Tsikalaria is a beautiful village, situated in a green area at the foot of the mountain Malaxa, in Chania. It is located in the northeast of the county, just two and a half kilometers from the port of Souda and six kilometers from the city of Chania.

In Tsikalaria, the residents observe the custom of the production of rosewater blossom of sour orange trees, habit brought in Crete by the refugees from Asia Minor. Originally, they collect the flowers of sour orange trees, in March, at flowering trees  Then put them in the freezer and the distil is realized in Tsikalaria, just before Easter as rosewater is used in the Epitaph Holy Week and for the preparation of traditional sweets in those days.

At the bottom of the cauldron, they put leaves of bitter orange with branches, then throwing the flowers and add sufficient quantity of water to cover the content. Then, they add a little salt – for the maintenance of rosewater – and immediately after putting the mixture into ammo to boil. The distillation process is realized outside the old church of St. John in Tsikalaria.


If you find yourself in Tsikalaria, not forget to visit the Byzantine church of Panagia.

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