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If you can’t get on a ferry boat to the Greek islands to enjoy swimming in the Aegean Sea, there is an alternative.
Attica, the region that encompasses the city of Athens has its fair share of beautiful sandy beaches.
There is a catch though. Most are crowded during the summer as Athenians flock to the sea to cool down from the intense heat. Almost all have cabanas, snack bars, showers, cafes, restaurants and everything you need to combat boredom at the beach.
For the more adventurous, for those who want more seclusion and privacy there are still some attractive options. Some smaller beaches and coves give the feeling of being on a tiny island somewhere in Cyclades.
In its southwest coast there is Laimos Vouliagmenis, only a few meters from busy Asteras Resort. Though rocky, Laimos waters are perfect for relaxing and the vistas are spectacular. It’s like finding somewhere remote on an island, except for the hundreds of young people who come on weekends and in the summer because it is free, pretty clean and great for snorkeling.
Further south towards Cape Sounio, near Agia Marina is the small beach of Althea, also known as “Skalakia.” which is perhaps the closest secret beach of Attica. The picturesque bay of Althea is as close as you can get to Cycladic landscape: A sandy beach and crystal clear turquoise waters.
Following the main road, just before Cape Sounio, there is Legrena Beach is which located just after Charakas. You will recognize it from the sand and its crystal clear waters that bring to mind memories of an island. Visitors may discover many caves and small coves around the beach.
Past Sounio and Lavrio and continuing northwards you come across Daskalio beach. One kilometer south of the main Daskalio beach, there is a tiny — unknown to most Athenians — beach where you can find peace, quiet and crystal clean waters. Unlike the main Daskalio beach, there are no taverns and cafes and the breath-taking landscape bears a lot of similarities to Cyclades.
Still further north, at the east coast of Attica, there is the long beach of Schinias with its pine forest that reaches the sandy beach. There are also several fish tavernas on the beach and some fish and meat tavernas inland on the road. It can get very busy in July and August but it is a very long beach.
Finally, further north is Ramnountas. A hard-to-find location, Ramnountas is right below the archaeological site and requires a pair of comfortable shoes in order to walk from the parking lot to the beach. This is why Ramnountas is not crowded, even on Sundays.