Matala Beach

Beach name: Matala Beach
Location: Crete
Our rating: 2/5 about
Our rating is based on our actual visit to the beach.
Visitors rating:

Click the stars to rate it
RATING SCALE

5 = Superb! Best we visited. Worth going far out of our way to swim there again
4 = Very good. We would go out of our way to swim there again
3 = Good. We would choose it for swimming among other beaches if we were in the area
2 = Average. We could go for swimming again if we happened to be in the area
1 = Just OK. The beach was fine for swimming and sunbathing one time
0 = Disappointing. We will not return to this beach

Note that these are our simple (and unscientific) observations based on our subjective experience during our visit

Matala beach, CreteGreece photograph
Matala beach
Crete
  • Beach berm:
    Sand, Shingle, Large Pebbles,
  • Seafloor:
    Sand, Shingle, Large Pebbles, Small Pebbles, Rock
  • Water rating: 1/5 about
    During our visit, it was a very windy day, and while the sea was not too rough, it was agitated enough and with a good deal of debris floating around.
  • Access:
    Good = Paved road all the way to the beach. Parking near the beach
    Fair = Accessible by car, poor road condition
    Poor = Accessible by car, poor road, plus a long walk or climb
    Boat = Accessible by boat only
  • Amenities:
    Restaurant at the beach
    Cafeteria/Bar near the beach
    Town within walking distance
    Organized Beach (trash collection, umbrellas, showers etc.)
    Hotel on the beach
  • RV / Camper Accessibility:
    Site is unsuitable for RV parking
    Campers explicitly forbidden
  • Snorkeling:
    Good snorkeling site
  • Notes:
    Matala beach offers a spectacular setting the way it is flanked by caves (ancient tombs) cut out of the live rock, and it has a colorful history. As such, it is a good destination for those who travel in southern Crete.

    The caves along the steep limestone rock were created as a Roman and Byzantine cemetery, and during the 60's they became dwellings of hippies who traveled from afar to become part of the Matala commune. Joni Mitchell is probably the most famous inhabitant of the Matala high caves during this time.

    Today the Matala caves are a tourist attraction as an archaeological site and entrance to the caves would set you back two Euro, and the crowd that inhabits the beach has no relation to the free spirited hippies of the 60's. The town itself has no personality and functions openly as a tourist trap that capitalizes on the romantic illusion of a yesteryear hippy commune.

    Visitors' Reports

    Beach_Report_by: Vivi
    Beach_Location: Heraklion
    Beach_Name: Matala
    Year_Last_Visited: 1990-1995
    Rating: 2=average ( could go for swimming again if we happened to be in the area)
    Beach: sand

    Access: Good = Paved road all the way to the beach. Parking near the beach
    checkbox: Organized
    RV,_Camper_Accessibility: Site suitable for free camping. Ample space for parking on
    the beach vicinity
    notes: small beach, too many people, the caves are interesting.

RATING SCALE

5 = the sea water was some the best for swimming. We would go way out of our way to swim there again
4 = sea water was excellent and inviting for swimming. We would go out of our way to swim there again
3 = very nice and clean sea. We would go swimming there again if we were in the area
2 = nice sea, we had a nice swim but we did not notice anything special about the water
1 = the sea water was not very inviting at the time we visited. We did more sunbathing than swimming
0 = the water did not seem suitable for swimming

Note that these are our simple (and unscientific) observations based on our subjective experience during our visit. We enjoy the water when it is crystal clear, and cool instead of warm. We don' like visible floating particles of any kind or algae settled on the beach.

Athens map. Satellite picture
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