Discover Crete South Islands
You will find on the Southeast and west coast of Crete in the Libyan Sea a wonderful opportunity for island visits to Gavdos island, Chrysi Island (Chrissi Island) and Koufonisi-Crete.
the most southerly part of Europe and lies 45km south of Hora Sfakion. Ferry-boats dock in the port of Karabe (Karavi) after almost a 2 and a half hours crossing from Hora Sfakia. Hora Sfakia is a smallish, charming village with accommodation, bars, shops, small beach, and many seafront tavernas. Small port with boat service to Paleochora, Sougia, Agia Roumeli, Loutro and to the island of Gavdos.
Twice a week ferry crossing from Paleochora to Gavdos. Kastri is the main village on Gavdos located about a km from the port. The Island is “home” to around 50 people. Bike, scooters available to rent but no public transport. Camping is tolerated in most places. Apartments and rooms available, It is recommended to book in advance. A few tavernas. Good beaches.
Chrysi (Chrissi) Island
Chrysi (Chrissi) Island or Gaidouronisi meaning ‘donkey island lies 8-9 nautical miles south of Ierapetra town. The residents of Ierapetra simply call it “the island”. The Chrysi (Chrissi) season lasts six months a year – from mid-May until late October. There are timetables, see links below, departing from the port of Ierapetra to the island on a daily basis. Makrigialos town further east along the coast from Ierapetra offers excursion boats to Chrysi (Chrissi) also daily.
Chrysi (Chrissi) island is ideal for a day visit. There is no public transport. Walking is the name of the game here. A few tavernas. No accommodation. Clean sandy beaches, turquoise coloured sea, and a small forest of cedar trees.
Koufonisi Island Crete
Koufonisi Island (also known as Lefki) is a small island in the Libyan sea just off the South East coast of Crete and at a distance of 3,5 nautical miles south-southeast of Cape Goudoura, and 10 nautical miles southeast of Makrysgialos. The island is about 6 kilometers long. Koufonisi belongs to a group of small islets in the area like Makroulo, Marmara, Strogylo, and Trahila. Koufonisi Island is uninhabited now but is full of ruins that indicate human activity from the early Minoan times to post-Byzantine years. The locals like to call Koufonisi Delos of Crete, after the significant antiquities that have been found there.
Koufonissi has beautiful sandy beaches, mainly covered with fine sand, and was once an important center for sponge diving.
Excursion boat for the island departs Makrysgialos port in the morning and returns again in the afternoon.