Just 15 kilometers away from Heraklion, Archanes unfold their beauty at an altitude of 350 meters, at the foot of Mount Yiouchtas. This is a very beautiful traditional village of Crete, with great cultural heritage and history of 5000 years. The exemplary restoration done in the rural town and that was made with absolute respect to the traditional architecture, and gave the settlement the European Award for Village Reformation.
During your visit and your stay in Archanes Heraklion you will have the opportunity to tour the nearby attractions, enjoy the natural beauty of the place, and of course you can taste original recipes of Cretan cuisine. The area is famous for its vineyards, from which fine wine is produced, so do not miss the chance to try it.
Archanes is a village built on the slopes of a low hill in a green area and has retained its name for thousands of years. It was inhabitant in the Neolithic times (6.000BC). It reached its peak during the period 2500-1400 BC when the grand palace was being built in Archanes which was rebuilt on successive destructions it suffered over the years.
During the first Byzantine period and the Arab rules, Acharnes and the surrounding area follow the same course in history as the rest of Crete, while under the Turks it was used as a base for Turkish officials.
During the battle of Crete in 1941 (World war II) Acharnes was used as an administration centre of the Greek forces and later during the German occupation, the first espionage detachment was organized here. The beauty of Archanes was acknowledged by the EEC, bestowing it the title “Total and sustainable development of excellent quality”. Not only can the visitor enjoy the beautiful Byzantine churches but he/she can visit the museum of agricultural history, the Agia Irini gorge where the Venetian aquaduct constructed by Morozini, intended for the water supply of Heraklion, and finally the museum of natural history at the ecological and Archaeological park at ‘Yiouchta’.
A walk through the head village will give one the opportunity to admire the architecture. Fortunately, the results of the restoration programs of the traditional buildings can be easily seen and appreciated.
The access road to Arhanes is quite easy. The area is accessed in two ways: through a national network that connects the area of Archanes via the Industrial Area of Heraklion and through provincial network where the visitor crosses the classic route from Knossos area. In both cases, the average access time not exceeding 20 minutes from the city of Heraklion.
There is also the possibility of access via frequent bus itineraries. Services run daily from Heraklion (starting Central Bus Station Heraklion located near the port) and from Archanes every 30 minutes early in the morning and every 1 hour during the rest of the day.