Chania Ancient Falassarna

Table of contents:
General infoMapMembers Photos (8)Write a review!

Location: Falassarna

Situated to the north of Falassarna Beach, the Ancient city of Falassarna was the northwesternmost polis (city-state) in Ancient Crete. Situated at the base of the rocky Gramvousa Peninsula, Falassarna was built by excavating a local lagoon and creating an artificial closed harbor, connected to the sea through two man-made channels.

Although evidence seems to indicate the area may have been inhabited during Minoan times, the city proper was built in the middle of the 4th century BCE, to take advantage of trade routes connecting the Aegean Sea to Italy and northern Africa. This granted Falassarna political and economic power, allowing the city to mint its own coins.
The city’s history is noted by a war against Polyrrhenia; the peace treaty that settled this conflict survives and is today held at the Kissamos Archaeological Museum.
The city eventually became a hub for pirate activity in the Eastern Mediterranean. This prompted the Romans to destroy the city and block off its harbor. The site is believed to have been completely abandoned following the devastating earthquake of 365 CE, which seems to have pushed the land up by more than 5 meters, resulting in the location of this ancient port being rather removed from the modern coastline!

The city was rediscovered by British Navy officers in the 19th century, although excavation began in 1966, and have uncovered major sections of the ancient fortifications, including the remains of two towers and sections of the harbor’s channels and quays.
The acropolis of the city includes a merchant’s house, where imported goods were found, especially from Cyrenaic in modern-day Libya, as well as a winery, warehouses, and baths. Various coins, ceramics, and other finds are now on display at the Chania Archaeological Museum, as well as the museum in Kissamos.

East of the harbor and south of the acropolis stands the Throne of Poseidon, two meters high. Despite its name, its main use is debated, with theories ranging from a podium for public speakers to a small shrine, most likely dedicated to the goddess Astarte, better known as Ishtar.

During the Battle of Crete in 1941, a British tank landing craft was sunk near the ancient harbor, the remains of which are visitable today, known as The Forgotten Flotilla.

The archaeological site of Ancient Falassarna is open from 08:30 to 15:30 every day except Tuesdays.



    No reviews yet.
    Be the first to write one!