Monasteries in Crete • Chrispy Waterpark Resort

Monasteries in Crete

Monasteries in Crete have played a significant role in the island’s history and culture. These religious establishments are known for their striking architecture, rich historical background, and spiritual significance. Specifically, Cretans are incredibly religious and take much pride in these monumental buildings that date back to many centuries ago.

There are many monasteries in Crete that worth visiting during your holidays in the island. Check out below the top picks, plan your day trip to extend your admiration and become familiar with these holy places. Overall, these religious establishments are not only important from a spiritual perspective but also offer a fascinating look into the island's past.

Monastery of Odigitria Gonia 2,8km

The Monastery of Odigitria Gonia is a historical landmark in the town of Spatha, Crete. The monastery was founded in the 17th century and soon flourished due to the rich monastic tradition that developed in Spatha. The monks gathered in Gonia Monastery and it played an important role in local history. The monastery served as a shelter for the rebels of Crete and was thus destroyed multiple times by various conquerors. The canon ball which is stuck in the east wall of the monastery is proof of that fact. The initial church, which dates back to the 14th century, is located near the present monastery complex. The tall wall that surrounds that complex results in it looking like a Venetian castle. The monastery includes monk cells, an abbey, a dining room, cellars, but also the Orthodox Academy of Crete, schools, a gym and a pool, among other buildings.

Marathokefala, Cave of St John 5.1 km.

Spilia is a small village which can be found in the area of Marathokefala, best known for its Cave of St John, a small cavern that was once used as a secret school during the Ottoman Era, when the area was conquered by the Turks. Nowadays, the cave is a popular tourist destination, and visitors can see the "holy water of Agios Ioannis" that drips from a crack in the rock. Marathokefala is also home to a small church and a crypt in which Saint John the Hermit resorted to hiding from shepherds and farmers who were visiting him frequently. It is without a question, among the most unique monasteries in Crete. 


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