Photo of Matala beach with gray fine pebble surface © Δημητριος Μιχαηλιδης Google
Photo of Matala beach with turquoise pure water surface © Алексей Захаров Google
Photo of Matala beach with spacious bay © Karl Kuhlen Google
Photo of Matala beach with very clean level of cleanliness © Frank Google
Photo of Matala beach beach resort area © Roman Dornauer Google
Photo of Matala beach and the settlement © Unknown user Google
Photo of Matala beach with gray fine pebble surface © Δημητριος Μιχαηλιδης Google
Photo of Matala beach with turquoise pure water surface © Алексей Захаров Google
Photo of Matala beach with spacious bay © Karl Kuhlen Google
Photo of Matala beach with very clean level of cleanliness © Frank Google
Photo of Matala beach beach resort area © Roman Dornauer Google
Photo of Matala beach and the settlement © Unknown user Google
Photo of Matala beach and its beautiful scenery © Jovana Marić Google
Photo of Matala beach backed by cliffs © Chicco Google
Photo of Matala beach - popular place among relax connoisseurs © Holger Konetzke - Der Holgi Google
Matala beach photo #16 © Markos Zimvragoudakis Google
Matala beach photo #17 © Francesco Tacconi Google
Matala beach photo #18 © Jelena Milunovic Google
Matala beach photo #19 © Grzegorz Średniawa Google
Matala beach photo #2 © A. Wanke Google
Matala beach photo #2 © Sławosz Dunder Google
Matala beach photo #20 © VISIT CRETE - Φοίβος Google
Matala beach photo #23 © Sven de Wildt Google
Matala beach photo #3 © Bernd Frank Google
Matala beach photo #22 © VISIT CRETE - Φοίβος Google
Matala beach photo #24 © Martin Neuleitner Google
Matala beach photo #9 © Jelena Milunovic Google
Matala beach photo #8 © Agelos Zias Google
Matala beach photo #7 © Eric Lucas Google
Matala beach photo #7 © Cristina Velasco Montiel Google
Matala beach photo #6 © Martin Koenders Google
Matala beach photo #6 © Oleg Slesarev Google
Matala beach photo #5 © saskia De koekkoek Google
Matala beach photo #4 © Елена Google
Matala beach photo #4 © Sandra Schumacher Google
Matala beach photo #3 © Đorđe Tutić Google
Natural landmark - Matala caves

Matala beach

Matala, Greece
Located within the settlement
Matala 0.2 km
Map of beach
Hiking Area Matala grafiti
50m
Hiking Area Red beach Trail
140m
Hiking Area Red beach
690m
Hiking Area Sunset View
1000m
Hiking Area Viewpoint
1.3km
Park Hells Βεράντα
2.6km
Park Agiofaraggo Martsalo Kefali
5.7km
Hiking Area Αγιοφάραγγο - Μαρτσαλο
6.8km
Hiking Area Trail to the Agiofarago Beach
6.9km

About

The story of the beach

Matala red beach played a significant role in the island’s Crete history for many centuries. In the times of the Minoan period's prosperity, it has become a large and important port, owned by Fest, the center of this civilization. In the days of Dorians, it belonged to the ancient city Gortyna.

The locals have hollowed out multiple caves in the Neolithic Age. They were used for interment after the island's conquest and in the period of early Christianity in Crete. In the 60s, in the period of the hippie movement prosperity, such people from America have found these grottos. Picturesque caves turned out to be liveable. Inside there remained either prehistorical constructions like fireplaces and shelves or texts on the walls and taints of candles' wax. Even celebrities stayed in the Matala's caves. Among them, such people as Bob Dylan and Janis Joplin. Members of the Rolling Stones gave concerts there. 

Due to the fulfilling events that took place in Matala, there are many gossips and mysterious legends about Matala beach. For example, its second name is «the beach of the Zeus». According to one of the legends, on the shores of the Matala Bay the god Zeus found shelter with his beloved, the Phoenician princess Europe.

The beaches’ infrastructure

The Matala shore is located in the natural island’s bay on the southern coast of the island and is surrounded by cliffs from three sides. In the front part of the bay lies a long sandy strip with small pebbles and the purest water of the Libyan Sea. The beach is well arranged, you’ll be able to find sunshades and deck-chairs, composting toilets and bath stations, also there are beach volleyball courts. In addition to it, the biggest part of the beach is covered with trees that give shelter from the bright sun.

In the evening's beach bars are full of various visitors: either Messara’s residents or foreign travelers. Almost all local cafes and taverns are located in such a way that the visitors may not only eat well but also watch the sunset from the best part of the bay. Local taverns serve fresh fish from the Libyan Sea, local wines in addition to traditional Cretan cuisine. Alternatively, you can stroll through Krasnaya Matala village, see art objects left behind by hippies, listen to street musicians, as well as stroll through authentic shops and buy souvenirs.

Matala caves

The most significant peculiarity of this region is the great variety of caves that appeared in the cliffs million years ago. They are believed to be tombs from the Roman and Christian eras in Greece. There are other natural caves along the beach that can be reached by boat. 

Moreover, many archaeological remains and shipwrecks have been found in the vicinity. From the rock shelters, there’s a wonderful view of the Libyan Sea. That's why caves turn out to be a perfect place to see the sunset. Extremal lovers are jumping from these caves right into the sea.

Weather

history
+27 o C +19 o C
Air temperature
4.9 M/S
Wind
+25 o C
Water temperature
1 M
Wave height

Matala, Crete,

even more interesting beaches

View
Located within the settlement
Matala 0.2 km
Map of beach
Hiking Area Matala grafiti
50m
Hiking Area Red beach Trail
140m
Hiking Area Red beach
690m
Hiking Area Sunset View
1000m
Hiking Area Viewpoint
1.3km
Park Hells Βεράντα
2.6km
Park Agiofaraggo Martsalo Kefali
5.7km
Hiking Area Αγιοφάραγγο - Μαρτσαλο
6.8km
Hiking Area Trail to the Agiofarago Beach
6.9km
Booking.com

Stays nearby

12 accomodations nearby
160m from the beach
9.6 Exceptional

Teacher's Apartment

Entire Apartment
Located at nearest locality
Matala  •  120m   from center
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Fantastic Matala 1

Entire Apartment
Located at nearest locality
Matala  •  100m   from center
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Located at nearest locality
Matala  •  100m   from center
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Located at nearest locality
Matala  •  160m   from center
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240m from the beach
8.2 Very good

Platia Studios

Entire Apartment
Located at nearest locality
Matala  •  90m   from center
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Matala home Golden View

Entire Apartment
Located at nearest locality
Matala  •  180m   from center
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Matala Blue

Entire Apartment
Located at nearest locality
Matala  •  220m   from center
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450m from the beach
10 Exceptional

Kayy Apartments

Entire Apartment
Located at nearest locality
Matala  •  550m   from center
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660m from the beach
7.9 Very good
Located at nearest locality
Matala  •  790m   from center
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2.4km from the beach
10 Exceptional
Located at nearest locality
Matala  •  2.6km   from center
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Located at nearest locality
Matala  •  3.8km   from center
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Villa Fabrika

Entire House
Located at nearest locality
Matala  •  3.9km   from center
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Area

Average rating of nearest beaches is 6.9 (Good)

View map

Nearest Beaches

Red beach
890m 11 min walk
Red beach
8.1 Very good
Kommos beach
2.2km
Kommos beach
7.6 Very good
Vathi beach
4.7km
Vathi beach
7.7 Very good
Afrathias beach
7.1km
Afrathias beach
6.7 Good
Martsalo beach
7.4km
Martsalo beach
7.7 Very good
Kounenoi beach
7.5km
Kounenoi beach
5.7 Pleasant
Akra Trachili
7.9km
Akra Trachili
3.9 Frustrating
Agiofarango beach
8km
Agiofarango beach
7.7 Very good

Localities

Matala  •  220m
Kastelli  •  87.3km

Transport

HER  •  54.9km
Bus station Tympaki  •  8.8km
Club Calimera Sunshine Kreta  •  49.3km
All nearest beaches
You can set the search radius & filter nearest beaches by features

Travelers reviews

Average Reviews rating

8.6 Excellent

Share your experience with other travelers

Average Reviews rating

8.6 Excellent
LK
Lena K.
User status Novice Beachgoer
10 Exceptional

Although the beach is pleasant, it doesn't surpass the beauty of other beaches on the island. However, the entire area, which includes the intriguing hippie caves (admission requires a small fee), charming restaurants, and a few touristy shops, creates a unique and enjoyable experience.

1 year ago
NN
Nikolas Nikopoulos
User status Novice Beachgoer
10 Exceptional

The south side of Crete boasts an amazing beach that is easily accessible.

1 year ago
L
Larissa&Wyatt
User status Novice Beachgoer
10 Exceptional

The beach is absolutely charming! It's definitely worth taking a day trip and staying overnight to witness the breathtaking sunset, indulge in a scrumptious dinner, and unwind while savoring a refreshing beverage at the cozy taverns and bars of the picturesque hamlet.

1 year ago
NB
Nolan Bracken
User status Novice Beachgoer
10 Exceptional

This beach is easily accessible and we were able to park right in front of it after paying a €3 parking fee. No need to rent a car to get here.

1 year ago
Sandra Bullok
User status Novice Beachgoer
9 Excellent

Matala beach is a small bay, five hundred meters wide, sandwiched between two rocks of sandstone. Matala beach has all the infrastructure: showers, changing rooms, toilets. To get to it is not difficult, you drive up almost directly to the beach, there is a paid parking, or you can leave your car on the road just before the parking (free). Matala beach became famous thanks to the hippies who came to love this place many years ago. At times it seemed that they still live here. The beach itself is sandy, the sand is quite coarse, the approach to the sea is normal, first not a lot of sand and then begins "slab" like concrete bottom of the pool. The beach was very calm and the beach was very nice.

2 years ago