SPECIALS/EVENTS IN THE AEGEAN SEA
ARKADI MONASTERY (CRETE)
National shrine and chapel at the same time: the Arkádi Monastery tells of the resistance of Crete for independence from the Ottoman Empire and the tragic story of how people lost their lives in the fight for the freedom of Crete.
Arkadi Monastery on Crete: "This flame, which was kindled in this crypt and illuminated the glorious Crete from one end to the other, was a flame of God in which the Cretans burned for freedom." - Archbishop Timotheos Veneris
About 23 km southeast of Rethymnon in West Crete, the monastery Arkádi, the most important national monument of Crete, played a prominent role in the Cretan struggle for independence from the Ottoman Empire. The monastery (Μονή Αρκαδίου) is a former Orthodox monastery from the 14th century and commemorates the resistance against the Turks on November 9, 1866 in which almost 1,000 men, women and children were killed.
The to the monastery adjacent museum is a reminder of the martyr's death of the freedom fighters who set fire to the powder magazine of the monastery. The remarkable Venetian baroque church with the open bell tower was once even depicted on the 100-drachma note.
A stone slab with the citation of Archbishop Timotheos Veneris commemorating the events of 1866 was placed in the partially rebuilt powder magazine. In the adjoining refectory, one can still see battle scars on the furniture.
The circumstances of the fall of the monastery caught attention at international level and went down unforgotten in the history books. However, it is only in 1897 that Crete became de facto independent; it joined Greece in 1913.
The monastery Arkádi - a place with a very special atmosphere, a place of remembrance.
April – May: daily from 9:00 to 19:00
June – August: daily from 9:00 to 20:00
September – October: daily from 9:00 to 19:00
November: daily from 9:00 to 17:00
December – March: daily from 9:00 to 16:00
Entrance fee: 3 euros; free for Greek citizens