Kedrodasos Beach Crete Greece: A well kept secret

An astonishingly beautiful place, an untouched, pristine piece of paradise.

Kedrodasos Beach Image of Kedrodasos Beach Crete Greece
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Kedrodasos Beach is one of the most beautiful Greece beaches of all. An astonishingly beautiful place, an untouched, pristine piece of paradise.

This stunning secluded beach in the western corner of south Crete has remained one of the best hidden gems in Greece. Yet it’s only a short distance from Elafonissi beach, one of the most popular of all Crete beaches

So why is Kedrodasos beach such a well-kept secret? Its relative remoteness is the main reason, and even though the Elafonissi beach and lagoon are nearby, the Elafonissi tours and bus timetables don’t give you enough time to see both beaches.

This is why one of the best beaches in Crete remains off the beaten path. 

Many of those lucky enough to have visited Kedrodasos beach say it’s the most beautiful beach in Crete, and even one of the most beautiful beaches in Europe. I’ve visited Kedrodasos a few times, and am captivated by this astonishing place.

Image of Kedrodasos Beach Crete
Rush hour at Kedrodasos beach

Kedrodasos Beach Crete – What You Need To Know

Kedrodasos Beach Crete Image of one of the smaller bays at Kedrodasos
One of the smaller bays at Kedrodasos
Best beaches near Chania Image of Kedrodasos Beach Crete
The ‘main’ beach at Kedrodasos
Image of Kedrodasos beach from the sea
Kedrodasos from the sea: that water!
  • Kedrodasos is a series of pristine beaches formed around a system of sand dunes on the south Crete coast. It is the perfect spot for you if you want to get right away from it all.
  • Most of these beaches are small coves – the main beach is around 400 metres long.
  •  Kedrodasos is the Greek for ‘cedar grove’ – you may have read that there is a cedar forest around the beach. However, these trees are not cedars.
  • The trees at Kedrodasos Beach are juniper trees – juniperus phoenicea – which are related to cedars. 
  • The beach is located around 2 km from the famous Elafonissi beach.
  •  It’s a very secluded beach, and the natural shade provided by the trees and privacy from the many many rocks make it popular among naturists in Crete. 
  • Kedrodasos Beach also has some of the most crystal-clear waters you are ever likely to see
  • Even during the peak season Kedrodasos Beach is very quiet, with very few people there. When I visited at the end of October – at the tail end of the short Greek island season – I was the only person on the beach for most of the time.
  •  It’s pronounced ‘Ke-DROD-ass-os’, with the stress on the second syllable. 

Where is Kedrodasos Beach ?

Image of Kedrodasos Beach Crete
Rush hour at Kedrodasos beach

Kedrodasos is located in the southwestern corner of Crete. It’s only around 2 km (1.25 miles) from the famous Elafonissi pink sand beach. 

It’s part of the province of Chania, the capital of which is 73 km away. The nearest town of any size is Paleochora, 20 km to the east on the southern Crete coast.  

How to get to Kedrodasos Beach 

Best beaches in Crete Greece Image of boat approaching the harbour at Elafonissi
Our boat approaching the tiny harbour at Elafonissi

Kedrodados is one of the more remote Chania beaches, and this is why it’s relatively unknown. It makes sense to try to see two of the top beaches in Crete – Kedrodados and Elafonissi – at once. Especially as they’re tucked away in this far-flung corner of the southwestern coast of Crete. 

1. Via the Chania to Elafonissi road 

Image of a juniper tree at Kedrodasos beach in Crete
The final goal: Kedrodasos

The easiest way to get there is to drive.  You need to follow the Chania – Kissamos – Elafonissi road, which takes around an hour and a half.

Sections of the road to Elafonissi are slow and winding, including the scenic Topolia gorge, so don’t even try to make quick progress. There is a left-hand turn for Kedrodasos beach car park around 2 km (1.25 miles) before Elafonissi car park. 

2. The Chania to Elafonissi Bus 

The Chania Elafonissi bus runs during the summer months, usually stopping for the season sometime in October. Dates vary year on year. The bus calls at all the beaches near Chania, before passing through Kolymvari and Kissamos.

Note: that the bus from Chania to Elafonissi  passes the left-hand turn for Kedrodasos, so one option you have is to walk from there – a considerably less scenic option than the coastal walk to Kedrodasos from Elafonisi beach. 

3. On Foot Via the E4 Crete Trail 

E4 Trail Crete Image of a rock signifying the E4 trail with black and yellow stripes at Kedrodasos beach Crete
Follow the yellow and black stripes: the E4 trail markers are a common sight around Kedrodasos

The E4 Path is part of a trans-European trail over 10,000km long that starts in Spain and ends in Cyprus. It also traverses the island of Crete.

The European Path E4 runs for 320 km across the island, taking in the White Mountains Crete, the amazing Crete coastline and much of the island’s interior. 

The trail is well-marked between Elafonissi and Kedrodasos. Rocks are marked either with black and yellow stripes or yellow marks only. 

The walk to Kedrodasos takes 30-45 minutes, depending on your rock scrambling ability. It starts at the tiny Elafonissi harbour near the east end of the beach. Follow the poles and markers from there.

After a while, the trail heads through some very rocky terrain, with one or two manageable short hops over drops. Most of it is fairly well-marked. Some would probably find the terrain challenging and intimidating. 

If you’re using GPS, here are the co-ordinates for the main beach:

35.268583, 23.562483

4. By Boat From Paleochora to Elafonissi, Then Walking 

A ferry runs from Paleochora during the Crete tourist season. We were surprised to find that it had stopped for the season by mid-October – local friends remarked to us that it often continues until close to the end of the month. 

Some Paleochora travel agents operate a speedboat service to Elafonissi up until the end of October. This runs daily, and depends on the weather and there being enough customers. 

If you are staying in Paleochora and the boats are running this is a wonderful way to visit. You could do as we did and have two great day trips, one day exploring Elafonissi & the next Kedrodasos.

Just ask at any of the travel agents down near where the ferry docks in Paleochora for more information.

What Facilities are at Kedrodasos Beach ?

Image of a juniper tree and rocks at Kedrodasos beach Crete
One of the best wild beaches in the Greek islands, with no facilities for miles

Not a lot is the succinct answer.

There is a small free car park behind the beach. This parking lot is at the end of a dirt track. And that’s your lot.

You can find snack bars, WCs and beach equipment for rental at Elafonissi.  Kedrodasos is a wild beach, just as nature intended it. 

Visiting Elafonissi & Kedrodasos beach in one day ?

Crete Greece beaches Image of pink sand at Elafonissi beach Crete
The pink sand of nearby Elafonissi beach

It makes sense to see Kedrodasos and Elafonissi beaches in the same visit, however bus and tour schedules make it difficult. They’re both among the best beaches in Chania province, indeed all of Crete Greece. 

This Elafonissi tour from Chania usually includes 4 hours at Elafonissi, which would give you enough time to see both beaches, but you wouldn’t have time to linger long at either. This Elafonissi tour from Rethymno also offers 4 hours at Elafonissi.

Obviously, if you’re driving you have the most flexibility and can get to both comfortably within a day. Otherwise a more expensive private tour gives you more flexibility, and enough time to visit Kedrodasos Beach as well as Elafonissi.

Chania Greece beaches Image of one of the small coves at Kedrodasos Crete
One of the first coves you reach if walking from Elafonissi to Kedrodasos

Everything will depend on how long you have there. If you want to do the E4 trail walk, count on a minimum of two hours to get there and back, including half an hour or so to sit and savour it. 

If you only have one day there, and you’re planning to visit on an Elafonissi tour, shop around for whatever gives you the most time there. Four hours is the norm. If you come all this way, you absolutely HAVE TO see Elafonissi. It gets a lot of hype, but it is one of the best beaches in Greece.   

Kedrodasos Beach – Our Verdict

Best beaches in Greece Image of Kedrodasos beach on Crete
Sublime Kedrodasos

Kedrodasos is an astoundingly beautiful beach. We’ve always loved the wilder beaches of Europe, from stunning Falassarna in north-west Crete to some of Portugal’s Costa Vicentina to the Llyn Peninsula in North Wales, UK. 

Kedrodasos is right up there with the most beautiful beaches in Greece. Like Falassarna, albeit on a smaller scale, Kedrodasos is actually a series of beaches, with each tiny cove and bay offering something different.  

If you want to just bask in the sunshine, the glorious ‘main’ beach of Kedrodasos is just the place. The smaller coves have everything from sand dunes to rock pools to explore for the more inquisitive and adventurous.

Image of David Angel found of Delve into Europe Travel Blog / Website

David Angel is a Welsh historian, photographer and writer. He is a European travel expert with over 30 years’ experience exploring Europe.

He has a degree in History from Manchester University, and his work is regularly featured in global media including the BBC, Condé Nast Traveler, The Guardian, The Times, and The Sunday Times. 

David is fluent in French and Welsh, and can also converse in Italian, German, Portuguese, Spanish, Czech and Polish.

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