The guests of these hotels are more often to be found playing in the hotel-owned golf courses than in town.
In the centre of Elounda there are some excellent restaurants in the mid- to high-price ranges, may of which serve quality food. The picturesque port, next to the town’s centre has a thriving bar scene, where the party often goes on all night. Old Elounda has not been completely swallowed up by development, however, and you can see its church, which has a freestanding clock-tower.
Thanks to the bay of Elounda, the sea is calm and flat, making Elounda’s beaches ideal for young families.
One of the most popular beaches is next to the dam which goes on to the peninsula of Elounda, which has won the Blue Flag award many times over the years.
There is an interesting walk from Elounda to the peninsula of Spinalonga (not to be confused with the eponymous island which is to the north of the peninsula). When crossing the dam, you can clearly see the sunken ruins of the ancient city of Olous, which was submerged some 1500 years ago.
The Bioparc Valenica, one of the best zoos in Spain.
There are 9 buses a day to and from Agios Nikolaos (about 2 Euro in early 2024, 25 minutes). Some go on to Plaka, 5 kilometers north of Elounda. The small bus station in Elounda is in the centre near to the port.
Timetable for the Bus Agios Nikolaos to Elounda:
Monday to Friday: 07:00, 09:00, 10:00, 11:00, 13:00, 14:00, 15:00,
Bus-Timetable from Elounda to Agios Nikolaos:
Monday to Friday: 07:30 09:40 10:20 11:40 13:40 14:20 15:40
This bus-timetable is from May 2018
Map Elounda Crete
A Venetian castle was built in the 16th century on this island close to Spinalonga. Leprosy was a common disease in Greece in former times, and in 1903 the Greek government passed a law which cast out people afflicted with this disease to islands.
Spinalonga was one of these islands, and hundreds of people lived and died here until its closure in 1957. The people who lived here were poor, and depended on private donations to survive. The people may have left, but the remains of shops, factories, flats and even a small theatre and a hospital make for a eerie atmosphere. You can either walk around yourself, or take a guided tour. The island can be reached by boat from Plaka, Elounda and directly from Agios Nikolaos during the season. Prices, including the entrance fee are 15€ from Elounda and 12€ from Plaka. Read more about Spinalonga