Address: Pachia Ammos
The Monastery of Panagia Faneromeni is located between Gournia and Pachia Ammos, in a fairly high attitude, 540 meters, on the northern side of the mountain region of Ierapetra’s cross and arranged in 6 levels.
The Catholic Monastery dedicated to the Assumption and Life Giving Source, is a cavernous, in a rock cavity shape in the fifth level.
Its exact establishment time is not known, nor can be deduced from the architectural elements that are preserved. A major renovation happened after 1839. By the mid 20th century, extensive interventions that altered several buildings and the overall form of the complex happened.
The monastery operates today with communal regime.
Places near Faneromeni Monastery
Church, 15th - 19th Century
The small, barrel-vaulted, single-nave church was propably rebuilt at the beginning of the 19th century, close to the commercial port of Kalo Chorio. The surviving inbuilt decorative glazed bowls on its exterior possibly testify to its being older.
The church was obviously destroyed by fire as only the cross and the damaged icon of St. Panteleimon survive from its once elaborate alter screen. As was determined after the icon's cleaning, it was used to paint the icon of Christ at around the beginning of the 2oth century. Outside of the small church are graves, not only of residents of Katevati but also of others who were slaughtered by the explosion of a mine from those that the Germans had placed along the coastline of Kalo Chorio. During embellishment work witch took place around the church,marble slabs were discovered that confirmed the tradition of the area known as "Marmara, marbles". The famous italian traveller, monk and geographer, Christopher Buondelmonti, during his visit to the area around 1415, mentions the port and the existence of large, rough marble slabs which were transported, suitably chiseled to the location "Marmaro", where there were the remains of an ancient pagan temple.
The church celebrates on July 27, feast day of the Great Martyr and Healer St Panteleimon, and constitutes the largest local feast. During Vespers, the procession of the Holy Icon of St. Panteleimon takes place, while on the dayof the feast, after the conclusionof the Divine Liturgy, the priest, according to an old tradition, blesses the waters and throws the Holy Cross into the sea, from where it is brought up by swimmers.
Istro is no bustling tourist village, and those who come to visit will live alongside the local people. It is easy to relax in the warmly welcoming atmosphere of the Greek tavernas, restaurants and kafenions, and the shops in the village provide everything you might need on holiday.
In all directions there are excellent bus connections, which offer the possibility to see much of Eastern part of Crete on a series of day trips. Well worth seeing, if you rent a car, is the palm tree lined beach at Vai, the famous Minoan palace of Knossos, the Lasithi plain with its windmills, the island of Spinalonga, and Chrisi Island, or Matala with its ancient man made caves, and much much more.
Apart from these there are beautiful walks in the area, and Istro is full of archaeological interest. The new village of Istro sits on the site of the ancient town of Istrona, remains of which are still being found today. Because of this, the land closest to the sea has a conservation order and no new building may take place, which leaves the beaches uncrowned and un spoilt.
There is a regular bus service to Agios Nikolaos and other areas, a Taxi rank, telephone and internet facilities, Post Office, petrol station, grocery stores, restaurants, taverns, mini markets, souvenir shops, clubs, bars, travel agencies, cars and bikes for rent, etc. catering for the 2800 tourists staying in hotels, villas and apartments and for the visitors or day-tourists from other areas. Kalo Chorio (or Istron) is also a perfect place for windsurfers. Most of the days there is wind strong enough (specially in Agios Panteleimon beach) to take you in surfers paradise.
Panagia Vreomeni Monastery is an impressive monastic complex which probably dates from the Byzantine period. The Monastery church belongs to the type of monochrome domed church and came up from to construction phases.
The original church, was built in 1400 and during the 16th century an overhead narthex was added. The interior of the original church is full of wall paintings that are sample production paintings of Crete in the early 15th century while the 16th century constructions have richness and originality in the decorative motifs. The monastery is currently today inactive and belongs to Meseleroi Parish.
Very close to it two first aid stations, one belonging to a well organized diving centre, the telephone, and the beach restaurant of the hotel with Cretan and Mediterranean cuisine. Pilos is a particular beautiful beach, quiet and isolated optically from the hotel by a steep cliff of a sandy hill with sea pines. It has been praised repeatedly by the Greek and International Press for the unique colours of the sea.
Church of the Nativity of the Theotokos
Although not fully organised, the beach presents many advantages. Being between Istro beach (2,5 km to west) and Pachia Ammos Village and beach (3,5 km to east) and in front of a camping, it offers various accommodation facilities and good food and drink; besides, it is a nice beach. For swimming you have also the alternatives of Istro village (Karavostasi beach, Agios Pandeleimonas beach, Voulisma beach, Istro bay beach) and Pachia Ammos.