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Hiking in Palekastro area with view to Kastri hill and to Kouremenos bay

The small plateau south of Palekastro and the pictursque chapel in the midst

Sunrise in Karoumes bay, exceptional beach between Palekastro and Kato Zakros

Windsurfing in Kouremenos Bay

The bay of Kato Zakros and the Deads Gorge in the background

Palm Beach Vai, 7km north of Palekastro village

Xerokambos Beach, 10km south from  Zakros

Itanos BeachThe sandy beach of Erimoupolis is situated slightly to the north of the magnificent  palmforest of Vai. The visitor can combine a swim in the sea with a visit to the ruins of ancient Itanos, which used to be the one remaining Heteocretan city.

The ancient sites of ItanosItanos had been one of the most important coastal cities of eastern Crete from the Minoan years until the first Christian era. Nowadays it is known under the name of Erimopolis. Its citizens were dominating throughout the coast of Sitia, from the Samonion cape (today cape Sidero (iron)) to the Erythreon cape (what is today called Goudoura) and the island of Lefki (Koufonisi).

Hellenistic city of XerokamposRecent surface excavations have proven that the area has been populated since the prehistoric times and is of great archeological interest. In the site of Katsounakia a large Minoan settlement was found but has not been excavated yet. In the hill of Trachelas a sanctuary was also found but had already been desecrated.

Hametoulo - Xerokambos gorgeThis impressive small gorge of Hametoulo starts from the region of Ziros by an altitute of 6oom, but you can enter by the region of small and traditional village Hametoulo and ends at the beautiful beach south of Xerokambos. It is relatively easy to cross. It is about 3,0 km long and the altitude difference from the entrance to the exit is about 400 meters.

Zakros gorge"Faraggi ton Nekron" (gorge of the dead) or the gorge of Zakros

There is a sacred relationship between the people of east Crete and the gorges since antiquity, when nature was worshiped and ancient Cretan deities were closely connected with its reproductive abilities.

Etia villa and settlementEtia probably took its name from the tree Itea (willow) The village seems to have been populated since the Byzantine period as one can see from the remaining churches of Aghios-Ioannis and Aghia-Ekaterini. During the Venetian reign it was on of the largest villages of the area with 563 citizens.

East Crete gorgesThe wider region of Sitia, and especially its southeastern part, is characterized by exceptionally beautiful gorges, where orange and grey-green colours prevail on their rocky cliffs, creating gorgeous scenes of wild nature. The gorges of the region and of Crete in general, were created about 2 millions years ago, when Crete took its final form.

Chiona beach in PalekastroHere is to be found  yet another Sitia beach sunning itself next to the crystal blue sea.  It is situated 2 kms from Palekastro and 19 km far from Sitia.  Why not try the famous fish soup (kakavia)  found in the charming little fish restaurants next to the beach.

Archaeological Park of PetraPetra is a traditional settlement, 1 km east of Sitia. A small tower from the Venetian period can be found there. It bears the name "house of Kornaros" and belonged to the homonym family. On the hill over the tower, a small palace and a settlement have been brought to light by recent excavations. The rooms of the palace were luxuriously adorned and its walls painted with bright colours.

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