Gramvoussa and Balos
Take an amazing hour-long boat trip from Kissamos to Gramvoussa and Balos through fantastic scenery. This tour will unveil fascinating Mediterranean scenery, starting with an ancient cave that was once a shipyard and down Kissamos bay where you can see curious geological formations.
Swim around this stunning island and explore its Venetian castle. Get back on the boat a couple of hours later and go on to Balos to dip in the shallow, ambient lagoons.
The boat itself comes with restaurants, bars and open decks to enjoy the great view. Make sure to get your camera and bring along your snorkeling gear for a special treat. If it’s not too hot hike around to get a real feel of the place.
Keep in mind that Gramvoussa and Balos represent a protected environment within the EU’s Natura 2000 network. They boast amazing biodiversity with some plants not found anywhere else in the world, as well as many rare and threatened bird species.
Loggerhead turtles, wild donkeys and Mediterranean monk seals also roam these natural habitats, so we ask you to please tread lightly and respect the fauna and flora to the utmost degree.
Lastly, you might be surprised to know that Prince Charles and Princess Diana dipped in the crystal clear waters of Balos during their honeymoon, adding a royal twist to this magical place!
Bring your hat or cap, sunglasses and lots of sunscreen to really enjoy the southern Mediterranean landscape.
Daily cruise to Gramvoussa & Balos
DAILY CRUISES – OPERATED EVERY DAY
- Departure 10.40 am – Return 18:00 pm (You stay two and a half hours to Balos & one and a half hour to Gramvousa)
- Departure 12.30 am – Return 19:30 pm (You stay two and a half hours to Balos & one and a half hour to Gramvousa)
COST: 27 euros (Make a reservation 1 day ago! The same day, all ships fill up due to high traffic.)
Reservation tel. 0030 28220 22900
BOOK YOUR TICKET
fill the “Request Form” or Tel.+30 28220 22900 / +30 694 7091549 or E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Kindly send your request at least 24 hours so we can process it. Eleni, Manolis or Yiannis will get back to you as soon as possible.
Receive your booking from our office or via e-mail and present it at Kissamos/Kavonisi Port (3 km down the road).
Our location: 131 Iroon Polytechneiou Str, Kissamos (50 meters after Alpha Bank at the left side of the road from Chania)
GPS address: Iroon Polytechneiou 131, Kissamos
Google maps : Balos Travel (Kissamos)
During the 1980s the locals used to visit Balos Lagoon on foot or by donkey, making their way on the narrow footpaths. The lagoon’s empty shores were ideal for gathering the salt, collecting wild herbs and fishing for a fresh catch. My Dad still recounts how challenging it was to reach Balos, even if everyone did it without complaining. On the contrary, his generation looks back with nostalgia at those peaceful days with a simpler life surrounded by nature.
Nostalgia aside, the beautiful and once remote area of Balos is now easily accessible, and we’re ready to take you on a trip to discover it in a number of ways: hiking, sailing, or biking.
Departing from the port of Kissamos and traveling for approximately 55 minutes in the gulf, you will admire a huge cave, that is believed to have been the ancient shipyard (Tarsanas) and it is located near the Roman city Agneion and the Temple of Apollo (today Agios Sostis). During the voyage across the gulf we often come across sea turtles (Caretta Caretta), the Mediterranean seal (Monachus Monachus) and dolphins of the area.
At the end of the Gulf you will notice an impressive geological phenomenon where, as a result of the passage of time, the western part of the island is elevated, while the eastern part is sunk.
This phenomenon was created by catastrophic earthquakes that took place in66 ACand 365 BC. These earthquakes, caused by the movement of the lithospheric plates of Africa, caused the abrupt elevation ofCretefrom 6m to 9m above sea level. This ancient shoreline can still be seen today as a black trace along the rocky coast.
According to scientific estimates, this geographical phenomenon, of the so called elevation, is still continuing today, but at a much slower rate.
Reaching the end of the gulf, if the atmosphere is clear and there is good visibility, as the boat passes between the island of Agria Gramvousa and cape Vouxa, one can spot the island of Antikythira in the distance. By this time and at this point, you will admire an amazing landscape, followed in the distance by the view of Valenti, Pontikonisi, the lagoon of Balos and Imeri Gramvousa, with its castle, where the boat will sail to in 15 minutes.
After an hour , you arrive at the smallport of Gramvousa and you can disembark, while the boat awaits your return in around 2 hours time. The famous castle, was built by the Venetians in 1579 at the highest point of the island, on top of a steep rock at a height of 137m.
It is surrounded by a wall of 272m, where the abrupt rock does not offer any natural fortification. It has a roughly triangular shape and each side is 1km in length. Gramvousa castle played an important role in the history of the region.
The panoramic view, the imposingness and the legend of the hidden treasure of the pirates tempt you to visit it. The walk takes approximately 20 minutes.
Besides visiting the castle, you can swim at the beach next to the small church of Ag. Apostoloi or remain on the boat relaxing and swimming around it using for your enjoyment a special water slide attached to the side of the ship.
You can also have lunch or enjoy a drink from the ship’s restaurant-bar that is open all day long.
Following the 2 hour visit to Gramvousa, the boat will depart for the lagoon of Balos, a journey of approximately 15 minutes.
Arriving at the lagoon, and because there is no port there, the ship,depending on the weather conditions, either will drop anchor in the cove of Gramvousa (Tigani) (within 200 meters from the beach and at an approximately 4m depth) ,and disembarkation will take place from large boats ,or it will approach a point of the beach, where you will be able to disembark.
Definitely, it’s one of the most beautiful places in Greece, with its unique beautiful sandy beach and variety of shells.
Your stay at the lagoon, where you can enjoy a fantastic swim, will last for about three hours.
It is also possible, if you wish, to swim to shore or remain on board , in order to relax and swim around the ship. The bar on board is open all day and you can have lunch, refreshments, coffee, ice-creams etc, while enjoying pleasant music.
On the ship you can return whenever you want, but you should be within that maximum ten minutes (10 ‘) before its departure.
Price without pickup: 27 euros per person (see applicable discounts below for children, seniors, students, groups, etc.)
Includes round-trip boat ticket. Excludes environment tax at port: 1€ extra per person (Natura 2000 area).
Price with hotel / town pick-up: 39 euros per person (no discounts apply to pick-up package)
Pickups available every day from your hotel or from the following points: Chania Centre (main market), Agioi Apostoloi, Daratso, Kalamaki, Stalos, Agia Marina, Platanias, Gerani, Malame, Tavronitis, Kolimbari
SPECIAL PRICES & DISCOUNTS
Apply to phone, email or in-office ticket purchases, without hotel/town pickup.
- Toddlers: Free up to 2 years old
- Children: 50% off (13 euros total)
- Students: 13 euros for those aged 3-12 years, 23 euros for all others, relevant ID card required.
- Groups of 10 or over: 20% off (23 euros total)
- People with disabilities: 20% off (23 euros total)
- Large families (with at least 4 children): 20% off (23 euros total)
- Pensioners/seniors (65 and over): 20% off (23 euros total, relevant ID card required)
- ANEK Lines: 20% off (23 euros total) with ID card and ticket stub if you travel with ANEK from May to October 2016 on the Piraeus-Chania/Herakleion-Piraeus route or vice versa. Applies to full-rate tickets.
Different discounts cannot be combined.
Environment tax at port: 1 euro extra per person (Natura 2000 area)
All other taxes included in the price.
Kindly send your request at least 24 hours so we can process it. Eleni or Yiannis will get back to you as soon as possible.