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The village of Makrigialos on Crete
The village of Makrigialos lies on the south coast of Crete, 24 km away from Ierapetra, and is the next door neighbour of the village of Analipsi (with a big beach). The name Makrigialos actually means "long beach". It's a quiet, friendly place with a cosy little fishing harbour and a small sand beach inside the village. The beach is shallow and stays undeep for a while so is is easy to go into the sea and suitable for small children. At the end of the promenade with the tavernas is the start of the long sandy beach that runs all the way into the next village, Analipsi. The village of Makrigialos. has been expanding and growing for the lest few decades and nowadays there are plenty of hotels and other accommodations (apartments, studios, villas) in the area and at least one excellent taverna (we had dinner there ;) - but of course there are more restaurants and kafenions. Yet it's still pretty unspoiled compared to some of the other coastal villages in Crete. The background setting is one of pretty, high hills. A nice place to stop and relax for a while. In the land behind Makrigialos there are no direct spectaculair things to take a look at, but there are nice walking tracks that you can use to wander around in the quiet nature. You can also make a boat trip from Makrigialos to the small nearby island of Koufonisi. A boat leaves from the port of Makrigialos early in the morning and then returns late in the afternoon. The trip to the island takes about one hour. Koufonisi has nice beaches and is a good place for a swim in the sea. The island is also an archeological site because during the Roman period there was a factory here that produced the color purple from sea shells for the Roman imperial clothes. Inside the village there are all amenities that you would want: tavernas and kafenions, a bakery, mini markets, tourist shops and cash points where you can get money. For the lovers of old stones there is also something closer to home, because in Makrigialos a Minoan villa has been found. You climb up the stairs at the end of the small town beach where are all the taverna's and then it is on the other side of this small hill. You can also reach it from the main road that leads through the village. Excavations that took place in the seventies showed that the villa had been destroyed by fire. It had thick outside walls and many rooms and a large courtyard and the villa in the details and the way it is set out looks like a smaller copy of the large Minoan palaces on Crete. High in the mountains above Makrigialos there are a couple of old traditional villages: Pefki, Stavrohori and Agios Stefanos. In these three mountain villages there are many houses that are falling apart, but plenty of them are being renovated. Here it is still relatively cheap to buy your Cretan dream home. Somehow there is a different atmosphere in each one of the villages and for instance the people in Stavrohori appear to be more friendly and open to the "new foreigners" than the people in Agios Stefanos.
More beaches in Makrigialos, Crete.
On both sides of the village beach there are more stretches of sand. On the east side of Makrigialos there is the large sandy beach of Makrigialos / Analipsi and on the west side just around the corner from the town beach is the real hidden gem, that nobody seems to know about: a large and beautiful quiet sand beach (which is much nicer in my point of view, but as you know I like it to be quiet). You can reach this beach from the main road and you have to descend some stairs. Other pretty beaches that are not far away from Makrigialos are for instance the beautiful beach of Agio Fotia that is surrounded by high mountain, the beaches of Koutsouras and Mavros Kolimbos or the beaches of Ferma and Kalo Nero. The last two beaches are also suitable for naturists.
Accommodations, hotels, apartments, studios and villas in and around Makrigialos in crete
Crete Hotels: CretaSun Apartments in Makrigialos
Makrigialos is a cozy fishermens village in the south of Crete, with nice taverna's and beautiful beaches. Tourist industry is not over-developped here, allthough there is some life in the village. There are no ugly concrete buildings though like you will for instance encounter them in Malia or Chersonissos. In this way the village has maintained its authenticity. In Makrigialos you can find the CretaSun Apartments, which are each 70 m2 large, some with a beautiful view of the harbour, the beach and the mountains. The apartment complex is situated on top of a hill at the edge of the bay. A short walk and some stairs will bring you to the main beach and the taverna's. On the west side of the village is another more quiet beach and there are many more great beaches in the area.
Offering spacious apartments with views of the sea and the mountains, this property is in the centre of the traditional village of Makrigialos on the South-East Coast of Crete. Just 30 metres from the beach and restaurants, the accommodation is fully-equipped and furnished to be ideal for all-year-round holidays, benefiting from the climate at the most southern point of Europe. There is also a large, private parking area. A truly good destination choice for families, the village is built across the sands, and there are many wonderful and quiet beaches around it. The main beach is full of people in summer time and there are water sports, bars, restaurants, cafes, supermarkets and souvenir shops.
LIMANI RESTAURANT - MAKRIGIALOS
A taverna with a very extensive menu illustrated with pictures. You will be handed one when you sit down at one of the tables. This seemed to be the busiest taverna in the row of taverna's in the harbour, so we thought we would give it a try. They have a lot of fish dishes on the menu. We tried the tuna salad, the garlic bread (which was good), beetroot salad, spagetthi bolognese, sole fish (no bones but tasteless and we think - or are sure - it was deepfreezed and not fresh), french fries (soft, not chrunchy)... to be short, it was sort of a disappointment. Besides that there was football on the television (this might explain why it was so busy, it couldn't have been because of the food), and we seemed to be "invisible"- meaning: nobody was paying any attention to us, bad service.
Our verdict: a 6,5 out of 10
SEMELI RESTAURANT - MAKRIGIALOS
The neighbour of the Limani Restaurant above. This one was quiet and for us this was a mistery, because it was much better and cheaper too. We tried the same fish, sole fish (good, crispy and tasty), salad Semeli with spinach, rucola, cheese and turkey (good!), lamb chops (also good), french fries (like they should be - crispy) and courgette balls (also good but a bit on the salty side). The bread came in one piece and it was fresh. The only downside was the rosé, which was a bit tasteless...at least we thought so. Conclusion: cheaper and much better than the next door neighbour, and we wonder what everybody was doing there. The service was friendly and also much better.
Our verdict: an 8,5 out of 10
ILIOS CAFE - MAKRIGIALOS
The Ilios Café is located at the village beach in Makrigialos. It's not a place to have lunch or dinner but a good place for a cup of coffee, a soda, a cocktail or some ice cream. Friendly service and a good cappuccino with a glass of cold water.
Onur verdict: an 8 out of 10