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My wife Oksana and I were headed in the direction of Falasarna a few days ago when we turned the corner at Kissamou Harbor and saw a huge, spectacular cloud coming at us at high speed over the top of the Gramvousa peninsula. There was a turn-off from the main road right there and, knowing I wanted to snap some photos, I made a quick right turn. To my surprise, I ended up parking right in front of a small, but beautiful half-moon beach. There wasn’t a soul on it, and it looked like maybe there hadn’t been since last season. Surely there are at times, because a clothes-changing booth stands at one end of the beach. Crete is now open to travelers from some European countries, although in Chania, where we live, we are not seeing an influx of tourists. I don’t know if it’s too hard for people to get here because of official limitations, or if folks are just being careful as the Coronavirus pandemic continues to seethe around the world. But the upshot is that the Chania area, at least, is enjoying spectacular summer weather (30C/86F), while there is no one here but locals to enjoy it. I jumped out onto the beach and walked its length, taking pictures of the water, the sand, and the sights beyond. The clouds that kept billowing over the top of Gramvousa curiously never got any closer to us. As soon as they would pass the summit and roll a ways down the cliffs, they would dissipate. It was a fabulous sight to see – clouds boring down on us at high speeds, but never approaching us. There are no signs for the beach itself. I’ve Googled it since and found that one part is called Viglia Beach, and another, the eastern section, is called Trachilos. There is a sign for Trachilos on the main road going from Kissamos to Falasarna, so that should help you find it. But, in any case, it’s the very first right-hand turn-off after you pass Kissamou Harbor. There are even a few small hotels there for the intrepid.

Text and photographs © 2020 John Freedman. Please do not use without asking for permission first.

The road to Balos is cut into the eastern side of the Gramvousa peninsula.
The Kissamou Harbor is located a stone’s throw from Trachilos.
Looking east to Rodopos peninsula.