit a traditional pottery workshop that has been operating for 20 years and showcases Cretan arts and traditions. The village of Fodele is the homeland of Dominikos Theotokopoulos, also known as “El Greco”. There is a small museum dedicated to the painter’s life, where you can get a better idea of his influences during his youth. This is a great area for families with children to base themselves in and explore the surrounding region. Driving west towards Heraklion, we meet more excellent options for swimming and food, like Agia Pelagia, Ligaria and Ammoudi.
You may also wish to leave the coast behind and head inland to explore the villages of Rethymno. One of the most well-known Cretan villages in the area, that attracts hundreds of visitors all year-round is Anogia. The traditional tavernas of Anogia are an excellent option for homemade and traditional flavours. The village is famous for being the birthplace of legendary Greek singer Nikos Xylouris. For hiking enthusiasts, the E4 European long-distance trail runs through this area and offers various short routes that will give you a better idea of the landscape and natural beauty.