Beaches for toddlers and babies Greece Crete DP-min

The Best Beaches in Crete for Toddlers and Young Kids

    Crete is known for its countless spectacular beaches, but when you are traveling with young kids, your number one priority is to find the ones offering the best family-friendly amenities and a safe environment for your kids to enjoy a carefree day under the summer sun.

    No need to look further, as our pick of top beaches for toddlers and young kids covers every corner of Crete! 

    Below is our list of wind-free and wave-free beaches with shallow waters that meet at least three basic criteria: safety, fun, and access to basic facilities. Plus, you can combine beach time with one of our nearby kid-friendly activities to make your day truly memorable!

    1. Elafonissi Beach (Chania)

    Crete’s most popular beach needs no introduction, as thousands of visitors flock to its warm turquoise waters and magnificent pinkish sand. Elafonissi is also the most beautiful toddler-friendly beach on the island. The lagoon in the western part of the beach is the ideal spot for young kids to enjoy the water, as it does not exceed 1m in depth.  Located 76km from the city of Chania, Elafonisi is a Natura 2000 protected area, and the perfect field for little explorers – but please take care and do not remove any plants, shells, and sand from the area. The beach is well organized with sunbeds, umbrellas, showers, snack bars, and changing rooms, making your family experience in one of Crete’s most exotic beaches safe and comfortable!


    – Avoid visiting Elafonissi on weekends and in high-season (July-August), when it’s most crowded.

    – If you would like to enjoy this Cretan paradise everyday, we suggest you book accommodation nearby from our list: Where to stay in Elafonissi: Top picks for families | Kids Love Greece

    – Read more about things to see and do near Elafonissi in our extended beach profile: Elafonissi Beach: An exotic paradise for families | Kids Love Greece

    Nearby related activities / tours:

    Family Sailing in Balos-Grambousa | Kids Love Greece

    Family Sailing on the South coast of Chania | Kids Love Greece

    Elafonissi beach kids lying in the lagoon

    2. Marathi Beach (Chania)

    A short drive from the city of Chania, Marathi is an ideal option for families. Its crystal clear, shallow waters are well protected from the winds, creating a safe and fun environment for young kids to splash around. Marathi actually consists of two beaches, separated by a pier. Both beaches are well organized, offering all necessary comforts (sunbeds, umbrellas, showers. Plus, there are several traditional taverns by the beach where you can relax and enjoy a meal or refreshment at the tables on the sand.


    – Try fresh fish and delicious Cretan specialties at Patrelantonis Fish Taverna, our personal favorite

    – Visit the nearby archaeological site of Minoa, a seaport city of ancient Aptera.

    Nearby related activities / tours:

    Wine Making and Cooking Lesson Family Experience in Crete | Kids Love Greece

    Family Visit to a Traditional Olive Oil Farm in Crete | Kids Love Greece

    Marathi Beach Crete-min

    3. Damnoni Beach (Rethymnon)

    The beaches of south Rethymnon are famous for their wild beauty, but also for the strong winds during the summer! Damnoni beach is one of the most protected, at least from the waves, and also one of the most beautiful, with turquoise waters and white sand.

    Located 35km south of Rethymnon, the beach is well organized with sunbeds, umbrellas, showers and changing rooms. Around the beach you will find supermarkets, taverns, and snack bars, so you can spend the whole day there without missing anything.  At the west end of the beach, there is a small river where kids can explore and play, especially if you happen to be there on a windy day!


    – You can combine Damnoni with a visit to the palm tree forest of Preveli. However, since getting down to Preveli beach is difficult for young kids, try the alternative way from the left side, or hire a taxi boat.

    Nearby related activities / tours:

    River Trekking Outdoor Family Adventure in Crete

    Rural and Bygone Family Experience in West of Crete

    Damnoni Cretan Beaches-min

    4. Bali beaches (Rethymnon)

    A favorite weekend destination for families, the four beaches of Bali are well protected from the winds in a large bay between the cities of Rethymnon and Heraklion. All beaches have fine sand, shallow and calm waters, and are well organized with sunbeds, umbrellas and water toys, making them ideal for young kids. Plus, you have quick access to all basic amenities, from taverns and cafes to supermarkets, pharmacies, and snack bars.


    – Avoid Bali during the weekends when it is most crowded and try the nearby beaches of Fodele or Panormo instead.

    – The second beach, known as Varkotopos, is perhaps the most beautiful of all four (but also the most popular!).

    Nearby related activities / tours:

    Rethymno Family Walking Tour

    Bali Beach Crete Greece DP-min

    5. Hersonisos beaches (Heraklion)

    Heraklion’s most popular resort, Hersonissos not only offers many family-friendly beaches, but also lots of activities around that kids will love: from water parks, playgrounds, and amusement parks. All Hersonisos beaches are sandy with crystal clear waters, and if it’s windy you can always find calm waters in one of the small coves in Limanakia Hersonisou.


    – Save some time to visit CretAquarium or Labyrinth Park to complete a perfect day at the beach!

    – In Hersonisos there are countless taverns and restaurants, but our personal favorite is Saradaris Fish Restaurant

    Nearby related activities / tours:

    Cretan Cooking Lesson for Families | Kids Love Greece

    Family Day Cruise to Dia | Kids Love Greece

    Low season sunbeds Hersonissos DP-min
    Low season sunbeds Hersonissos

    6. Aghia Pelagia beaches (Heraklion)

    An all-time classic choice for families of locals and tourists alike, the beaches of Agia Pelagia are just a breath away from Heraklion city and an ode to Mediterranean simplicity: wind-protected picturesque coves, calm and clean waters, a few traditional taverns and cafes by the beach. All beaches are well organized with sunbeds, umbrellas and showers.


    – If you want a local gastronomical  experience, visit one of the many fish taverns after a long day at the beach

    – The long sandy beach of Agia Pelagia is often busy, so you can also check the neighboring beaches of Psaromoura and Ligaria

    – If you prefer a more high-end beach experience, you can try Kladisos in Capsis hotel (entrance fee – call before).

    Nearby related activities / tours:

    Private Family Tour Archaeological Museum Heraklion | Kids Love Greece

    Knossos Private Family Friendly Guided Tour | Kids Love Greece

    Aghia Pelagia Beach DP-min

    7. Voulisma beach (Lassithi)

    Perhaps the best family-friendly beach near the town of Agios Nikolaos, with warm, emerald waters and fine sand. A small heaven for small kids that can play around freely while parents relax in comfortable sunbeds. Near the beach you will find taverns, super markets and all the basic things you will need for a perfect day at the beach!


    – If you want more isolation, you can explore the rest of the beaches in the area, scattered in three adjacent bays.

    Nearby related activities / tours:

    Family Sailing in Elounda | Kids Love Greece

    Voulisma Beach Crete DP-min

    8. Vai Beach (Lassithi)

    A stunning exotic beach with turquoise waters bordering an endemic palm tree forest, perfect for exploration and fun games with the kids. Vai is one of the most popular beaches on the island and a protected area, so there are only a few amenities around: a canteen and water sports. The beach has an entrance fee and it is organized with sunbeds and umbrellas.


    – If you want to explore more beaches in the area, or if you seek more isolation, try the beach of Chiona with shallow, calm waters or the beaches of Itanos.

    – Book accommodation in the area near Kouremenos Beach

    Vai Forest Kids
    Photo Credit: Six Passports


    make your reservation now CREATE UNIQUE MEMORIES

    Kids will love

    Building sandcastles on the beach and swimming in the lovely warm sea

    Parents will love

    The fact that each beach is very individual, whether it be the size of the beach or the facilities available

    Best season to visit

    • summer
    • autumn
    • winter
    • spring
    • All
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