Monastiraki

Monastiraki is a village of the prefecture of Rethymno located approximately 38 km far from the city of Rethymno.

At an altitude of 380 meters, built on the slope of Mount Samitos, Monastiraki is considered one of the most beautiful villages of the valley of Amari. The village is surrounded by thousands of olive trees and, with the green olives and grapevines at the foothills of Psiloritis, creates a striking image.

The origin of the name of Monastiraki is not mentioned in any written testimony, but the most dominating version is that the origin of its name is related to the existence of a monastery in the area.

The exact date of the foundation of Monastiraki village still remains unknown. On the other hand, we know from written sources that the settlement was given as a fief to a Byzantine family in 1254 AD.

During the Ottoman rule, a school, where students taught each other, operated in Monastiraki, the first of Crete, and has been the educational center of the region for many decades. The memories of the events of February 9, in 1822, remain important to the residents on the village. It was when the locals opposed the Turkish army and won.

While visiting Monastiraki, do not miss the homonymous archaeological site located near the settlement, in order to admire one of the most important Palaio-Palatial buildings of Crete. Moreover, on the southern outskirts of the village, in a green landscape, a hydrant and the ageless plane tree of the village both deserve another stop.

Finally, there are many Byzantine churches in Monastiraki village. The one that stands in the middle of the village, dedicated to Mihail Aggelos the Astratigos, is the most outstanding model of fine architecture, featuring some remarkable frescoes of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary.