Holidays to Gournes offer up barefaced beauty, ancient treasures and pindrop-peaceful beaches. Plus, you've got easy access to the nightlife that buzzes along Crete's north coast.
Quiet island life
The peaceful village of Gournes is a relative newcomer on Crete’s northern coast. That said, its unhurried, laid-back vibe leads you to believe it’s been around much longer. Pint-sized guesthouses and apartments are sprinkled across the rugged landscape, which centres around a charming waterfront and a pristine stretch of sandy beach. And the better-known tourist spots of Gouves and Kokkini are within strolling distance.
Take one of the three roads down to the beach and you'll find a long, narrow stretch of rocky shoreline that's broken up by a necklace of sandy bays. A promenade scattered with bars and restaurants lines up alongside it. Here, fishermen spend their days perched on the jetties that jut out into the sea, and sunbathers sip cocktails while drinking in the view of the lizard-shaped island of Dia. There are plenty of umbrellas and deck chairs for hire, too.
Hillside hikes and Heraklion
Gournes is a great base for walking. Sand paths lead from the end of the main street and criss-cross all over the countryside. Skotino’s Cave, used as a shrine in the Minoan era, is just 15 minutes’ walk away. And a 10-minute stroll gets you to the Minoan villa at Nirou. Further afield, Heraklion has a buzzing nightlife and the island’s best shopping – it’s quarter-of-an-hour away by car.
Things To Do View all »