What if someone told you that you can swim at the same time in the sea and in a river? Would you be interested? We certainly would be! And there’s a place like this, located at the south part of Crete, 36km far from Rethymno, known as Preveli beach. We almost forgot to add that there’s a palm forest following the river, the second biggest on Crete after Vai palm beach.
Preveli is one of the most beautiful and memorable places in Crete and Greece. The beach is gorgeous with sand and pebbles. (Note that the beach is not organized because the area is protected by Natura 2000, so visitors must carry umbrellas and water themselves). If you follow the river, you will find a lake formed and after a while the entrance of Kourtaliotiko gorge. Hiking is easy and enjoyable through majestic sceneries, but it’s always foe the best that you have with you a pair of boots, even in summer.
To reach the beach you can follow the signs leading to Preveli monastery. 1500m after the monastery, there is a parking area, where you can rest the car and start descending to the beach. After 15-20 minutes you’ll get there. It sounds a lot of time, but the view is so magnificent that it’s totally worth it. Also, boat trips from Plakias are organized daily.
Moni Piso Preveli, is the historical and rebellious monastery, also known as Moni Preveli. In 1866, during the Cretan Revolt, the monastery sheltered many revolutionists. In the second world war it was a center of resistance against the Nazi forces and offered protection to Greek fighters and the Allied forces. That is why, just before the monastery, there is a military monument dedicated to the Allied forces in recognition of their struggles and the offer of the monastery as well.
Inside the monastery you will admire the monk cells, the cross with a piece of holly wood, the fountain and the museum with wonderful and amazing religious exhibits. A souvenir and gift shop also operates. The monks maintain a small zoo.
From the Monastery you will enjoy the panoramic view of the southern coasts (up to Saint Paul and Triopetra) and the Libyan Sea.
Don’t forget to pay a visit also to Moni Kato Preveli, which was built in the 16th century. Although the monastery has been abandoned it’s worth spending some time there.
And what’s the easiest and safest way to visit Preveli beach and Moni Preveli? By hiring a car from SunRise Car Rentals of course!