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Alikianos
Category: Town-Village
Prefecture: Chania
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Alikianos



Alikianos is the head village of the Mousouri municipality in Chania Prefecture, Crete located approximately 12.5 kilometers southwest of Chania. Alikianos is best known outside the island for the fierce fighting which took place there during the 1940 Battle of Crete, during which the 8th Greek Regiment (Provisional) helped cover the retreat of the 10th New Zealand Division, to which it was attached. Today Alikianos is again the lively country village it once was. Nested in the middle of a fertile valley, which is irrigated by Keritis - the ancient river Iardanos - and covered with orange and lemon trees, the village stands proud, pleasing the eye with its beautiful orchards.

In the middle of these orchards, opposite the Da Molin castle, stands a Byzantine Church of Ai Kyrgianni church, built in 1243 and dedicated to Aghios Georgios, which is worth visiting. Inside, the icons of the saints, painted by Pavlos Provatas in 1430, have been very well kept. Another Byzantine church with impressive arched gates and beautiful wall paintings undergoing maintenance is the church of Ai-Kyrgianni, to the north of Alikianos, five hundred metres before the village of Koufos.

The byzantine Saint George church in Alikianos (13th century) with murals painted by Pavlos Provatas one century later is a must-stop-over for those who are interested in authentic examples of byzantine architecture and iconography. This is also the case with the even older Zoodochos Pigi church (11th century) that is located on the "meeting point" of the villages Alikianos, Vatolakkos and Koufos and features an anteroom and beautiful murals and mosaics. The people of the region call it "Agios Ioannis o Xenos".