Spoiler, Karpathos Beaches are among the most beautiful beaches in the world. Think of white sandy beaches with clear emerald water, sunbed and drinks on your side, and kite surfers above the water in front of you. Caribbean? Thailand? Seychelles?
Think closer! The Greek islands provide with Caribbean beaches experience at a stone throw away from all European and Mediterranean countries. The country includes 6,000 islands and islets scattered in the Greek Seas, of which only just over 200 islands are inhabited.
The Greek coastline offers a diverse landscape: beaches stretching over many kilometres, sheltered bays and coves, sandy beaches, sand-dunes, pebble beaches, wetlands and deltas, caves formed by seawater and dark-coloured sand in volcanic areas.
In this article I will share with you my ultimate beach experience in the island of Karpathos. Situated between Rhodes and Crete, Karpathos is one of the best Dodecanese islands to visit, despite its rather secluded location.
Its natural landscape remains unspoiled, and its beaches are magnificent! Only its southern side is developed for tourists, while the rest of the island maintains its authentic atmosphere. The picturesque villages of Karpathos keep the local tradition alive.
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1) Kastelia Beach Karpathos
Sunday morning, we drove to Kastelia beach that is 5 minutes down the road from our apartment. The beach is hidden by the cliffs, but the access is easy.
Going down the stairs to the shore, you immediately see a tiny beach to your left where only few people can get together, while on the right side you will see a larger beach which is much more crowded and organized, with sunbeds and parasols.
Both sides are rocky with some pebbles and theses, and both are great for snorkeling. The seabed is shallow and therefore water shoes are recommended.
2) Diakoftis Paradise Beach, Karpathos
After a short afternoon nap, we took the car and travelled to Diakoftis beach. We reached this amazing waterfront on a dirt road which leads to the Diakoftis from the western side of the airport.
The dirt road is in poor condition, but it is also accessible by smaller cars like the one we were driving. The road is about 3 km long, and it’s surrounded by many small bays, where you can stand aside the vehicle and go to swim.
Diakoftis beach is a beautiful bay with white sand, turquoise-colored waters, and stones scattered all around. The area is filled with sand dunes and small coves, giving a sense of a tropical beach.
There is a small house next to the beach but beyond that building there are no facilities nearby, only few parasols for rent and small cantina.
Diakoftis offers a stunning lagoon and therefore considered one of the best among Karpathos beaches. You can also enjoy snorkeling as some places are rocky and provide nice location to observe marine life.
We returned from Diakoftis beach in late afternoon and after short break at the apartment we decided to go to Pigadia, the beautiful capital of Karpathos.
3) Pigadia Beach
While Pigadia beach is a very attractive waterfront to observe, you wouldn’t want to go inside it, as rocks replaced its soft sand. Still, we’ve decided to feature Pigadia beach on our list, since this beautiful shore of light blue waters and white-grey rocks is neighboring Pigadia, one of the best cities in Karpathos.
The coast’s beauty is rather different and unique than the rest of the beaches found in Karpathos, and it can make an excellent place for romantic moments.
Pigadia is an amazing town with a charming port, lively promenade, and many great taverns, bars and souvenir shops. Pigadia means “springs” in Greek language and got its name from the many springs found in the area.
The city center was built on a slope of a hill, and it is filled with charming streets and narrow alleys, so it is like walking in an old town. The downtown is an attractive place with colorful balconies, fountains and great view of the main port.
The promenade of Pigada is filled with taverns, bars, restaurants and coffee houses serving Greek and international food. Of course, we could not resist the selection of Greek food and drinks and sat for dinner at a tavern looking over the Pigadia beach.
4) Apella Beach, Karpathos
After a cup of coffee and handful of honey lukomades, one of the best Greek deserts, we headed back south to the sandy beach of Apella. The beach is in the middle of Karpathos on the eastern side.
Apella Beach is reached by a long curvy road, and I can imagine parking becoming a problem in peak season. There are steps toward the shore however the last 50 meters were over rocks and may make access difficult for some. Alternative access is by a boat which depart regularly from the harbor of Pigadia.
Indisputably, Apella Beach of the most stunning beaches in Karpathos and in general. A must-visit for those who travel the island. Pine trees are blended with the rocks surrounding the beach, composing a beautiful setting. Crystal clear water, amazing scenery, and a peaceful environment.
The beach is good for those who like to swim. In the afternoon, you won’t need umbrella because there is natural shade from big rocks. It is a bit windy so if you bring your own umbrella, you will have trouble putting it on the ground. There are no rental facilities or any kind of accommodations around this magical bay.
5) Achata beach
Next morning, we headed north to Achata beach. Achata might just be the most beautiful among Karpathos Beaches. It’s surrounded by breathtaking scenery, with white pebbles and sand, and the best part – it’s quiet.
Achata beach is located few kilometres north-east of Pigadia. It is easy to reach by car or motorbike, the road is narrow and curvy but not too long, and we found a parking lot close to the beach.
The beach is lying in an idyllic cove, surrounded by mountains and verdant vegetation. It has natural shade from a big tree so you can stay there or rent an umbrella.
Achata Beach is rocky, the water is cold, but not too much. It gets deep very soon, but it Is a good beach if you’re here to swim, or even climb the cliffs around. Water is crystal clean and there is no wind in this beach, which is rare on Karpathos. A small tavern is standing on the beach, which has no rentals or accommodations.
6) Finiki Beach, Karpathos
We ended our trip to Karpathos in the village of Finiki situated in the west side of the southern part of the island. Finiki is a small coastal village founded by local fishermen. It is mostly known for the fish taverns serving local delicacies and delicious meals.
The wooden boats at the picturesque port adorn the entire settlement and right next to it is a beautiful sandy beach, ideal for swimming and sunbathing. Finiki has plenty of tourist facilities and modern amenities for all visitors, but it keeps its calm and traditional atmosphere.
In the village, you can find a small natural harbor and a sandy beach where parasols and sunbeds can be rented. Around the harbor of the village, you can find several fish restaurants that are especially popular with the locals. At the top of a hill near the village is the beautiful Agios Nikolaos church and just a little bit more to the north there is another one, the Agios Georgios church. We found another small beach there.
In the port of Finiki there is a monument in memory of the seven Greek heroes who, after the liberation of Karpathos in 1945, sailed from Finiki to Cairo to inform the Greek government in exile there.
Watersports in Karpathos
Fans of water sports will surely appreciate the southern side of Karpathos, which transforms into a surfing hub in the summer, thanks to the strong Meltemi wind.
Make the most of the fierce waves and try windsurfing or kitesurfing in the Afiartis area near Karpathos Airport. There are three bays to choose from, depending on your skills; opt for the Chicken Bay if you’re a beginner, the Gun Bay if you’re more experienced and the Devil’s Bay if you’re a pro. You can also swim in the turquoise waters amid roaming windsurfers if you feel like laying low.
Karpathos is filled with magnificent beaches all around it. If you’re planning on entering the waters, pick one of the beaches that feature good facilities and soft sand around it. If you’re visiting the beaches to observe the beauty of it, and just relax on the shore, you might want to consider visiting the more unique beaches.
We wish you happy traveling and as always, we are eager to hear your feedback and own experiences. Please share those with us either by writing to us directly, or by posting on our Facebook Group.