The last of the four prefectures occupies the eastern part of Crete. Due to its
all-year round mild climate and excellent beaches this prefecture contains some
of the best resorts on the island, like Agios Nikolaos, the capital of the
prefecture, and Elounda but also other towns such as Ierapetra and Sitia.
Ag. Nikolaos built on the north-western side of the Mirabello Gulf, is the capital
of Lasithi prefecture. A famous tourist centre with modern infrastructure and
wonderful shores which offers a wide choice of entertainment and at the same
time manages to keep its tranquillity and traditional hospitality. The lake of
Agios Nikolaos, linked to the sea by a narrow canal, is the main attraction of
the town. From there you can enjoy the view while sitting in one of the many
coffee shops around it. The port of Agios Nikolaos, where most of the bars,
restaurants and taverns are located, is also the starting point for daytrips to
Spinalonga, Elounda and Merabello bay.
Elounda is situated 7 km from Agios Nikolaos. Many years ago, Elounda was a small
fishing village. Its community is made up of five villages, of which only
Schisma is located next to the sea. A few years ago large, luxury hotel
complexes were built, transforming the region into one of the island's major
tourist attractions. Today apart from the luxurious hotels, there are large
number of taverns and restaurants with Greek or international cuisine and
numerous coffee shops by the harbour as well as discos and music bars. For your
shopping there is a good selection of shops and last but not least there is a
wonderful sandy beach offering water sport facilities. Elounda is the top place
of Crete's tourist traffic, hosting some of the world's rich and famous. At
the entrance of Elounda bay is the small island Spinalonga, with a Venetian
fortress which was built in 1579 and seized in 1715. Following independence for
many years, it was a leper colony. You can go to Spinalonga from Elounda by
caique in 20 minutes.
Situated on the northeast end of the prefecture, a wonderful exotic sandy beach
embraced by date trees. It is an organized beach with umbrellas a small canteen
and a dive centre, which receives a large number of visitors every year.
A picturesque beach with sand and pebbles, situated at
The island Chrissi is located 8 miles south of Ierapetra
and is an exotic place for the European standards. Although human presence in
the island dates back to Minoan times the natural environment of Chrissis has
barely been disturbed during time. The shallow blue-green sea, the sandy
beaches, which in some spots are full of small sea shells, and the rare cedar
forest on the sand-hills are the most impressive features of the island. The
island is almost flat with colorful volcanic rocks, covered in sand and aquatic
fossils. It is 5Km long, it has an average height of 10m. The value of Chrissis
natural environment is great and therefore has been placed in the network of
European Union's protected areas.
A pretty sandy beach next to Istron, with clear blue water.
A traditional fishing village, with small port and pretty beach.
How to get there
- By air: from Eleutherios Venizelos airport in Athens or from Thessaloniki's Macedonia airport to Heraklion, and then by car, taxi or bus to Elounda or Ag. Nikolaos.
- By ferry: from Piraeus to Heraklion and Agios Nikolaos and from Thessaloniki to Heraklion.