Lassithi Chrissi Island

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Location: Ierapetra

The uninhabited islet of Chrissi (Golden) lies in the Libyan Sea, at a distance of 8 nautical miles from Ierapetra. The unofficial name of the islet is Gaidouronissi (island of donkeys). It is nearly flat and its highest point is only 30 meters high. Visitors who wish to spend a few hours in Chrissi can enjoy the small sandy beaches and swim in the turquoise waters of the sea.

Belegrina Beach (or Golden Beach) is the most popular. Visitors have the opportunity to view the thousand-year-old fossilized sea shells lying on the beach, which give its shore a remarkable pinkish hue. Among the historical sites to see on the island, you will find the small 13th-century church of Agios Nikolaos, Roman graves and an old lighthouse, as well as some Minoan ruins.

The interior of the island is covered by a beautiful forest of juniper trees. Due to its unique and fragile ecological system, the islet of Chrissi has been included in the NATURA 2000 Program, a European initiative to protect places of natural beauty and ecological interest. Visitors can go to Chrissi by excursion boats that depart from Ierapetra in the morning and return in the afternoon.

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