Heraklion Matala beach

General information

Matala Beach is one of the most famous beaches in Greece, located 67 km southwest of Heraklion town. The beach extends for over 300 meters, with light golden sand and bamboo umbrellas and sun beds available for rent.

Matala gained its reputation in the 1960s, as a gathering spot for the young hippies of the era. It lies at the end of a valley and is surrounded by a couple of craggy hills.
On the northern cliff face, one can see the artificial caverns that date back to the Neolithic period, when it is believed they functioned as gravesites.

Hotels in Matala

We have made a selection of the best hotels in Matala.

Thalasso Resort

Apartments3 keys

Thalasso Resort is ideal for seafront accommodation, as it is located on the famous beach of Matala. In addition to its stunning sea views, the resort stands out for its modern design and amazing facilities. Its apartments are minimally decorated, with private balconies and kitchenettes.


Marina Matala

Hotel2 stars

Marina Hotel is located a short drive away from the famous beach of Matala. Featuring a swimming pool, the hotel has a friendly and peaceful atmosphere and its rooms have a modern style. All the rooms are air-conditioned and from there you will be able to reach the beach in a few minutes.


Valley Village

Hotel Apartments Villas Bungalows3 stars

Situated near the beach of Matala, Valley Village provides swimming pools and a breakfast lounge among other facilities. The hotel's apartments, rooms and bungalows are minimal and comfortable, with complimentary amenities, and they open to private balconies or the hotel's lush green garden.


Things to See & Do in Matala

Check out the things to see & do in Matala during your stay and explore what the area has to offer.


Top Activities & Tours in Matala

Experience once-in-a-lifetime moments by participating in well-organized tours related to Matala.

Matala Map

Explore our interactive map of Matala.

More about Matala Beach

The caves of Matala are better remembered as the residences of the hippies who made the beach famous, including many celebrities, such as Bob Dylan, Joan Baez, and Joni Mitchell, whose 1971 song “Carey” is about this community.
Access to the Matala caves is limited nowadays, mainly due to archaeological interest.

Matala’s reputation has had a lasting effect and, even though the hippies are left in the past, the area has seen important development to accommodate the tourists who still arrive in droves. Many tavernas and beach bars line the far end of the sand, and a great number of sunbeds and umbrellas are laid out in the summer. A lifeguard tower and a beach volleyball court complete the picture, supplemented by a campsite further away from the sea.


1 Review
  • franc45 03 Feb 2011
    The old paradise of hippies
    Matala is located very far away from the tourist places of northern Heraklion, we drove about 70 km and the weather was incredibly hot that day. However, the golden sand, the crystal clear waters and the mysterious rocks that stand right above you, are definitely a reward once you get there. Though, that day the beach was very crowded still I enjoyed the beauty of the place. It is worth to make a stop and enjoy a coffee. Matala was popular especially during the 1960s, the time of the hippies movement where they gathered inside the caves as a sign of rebellion. Today these caves are considered protected archaeological areas and they are fenced. If you are a fan of this era like me, you will soon feel the carelessness atmosphere of those years. Also from Matala, visitors can take the small boats for a tour around the area.