The actual harbour is naturally well protected by a long peninsula and the island of Spinalonga, a former leper colony.
Travelling north for about 4.5 km from the large village of Elounda with its vast central square, promenade and delightful marina, past various little landing places with moored fishing boats, you reach the quiet little village of Plaka. Plaka has two shingle beaches, a selection of pretty little fish tavernas on the sea front. Some 2.5 km further on there is a mini market. A regular bus service links Plaka with Elounda and with Agios Nikolaos.
This delightful region is ideal for extensive walks. The traditional mountain villages of this area are unspoilt and give one a good sense of the original Cretan way of life. For sightseeing you may choose to visit the old Salt Pans, which are close to the ‘sunken city’ of Olous. And highly recommended of course, is a boat trip to the island of Spinalonga, the former leper colony with its old Venetian buildings. Thanks to the protection of the long peninsula, waters are very calm here and lend themselves particularly well to all forms of watersports. The beautiful sea with its crystal clear, clean water, the magnificent countryside, as well as the tangible peace of this area will delight all visitors.
Hotels to visit
Situated on a hill just outside Elounda these villas offer breathtaking views over the Mirabello Bay and the Aegean Sea.
R Vaughan Payne, UK, July, 2015
D Raynor, UK, July, 2015