ARCHEOLOGICAL MUSEUM OF AGIOS NIKOLAOS
The Archeological Museum of Agios Nikolaos was created in order to exhibit finds from eastern Crete, which, until then, used to be carried to the Museum of Heraklion. The exhibition is not in its final form yet, but it covers a long period of time from the Neolithic times to the end of the Greco-Roman period.
The visitor can watch the development of the art of the area over time through representative specimens of various styles and times. The funeral gifts from the early Minoan cemetery of Agia Photia near Siteia (3.000-2.300 π.Χ.) in the first chamber and the findings from the Palace of Malia brought to light by the excavations of the French School of Archaeology in the fourth chamber are considered to be the largest and most important sets. The most famous object is the rhyton vessel known as “the goddess of Myrtos”.
The museum is accessible to people with special needs.
ARCHAEOLOGICAL COLLECTION OF NEAPOLIS
Τhe Archaeological Collection of Neapolis was created before World War II and within two years included around 1000 items, found mostly in the area of Mirambello and in other sites of the Prefecture.
IERAPETRA ARCHAEOLOGICAL COLLECTION
The museum was founded at the end of the 19th century, during the Turkish occupation. It has been forced to move to different locations on a number of occasions. Today it is housed in the Commercial Ottoman School, which has been declared a listed building, ceded to the Ministry of Culture by the Municipality of Ierapetra.
Minoan art: inscribed Minoan sarcophagi, lamps, late Minoan III vessels (1400-1200 BC), mostly stirrup jars and kraters. Geometric period art (figurines, vases), 9th-8th century BC. Archaic art (mostly figurines and relief plaques). Late 7th-6th century BC Classical and Hellenistic art (vases and figurines), 5th to 1st century BC Greco-Roman art (vases and figurines). Late 1st century BC-4th century AD. Roman period reliefs and statues. Funerary and votive inscriptions from Greco-Roman times.
At the northern entrance of Elounda Bay, at a key-position for the control of the natural harbour, is located the islet of Spinalonga, with an area of 8,5 ha and an altitude of 53 m. The island was fortified in the antiquity, possibly in the Hellenistic period, with a large enclosure. On the ruins of the ancient castle the Venetians built a strong fortress, which was designed according to the bastion fortification system by Genese Bressani and Latino Orsini.
The Cretan State established the isolation of the lepers in 1903 and decided to create a leper hospital in Spinalonga, in order for coordinated help to be available to Hansen patients. The hard life of the patients, who lived on the island until 1957, marked the area as a place of martyrdom and heartbreaking memories.
Vai is a region of east Crete between Cape Sidero and Cape Plaka, just south of the site of ancient Itanus but north of the villages that surround and are part of Palaikastro. Vai does not belong to them nor is it part of any civic unit of the local civic division of Greece. It is not itself an official village. The region is somewhat isolated on the isolated northeast peninsula, connecting only to Eparchos odos moni Toplou, the only road between Palaikastro and Toplou Monastery. The entire distance is essentially trackless and deserted, as the name of one of the beaches at Itanus suggests, Eremoupolis, “deserted city”.
The Lasithi Plateau, is a high endorheic plateau, located in the Lasithi regional unit in eastern Crete, Greece. Since the 1997 Kapodistrias reform, it is a municipality whose seat is Tzermiado and the second biggest village is Agios Georgios.
The Dikteon Cave (or Dikteon Andron or Dictaean Cave) is one of the most important and famous of the 3,000 caves in Crete and the 8,500 in Greece.
It is in the impressive Dikteon Cave, rich in stalagmites and stalactites, that Zeus was born according to legend. This is why the Dikteon Cave was already famous in antiquity, dedicated to the worship of the greatest of the gods, as the many offerings found there indicate.
In our days the Dikteon Cave continues to receive many visitors, no longer worshippers, of course, but travellers from all over the world.
The castle of Ierapetra was built to protect the port and the city some time in the 13th century by the Venetians.
According to a not verifiable version, it was built by the Genoan pirate Enrico Pescatore in 1212 and immediately after was sold to the Venetians.
In 1508, it was destroyed by a strong earthquake and was not repaired fully. In 1626 the admiral Morozini made some repair works.
The Kazarma Fortress in Sitia stands high above the town and is visible from the beach. It was built by the Venetians in the 13th century as the guard barracks, the Casa di Arma, a name corrupted to Kazarma.
Chrissi, an island 7km long with a maximum width of 2 km, is located 8 nautical miles south of the most southern town in Europe, Ierapetra Crete. The shores of Chrissi surrounded by the Mediterranean’s Libyan sea.
Koufonissi or Leyki Nissos is a small island in the Libyan Sea, off the southeast coast of Crete near Cape Goudouras, 10 sea miles from Makry Gialos where the boats set off for daytrips to the island.
Koufonissi is separated from the rest of Crete by a narrow strip of sea, but it’s often rough here, so boat trips may be cancelled unless the weather is really fine.
GORGE OF THE DEAD IN ZAKROS
The Gorge starts at the village of Zakros and continues all the way till the wonderful bay of Minoan Palace. The rock faces of the gorge contain a number of caves, which were used as burial grounds during the Minoan period and this has led the gorge to obtain the name Gorge of the Dead.
ZAKROS ANCIENT CITY
The palace of Kato Zakros is located at the eastern end of Crete at the slopes of a low rocky hill and surrounded by rugged mountains to the east. A stone paved road took the inhabitants from the palace entrance to the nearby harbor which was easily reached in a few minutes by foot.
Kritsa is located 11 km inland from the large town of Agios Nikolaos in the East of Crete. Kritsa is a traditional village with old houses and narrow streets on the Lassithi (Dikti) mountains.
As you approach you can see Kritsa nestling in a bowl at the foot of the Dikti Mountains, under a red overhang of rock known as Kastellos.
From many vantage points throughout the village there are far reaching views across the olive groves that produce delicious award-winning oil, down to the coast and up to the rounded Thripti Mountains that spectacularly fill the eastern view.
Hidden away on the eastern coast of Crete, Elounda is a pretty fishing village which is the perfect destination for a relaxing seaside getaway. You’ll love Elounda if you’re looking for a traditional Greek resort which isn’t too crowded or commercialized. However, that doesn’t mean there’s nothing to do here.
Lato was one of the most important Dorian city-states of Crete; its port was at Kamara, on the site of the present-day town of Agios Nikolaos.
It was built on a mountainous area, 3 kilometres north of the village of Kritsa, at the north-east foot of Mount Dikti. The privileged, naturally fortified location was considered ideal since it facilitated the control of the pass from Central to Eastern Crete, the whole surrounding area and a large part of the bay of Mirabello. The territory of Lato included the current areas of Agios Nikolaos, Kritsa, Katharo plateau, Kalo Chorio and Prina.