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A ferry passing by Sougia Beach. The moon rising and the sun setting at Sougia Beach A view from our balcony in Sougia. Up on a mountain near Sougia.
SOUGIA IN CRETE

Sougia in the south of the island of Crete must be one of my favorite villages to relax and chill out for a couple of days. There is no need to rush for anything in this remote and peaceful village with its beautiful beach. It's been on our destination list for a couple of times and it's defenitely a place to return to. There are good tavernas along the coast, special visitors, and there is a sense of wild freedom in the air. The area of Sougia is also very suitable for making interesting walks, and if you feel like doing nothing at all there is that gorgeous beach in front of the village. You just take your book and your sun lotion, read a bit and make a few dips in the clean water. The people in this village are very kind. There are also two small supermarkets that sell products from the area, like the raki that they put in the recycled plastic water bottles. Don't mix those two up like I did one morning when I wanted to make a quick cup of coffee, ahah! The local raki is delicious by the way and you defenitely have to try it. Drink it very cold, and best in good company outside on your balcony. In one of the two supermarkets we met a woman from Holland that once went for a short visit to Sougia to celebrate that she just got her diploma, and she never returned. Instead she got married and she still lives in this tiny village, which shows you what magic you can be captured by once you have been here. Sougia is a romantic place. You can have lovely local food in the tavernas with a few tourists and inhabitants of the village, but don't be surprised if you are suddenly in the company of a goat. Sougia is authentic and friendly and the real old Greece.
Update 2007: in 2007 umbrellas and sunbeds have been placed on the beach. The people seem to be happy and talk about an "upgrade". This was no upgrade to us though: the beach has become much more busy.
The beach at Sougia The beach at Sougia The beach at Sougia The beach at Sougia. The beach at Sougia.
The beach village of Sougia is situated 70 kilometers south from the old capitol Chania. You can reach it from Chania in a 2 hours drive through beautiful green mountains. The westbound boats from Hora Sfakia stop here as well on their way to Paleochora. Sougia is a small village with not many houses on the beach. It will probably stay this way for much longer. Sougia is a historical site where a lot of escavations still have to take place. This is the reason why it is not allowed to build houses and no land is given out for sale, so an extra guarantee that it will not be exploited for mass tourism.
Surroundings of Sougia Surroundings of Sougia Moon rising over the beach of Sougia A rock in the harbour of Sougia. A view from a mountain near Sougia.
Sougia's ancient name was Syia, and it was a port of the Roman empire (most remains are now beneath the sea). West of Sougia are the ruins of ancient Lissos. One can admire the tiny Dorian temple of Asklipios, the ancient theatre and the vaulted tombs. I tried to make it to this ancient Lissos one day but I didn't succeed :(, instead we got lost on the track. If there is anybody out there that thinks he/she can be of help, write me, be my guide!! We spoke to several people who made it there and it's supposedly very special.
Views from the mountain at Sougia. Views from the mountain at Sougia Views from the mountain at Sougia. Views from the mountain at Sougia.
Allthough there is a sign opposite the taveerne on the corner of the main road saying that 'nudism is prohibited' Sougia is mainly a nudist beach. It is long stretched and beautiful with pebbles and sand, the atmosphere of the village is cosy, and the people very friendly. Sougia has some tourist services, such as small supermarkets, rooms to rent and small hotels and tavernas. Behind Sougia there is the start of a second gorge, a bit smaller than the one at Samaria, another opportunity for an interesting walk.

If you want to see a short realplayer movie of Sougia beach click here and for a short realplayer movie of the ferry sailing along the coast click here. If you don't have realplayer you can download it for free.



Hans Huisman 2007