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Crete: the legendary birthplace of Zeus and other Greek Gods

Chania ● Crete ● Heraklion ● Lassithi ● Rethymnon ● 16 June 2017
 
Crete was considered since the antiquity as a legendary place, which was connected to many myths of the Greek mythology. The impressive beauty and character of the island created many legends about it, and the most famous of them is that Crete is the birthplace of many Gods and most importantly of Zeus.

According to the mythology, Ideon Andron, the cave, which is located 20 km from Anogeia Village in the prefecture of Rethymnon, was the place, where Zeus was born, hidden from his father, Cronus. The myth says that a goat, named Amalthea, raised Zeus in this cave. Until the Roman times, this cave was considered to be sacred, and archaeological excavations unearthed votive offerings, like shields, spears and gold figures. When Crete was attacked by a giant lizard, Zeus protected its birthplace and threw a lightning bolt against it, turning the beast into stone, creating an island with the name Dia.

According to many myths, the area was birthplace also of the twins Greek gods Apollo and Artemis, who were born in the nearby islets with the name Paximadia. Apollo and Artemis were considered, together with Zeus, to be the Gods that protected Crete. It is interesting that a few years ago, were excavated in ancient Aptera in Crete two stunning sculptures of the two Gods that show their tradition and dominance in Crete.

Another legend of the Cretan mythology is that of King Minos and its palace. Daedalus has built the labyrinth of the palace, where Minotaur lived. Minotaur was the monster, which was created by the union of a bull and the wife of Minos, Pasiphae. Daedalus and his son, Icarus, kept captive there, but they managed to escape by making wings from feathers and wax. However, Icarus flew so close to the sun that the wax melted, the wings were destroyed, and he fell into the sea.

Finally, Minotaur was killed by the Athenian Theseus. Theseus was one of the young men and women that were sent from Athens every nine or seven years to be eaten by the Minotaur as a compensation that Athens had to pay due to its defeat in a past war against Crete. Theseus managed not to get lost in the labyrinth and kill the Minotaur thanks to the help of Ariadne, the daughter of Minos that fell in love with him and gave him a sword and a ball of thread.

Where to Stay

Hotel in Chania, Greece Megim Hotel
8 10
Megim Hotel
Paleochora, 73001 Chania, Greece

Located 70 km southwest of Chania, Megim Hotel offers accommodation in a quiet location just 5 minutes walk from the beach. The busy town of Paleochora is at 4.5 km, while Elafonisi beach is 30 km away. Chania International Airport "Ioannis Daskalogiannis" is 90 km away and Souda Port is 80 km away from the hotel.

Villa in Chania, Greece Stratos Villas
9.9 10
Stratos Villas
Melidoni, 73008 Chania, Greece

Surrounded by lush greenery, Stratos Villas are located in Melidoni village, 13.5 km from Kalyves village and 31 km from the center of Chania. Souda port is 23 km away, while Chania International Airport "Ioannis Daskalogiannis" is 38 km away. The lively Rethymno town is at 38 km.

Hotel in Heraklion, Greece Roxani Hotel
Roxani Hotel
267, A. Papandreou str., Amoudara, 71500 Heraklion, Greece

Roxan Hotel is located in Ammoudara, only a 5-minute walk from the beach. Heraklion city centre is 5 km away. Heraklion International Airport, “Nikos Kazantzakis” , is 11 km away, while Heraklion Port is 8 km away.


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