Ilingas beach, Sfakia, Chania

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Author: Giannis Foudoulakis
Ilingas Beach near Sfakia, Chania, South Crete

Ilingas means "vertigo" in Greek. The beach is located at the exit of the homonymous gorge and approximately 2 km west of Chora Sfakion by the road to Anopolis. You cannot drive down to the beach, as the road stops at the parking area of a hotel from which you may get all the necessary supplies. After following a short and easy-to-walk path, you will come upon this spectacular beach with pebbles and crystal clear water. There are a few sunbeds and umbrellas at the beach, yet if want to avoid this extra cost you can head east; there are a couple of caves by the beach, large enough to protect you from the blazing sun.

Ilingas has two more beaches apart from the main one. These are often totally empty, as you can only swim to them or get there by boat or kayak. So, if you are a good swimmer and daring enough, then swim east for 80 m towards Chora Sfakion. Once you bypass the stiff rocks, you will meet the beautiful second beach, while another 100 m of swimming will get you to the third one.

Ilingas is rarely crowded, though it is easy to get here by taking a short 15 minutes walk from Chora Sfakion. This is a must-go destination if you ever get to Sfakia and you can combine your swim with a visit to the traditional village of Anopolis, the well preserved castle of Frangokastelo and the ghost village and the bridge of Aradaina.

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