Kastelli Fournis - A Small “Venice” in Crete

Crete, the beloved holiday destination of Greece, besides its popular tourist resorts and dreamy beaches, hides little precious gems in its hinterland, which are worth discovering and adding to your chest of memories.

One of these precious gems in Crete is the picturesque village of Kastelli Fournis, found in the area of Epano Mirabello, in the prefecture of Lassithi, 12 km west from the cosmopolitan Elounda resort and 16 km from the city of Agios Nikolaos. Marks of great cultural tradition are omnipresent in every tidy corner and flower-decorated alley, while the slow and lazy rhythms are the basic characteristics of the village.

Kastelli Fournis is actually comprised by three different villages, close one to another; the villages of Kastelli, Kato Chorio and Pano Chorio, all located in the homonymous fertile plain at an altitude of 320m and connected by a magnificent 400m-long road with eucalyptuses and cypresses. Kastelli Fournis is among the oldest villages of the island, with its existence being mentioned from 1.4000 AD. Today is characterized by the same natural environment, still maintaining the well as its Neolithic inhabitants.

Considered as a significant old settlement, the village Kastelli Fournis owes its name to the Venetian word Kastelium, which means fortress. The Venetian element and scent is widespread in buildings of architectural interest, which brings to mind images from the enchanting Venice - even without the water element.

Among the things worth seeing is the Byzantine church of Agios Apostolos with its remarkable frescoes, as well as the historic monastery of the Lord Christ. It is worthwhile to plan and visit the village at August 15th, the day of the feast of the Virgin Mary and attend the annual festival and have fun with local lyres and rich delicacies.

Travelling to the villages of Crete like Kastelli Fournis is a unique getaway to Crete’s most intact elements to meet authentic hospitable Cretans that will fill your glass with raki and offer you the finest meze plate.

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