Lasithi Prefecture - Crete
Lasithi Prefecture - Crete

Crete Island - Lasithi Prefecture

Agios Nikolaos, Sitia, Ierapetra, Elounda

 
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Crete island, Greece

Lasithi (Greek: Λασίθι) is the easternmost prefecture on the island of Crete, to the east of the prefecture of Heraklion. Its capital is Agios Nikolaos, the other major towns being Ierapetra, Sitia and Neapoli. The mountains include the Dikte to the west and the Sitia Mountains to the east. The Sea of Crete lies to the north and the Libyan Sea to the south.

To the east of the village of Elounda lies the island of Spinalonga, formerly a Venetian fortress and a leper colony.
On the foot of Mount Dikti lies the Lasithi Plateau, famous for its windmills. Vai is well-known for its datepalm forest.

Thanks to stunning beaches and its mild climate year-long, Lasithiattracts many tourists. Mass tourism is served by places like Vai, Agios Nikolaos and the island of Chrissi. More off-beat tourism can be found in villages on the south coast like Myrtos, Makrys Gialos or Makrigialos, Xerokambos and Koutsouras.

The prefecture is home to a number of ancient remains. Vasiliki, Fournu Korfi, Pyrgos, Zakros and Gournia are ruins of Minoan date, Lato and Itanos were Doric towns.

Agios Nikolaos (or Aghios Nikolaos, Greek: Άγιος Νικόλαος) is a coastal town on the Greek island of Crete, lying east of the island's capital Heraklion, north of the town of Ierapetra and west of the town of Sitia.In the year 2000, the Municipality of Agios Nikolaos, which takes inpart of the surrounding villages, claimed around 19,000 inhabitants.The town is the capital of the nomos (province) of Lasithi, and sits partially upon the ruins of the ancient city of Lato pros Kamara.

Agios Nikolaos is probably best known as a tourist town that serves asa hub to the twenty or so small villages and farms that make up thatpart of Lassithi. Tourist attractions include the small lagoon Lake Voulismeni, small beaches in the town, the tiny island Agioi Pantes, the archaeological museum, the local flora exhibition “Iris” and numerous fairs. Tourism is mainly west European with Greek tourism concentrating in mid August. The lagoon features a small parkwith a trail, traditional fishing boats, ducks, pigeons, anamphitheatre and many cafès.

Crete Vai

Vai palm beach - Crete

Elounda (Greek: Ελούντα, alternative transliteration Elounta or Elouda, road-sign transliteration Elounda or Elounta) is asmall fishing town on the bay of Elounda, on the northern coast of the island of Crete, Greece. It is part of the municipality of Agios Nikolaos (Greek: Άγιος Νικόλαος), and the prefecture of Lassithi (Greek: Λασίθι). It is popular with European tourists and has several hotels. Elounda is also the closest major town to the former leper colony of Spinalonga, located on an island officially named Kalydon (Greek: Καλυδών), located at the entrance of the Bay of Elounda, a lake-like body of water enclosed by mainland Crete and the peninsula of Spinalonga (Greek: Σπιναλόγκα). The town is close to the city of Agios Nikolaos and the village of Plaka (Lasithi).

Ierapetra (Greek: Ιεράπετρα, meaning Holy Stone, ancient name Hierapytna) is a municipality and a town in the east of the Greek island of Crete, in the prefecture of Lasithi. The municipality has an area of 394.774 square kilometres and a population of 23,707 (2001). The municipality consists of the town of Ierapetra, several villages and hamlets and the island of Chrissi.

Sitia (Greek: Σητεία) refers both to a port town, with 8,900 inhabitants (2001) and a municipality, with 14,338 inhabitants (2001) in the far east of Crete, in the prefecture of Lasithi. It lies to the east of Agios Nikolaos and to the northeast of Ierapetra. The town is one of the economic centers of the Lasithi region. European route E75, which ends in Vardø,starts in Sitia. Plans to upgrade the local airport have notmaterialised. Sitia has not experienced the effects of mass tourismsince the Poole family rented windsurfers back in the eighties; eventhough there is a long beach along the road leading to Vai and several places of historical interest, the town is visited by few tourists.

 

 

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