It is very difficult to describe in words the deep blue waters, the white sand and the majestic sceneries that someone can see in Elafonisi beach. The sand gives the crystal clear waters beautiful colors in all the shades of blue. On many points, on which the waves meet the beach, the sand has an extraordinary pink shade, a unique feature of this exotic beach. In order to swim you have to walk quite some distance since the waters are very shallow and therefore the beach is ideal for families with small children.
A narrow strip of sea with warm and shallow waters separates Crete from a small island that is located right across the beach and you can visit on foot. The 38 victims of the Austrian ship Imperatrix that ran aground on the reefs around the islet in 1907 are rumored to have been buried there. In this area has been placed a cross which you will find on the island. There is also a chapel and a lighthouse on the southwest side.
The beach and the surrounding region are included in the Natura 2000 network of protection and on the coast you will find many areas that have been fenced off in order to protect vegetation. The measures that have been taken may seem excessive but the large number of tourists that come to the beach makes them rather inadequate. In any case, it is prohibited to touch any of the plants and to collect the rare pink sand of the seashore.
The beach has a lifeguard on duty, deck chairs and umbrellas, some canteens and chemical toilets that you can use for a small fee. Elafonisi is usually crowded but the beach is long and you will easily be able to find quieter spots. If you come to Elafonisi, then you should definitely go for one more dive at the nearby cedar forest and returning to Chania make a stop at the monastery of Chrysoskalitissa which dates from the 17th century.
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