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Skinias
Category: Beach
Prefecture: Lassithi
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Skinias



Skinias is the name not only of the beach, but of a larger region, 4 kms south-east of Palekastro, between the beaches of Hiona and Karoumes.

The quickest way to reach Skinias is along a dirt road starting from the settlement Agathias, 1 km eastern from Palekastro to the Plativola area and the little temple of Agios Spyridon. The distance from Agathias to the church is about 2-3 kms. You can drive there, but the area is paled with barbwires by the herdsmen. There are some gates made by barbwires, where you are allowed to enter and reach your destination.From the church of Agios Spyridon you will have to walk the next 1.5 kms. The area is very beautiful and you will enjoy the landscape especially before you reach the beaches, where the view is unlimited to the east.

The feature of the area is the perfect peace and seclusion and you will surely enjoy your swimming in the clear blue waters of eastern Crete.  The seashore around the area is wild and rocky, so the two beaches impress the human sight with their beauty.The beaches are only two and small, but the one (northern) is sandy and the most suitable for swimming. The second one (southern) has pebbles. The distance between these two beaches is almost 200 m.

There are among them amazing shapes of rocks and the area is known to those who love scuba diving and also for salt collection at the early summer months. The sea there is full of fish and the natives are used to fish there.Your sight will combine the deep blue of the sea with the dark colours of the cretan mountains and your body will enjoy the swimming.The only disadvantage is the lack of shadow, which is necessary at noon time, as the uphill way of return will try your physical condition.From the pebbled beach of Skinias, there is a signed path, relatively easy, which will lead you to the terrific beach of Karoumes and the area of the homonymous gorge, after 45-60 minutes of walking. Read about the hiking route Palekastro - Karoumes

 

Places near Skinias


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Skinias 2771 hits

Skinias is the name not only of the beach, but of a larger region, 4 kms south-east of Palekastro, between the beaches of Hiona and Karoumes.

The quickest way to reach Skinias is along a dirt road starting from the settlement Agathias, 1 km eastern from Palekastro to the Plativola area and the little temple of Agios Spyridon. The distance from Agathias to the church is about 2-3 kms. You can drive there, but the area is paled with barbwires by the herdsmen. There are some gates made by barbwires, where you are allowed to enter and reach your destination.From the church of Agios Spyridon you will have to walk the next 1.5 kms. The area is very beautiful and you will enjoy the landscape especially before you reach the beaches, where the view is unlimited to the east.

The feature of the area is the perfect peace and seclusion and you will surely enjoy your swimming in the clear blue waters of eastern Crete.  The seashore around the area is wild and rocky, so the two beaches impress the human sight with their beauty.The beaches are only two and small, but the one (northern) is sandy and the most suitable for swimming. The second one (southern) has pebbles. The distance between these two beaches is almost 200 m.

There are among them amazing shapes of rocks and the area is known to those who love scuba diving and also for salt collection at the early summer months. The sea there is full of fish and the natives are used to fish there.Your sight will combine the deep blue of the sea with the dark colours of the cretan mountains and your body will enjoy the swimming.The only disadvantage is the lack of shadow, which is necessary at noon time, as the uphill way of return will try your physical condition.From the pebbled beach of Skinias, there is a signed path, relatively easy, which will lead you to the terrific beach of Karoumes and the area of the homonymous gorge, after 45-60 minutes of walking. Read about the hiking route Palekastro - Karoumes

 
Palekastro Minoan City
Palekastro Minoan City 2739 hits

At the northernmost edge of the eastern coast of Crete lie the ruins of a settlement which flourished during the Late Minoan period (1550-1220 B.C.). At the same site, however, are preserved remains of the Early and Middle Minoan periods (3000-1550 B.C.), mostly cemeteries with well-built ossuaries, and ruins of spacious houses. The site ceased to be inhabited at the same time when Zakros was abandoned (1450 B.C.) but was reoccupied during the Late Minoan III period (1300-1200 B.C.). The city covered a total area of more than 50,000 sq.m., was densely inhabited but not fortified. 

To the NE of one of the city's sectors lies the sanctuary of Diktaian Zeus, which belonged administratively to the city of Itanos. Cult practice was continuous from the Geometric period (8th century B.C.) until the Roman conquest. It seems that the sanctuary was plundered and destroyed by fanatic Christians at the end of the 4th century A.D.

 

Dragmos

Is was a location between Itanos and Praisos (or Pressos). In inscription that was found at Itanos and is referred to 58-57 BC, near Diktaion Andron, cites the city. 

Stefanos Byzantios says: “Dragmos. It is city of Crete. As Xenion says in his book “The Cretan Issues”, the national adjective is Dragmios or Dragmites.”

Diktaion Temple was under the rule of the city. In c.3rd century, Praisos vanquished Dragmos and thus the Temple became under the rule of Praisos. Later Ierapytna vanquished Praisos and the Temple was under the rule of Ierapytna.

The area where Dragmos located seems to be completely inviolated the settlement is on the coast-side plain of Rousolakkos. The city was 30000 square metres. It was the second larger city (after Knossos) in Crete.

Cemeteries and single tombs have been discovered in the surrounding area; at Sarandari, Aspa, Patima, Petsofa and Kastri hills, near the villages Agathia, Agia Triada and Agios Antonios. A shrine has been discovered on the top of Petsofa hill. In the north, there was also a cavern. Kastri hill and the cape were the acropolis of the city. The gravel-stone pits were at Skaria location. Gravel was very common building material. Thewhich was constructed in Old palaces period, was linking the city with many other Minoan centres. In the end of the Old palaces period, the city was destructed and reconstructed. The reconstructed city was very well organised, in the Mid-minoan IIIB/ Postminoan IA period.

The Neopalatial city is a very characteristic example of Minoan urban design of large roads and blocks. In the Postminoan IA phase, the city was destroyed by earthquake. This earthquake might be part of the Thera volcano upheaval in 1628 BC. The city was again reconstructed after the fire disaster in 1500 BC.

In the early Postminoan IIIB phase, the city was gradually vacated. The last settlements were only at Kastri in the Postminoan IIIC period. After that period, the city was totally vacated.

However, the area was dedicated to Diktaian Zeus. There was also built the temple of Zeus, in the geometric, over the Minoan buildings of block X. In the Roman period, the cult of Zeus revived. At the position of the temple, there has been found inscription with “The hymn to the Diktaian Zeus”. Naked shield-holders young men, who were imitating Kourites, sang the hymn. The tablet is inscribed in both sides. The text of both sides is the same with some tiny differences. The scholars believe that the scrivener made some mistakes and thus he rewrote the text on the other side. The context of the text is invocation to Diktaian Zeus who visits mount Dikte with the Kourites every year. They glorify the goods and the omnipotence of Zeus and they invocate him to bring them happiness, fertility to their land and protect the army and the navy.

It is believed that the cult in the temple was not mystic and the artefacts testify that the cult was continuous from the Geometric period to the Roman dominion. According to the excavation information, the Christians of late 4th century AD, destroyed the temple due to their fanaticism against the paganistic religion.

There have been found very few artefacts: ornamental edge tile of Medusa, terracotta tables with representation of warrior-charioteer and a dog, four bronze shields, tripods, cups, idols and armour models. Outside the temple, there was found a shrine. This ancient city, like Arkadia, Kantanos, Elyros, Inatos and Olous, were places where foreigners could settle. It is assumed this city was Dreros.

The British Archaeological School at Athens excavated Paleokastro (perhaps Dragmos). In the first excavations period (1902-1908), the British archaeologists unearthed the high street, large houses in the city centre, the temple of Diktaian Zeus, cemeteries and other houses in the outskirts of the city and on top of Petsofa hill. The precinct, the altar, and other architectonic parts of the temple have been excavated. The altar was covered with ash. There were also found slates from the roof of the temple, with martial chariots, a terracotta lion, which testifies the cult of Rhea, and the “Hymn to Cretogenes (of Cretan birth) Zeus”, inscribed on table that was smashed into pieces by the Christians. In the second excavation period (1962-1963), block N and Minoan relics at Kastri were excavated. In the third excavations period (since 1986) some buildings of the northern part of the city were cleaned. In 1983, the area was studied topographically and magnetically.

The Greek Archaeological Office excavated the area in the period 1971-1972. The Greek archaeologists unearthed one incinerator, two houses in the eastern part of the city and more objects from Petsofa. In more recent excavations (1987-1990), English archaeologists discovered pieces of half metre statue made of gold and ivory. The statue is known as The Kouros of Paleokastro and is exhibited at Museum of Sitia. In the 2nd World War, the German bombs ruined the archaeological area. In addition, in the same war, Joseph Borsari, Italian infantry captain of Sienna division, destroyed the ancient city totally and on purpose (August 1942). He forced the peasants to remove all the stones from the ruins.

 

Chochlakies Gorge
Chochlakies Gorge 2728 hits
The Canyon of Hohlakies – Karoumes
The path which begins at the settlement of Hohlakies is quite easy and it follows the configuration of the canyon and only in very few parts the hiker needs to be very careful due to the lubricity of the rocks in the streambed.
 
During the rainfall season to the end of April the journey gets really difficult and at points very dangerous depending on the height and the momentum of water as the stream is still full of  water.
 
The canyon is full of impressive geological formations. On the vertical rocks from left to right impressive caves are created whereas lots of avifauna species, especially raptors, nest on the steep rocks. The best period to observe the flora in the canyon is during the spring.
 
Lots of rare and important plants grow at the bed of the stream and its rocks such as Aristolochia cretica, Bellevallia sitiaca, Capparis spinosa, Delphinium staphisagria, Vitex agnus castus, Scorzonera cretica, Tulipa saxatilis, to name but a few.
 
There are also lots of aquatic species in the marsh formed in the exit of the canyon with the Juncus acutus (bulrush) being predominant. Because of the rock erosion on the coastline around the beach called karoumes a huge number of fossils have been revealed.
 
 This is another well known gorge in the area which attracts several visitors throughout the year. The gorge of Chochlakia starts just outside the hamlet by the same name and ends at beautiful Karoumes beach. The gorge is impressive, with rich flora, stunning landforms and it offers and easy hike! 


Karoumes Beach (or Chohlakies Beach): At the village Chohlakies begins a magnificent accessible Karoumes gorge that ends after 1,5 hour walking to the pure and scenic bay of Karoumes. Chochlakies village is located between Palekastro and Zakros.
You can approach this completely lonely beach only through this gorge! Karoumes is the most remote beach in Eastern Crete !! Chohlakies is located 8 km south from Palekastro, on the way to Zakros.

 
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Elia Studios 2699 hits

Elia Studios’ complex of 6 studios – apartments (about 26-28m2 each one) is located on a quiet slope of a hill at the edge of the traditional settlement of Agathias, east Crete at Palekastro area.

Their exceptional position gives them superb views to the sea, the village and surrounding mountains.

The dictance from Heraklion Airport is 150km and from Sitia 20, Agios Nikolaos 85km.


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Μινωικό Ιερό Κορυφής Πετσοφά 2695 hits

At the Peak of Petsofas Hill to the east of Palekastro is the Minoan Peak Temple by the same name. 

Petsofas is the archaeological site of a Minoan peak sanctuary  in Palekastro, Sitia region in eastern Crete. Among the ubiquitous human and animal figurines found in peak sanctuaries, Petsofas uniquely has clay figurines of weasels and tortoises. 

Some Petsophas cylinder seals bear a male figure resembling specimens recovered at the Minoan site of Knossos. Stone lamps, ceramic altars and ceramic building models have also been found at Petsofas.

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Karoumes 2692 hits

Karoumes Beach (or Chohlakies Beach): At the village Chohlakies begins a magnificent accessible Karoumes gorge that ends after 1,5 hour walking to the pure and scenic bay of Karoumes. Chochlakies village is located between Palekastro and Zakros.

You can approach this completely lonely beach only through this gorge! Karoumes is the most remote beach in Eastern Crete !! Chohlakies is located 8 km south from Palekastro, on the way to Zakros.
Agathias
Agathias 2689 hits


Agathias is a small village of 200 inhabitants. It is located between Palekastro village and Chiona Beach. Its main feature is its old narrow streets and the traditional houses.

The recent years there is a significant increase of tourism.

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Skinias 2682 hits

Skinias is the name not only of the beach, but of a larger region, 4 kms south-east of Palekastro, between the beaches of Hiona and Karoumes.

The quickest way to reach Skinias is along a dirt road starting from the settlement Agathias, 1 km eastern from Palekastro to the Plativola area and the little temple of Agios Spyridon. The distance from Agathias to the church is about 2-3 kms. You can drive there, but the area is paled with barbwires by the herdsmen. There are some gates made by barbwires, where you are allowed to enter and reach your destination.From the church of Agios Spyridon you will have to walk the next 1.5 kms. The area is very beautiful and you will enjoy the landscape especially before you reach the beaches, where the view is unlimited to the east.

The feature of the area is the perfect peace and seclusion and you will surely enjoy your swimming in the clear blue waters of eastern Crete.  The seashore around the area is wild and rocky, so the two beaches impress the human sight with their beauty.The beaches are only two and small, but the one (northern) is sandy and the most suitable for swimming. The second one (southern) has pebbles. The distance between these two beaches is almost 200 m.

There are among them amazing shapes of rocks and the area is known to those who love scuba diving and also for salt collection at the early summer months. The sea there is full of fish and the natives are used to fish there.Your sight will combine the deep blue of the sea with the dark colours of the cretan mountains and your body will enjoy the swimming.The only disadvantage is the lack of shadow, which is necessary at noon time, as the uphill way of return will try your physical condition.From the pebbled beach of Skinias, there is a signed path, relatively easy, which will lead you to the terrific beach of Karoumes and the area of the homonymous gorge, after 45-60 minutes of walking. Read about the hiking route Palekastro - Karoumes

 
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Pera Karoumes (Mavro Mouri) 2667 hits
About 700 meters north of the main Karoumes beach, Palekastro - Zakros region, East Crete, there is a secluded area consisted of smaller beaches and is called "Pera Karoumes." There is access to this area in two ways:1) From Chohlakies village, you pass through the Karoumes gorge and after 1,5 hours walking to Karoumes beach. Afterwards you walk on a footpath to the north and after 10 minutes’ walking you reach Pera Karoumes.2) Follow the hiking trail Palekastro - Agathias village - Skinias beach – Pera Karoumes beach.The entire route from the village of Palekastro lasts about 2 - 2.5 hours. The route is beautiful and you will discover the hidden Crete away from mass tourism and busy traffic.Just next to the beach passes the path connecting Karoumes with Skinias area. The sea is crystal clear, as in all the surrounding beaches and you will surely enjoy the sandy beach at a place completely remote and almost unknown to many. It is an option for hikers who pass the gorge of Chochlakies and seek complete isolation.
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Anatoli 2661 hits

ANATOLI Rooms are located at the eastern side of the small, but picturesque traditional settlement of Agathias, 1 km far from the beach of Hiona and 1200m far from the beach of Kouremenos, known to the lovers of windsurfing.