Secret Escape House, next to the sea, close to nature, spacious and homely, discover an environment of harmony and balance and allow yourself to be lost in the sea and breeze sounds.
A charming and cozy house (like home) of one-bedroom (up to 3 guests) with magnificent sea views, fully equipped kitchen, all the necessary amenities, indoor and outdoor spaces, lounging area and private parking.
Being located next to the sea it is the perfect getaway for, yoga, meditation, artists, and nature lovers.
You, the picturesque church of Saint Nicholas with its blue dome and the remains of the Hellenistic city of Ambelos and the Argilos Beach ... and of course the endless blue.
Next to Secret Escape Residence are located the beaches of Ambelos - Xerokampos. They start close to the church, at the east base of Cape Trahilos and all beaches are formed in several adjacent small coves.
The first one is called Gerontolakkos or Agios Nikolaos (due to the church) and the next one, which is the one next to the house is the beach of Argilos. Argilos means clay and the rocks here are argillaceous and this is why you will see many people bathing and massaging with the clay!
Above the beach of Gerontolakkos, at position Farmakokefalo, the archaeologist P. Papadakis in 1984 revealed the remains of the Hellenistic city Ambelos. Excavations revealed a prosperous city with massive walls, houses, and distinct roads.
Ambelos was founded in the 5th century BC and was a trading hub for the Western Mediterranean. The center of the site is dominated by the scenic church of Saint Nicholas, built-in 1895.
Few places allow you to be in such close proximation to your own beach and the beckoning sea.
And despite the feeling of blissful remoteness, you’re still only a few minutes' drive from shops and tavernas.
Xerokambos, in the eastern part of Crete, is not in any way built up, so going out for a meal or a coffee or a drink allows for the choice of one of Xerokambos' several tavernas. One is only about 300 m away, others up to 2 km. Often, each taverna will coordinate and specialize their menu on a given night so that one may be grilling lamb, the other mainly chicken, and so on. We've found the quality of food to be very good.
600 m away is a mini-market, well-stocked with many foods and basic essential items.
The area has many caves and the splendid neighboring bay makes a magical picnic place.
A better place to spend time right by the sea, in peaceful surroundings, and with a dramatic mountain backdrop, is hard to imagine.
Each of the Xerokambos beaches has its own unique personality. Just a six-minute drive away, two are well organized which, combined with the calm, shallow waters and a couple of tavernas ideally situated perfectly for a relaxing lunch, makes them ideal if you’re holidaying with little ones.
The rest have been left as nature intended – and each is a work of art.
The winding road into the hills above Xerokambos is one of the most scenics on the island and the lovely Kato Zakros is just a 25-minute drive away. There you’ll find the ruins of a Minoan palace; Pelekita Cave, a vast cavern of stalagmites and crystals, and the Gorge of the Dead at the end of the E4 walking trail.
Or for a livelier experience, visit famous Vai Beach, a small palm paradise with watersports, restaurants, and Europe’s only palm forest, as well as all the facilities you could wish for.
It may be that all you need here is a book and suntan lotion. (Although something to wear while swimming or visiting tavernas may be useful!)
Do note that Xerokambos is a long way away from anywhere! It does take some time to get in and out of the area and you should allow for this if you intend to explore eastern Crete from here.
The only way to reach Xerokambos is by car.
Why We Like It
- A great place for nature lovers, artists, writers, explorers, yoga & meditation enthusiasts and many more looking for a peaceful and relaxing holiday experience away from the hustle and bustle.
- A great base to explore lovely eastern Crete and places like Kato Zakros, Monastery of Toplou, Voila, Makrigialos, Koutsouras, Koutsounari, Achlia Beach, Agia Fotia Beach, etc.
Good To Know
- Hiring a car is a must and will allow you to explore the area much better.
- It goes without saying that the road less traveled sometimes takes a little longer, therefore you need at least a two-hour-45-minutes drive from Heraklion to Caves Villas.
- You have to book early, especially for July, August, September.
Secret Escape is a charming and cozy house (like home) of one-bedroom (up to 3 guests) with magnificent sea views, a fully equipped kitchen, all the necessary amenities, indoor and outdoor spaces, a lounging area and private parking.
- Double bedroom on ground level with double bed, AC and bathroom
- Sofa bed in the living room area
- Indoor space with dining place for 4 people
- Living room
- Fully equipped kitchen
- Outdoor space with dining place for 4 people
- 2 Outdoor terraces with magnificent sea views
- Exterior lounging area with endless sea views
- Private parking
You have your own fully equipped kitchen to prepare your meals, snacks, and coffees and enjoy the stunning sea view from your terrace.
Xerokambos is not in any way built up, so going out for a meal or a coffee or a drink provides the choice of one of Xerokambos' several tavernas, one about 300 m away, others up to 2 km.
Often each taverna will specialize on any given night so that one may be grilling lamb, the other mainly chicken, and so on. The quality of the food we've found to be very good.
Kids are always welcome to Secret Escape House but the house is ideal for couples and friends.
- Xerokambos has many caves, the splendid neighboring bay making a magical picnic place. A better place to spend time right by the sea, in peaceful surroundings and a dramatic mountain backdrop, is hard to imagine.
- Except for the two beautiful beaches at Xerokambos worth visit as well as the Salt Lake or Alatsolimni a large salt lake which is dry during the Summer months and in the Winter floods with water and forms a small lagoon. The lagoon is an ideal refuge for many migratory birds such as flamingos, herons, etc. In Alatsolimni forms and a beautiful beach.
- Flowers lover, then you have to visit the beautiful isolated beach of Katsounaki. To get there you have to park and walk for a few minutes. Between the dunes sprouts the rare and beautiful white sand lily.
- West of the main beach beneath the small church of St. Nikolas in a small bay is the well-known beach of Argilos or Clay because of the clay that exists in that area. Here you will see people covered with clay to make the natural spa a sand bath and massage. Next to Argilos Beach is another superb beach of Gerontolakos with crystal clear waters and fine sand.
- Visit the Toplou Monastery which is located about 11km east of Sitia, one of the wealthiest, most beautiful, and most important monasteries in Crete. The historic monastery has a very special architecture with a square shape and it looks more like a castle.
- Small excursions should include the Kapsa Monastery above the gorge of Perivolakia (about 10 km east of Makrygialos) and the remains of the medieval village of Vóila.
- You can also make longer trips to the famous palm beach of Vaï (but don’t go in July or August when it gets sadly crowded), the lively seaside town of Agios Nicolaos on the northern coast, the Lasithi Plateau famous for its 7,000 (or so) windmills, or, closer to ‘home’, the island of Koufonisi, to see the remains of the ancient Roman theatre and to go for a swim from the wonderful sandy beaches.
- Sitia Town is an absorbing place to wander around, doing no more than enjoying atmosphere. The small narrow streets behind the seafront feature the everyday scenes of a Cretan provincial small town: villagers in to stock up on news and necessities and stores which cater to their every conceivable need.
- Go to Kato Zakros which apart from having one of the largest archaeological sites just by the beach, has a far-away peaceful, end-of-the-road beach and small seafront, with a handful of tavernas serving all the food that you could wish to enjoy by the sea. Here you will find as well the excavations of the Minoan palace at Kato Zakros and the so-called Gorge of the Death a unique destination for hikers and the end of the European Path E4.
- The Cave of Pelekita is situated at a distance of 5km northeast from Kato Zakros, and is one of the biggest caves in Crete with a length of up to 310m and occupies an area of approximately 500m2. The interior is unique as spectacular stone blocks alternate with the stalactites and the stalagmites that decorate it.
- Don't miss to enjoy the traditional, delicious cuisine at Platanakis Family Tavern at Kato Zakros.
More activities at East Crete.
- Check-in: 15.00 pm
- Check out: 10.00 am -12.00 pm
- Minimum Stay: 2-7 nights, depending on the season
- PLEASE NOTE: For reservations less than one week (minimum 2 nights) a 20% will be applied to the above prices.
- Payment Policy:
21 days prior to the confirmed arrival date, 50% of the stay is charged as a non-refundable deposit
7 days prior to the confirmed arrival date, the remaining 50% of the stay is charged as a non-refundable deposit.
- Cancellation Policy:
In case of modification at least 7 days prior to arrival, a penalty equal to 50% of the amount of the nights cancelled will be charged in addition to the deposit,
while in case of modification less than 7 days prior to arrival a penalty equal to 100% of the amount of the nights cancelled will be charged in addition to the deposit.
In case of no-show, or departure prior to the scheduled date, the total amount of the reservation is subject to penalty.
In the event of a potential travel ban due to Covid-19 related government regulations, that restrict you from traveling to Greece, you will be credited the amount of your reservation against a future booking, valid for a period of 16 months from the original booking dates. Any deposit amount charged will be non-refundable.
How To Get There
The cozy Secret Escape Villa is located on the edge of Xerokambos Village with stunning views to the sea in east authentic east Crete.
- By Air
From May through mid-October there are direct charter flights to Sitia (47km) and, more frequently, to the capital Heraklion (160km). Tickets can be bought in advance for almost all flights via our partner website.
- By Sea
"The journey is the thing". A superb way of enjoying the journey to Crete is to fly to Athens and take the ferry from Piraeus (Pireas) - the port serving Athens. A still-romantic way to travel by the overnight ferry from Piraeus to Heraklion Port (165km). Tickets can be bought in advance for all ferries via our partner website.
- By Car
If you want to explore the region while you're here, we recommend that you rent a car, other means of transport are limited and/or infrequent. We suggest our sister website Crete-Car-Rental.com, which offers competitive prices and you can collect your car at either airport.
- By Taxi
Book your transfer online easily and safely from the airport or port to any location via our partner website
Detailed directions will be sent to you when you book through CreteTravel.com
- Dining: No breakfast is available at Secret Escape Villa. But you have your own fully equipped kitchen to prepare your meals, snacks, and coffees and enjoy the stunning view from your terrace. Xerokambos is not in any way built up, so going out for a meal or a coffee or a drink provides the choice of one of Xerokambos' several tavernas, one about 300 m away, others up to 2 km. Often each taverna will specialize on any given night so that one may be grilling lamb, the other mainly chicken, and so on. The quality of the food we've found to be very good.
- Internet Access: Wi-Fi Internet
- Swimming Pool: Not available (actually you don't need it :-)
- Communal areas: No
- Meetings/Functions: Not suitable
- Disabled Access: Suitable
- Pets: Not allowed
- Languages Spoken: Greek, English
- Parking: The house has its own private parking