Destinations worth exploring
Standing at the crossroads of three continents, the atoll described by Homer in his Odyssey as ‘a fair land … amid the wine-dark sea’ lies the imposing island of Crete. Home of the Minotaur legend and birthplace of Europe’s first evolved society Crete is all about variety, a mosaic of contrasts.
Crete is a land of wonders where several civilizations blossomed, leaving their cultural mark in a remarkable heritage of museums, monuments, temples, churches, and residences. The Cretan land is a fascinating blend of seas, mountains, rivers, and lakes. Cretans and their distinctive way of living are considered the spice of life!
Elounda is Crete’s renowned and radiant cosmopolitan destination. Its inherent beauty attracts travelers from every part of the world. Built on the grounds of the ancient city of Olous of the Minoan era is nowadays a preferred destination. Those seeking luxurious vacations and tailor-made experiences will satisfy their most demanding and eclectic tastes.
The islet of Kolokytha
Spinalonga, a UNESCO World Heritage List nominee, is among Crete’s famous archaeological sites. Its strategic position in the ancient’s Olous harbor entrance led to its fortification during its occupation by the Venetians and the Ottomans. You can trace its long and tumultuous history back to Minoan and Hellenistic times. It remained active as recently as the first half of the 20th century through different uses and roles.
As much as Cayo’s seafront offers plenty of reasons to keep you busy throughout your holiday, its surrounding mountainous area’s beautifulness promises an unforgettable experience.
Enjoy hiking, cycling, climbing, or crossing beautiful mountain paths through centuries-old chapels and monasteries. More than 70 villages and settlements and their unique culture and traditions await you.
Agios Nikolaos is a cosmopolitan resort of impressive beauty built on the ruins of Lato’s ancient city towards Kamara. By many, its famous lake surrounded by hills is considered the town’s jewel. Agios Nikolaos provides the ideal environment for an all-day-long adventure filled with colors, tastes, sounds, and action.
Enjoy a walk in the streets, get to know places of interest, or visit archaeological sites and museums. Perambulate shops, traditional cafes, restaurants, and markets throughout the day. At night the city awakens amidst entertainment proposals you’ll remember long after returning home.
Not far from the cosmopolitan town of Agios Nikolaos, we find one of Crete’s oldest and largest villages. Kritsa commands its surroundings from an amphitheatrical position. Its rich tradition derives from an impressive history that goes back many centuries.
Kritsa’s residences of traditional architecture, with its many alleys and Byzantine churches, make it an ideal place to visit and travel back through time. About 3 km north of Kritsa, ancient Latos’s ruins, which are naturally fortified and strategic, present a stunning view of the Mirabello Bay that will reward your journey.
The Archaeological Site of Knossos
We celebrate Crete’s rich cultural heritage amidst every occasion. Knossos Palace, the largest Bronze Age archaeological site on Crete, is the preeminent symbol of Minoan civilization and the birthplace of thrilling stories, such as the myths of the Labyrinth with its Minotaur and Daedalus and Icarus.
The location was populated as early as 6000 B.C. Knossos remained an important city-state until the early Byzantine period. Despite its destruction by two earthquakes, the Palace was rebuilt, and at its apogee, it reached a population of 100.000 citizens.
The site of ancient Knossos was discovered in 1878 A.D. by the Cretan archaeologist and merchant Minos Kalokairinos. It covered 22,000 m2, reflecting its status in all facets of its economic, social, and cultural life.
Shortly after its discovery, the English archaeologist Sir Arthur Evans and his team started their excavations. Consequently, the British School of Archaeology at Athens and the local Archaeological Service continued their work on the site and its wider region.
Visit the Archaeological Site of Knossos and embark on a mystic journey through time to a unique civilization that never ceases to inspire and amaze.