Sea, mountain & culture: things to do near Malia
16 Dec 2018

Sea, mountain & culture: things to do near Malia

Post by eyewide

You are planning your vacation in Crete but you just can’t decide if you prefer a bustling tourist destination by the beach or a more traditional destination to profit from the serenity of a Cretan village and a variety of outdoor activities?
We have good news: In Alexander Beach Hotel & Village you can have it both!
The resort’s architecture resembles that of a traditional Cretan village, offering a calm environment for undisturbed nights and lazy mornings. At the same time Alexander Beach is located in Malia, a cosmopolitan resort with a vibrant nightlife. Plus, there are many things to do near Malia, but we recommend at least 3 that combine the main features of the Cretan experience: the sea, the mountains, and the culture!

1. Explore the beaches of Hersonissos & Malia

Alexander Beach takes pride on its long private sandy beach (over 500 m.) with crystal clear waters. You can spend all day swimming or sunbathing or even indulge in water sports activities like aquaplane, parasailing, wind surfing, banana canoes and pedalos.
But then there are more beaches to explore, like the beautiful Potamos beach next to the Minoan Palace of Malia. However, you should definitely explore the stunning little coves around Hersonissos port. Head east to discover the small sandy and pebbly coves of Drapanos Cape to enjoy isolation and crystal clear waters. Dedicate another day to explore the so-called “Limanakia”, the Coves of Hersonissos, towards Anissaras. Protected from the northwest winds, a series of absolutely lovely beaches for every taste awaits you! Most are located within walking distance from bars and cafes, but as you continue to the west, you will find more isolation and striking coastal landscapes formed by whitish limestone. There is even a naturalist beach in the area, well protected from prying eyes by high cliffs!

2. A tour in Lassithi Plateau

Crete might be an island but it’s not all about the sea. The high mountains that stretch along the island hide spectacular landscapes and a unique culture that you should definitely experience during your visit. Fortunately, one of the most beautiful mountainous landscapes is just a 50-minute drive away from Malia! Located in an altitude of 800-850m, Lassithi Plateau is known for its numerous attractions and rich agricultural production and makes an ideal day-trip destination. The most famous attraction is Diktaion Andron (Diktaean Cave), the birthplace of Zeus according to mythology, and the traditional stone-built windmills, a trademark of the area. If you feel like walking or hiking, there are many scenic trails starting from Lassithi Plateau that lead to breathtaking summits, archaeological sites, gorges and other beautiful plateaus, such as the plateau of Katharo. The attractions are many and some roads can be rough, therefore we highly recommend a jeep safari tour to see the best of Lassithi Plateau!

3. Visit the Museum of Lichnostatis

Crete boasts a rich and complex culture worth discovering, but that can be a difficult task in a short-time stay. Fortunately, the open-air museum “Lychnostatis” in Hersonissos is cleverly designed to introduce as many aspects of traditional Cretan culture as possible to visitors. The collections cover a wide part of the history of pre-industrial Crete (19th-18th Century), folk art & culture, geology and botany. The museum has implemented a hands-on approach to its exhibits, so you are welcome to touch most of the items in display, smell and taste the various plants, fruit and products. Plus, every Wednesday the museum hosts cultural activities for its guest, from Cretan dancing to grape-stomping, and the friendly staff will treat you with samples of Cretan products, wine or raki. The exhibits are so many you will definitely want to come again, and you should, as the museum’s policy will grant you a free admission if you come for a second visit!

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