Agios Pavlos

Rethymno Province

Agios Pavlos' main beach comprises a brown arc of sand that's topped by steep dunes, and a rocky bluff that resembles a recumbent dragon. When the sun's out the aquamarine colours of the Libyan Sea are stunning. The bay gets busy in summer, when excursion boats arrive from Agia Galini, but it’s possible to escape the crowds by heading to the beaches behind Cape Melissa.

For the beaches west of Agios Pavlos, be aware that getting there involves a scramble down (and up) a steep sand dune; bring water and snacks, since there are no facilities. The furthest cove is the least busy and is popular with nudists.

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