Address in France: 20, Boulevard Joseph Garnier F-06000 Nice
Address in Greece: Astrikas - Chania - Crete, 73006 Greece
Tip of the day
Ancient Aptera. Following the northern
road axis towards Rethymnon and at a distance of 15
km from Chania, you will visit the site where the ancient
city of Aptera was built. The ancient city of Aptera
was one of the most important ancient city-states in
western Crete. It was founded in the 7th century B.C.
and was completely destroyed in 823 A.D. by Saracene
pirates after having achieved a glorious past for centuries.
The place-name is attributed to Aptera or Ptera who
was its founder and leader. According to another version
of the story, it was called Aptera by the Sirens who
establised "the city Aptera and the islets of Leukai"
after their defeat in the race with the Muses. It is
also believed that they fell into the sea and in this
way the islets Leukai were created in the bay of Souda.
The finds give evidence that it was inhabited from the
archaic period up to the Byzantine years and developed
important commercial activity.
Archaeological excavations show a small Sanctuary most
likely dedicated to the goddess Demeter. Statues, epigraphs,
epitaph pillars and ceramics which today decorate the
showcases of the Archaeological Museum of Chania have
been discovered. You will also see at the site relics
of a small theater, foundations of houses, carved tombs-
of the Roman Age - and many large dome-shaped reservoirs
of which one well-preserved is divided into three sections.
Also found in the vicinity were coins that give evidence
of the autonomy of the city.