SPECIALS/EVENTS IN THE AEGEAN SEA
KNOSSOS PALACE (CRETE)
Famous and unique: the ruins of the Minoan Palace of Knossos – not just a superlative of architecture, but a fascinating journey back to the days of the Minoan culture.
Knossos Palace: The ruins of the palace of Knossos are one of the highlights of the history of Crete. Compared to the palaces of Malia, Phaistos and Kato Zakros, it is the largest and most important palace on Crete and even of Greece. It was rightfully awarded the European Heritage Label.
The Minoans, the oldest European civilization, built the palace of Knossos about 5 km south of Heraklion. They had one of the strongest and most feared fleets in the Mediterranean. The palace was built as an expression of their strength, splendor and wealth. At the end of the 3rd millennium BC, smaller kingdoms emerged on the island, as one can conclude from the palace complexes in Crete. Knossos became the leading Cretan city-state and probably the religious and political center of the island.
The palace of Knossos was built between 2100 and 1800 BC. The ruins that can still be visited today come from the "new" palace. It was built on the ruins of the "old" one, after an earthquake brought it to collapse in 1700 BC. The "new" palace was bigger and more magnificent. With about 1300 rooms and up to 5 floors high, the palace of Knossos was a superlative of its time. It covered an area of about approximately 21,000 m2. Particularly noteworthy is that the palace should have been equipped with running water: living rooms were heated by a hot water heater, bathrooms had hip baths and toilets with water flushing installed. Rainwater was collected in cisterns. Taxes were also kept in the palace. Knossos was relatively rich, so there was no shortage of honey, olive oil and grain. These were collected in antique pottery jars and stored in the palace.
For the visit you should plan about three hours. And it is best to combine visiting the palace and the archaeological museum of Heraclion. A wonderful cultural addition to your biking holiday on Crete!
November – March: daily 08:00 - 15:00
April: daily 08:00 - 18:00
May – October: daily 8:00 - 20:00
Entrance fee: 15 euros per person