The beach at Agia Irini is off the usual path and so untouched. Because it is a pebbly beach rather than a sandy one, it is ideal for individuals who want to swim rather than sunbathe. The drive is rather long on unpaved roads, so you’ll need a 4-wheel-drive or off-road-ready vehicle. Although I drove it in a typical budget rental car, I wouldn’t recommend it unless you’ve done dirt-road driving in Crete before. We drove to the beach for about 45 minutes on the dirt road, and it took us about the same amount of time to return. Because it is windy and bumpy, travellers may become nauseous.
This isn’t the place to go if you want a relaxing beach vacation, but if you prefer exploring and want to get away from the crowds, it’s worth a trip. The journey itself is breathtaking, and the swimming and snorkeling once you get are fantastic. There are caves in the cliffs to the side of the beach which can only be accessed from the water – if you decide to climb up into the caves to explore be aware they are home to some small biting insects and a number of bird or bat droppings – the water is a nicer place to be.
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THINGS TO DO IN CHANIA