Elena Venizelou Stadium
Places near Elena Venizelou Stadium
The Municipal Market of Chania is located in the centre of the city and is an iconic building of Chania. With its 4,000 sq.m. this is one of the most important buildings of its kind in the Balkans. Since 1980 it has been declared as a protected monument.
In this place there was once the main venetian bastion, Piatta Forma, which was the entrance to the city. Like today, until the early 20th century took place here an outdoor street market of the villagers of the surrounding area. In 1908 by decision of the Municipal Authority began plans to create a building that would house the market, and would give the city a more organized image. The construction of the building began in 1911, with plans to the standards of the Marseilles market, influenced by the architecture of the industrial revolution, and was completed in 1913 where it was inaugurated on 4 December 1913, three days after the union of Crete with Greece, by the Prime Minister, Eleftherios Venizelos.
The building consists of four wings with separate entrances, and joined together forming a cross shape in plan of the building. Inside of it are housed 76 shops consisting of butchers, fishmongers, greengrocers, a pharmacy and several shops with souvenirs.
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East of Splatzia Square of the old city of Chania is located the church of Agios Nikolaos, which was built before 1320, during the Venetian Period, as monastery of Dominican Order. During the Venetian period it constituted the most important church of the city.
It was elegant and big in capacity, with wide arches in the interior. After the predominance of Turks in Chania the temple was turned into mosque and was named Hiougkar Tzamisi (mosque of the Emperor), in honour of the sultan of Ottoman Empire, Imbraim.
Its importance is highlighted by the existence of two- instead of one- balconies on the minaret. In 1928, after being seized by the Christians orthodoxe, the mosque was turned into a christian church and has been dedicated to Agios Nikolaos.
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The clock tower of the city is located on the north-east part of the Municipal Garden. Its construction started in 1924 and ended in 1927 and constitutes one of the most remarkable buildings of the City of Chania.
It is located in the internal part of north-westernside of the fortification walls that was renamed to Monastery of Saint Salvatore. The exhibition is focused on the historical and artistic identity of region of Chania during the Byzantine and Post-Byzantine period.
The exhibits have been separated in units according to their category (Mosaics, Signs, murals, ceramic, sculptures, coins etc.) and are placed in chronological order, accompanied by information tables and maps.
The 1866 Square in Chania is located on the west part of the city, on the way to the "Kisamos" exit. This Square is one of "green" areas of the city, with many plants and statues of the heroes of the Cretan revolutions and an elegant Arabic fountain.Its name refers to the grand and bloody 3-year Cretan revolution (1866 - 1869) against the Turks, which resulted to the holocaust of "Arcadi". On the northwest side of the plateau, next to the hotels "Samaria" and "Omalos", there is the public bus station (KTEL) of the city.
The bus station offers a large network of destinations with modern buses, which connect Chania with Heraklion, Rethymnon, other towns and villages of the Chania Prefecture, as well as to other cities of Greece (Athens, Lamia, Larisa, Thessaloniki, Korinthos, Patra, Ioannina, Mesologi, ect).
The Grand Arsenal is the last of the 17 Neoria to the west. Its construction started in 1585 by the Intendant Alvise Grimani. A new era began for the Grand Arsenal with the addition of the second flour in 1872 during the Turkish period. The building hosted several important public services and authorities.
Nowadays, it has been transformed from a roofless ruin into an impressive building that hosts various events and exhibitions. Since 2002, after its reformation, it hosts the Center of Mediterranean Architecture, organizing important cultural events, artistic exhibitions and international events related to architecture.
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The modern city of Chania is founded in the site of a significant ancient Minoan settlement, Kydonia or ku-do-ni-ja as it appears on Linear B script. According to the tradition, Kydonia was one of the three cities founded by King Minos in Crete.
The settlement that is presently excavated in the city of Chania has as center the hill of Kasteli and is the most important of the prefecture. Large habitations with well-built rooms, elegant floors with circular cavities- fireplaces, coated walls with deep red mortar, door frames and ceramics of excellent quality are some of the findings that indicate the existence of a significant proto-Minoan centre. The extended excavations in the archaeological site of Kasteli, which constitutes one of the most important monuments of the prehistoric period of Crete, are carried out since 1966 until today by the 25th Ephorate of Prehistoric and Classical Antiquities. Some of the most important findings of the excavation are available in Chania Archaeological Museum.
The Nautical Museum of Crete is located at the entrance of the historical fortress "Firka". It was founded in 1973 in order to promote the nautical traditions and history of the island. The Museum cooperates and interacts with other Nautical Museums in Greece and abroad.
The permanent exhibition includes 2.500 items, such as relics, objects found in the bottom of the sea, paintings, maps, photographs, models of ships, nautical equipment etc. The exhibits are organized in units, in chronological order from the Copper Age until today. There is also a special exhibition of sea environment, with a rich collection of shells from different places of the world.
An important development step for the Nautical Museum is the creation of a permanent exhibition of ancient and traditional shipbuilding. The main exhibit of the museum is the reconstructed Minoan ship “Minoa” an experimantal model, faithful copy of the original ancient commercial ship. Other exhibits are the tools and the materials that were used for its manufacture, some photographs and a map of its experimental travel.
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The prefecture of Chania covers the western section of the island. The prefecture is known as beautiful and mostly unspoilt part of the island. It has an area of 2,376 square km and approximately 134,000 residents, the second largest population in Crete, after Heraklion. Chania is subdivided into five provinces: Kydonia, Kissamos, Apokoronas, Selino, and Sfakia. The main cities of the prefecture are Chania, the capital, and Kastelli in Kissamos. The main towns are Paleohora and Kandanos in Selino, and Hora Sfakion in Sfakia. The prefecture of Chania offers a wide variety of tourist services and activities of all classes and types. The city of Chania has also maintained characteristics of the Venetian era. The Lefka Ori rise behind Chania and drop to the Libyan Sea in Sfakia and contain many gorges and canyons for the nature or hiking enthusiast. The sandy beaches and clear waters of Falasarna, Paleohora and Georgioupolis offer pleasant swims. The Minoan, Roman, Byzantine, Venetian and Turkish archaeological sites attract those seeking cultural and historical information. The province of Kissamos in the northwest of the prefecture of Chania lies between the two peninsulas of western Crete. It extends west to the sea and south to Elafonisi Island. Kastelli is the main city of this area. The city has a variety of tourist services. On the coastal road from Kastelli to Elafonisi Island you can see the wild beauty of western Crete. The beaches at Elafonisi, Falasarna, and Gramvousa are among the finest in Crete. The many Byzantine and Venetian churches, as well as the ancient cities of Polirinia and Falasarna, may be of interest to tourists. The peninsulas of Gramvousa and Spatha are mostly inaccessible by car. Hikers can enjoy some parts. The province of Sfakia occupies the southeast area of the prefecture of Chania. The Lefka Ori cover most of the area. The province includes the plateaus of Krapi, Askifou, Niatos, Anopolis, Aradena, and Kalikratis. Sfakia has the highest peaks of the Lefka Ori: Pahnes (2,450m); Kastro (2,218m), and Troharis (2,409m). This wild terrain is one of the most impressive in Crete. The visitor may enjoy the panoramic view going from Chania to Sfakia by road. Very impressive also is the Samaria Gorge excursion and the subsequent boat trip to Hora Sfakion. There are many interesting things for a visitor in the area of Sfakia. The beaches near Loutro, Agia Roumeli, and Frangokastello offer the clear waters of the Libyan Sea. The Byzantine churches of Agios Pavlos (in Agia Roumeli), Michael Archangelos (Aradena), Agii Apostoli (Hora Sfakion), and the Panagia Thymiani and Agios Georgios (Komitades) are of cultural interest. The ravines and gorges through Samaria, Aradena, Imbros, and Kalikratis afford excellent hiking opportunities. The mountain hike to the refuge and plateau at Niatos, 1,500 metres above Askifou, may interest the visitor. With more than 40 peaks above 2,000 metres, the Lefka Ori offer numerous superb hiking possibilities. The province of Selino is in the southwest part of Crete. It borders the Libyan Sea and the south side of the Lefka Ori. The two major towns are the capital, Kandanos, and Paleohora on the south coast. The name of Selino is derived from the Venetian castle, Selino, in Paleohora. Near Kandanos there are many interesting Byzantine churches. The town of Chania, which is also the prefecture's capital, has obtained a great reputation throughout history. Walking on narrow streets of the Old Town you taste the historical atmosphere, meeting the ornaments of Chania, the Venetian harbour and castle . The old town is also the centre of night life. While visiting Chania, you have the chance to visit many archaeological sites which still bring memories of the foreign occupation. Arabs, Venetians and Turks left their marks in the town of Chania. You will be really enchanted by its picturesque houses, churches and its special architecture. Furthermore, the prefecture of Chania has the greatest beaches in Crete! Sandy beaches getting wet by the crystal light-blue waters of Libyan Sea creating an unforgettable landscape. The islets and the mountainous villages give an exotic image to this part of Crete! If you love unspoiled beautiful nature, you should visit the famous Samaria gorge or the steep mountains of Chania, called White Mountains . Chania is the ideal vacations destination. Luxury hotels, villas or apartments are waiting for you so as to experience what you will never forget!
Along the famous waterfront there are built numerous cafes, bars and a few traditional tavernas with wonderful views to the sea and a part of the Venetian Walls. The locals usually prefer this part of the waterfront to have a coffee in the evening or a first drink during the night.
The history of Kum Kapi starts during the last years of the Turkish occupation when the Arabs grew "Halikoutes", a small village, near a sandy beach and next to the Venetian fortifications. This district was called in Turkish "Kum Kapisi" (meaning Gate of the Sand) because of the Venetian Gate built there.
If you want to have a coffee in the Kum Kapi waterfront you can try the following cafe-bars; Elliniko at the start, Thema at the centre, Il Nostro at the end, and the rock-cafe Other Side near the end. There are also many choices for food like the first two restaurants at the start of the waterfront (O Aswtos Yios, Diachroniko) or the restaurant next to the Thema.
The area of Kum Kapi is quite near the old Venetian Town so that you can walk to get from the one place to the other. While walking , if you follow the seafront, you will meet more seafood restaurants (try the Dinos Restaurant) and cafes (try the Dio Lux).
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Giali Tzamisi is the unique preserved Mosque of the city and was built during the second half of the 17th century. It is located at the Venetian Port of Chania. The Mosque Kioutsouk (meaning "little") Hassan or Giali Tzamisi (meaning, the Mosque of the Seaside), as it is commonly known, is a unique sample of islamic art of Renaissance.
It was built to honour the first Sergeant of Chania, Kioutsouk Hassan. Nowadays, the Mosque has been totally renovated and is used as a place for events and exhibitions mainly during the summer period, constituting one of the charakteristic buildings of the old port of Chania.
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One of the most important constructions of the Venetian Period is the Entrance of Renier Mansion. It is a palace (Palazzo) of the homonym Venetian-Cretan family with a small family chapel of Agios Nikolaos and the impressive entrance with the Latin sign and the blazon of the family.
The largest part of this building is still preserved with some alterations. Over the arched gate of the entrance, the inscription is still preserved: “MULTA TULIT, FECITQUE AT STUDUIT DULCES/PATER, SUDAVIT ET ALSIT SEMPER REQUIES CERENAT, MDC VIII. IDI B. IAN” ("Many things he brought, done and studied, the sweet father, who worked hard. May he rest in peace 1608").
The rampart Sabbionara still preserves its Turkish name "koum - kapi (Kum Kapisi = the Gate of the Sand), is located on the northeast corner of the Venetian walls and is completely constructed in the sea. On the front of the rampart, the circular Venetian emblem of the lion of Agios Marcos is still preserved. It is the only preserved gate today and its external side had been modified during the Turkish period.
It is the only preserved gate today and its external side had been modified during the Turkish period. The port of Chania cannot be used by modern ships because of the shallow water, which contributed in preserving its old character, maintaining the signs of its conquerors till today.
The Etz Hayyim Synagogue (Hebrew: בית הכנסת עץ חיים) is the only surviving remnant of the once Romaniote Jewish community on the Greek isle of Crete. After being restored, the synagogue (with its Mikveh) has become a tourist destination.
Today the community is a symbol of a good living together. The community life has revived while almost all congregants are Non-Jews. Occasionally a Rabbi or (at the jewish holidays) someone who is able to blow the shofar visits the community. An International team takes care of the congregation work. Christians and Muslims are invited to visit the meetings and in opposition to other Jewish Congregations in Europe, the visitors have not to show their passport at the entrance.
Despite of the community's romaniote past, the congregation today uses primarily the sefardic custom of Greece and has developed its own Haggadah text.
At the centre of Chania, dominates the historical Trimartiri, the Cathedral Temple of Chania, the Temple of Eisodion of Theotokos. The Temple of Eisodion, as Cathedral and Metropolitan and Protector of the City, concentrates the religious, oblative and generally devotional interest of godly population of Chania.
During the 150 years of its life, the Temple has been identified with the fate, the life and the history of the City and has been valorised as one of the remarkable historical monuments of Crete. According to historical testimonies, in the place that the Cathedral Temple is located today, a small Temple existed since the beginning of the 11th century, dedicated to Eisodia of Theotokos. The Venetians demolished this small Temple, building in its place a big storehouse for the needs of their Monastery, that was located opposite of it, on the other side of the current Halidon Street. Afterwards, when Turks enslaved Crete (1695), they transformed the storehouse of Catholics into a soap making workshop that was open until 1850. The manufacture of temple was completed in 1860.
The Temple of Eisodion is also known with the characterization Trimartyri because it is composed from three aisles: the central, where Eisodia of Theotokos are honoured, the right, where the Three Hierarches, Fathers and protectors of Greek Language are honoured, and the left, where Agios Nikolaos is honoured, as substitution of the homonym Temple of Splantzia that Turks had changed into a mosque. The Temple celebrates on November 21, feastday of Eisodion of Theotokos, which is also a holiday for the City of Chania.
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