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Heraklio Town
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Heraklio Town Greece

Heraklion, the capital city of Crete, possesses the lion's share of its island's attractions. You'll find plenty of modernity in its urban sprawl – a bustling, eclectic mix of restaurants, cafés, shops and nightlife – as well as some of the region's most important prehistoric monuments.

One of Heraklion's most notable sights is the Heraklion Archaeological Museum, one of the largest in Greece and a tour de force when it comes to Minoan art. The collection spans 5,500 years of history across 27 galleries and contains artefacts such as seal stones, ceramics and ancient frescoes excavated from the Palace of Knossos. After exploring the museum, you can pay a visit to Knossos itself. The monumental Minoan palace was believed to have served as the mythical labyrinth of King Minos. More recent art can be seen at the Historical Museum of Crete, whose collection covers Crete's Byzantine and Venetian eras – including works by Cretan artist El Greco and author Nikos Kazantzakis.

A stroll through Heraklion's Old Town offers an atmospheric glimpse of Cretan life and the city's rich past. You'll encounter a clutch of Venetian-era structures including defensive walls, arsenals and Koules Fortress, whose 16th-century interiors contain period furniture, cannons and carved stone – not to mention scenic views of the harbour. Near the Loggia, a picturesque arcaded Venetian building, is the Morosini Fountain. What once provided drinking water to Heraklion residents is now a central gathering place where visitors come to people-watch and kick back at surrounding cafés.


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