The bay of Karystos is of a horse-shoe shape forming two headlands facing south, while its coastline is over 20 km long.
The western headland is called Paximada. Off the tip of the eastern headland, Cape Mandelo, there is the small islet of Mandili. Due to its key position for sailing within the Aegean the islet hosts a most-valuable lighthouse which navigates boats through the Straits of Cavodoro.
The massif that overlooks the bay (Mt Ochi) gradually loses its height towards the southern coasts, where it forms a series of beaches with shallow, warm and calm waters.
The beaches on the eastern coast have more rocky sea-beds in comparison with those of the northern and western coasts which are sandy and quite shallow.
All these beaches are very clean as Karystos is connected to a main sewage system and a biological waste disposal system, which eliminates any risk of water pollution caused by domestic detergents and other waste.
Οrganised beaches (with umbrellas, deckchairs, changing rooms, cafés, cantinas etc) are:
Νot organised beaches. Some of them are close to inhabited areas and thus easily accessible and others are more remote and unspoilt.
- Matalia of Bouros beach
- Agia Irini beach (Koutsoukou)
- Vagonakia, Dikigorou, Chalasma, Kolibithra and Svoli beaches
- Nissaki beach
- Tripiovrachos beach
- Marmara beach
- Agios Antonios beach
- Agios Athanassios beach
- Livadaki beach
- Katsouli beach
- Pera Katsouli beach (Kali Kira)
- Elia, Palaiopythara, Kalivi Saravanou beaches
- Mnimata beach
- Agia Paraskevi beach
- Kalamitsi beaches
For most of the east coastline of Karystia, Mt Ochi maintains a high altitude and as it meets the sea it causes the formation of many high cliffs and few beaches. It is mainly the mountain torrents that over the years have cut through the mountain, forming narrow valleys and gorges and quaint beaches at their mouths. Access to these beaches by land is rather hard. It is much ea sier to reach them by boat. There are few which are accessible by fairly good roads.
In the vast majority, these beaches are remote and are enclosed by high cliffs.
All of them face east and their seabed, either sandy or rocky, shows all the characteristics of a coastline that is weathered by large waves. It gains sudden depth, has very little algae and almost no shells.
These large waves are a result of the strong air and water currents formed in the straits between Karystia and the Cycladic island of Andros. When the wind blows, one has to be very vigilant. For winds between 3 and 4 on the Beaufort scale we have to be very careful entering the water. From 5 Beaufort or more, going in the water is not a wise option at all.