Knossos & Lassithi Plateau

Knossos, the supreme Minoan Palace, just 5 klms south of Heraklion, is a sight not to be missed. It dates back to 2000 BC, was the throne of King Minos and the prosperous capital of Minoan Crete.

It was discovered in 1878 and excavated by Sir Arthur Evans to reveal the most civilized center in Europe.

Leaving Knossos the first stop on the scenic route towards central Crete is the Monastery of “Kera Kardiotissa”. It’s dedicated to the Virgin Mary, is run by nuns and it is locally known as Little Lourdes, with people making pilgrimages to pray for relief from their sins.

Driving south and up to the mountain we reach the fertile Plateau of Lassithi which may be the crater of an ancient volcano. It is surrounded by the towering Dicti Mountains on whose foot slopes orchards and small villages are dotted. Lunch stop will be at Tzermiado and then you may visit the Dicti Cave, an impressive site with its stalactites and stalagmites, where Zeus, the father of the Greek Gods, is said to have been born.

Crossing the villages of the Plateau we pay a short visit at a traditional potter’s factory, this ancient ceramic art, which completes today more than 8000 years. Leaving the Plateau the views down to Pediada Plain is truly magnificent and a short photo-stop will complete the day.



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