Spend a day at the "Carribean" of Crete and give your holiday an exotic feel. It is no other than Chrissi island, located at the southeast part of Crete. Starting from the port of the small fish town of Ierapetra, embark on the boat and enjoy a one hour cruise in the Libyan Sea. After that you will have the chance to relax on the “Golden Beach”, one of the most beautiful beaches of Crete or explore this small yet full of history island.

Boat trip to Chrissi Island
Enjoy a boat trip in the Libyan Sea on your way to Chrissi Island.

Swim in turquoise waters
A refreshing and revitalizing experience in one of the cleanest beaches of Crete.

Relax and do nothing
The scenery is fulfilling by itself, just sit tight and gaze at the endless blue.

Snorkel in clear waters
Discover a whole new world full of colors and life.

Stroll in the cedar forest
Explore a unique environment of very old cedar trees protected by “Natura 2000”.

If you would like to visit the island of Chrissi, you can take the boat from the port of Ierapetra. The town of Ierapetra is located at the southeast part of Crete and it is one of the largest towns of the region of Lassithi. It is the southernmost town of Europe and its name is translated as the holy stone. From the port, you may see the Venetian fortress of the town, one of the attractions of Ierapetra.

The island of Chrissi (Golden), or else called Gaidouronisi (Donkey Island) is located 8 miles (15 km) south of Ierapetra and it is on the Libyan sea. It has a maximum length of 5 km and it covers an area of around 4,8 km2. From the town of Ierapetra, you may see it as a thin stripline above the sea, depending on the weather. It is an almost flat island, with its highest point being the hill of Kefala (head) on its east side, on an altitude of 31m. The island is nearly uninhabited, with only 1-2 people staying on it the whole year. Approaching the island you are going to see on its east side a small rocky islet (Mikronisi). The boat is going to leave you on the south side, where the only harbor is located. On the right side of the harbor, you are going to see a lovely small beach. This is one of the many beaches located around the island. The most famous is the “Golden Beach”, located to the north. There is a wooden path leading to it that will take you around 10 minutes to walk. As you walk the path, you will pass through the cedar forest of Chrissi island, with the rare Lebanon cedar trees, covering an area of 350 acres. After walking the path, you will reach the Golden beach, with its crystal clear waters and white sand consisted of tiny shells. On the east side of the Golden Beach, there are more shells and fossils on volcanic rocks from the time the island was submerged under the sea thousands of years ago. On the west side, there is a rocky path which leads to the chapel of Saint Nicolas (13th century), some Minoan and Roman antiquities, a salt pan and the lighthouse of the island, definitely worth a visit. The island is protected by the program “Natura 2000” as an area of intense natural beauty and it will not be hard to understand why after your visit.

Bring with you
  • Swimsuit and towel
  • Snorkeling equipment
  • Hat
  • Sun protection lotion
  • Travelling size umbrella
  • Camera
Food and drink availability
  • On the boat
  • On the island
WC facilities
  • Not on board of the bus
  • On board of the boat
  • On the island of Chrissi