Ano Malaki

The Ano Malaki is a village in the central part of the prefecture of Rethymno, 21 km southwest of the city of Rethymno, shortly after the Kato Malaki and near Saitoures.

The Malaki is already indicated in the Venetian census of the 16th and 17th centuries as two settlements.

The area of Ano Malaki and Kato Malaki has been inhabited since ancient times, which can be proved by the findings of many carved stone crushers and wells of Minoan era. In some places, where the erosion has swept away the soil, traces of the ploughshare of Isiodos plow can be seen, while there are berms on the slopes of the canyons. During agricultural works, some fossils of sea starfish, stuck into the rocky ground, have been found by chance.

As far as the name of Ano Malaki is concerned, the so far research has not discovered something or someone related to it, as it happens with other villages. It is possible, though, that the village bears the name of the sea molluscs that were found in this area so far from the sea.

Another version mentions the word “wool” and its diminutive mallaki, since the two villages have had a developed livestock farming and big wool production of good quality.

An important festival in Ano Malaki, which is also written as Ano Mallaki, is the feast of Agios Georgios (St. George) the Methystis held on November 3, when, during the Divine Liturgy in the homonymous church, the exhumation of the relics of Agios Georgios (St. George) is celebrated. The date coincides with the opening of the barrels of wine of the new harvest. During the event, plenty of wine and traditional snacks are offered under the accompaniment of Cretan music.

The church of Agios Georgios (St. George) in Ano Malaki is a picturesque Byzantine style chapel dated around 1000 AD in a unique wild nature landscape.

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