HERSONISSOS – HERAKLION – CRETE
HERSONISSOS IN GENERAL
Just 25 km east of the Heraklion, Hersonissos is the most cosmopolitan place of Crete. The seaside town Port of Hersonissos is quite busy all year around. Half of the shops and hotels are open throughout the year, in contrast to the rest of Crete where many hotels and restaurants are open only during the tourist season of April-October.
Hersonissos city consists of several small villages and the main tourist destinations of Port Hersonissos, Anissaras and Old Hersonissos. These villages are Koutouloufari, Piscopiano, Anissaras, Potamies, Avdou, Gonies and Kera.
The variety and extent of Hersonissos coastline make it possible for bathers to enjoy an infinite number of different places to swim, all of them lapped by warm, crystal clear water.
The harbor of Hersonissos is famous for its night life as there are many bars, restaurants and taverns next to the beach. Daily cruises are also organized by various travel agents, to the neighboring island of DIA and many other small islets and beaches in the area.
HISTORY OF HERSONISSOS
Hersonissos carries on the name of the ancient city that was located where the harbor of Hersonissos is today. The village of Old Hersonissos, located on the hill was built for the inhabitants to feel more secure from the pirates that forced them to move in the inland.
Even though the city was built during the Minoan times, it experienced great wealth during the Roman and early Byzantine period. Hersonissos during the Roman period had magnificent marble fountains, sculptures, etc. Remnants of this period can be seen today in the area of Kastri. The ancient city of Hersonissos was irrigated by an aqueduct, ruins of which can be found today at Xerokamares, at the village of Potamies.
Byzantine era marks on the city are mostly on port and the port's Akropolis (dominating hill) where a palaiochristianic basilica church is found. Venetians, Turks left their mark on the area as well. The port was called Porto Tigani and protected many middle age boats even after city was minimized to a few living houses. City faded slowly out because of Saracen and other pirates pillaging the coastal area and cities. It was profound that people sheltered high on the mountain slopes with enough time to react on reputed pirate attacks. The port was almost abandoned and changed to a small fishing village, until after the 1950's when some interest grown on its tourist hosting capabilities.
NIGHTLIFE OF HERSONISSOS
Crete is famous for it's unlimited, breathtaking, and full of excitement night life. You can choose among folk bouzouki, Greek and foreign music, strong beat and a great atmosphere. You can find here some of the most famous lively spots for a guaranteed entertainment!
One of most famous places in Crete about its nightlife is Hersonissos, a top destination of young people. In Hersonissos you are able to find a lot of clubs, bars, pubs, cafes, restaurants, taverns etc. You can either go out for clubbing or you can go to a fancy restaurant to taste the local cuisine.
Heraklion comprises a collection of different and unique elements more than any other prefecture of Crete. Since Heraklion prefecture is located in the center of Crete has established significantly the concentration of the main economic and administrative operations, as well as of the population of the island in the capital city, Heraklion.
The city that gathers together the one third of the population of Crete is a representative sample of the Cretan culture, mixed with all the expressions and operations of a modern urban center, since it constitutes at the same time the main commercial harbor of the island and the center of education, telecommunications, research and technology.
The old city which is surrounded by Venetian Walls connects vividly the history with the present. Even though Heraklion is known for the architectural chaos in the city, the truth is that a visitor walking around the city will experience the architectural legacies of the different civilizations Heraklion has known and this can be very interesting.
The city today is ideal for simple everyday pleasures. A visitor can walk around the streets and squares of the city, the daily street market, the Venetian port, the museums and churches, the shops and taverns. The city's intense nightlife is combined with quality cultural events that take place all year long and reach their peak in the summer, with the famous "Heraklion Summer Arts Festival", during which one can enjoy selected music, theatre and dance events.