The beach of Myrtos or Mirtos is a nice and rather quiet beach, sandy and in parts with pebbles, in front of the homonymous village at the southern coast of Crete, close to the borders of Heraklion prefecture. The beach is situated 51 kilometers far from Aghios Nicolaos at the South, 90 kilometers southeastern to Heraklion and 14,5 kilometers western to Ierapetra.
The beach is well enough organised. The visitor will find a few hotels and rooms to let for accommodation in the peaceful village, suitable for families or for those who prefer to have solitary holidays, but be close to the big tourist resorts and the places worth seeing. For food and drink the good fish taverns of the village are ideal; fish is always fresh and tasty.
Mirtos Village is on the sea and has a decent size beach and waterfront. The beach has sunbeds & parasols for hire (7 euro 2 beds & parasol) and is mostly coarse grey sand with some shingle at waters edge. There is also a small sailing outlet with a couple of Catamarans and a small sailing dinghy, and even one pedalo! Lessons are offered and on the catamaran half or 1 hour sailings around the bay with the captain/owner. Eastwards from the beach runs the waterfront itself lined with bars & Tavernas (4-5 Bars and approx 10 Tavernas) there are also a couple of bars and 3-4 Tavernas in the village (the village centre is ony 50 meteres from the beach!)
Over the last few years, Myrtos has seen a significant increase in the development of tourism, always showing respect for the traditions and natural beauty of the area. There is also a unique orange grove, which, in combination with the surrounding mountains and seasonal river comprises a unique view for the visitor.
In summer, the presence of tourists, who come to enjoy the natural beauty of the area and the well-known Cretan hospitality of the locals, is really intense. During the winter months, the locals are involved in agriculture. The relatively high temperature maintained in the region all year round (it never falls below 12°C), means that Myrtos serves as a winter ‘refuge’ for swallows, until the difficult winter months have passed.
On the way from Mirtos to Tertsa (west) you can find also Vatos Beach.
Places near Myrtos Beach
In the west of Ierapetra, at 15 km of road, at the estuaries of the river Sarantapihos, in a verdurous valley with olive and orange trees, the beautiful, tourist, beach village Myrtos is built. It took its name from common Myrtle that grows in the area. Its beaches, the deep blue waters and the breeze of the Libyan Sea, the mild climate, have long ago established Myrtos as an ideal summer resort.
A place to calm one’s soul, according to locals and visitors, as if unknown powers give it a positive, vitalizing and therapeutic charge.
An old historical village, it suffered during its history by pirate raids, conquests, devastations. It has important antiquities, such as a proto-minoan settlement at the site “Fournou Koryfi”, at 3.5 km in the east, where a lot of pots and clay artifacts, utility items, baking ovens, statuettes and offerings were found, “Pyrgos”, at 0.5 km in the east of Myrtos, where a “villa” of the post-minoan period was discovered. Also, in the west of the village buildings and mosaics, baths and traces of Roman inhabitation can be seen. The archaeological findings of the Myrtos antiquities are exhibited in its Museum, the life work of the teacher Georgios Dimitrianakis, in the Museums of Aghios Nikolaos and Heraklion.
The old churches and chapels have also historical interest, with their most important being Saint Anthony of the Byzantine period. The old bridge, in the north part of the bed of Myrtos’ stream, is an important stone-built architectural work. The old watermills, which used to grind the cereals, the preserved plumbing and irrigation installations bear witness of the progressiveness of the Myrtos’ residents.
Myrtos, a former Community, today a Local Department of the Municipality of Ierapetra, in 1630 it had 28 residents, in 1881 it had 127 and in 2001 440 residents. A transit center for the products of the wider area, which were traded by sea, it had important successes in the financial, developmental and intellectual sector. It is a village of scientists, of individuals distinguished in the Arts and letters.
Myrtos, the sea emerald of west Ierapetra, green, with a good town-planning, paved picturesque streets, coffee houses and restaurants on the wave, with beautiful and organized beaches, it satisfies every visitor. Its important infrastructures, the archaeological Museum, its antiquities, the mild climate, make Myrtos a center of attraction of local and foreign resorters. The high qualities of the provided tourism services, the residents’ hospitality, the friendly family environment of the social and cultural life of Myrtos, by winter and by summer, makes Myrtos everyone’s village. Houses, trees, emotions, ideas, legends, traditions in the beautiful bay, the bosom of the Libyan Sea, left “quietly on the grass”, according to the poet of Myrtos Manolis Pratikakis.
ΔΗΜΟΤΙΚΟ ΣΧΟΛΕΙΟ ΜΥΡΤΟΥ ΙΕΡΑΠΕΤΡΑΣ
Pyrgos settlement is founded at the same period with the neighboring Fournou Koryfi (2600-2300 BC) but habitation was longer lasting as architectural had been dated up to the Late Minoan period (1600-1450 BC).
One of the most impressive buildings have been uncovered is the two floor Tafos-Ikia, which is built on the northwest edge of the village at the beginning of the Middle Minoan period (2100-1900 BC).
In the next period (1900-1700 BC) belongs a tower and a water tank while in the center of the fortified settlement, was probably where the seat of the local ruler was located. Late Minoan I period (1600-1450 BC) erected on a hilltop commanding Agrepavlis. The architecture is distinguished by its palatial features. It must have been the administrative center of the entire Myrtos plain.