Agios Pavlos beach, Sfakia, Chania

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Author: Giannis Foudoulakis
Agios Pavlos Beach in Chania, Crete, Greece

It is impossible not to be impressed by the vast pebbly beach of Agios Pavlos and the ascetic landscape that surrounds it. The beach is accessible via the E4 hiking trail that connects Agia Roumeli with Loutro. Neither of these villages has a road and therefore the beach is solitary almost throughout the year. The easiest way to get there is by hiking approximately one hour from Agia Roumeli via a passable coastal path. If you decide to come from Loutro, the journey will take about 3-4 hours and it is more difficult, as the shade along the route is scarce.

The main feature of the beach is a Byzantine church that is built on the coast, dating from the tenth century. The temple was built in honor of the Apostle Paul who, according to church tradition, had baptized Christians here in one stop of his trip to Rome. Despite its secluded location, on the beach you will find a cantina where you can buy water and food. However there are no umbrellas and the trees are away from the coast, so make sure to bring something with you to protect yourself from the hot sun.

Here you will find very few people, with perhaps the only exception of the first half of August. The beach stretches for 1.5 km. If you want to be completely isolated or to avoid hikers, then you can head east along the coast where the path disappears into the pine forest. Although slightly cold, the sea is crystal clear and the colors of the water are unforgettable.

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