A pretty little fishing village at the foot of the wild and beautiful Rodopos peninsula, Kolymbari is the perfect spot for a holiday in the sunshine. This tranquil spot has preserved all its traditional charm, and you can relax on the beach, watch the fishing boats bob in the harbour, or explore the gorgeous green hills that stretch behind it. There is a good choice of cafés and tavernas, where you can tuck into tasty local specialities, and the vibrant resort of Platanias is only a 10-minute drive away if you want a great range of nightlife. Enchanting Chania is also within easy reach, and is packed with historic sights, boutiques and bars.
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A charming fishing village, Kolymbari has become a pretty little seaside resort with a gorgeous setting on the northern coast of Crete. There’s a wonderful long shingle beach, and colourful boats bob in the old harbour. It’s a quiet and relaxed spot, but you’ll find a sprinkling of shops, and a decent choice of inviting cafés and restaurants. You can head into the rugged Rodopos peninsula to find authentic villages, the beautiful Gonia monastery and museum, and the wonderful little cove of Afrata. If you’re in the mood for some nightlife, head into lively Platanias, a 10-minute drive away, or head for Chania, the historic capital of Crete and now its charming second city.
There are lots of delightful places for eating and drinking in Kolymbari, including wonderful beachfront tavernas serving ultra-fresh seafood from the harbour. Don’t miss out on the amazing Cretan cuisine, based on the island’s abundance of fresh produce. You can enjoy unusual local specialities such as fried snails (chochlioi boubouristi) or go for one of the excellent lamb dishes, such as the famous lamb with wild greens and spinach. A Greek salad of tomatoes, cucumbers and olives in perfect on a hot summer’s day, and comes with a tasty topping of crumbled mizithra cheese – just one of the many cheeses produced on the island.
Kolymbari has oodles of old-fashioned Greek charm, and its quiet beaches and relaxed, low-key atmosphere have made it a firm favourite with families. The beach is long and well equipped with sun beds and parasols for rent, although note that the shore shelves sharply, so take care if you’re travelling with young kids. Older kids and teens will enjoy the water sports available, particularly snorkelling and diving. Chania is a beautiful little city, wrapped around a picture-postcard Venetian harbour that is the starting point for lots of boat excursions, including a pirate boat trip. There’s also a water park just south of the city, with lots of slides and pools.
Kolymbari is a small town, but you’ll find plenty of enjoyable activities in the area. There are kayaks and paddle boards for rent on the beach, or you could also take a diving course or book an excursion to one of the amazing diving sites in the area. If you’re looking for jet skis and banana boats, you’ll find these and other fun activities in nearby Platanias, the nearest big resort to Kolymbari. You could also rent a boat to find your own little cove on the beautiful Rodopos peninsula, which is also a great place for hiking. You could also consider an excursion into the White Mountains, where you’ll find more spectacular hiking trails.
Kolymbari beach is lovely and long, but it’s mostly shingle with a few patches of sand so it’s worth bringing beach shoes for the pebbles. It’s the first of a virtually unbroken string of beaches that extend all the way around the bay. There are lots of facilities, including sun beds and parasols for rent, and you’ll also find plenty of water sports to do. This area is particularly good for snorkelling and diving and there are a couple of local schools that run courses, rent out equipment and organise excursions to the best dive sites. There are lots of wonderful little coves on the Rodopos peninsula, including Afrata beach, a miniature charmer tucked into a sheltered bay.
Kolymbari is a traditional, Greek seaside village, and is quiet and relaxed. Holiday-makers come to soak up the beautiful setting and utter peace, and so the nightlife is largely limited to the cafés and tavernas. You can enjoy a drink as the sun sets, and listen to the sound of the waves on the beach. If you’re in the mood for some serious nightlife, you’ll find a wide choice of bars and clubs in Platanias, the largest resort on this stretch of coast. Or you could head into Chania, a beautiful and historic city, which has a fantastic choice of places to party.
Kolymbari is a traditional fishing village that has grown into a tranquil little resort without losing any of its authentic charm. It’s an idyllic spot for a peaceful and romantic holiday in the sun. You can relax on the long beaches, enjoy a delicious seafood dinner at a waterfront restaurant, or perhaps rent a boat and go in search of one of the secret coves on the Rodopos peninsula. There are lots of pretty villages and vineyards to visit in the hills, and you’ll also find some fantastic walking routes. Chania, which was the capital of Crete for centuries, is an enchanting little city, perfect for a romantic stroll, and packed with boutiques, cafés and bars.
In the hills above Kolymbari, you’ll find the historic monastery of Odigitria Gonia, which enjoys a panoramic setting overlooking the sea. It was built in the early 17th century, and has held an important place in Cretan history since the Ottomans took control of the island from here in 1645. The museum has some superb icons. Chania, which was the island capital of 1971, is a charming city with a magnificent Venetian harbour. It is replete with historic monuments and enticing museums, from the remains of an ancient Minoan settlement to a charming Ottoman-era lighthouse.