The Paksimadia islands are 2 small uninhabited islets near the south coastline of Rethymno prefecture 7.5 nautical miles from Agia Galini.
From far away, the Paksimadia islands, which together are 3 km in length, seem like a joint island, since they have a very small distance between them. They were named “Paksimadia” because of their shape (Paksimadia=very popular Cretan chrispbread), while there are also some locals that call the islands “Elephandaki” (=small elephant), because they bear resemblance to a lying elephant.
The record of the Paksimadia islands is connected to Phaistos and they were called Dionisoi (from god of wine Dionisos) in antiquity. According to a myth, goddess Artemis used to hunt in this area or some legends claim that Lito gave birth to Appolon and Artemis, emphasizing the sacredness of the islands.
Moreover, only few people know that the Paksimadia islands have very beautiful pebbled beaches on the eastern islet on its southern side.
The Paksimadia islands can be accessed by boat from Agia Galini or Kokkinos Pirgos.