Cosmopolitan Agios Nikolaos is the capital of the Lassithi region, located on the shores of Mirabello Bay and Lake Voulismeni. The secret of the popularity of this resort lies not only in the well-developed infrastructure. Very close to Agios Nikolaos are Blue Flag beaches and attractions known far beyond Crete.

What to see in Agios Nikolaos

The main decoration of Agios Nikolaos is Lake Voulismeni, connected by a strait to the sea. If this reservoir did not exist, the city would definitely lose a lot. According to mythology, Artemis and Athena once bathed in the waters of the lake. There is another common legend: they say that Vulismeni has no bottom as it has an impressive depth. The lake is located in the center of the city, and the whole life of Agios Nikolaos is connected with it: tourists and locals arrange romantic walks, there are numerous restaurants and shops around.

History buffs should visit the Archaeological Museum. It contains finds from different parts of Eastern Crete - the oldest date back to the Neolithic. The museum displays artifacts from burial sites, vases, gold jewelry, bronze weapons, coins, cult figurines and statues. You can learn more about the culture of Crete at the Folklore Museum of Agios Nikolaos. The collection contains art objects, including Byzantine icons, folk costumes, handicrafts, household items, photographs and a reconstruction of an authentic Cretan house.

Among the ancient monuments of Agios Nikolaos, the Byzantine church of St. Nicholas stands out. It was built in the 9th century on a small hill. Inside you can see medieval frescoes and paintings.

Attractions near Agios Nikolaos

The surroundings of Agios Nikolaos are replete with historical monuments. Nearby are:

  • Ruins of the ancient city of Lato. In the excavation area you can see the Agora with the remains of the sanctuary, stone walls, workshops and a theater;
  • Spinalonga is the famous "leper island". It can be reached from Agios Nikolaos by boat;
  • The mountain village of Kritsa, surrounded by olive groves. Kritsa is famous for its authentic color and ancient architecture;
  • Monastery of Panagia Kera, founded in the 14th century. Its main church is decorated with medieval frescoes;
  • Faneromeni Monastery, located in a mountainous area, 25 km from Agios Nikolaos. The oldest of its buildings date back to the 15th century.

The beaches of Agios Nikolaos

The sand and pebble coast of the city is fully equipped. The beach, which will delight lovers of a lively atmosphere, has sun loungers, playgrounds, water sports centers and restaurants. The area of Agios Nikolaos is famous for its excellent beaches, so you should get to the nearest ones:

  • Havania is a sandy beach with crystal clear sea, 1 km from the center of Agios Nikolaos. This is a calm bay with good infrastructure: there are hotels, taverns, water activities;
  • Istro is a beach 13 km from Agios Nikolaos, covered with a mixture of white sand and pebbles. This bay is reliably protected from waves and winds, surrounded by green hills and is ideal for relaxing away from noise;
  • Amoudara is a long beach 5 km from Agios Nikolaos, one of the busiest in the area. Amoudara is not subject to strong winds and is well equipped: you can stay overnight in a hotel and try Greek dishes in coastal taverns;
  • Almiros is a beach 2 km from the city. It is suitable for families and offers a wide range of entertainment.

Please note: just 11 km from Agios Nikolaos, the beaches of the popular resort of Elounda are one of the most beautiful in eastern Crete.