Kasteli – Gramvousa – Balos Beach

Kasteli – Gramvousa – Balos Beach

  • 6 Hours
  • Sightseeing
  • Walking

Tour Description

Explore Kasteli, Gramvousa, and Balos Beach with Our Exclusive Excursion

Welcome to our Gramvousa and Balos Beach boat excursion. Here, adventure meets relaxation in one of Crete’s most stunning and unspoiled regions. This carefully curated journey begins at the picturesque port of Kasteli. There, you will embark on an unforgettable day exploring historical landmarks and breathtaking natural beauty. Whether you’re seeking a family-friendly outing or a romantic escape, our tour offers the perfect blend of excitement and tranquility. 


Starting Point: The Port of Kasteli 

Your adventure starts at the charming port of Kasteli. Kasteli is a serene harbor town that sets the perfect tone for the day ahead. It is undoubtedly known for its scenic waterfront and vibrant local culture. Kasteli is an ideal launching point for our excursion. As you board the boat, take in the stunning views of the Aegean Sea and prepare for the journey to Gramvousa and Balos Beach


Kasteli is more than just a port; it is a gateway to exploring the western coast of Crete. The town itself offers a variety of attractions and amenities. As you wait to board the boat, you can explore local shops. You can also enjoy a coffee at a seaside café, or take a stroll along the waterfront. The friendly locals and the relaxed atmosphere make Kasteli a welcoming start to your adventure. 


Gramvousa Island: A Historical Gem 

As you set sail from Kasteli, the first destination on our itinerary is the historic island of Gramvousa. This small island is home to an impressive Venetian castle perched atop a hill, offering panoramic views of the surrounding sea. The castle, built in the late 16th century, was a strategic fortress during the Venetian and Ottoman periods. It later became a refuge for pirates in the 18th century, adding a layer of intrigue and mystery to its storied past.


Exploring the Venetian Castle

Upon arrival at Gramvousa, you will have the opportunity to explore the Venetian castle. The hike up to the castle is moderately challenging but rewarding, as the views from the top are truly spectacular. Subsequently, from the summit, you can see the turquoise waters of the Mediterranean, the rugged coastline of Crete, and the distant horizon. The castle ruins themselves are a testament to the island’s rich history, with well-preserved walls and structures that transport you back in time.


As you walk through the ruins, your guide will share fascinating stories and historical facts about Gramvousa. You will learn about the strategic importance of the island, the battles that took place here, and the daily lives of those who lived within the castle walls. The combination of stunning scenery and historical insight makes this part of the tour both educational and enjoyable.


The Natural Beauty of Gramvousa

Beyond its historical significance, Gramvousa Island is also known for its natural beauty. The island is part of a protected nature reserve, home to a variety of flora and fauna. As you explore, keep an eye out for rare plant species, migratory birds, and the island’s resident goats. Without a doubt, the clear waters around Gramvousa are perfect for snorkeling, allowing you to discover the vibrant marine life that inhabits the area.


The island’s beaches are another highlight. With their pristine sand and clear waters, they offer a tranquil spot to relax and enjoy the natural surroundings. Whether you prefer to swim, snorkel, or simply bask in the sun, Gramvousa provides a perfect setting.


Balos Beach: Nature’s Paradise

After exploring Gramvousa, we will set sail for the breathtaking bay of Balos. Known for its crystal-clear, blue-green waters and stunning pink-sand beaches, Balos Lagoon is one of the most photographed spots in Crete. The lagoon’s shallow waters and warm temperatures make it an ideal location for swimming, snorkeling, and relaxation.


The Unique Beauty of Balos Beach

Balos Beach is renowned for its unique and picturesque landscape. The striking contrast between the white sand, pink coral fragments, and the various shades of blue in the water creates a mesmerizing scene. The lagoon is surrounded by rugged cliffs and rocky islets, adding to its untouched and wild beauty.


As you approach Balos, the view from the boat is nothing short of breathtaking. The lagoon’s colors change with the light, creating a constantly shifting palette of blues and greens. This natural wonder is a paradise for photographers and nature lovers alike.


Family-Friendly Fun in Balos Beach

The shallow waters of Balos Lagoon are perfect for families with children. Indeed, the gentle slope of the beach into the lagoon makes it safe and enjoyable for young swimmers. Children can play in the sand, explore the shallow pools, and discover marine life in the clear waters.


Parents can relax knowing that the calm, shallow waters are ideal for little ones. Evidently, the lagoon’s natural beauty and tranquil environment make it a perfect spot for a family day out. In addition, bring along a beach umbrella and some toys, and you have the makings of an unforgettable family adventure.


Activities at Balos Beach

Balos offers a range of activities to suit all interests. In particular, you can take a refreshing dip in the warm waters, snorkel among the vibrant marine life, or simply relax on the soft sand and soak up the sun. The calm waters are perfect for a leisurely swim, while the more adventurous can explore the surrounding coral reefs.


For those interested in exploring the underwater world, snorkeling is a must. Moreover, the clear waters provide excellent visibility, allowing you to see a variety of fish, sea urchins, and other marine creatures. The coral reefs add an extra layer of interest, with their colorful formations and diverse inhabitants.


On the other hand, if you prefer to stay on land, the beach at Balos is a wonderful place to relax. Spread out a towel, apply some sunscreen, and enjoy the warmth of the sun on your skin. Furthermore, the natural surroundings create a peaceful atmosphere, making it easy to unwind and forget about the hustle and bustle of daily life.



A Delightful Lunch at Kasteli

After your exploration of Gramvousa and Balos Lagoon, we will return to the port of Kasteli, where you can enjoy a delicious lunch at one of the local taverns. After all, Crete is famous for its cuisine, which features fresh, locally sourced ingredients and traditional recipes passed down through generations. 


At the taverns in Kasteli, you can savor a variety of Cretan dishes. In particular, from fresh seafood and grilled meats to vibrant salads and delectable pastries, there is something to satisfy every palate. Be sure to try local specialties such as:


  • Dakos: A traditional Cretan salad made with barley rusks, ripe tomatoes, feta cheese, and olive oil.


  • Lamb with Stamnagathi: Tender lamb cooked with wild Cretan greens.


  • Seafood Platters: Freshly caught fish and shellfish, prepared in a variety of delicious ways.


  • Baklava and Loukoumades: Sweet treats dripping with honey and sprinkled with nuts.


The taverns in Kasteli offer more than just delicious food. In addition, they provide an opportunity to experience Cretan hospitality and culture. The friendly atmosphere, coupled with the chance to taste traditional dishes, makes dining here a memorable part of your excursion.


Customize Your Excursion

Our excursion to Gramvousa and Balos Lagoon is designed to be flexible and accommodating. The initial price covers a 6-hour journey, allowing ample time to explore both sites and enjoy the stunning natural surroundings. However, if you wish to extend your adventure, we offer additional activities that can be tailored to your preferences.


Additional Activities

During the excursion, you have the opportunity to do additional activities, for example:


  • Extended Beach Time: Spend more time at Balos Beach, enjoying the beach and the crystal-clear waters.


  • Dinner at a Seaside Taverna: Extend your day with a leisurely dinner, savoring more of Crete’s culinary delights while watching the sunset over the Aegean Sea.


  • Swimming and Snorkeling: Additional opportunities for swimming and snorkeling in the pristine waters of the lagoon or nearby secluded spots.


  • Exploring Local Villages: Visit nearby traditional villages to experience Cretan culture and hospitality first-hand.


Why Choose Our Excursion?

Our Gramvousa and Balos Beach Tour offers a unique and unforgettable experience, combining historical exploration with natural beauty and local culture. In brief,  here are a few reasons to choose our tour:


  • Expert Guidance: Our knowledgeable guides are passionate about Crete’s history and natural wonders, providing insightful and engaging tours.


  • Comfort and Convenience: Travel in comfort with our modern, air-conditioned transport, ensuring a relaxing and enjoyable journey.


  • Flexibility: Customize your itinerary to suit your interests and make the most of your time in Crete.


  • Family-Friendly: Our tour is suitable for all ages, with activities that cater to families, couples, and solo travelers alike.


  • Culinary Experience: Enjoy the best of Cretan cuisine with lunch at local taverns that offer fresh, authentic dishes.


How to Book Your Excursion

Booking your Gramvousa and Balos Lagoon excursion is simple. Contact our transfer agency to reserve your spot and customize your itinerary. Our friendly and knowledgeable staff are here to assist you with any questions and ensure your excursion is tailored to your preferences. 


Whether you’re a history enthusiast, a nature lover, or simply looking for a relaxing day by the sea, our Gramvousa and Balos Beach excursion promises to be a highlight of your visit to Crete. 



Unquestionably,  this excursion offers a comprehensive exploration of two of Crete’s most significant and beautiful locations. From the historical intrigue of Gramvousa Island and its Venetian castle to the breathtaking beauty of Balos Lagoon with its unique pink sand and clear waters, this tour is designed to provide an unforgettable experience.


Join us for an adventure that combines history, nature, and culture in one of the most stunning settings in the Mediterranean. Book your tour today and discover the magic of Gramvousa and Balos Beach, creating memories that will last a lifetime.


Additional Information and Tips

To ensure you have the best experience possible, here are a few additional tips and pieces of information:


  • What to Bring: Don’t forget to bring sunscreen, a hat, sunglasses, and a towel. Comfortable shoes are recommended for the hike up to the Venetian castle. A camera or smartphone is also essential to capture the stunning scenery.


  • Health and Safety: While the hike to the castle is moderate, it is advisable to bring water and stay hydrated. The lagoon’s shallow waters are generally safe, but always keep an eye on children while they are swimming.


  • Environmental Responsibility: Balos Lagoon is a protected area. Please respect the natural environment by not littering and avoiding any damage to the coral reefs and wildlife.


By choosing our excursion, you are not only treating yourself to a memorable experience but also supporting sustainable tourism that respects and preserves the natural beauty and cultural heritage of Crete. 


Explore, enjoy, and immerse yourself in the wonders of Kasteli, Gramvousa, and Balos Beach with our expertly crafted tour. We absolutely look forward to providing you with an unforgettable adventure in this beautiful corner of the world. Lastly, if you would like to find more excursions in the beautiful island of Crete, check the excursions we have to offer here


  • Fuels
  • Water
  • Snacks
  • Wifi


  • Tickets
  • Beverages
  • Dinner


  • 1Pick up from your hotel or designated meeting point
  • 2Depart from the port of Kasteli
  • 3Visit Gramvousa Island and its Venetian castle
  • 4Arrive at the stunning Balos Lagoon for swimming and relaxation
  • 5Return to Kasteli for lunch at a local tavern.
  • 6Return to your hotel or designated meeting point