Greece is famous for its amazing beaches. But the Athenian beaches and Athenian Riviera are less well-known. However, the beaches around Athens are very suitable for children. Most are sandy and the sea around Attica is relatively calm. In Athens, you can find family-friendly private beach clubs as well as public beaches. The best Athens beaches are spread all along the southern and the northeastern side of the Attica peninsula. They start at Kastella near the port of Piraeus and end at Cape Sounion. Most sandy beaches are organized with chairs and umbrella’s and often a beach bar or tavern. At some of these beaches, you will pay for using the chairs and/or umbrella. Others expect you to buy a refreshment or snack from the bar in exchange for free use of the facilities.
The Blue flag organization is a good reference for the cleanliness and water quality of the sea and beaches. In 2016, Greece was in third place among 50 countries, regarding awarded beaches. 7 Blue flag beaches are located in the Attica region, these are all sandy beaches and start from Voula towards the South and on the East side of Attica.
These are some of the best family beaches in Athens:
A recently opened private beach club with a lounge bar and restaurant in the quaint town of Anavyssos. The beach is clean, the sea is calm and the kids are welcome. A large parking is near the beach. Read my family experience at L’Amico here.
A premier beach club with all the facilities that you need for a comfortable day at the beach with kids. The sea is calm and shallow here. Beautiful crowd, comfortable wooden lounge chairs, a play area for the children, a large grass playfield, clean facilities, watersports and family (fast food) restaurants. I love the gazebo’s on the beach for extra shade. You don’t need to leave your children alone to place an order, use the service buttons at your chair. I love the spa here too for some kids-free me time. And did you know that Astir beach hosts an archaeological site! Very crowded on weekends in the high season but perfectly fine all the other days.
Definitely a personal favourite and very suitable for families with young children. Grand beach Lagonisi is part of the Grand Resort Lagonissi and located at a 40 km distance Southeast from Athens. Very family orientated and great for young kids because it is very shallow for a very large part. It also has a pool (for members only). Towels are provided so I do not have to carry them from home. There is a very large parking near the beach entrance. There is a service button in the member area as well as an indoor baby room inside including a soft playground, a place to rest and feed your child. I like the large showers outside. Little fishes near the dock offer hours of fun for my little ones. Good choice of healthy food at the restaurant.
Balux cafe – The House project club in Glyfada
I do not like the sea at Balux House for swimming but it is ideal for young children to play in the water and the sand. You can have breakfast, coffee or a nice meal while your children are playing right next to your table in the sand. There is a special menu for children. There is also a garden with a specially formed space, called Baluxaki, with many options for play. They can play around in the traditional playground with swings and seesaws and you can watch them while drinking your coffee in a separate area with picnic style tables. Or you can visit the little luna park with a bouncy castle, a lake with miniature boats, a carousel, a fun park and a children’s train for an extra charge. Babies can play at the soft play area. There is shade from trees in the playground. At the Balux beach are also a water trampoline and other inflatable toys. Facilities are clean and valet parking is available.
Mikro Kavouri beach at Divani Apollon Hotel
When my daughter was a baby I used to visit this private hotel beach often. I found it very helpful that I could park my car inside the hotel and that towels were provided. I loved the private little grass area at the hotel beach because it was just large enough for my baby to wander around in the shade or play in the very shallow water. The hotel beach is not very big that is why I would only recommend for younger children or guests of the hotel. Next to the private hotel beach is a larger public beach where you can rent chairs and umbrellas.
More budget friendly family beaches are available too:
Golden Coast beach in Marathon
Here I recommend ‘Kalokairaki’ beach. This hidden spot is located in between Nea Makri and Schinias in the Marathon area next to Golden Coast hotel. It is a humble sandy organized beach with a canteen but with very clean facilities and lots of toys to play with. It is very easy to reach this beach and there is a large parking right next to it. There are kiddie toilets and showers. The beach is sandy but be careful because the sea has rocks. Nevertheless, my kids (6 and 3 ) easily get in and out of the water here. If you rent a chair with an umbrella you get a coffee or a drink for free. There are snacks and small meals in the canteen. Check the weather forecast before you visit. Because of it’s location, the weather, and the sea on this side of Attica is different from the Athens Riviera. On some days there can be strong winds and waves.
This beach is located at a distance of 45 km from Athens at the North East side. In summer it can get very busy on the weekends with many young people and music but during the weekdays and off-season, this beach is great for kids. Schinias is a long stretch of sandy beach in the Marathon Bay with clean water organized beach clubs and watersports for kids and teens.
Markopoulo – Avlaki Beach
This beach gets very crowded in summer and weekends but is ideal in autumn. It is organized with umbrellas, chairs, showers and snacks. At about a 100 meter distance from Avlaki is the so-called Panorama beach, not organized but very good for families and budget friendly.
Mavro Lithari – Eden Beach
Located on the coastal road to Sounio, this sandy beach with pebbles and rocks is suitable for young children. The water is very clear and the beach has been awarded a Blue Flag. You can opt for Eden Hotel beach or one of the organized beaches.
Varkiza is a nice town for a family excursion all year round. There are many taverns and playgrounds and the large beach is sandy with volley courts, water games and open play areas. The best beach for families in Varkiza is Yabanaki beach. Varkiza is a small town and one of the most developed and popular areas in the southern suburbs, quite lively during the summer season.
The beaches in Voula are located 18 km south of Athens and are of the most popular in the capital. Very suitable for families with very long sandy beach with cafeterias, taverns, umbrellas and chairs in summer.