The ruins of Ancient Kydonia can be found in the Old Town of Chania, intertwined with the modern part of the city. Most of them are located in the area of the old port, on the hill of Kastelli.
It is believed that Ancient Kydonia used to be the third most powerful city in Crete during Antiquity. Its location near the port contributed to its development, making Ancient Kydonia a commercial center that flourished during the Minoan Era. The city used to have its own coins, depicting King Kydonas who is said to have founded the city, at least according to mythological sources.
Ancient Kydonia remained an autonomous city-state until the post-Roman Period and it is believed that it suffered great damage due to an earthquake in 365. It lost its independence during the Arab occupation period and regained it about a century later.
Although the construction of newer buildings on top of the ancient ruins did not stop as the centuries passed, archeological excavations brought to light various ancient findings, mainly in the area of the Venetian port..
The findings do not only include ruins from the Minoan settlement but also objects dating to the Neolithic Period. Murals, ceramics, mosaics and Linear B script tablets have been recovered among other items, many of which are currently on display at the Archeological Museum of Chania.
A big part of the city cannot be restored since it is located beneath the modern part of Chania, although findings suggest the existence of a huge necropolis with various types of tombs.