Rethymnon is one of the most picturesque cities of Crete with a rich recorded history from the Palaeolithic to the Roman times. Of unique interest is the Archaeological Museum of Rethymnon, located opposite the Fortezza. it hosts findings which highlight the diachronic quality of the Cretan culture from the Neolithic to Roman times. Part of the exhibition includes vessels, figurines, weapons, and pieces of daily use.
Of great interest is the Wax Museum located in Zoniana village, displaying natural size figures made with wax by Dionysis Potamianos and his wife. The natural size figures depict famous personalities of the Cretan history like the prime minister of Greece, Eleftherios Venizelos. It is an ideal place for the children.
Equally impressive is the Ecclesiastical Museum of Rethymnon showing valuable exhibits like the campanile and other ecclesiastical items. In a close distance lies the Historical Museum. Rethymnon has a high cultural activity and visitors can admire excellent pieces of Modern Art in the Contemporary Art Gallery, located close to the city center.
The Archaeological Museum of Rethymnon is housed in a building right at the entrance of the Fortezza. It houses exhibits from excavations held in the prefecture of Rethymnon, presenting the history of the area from the paleolithic till the Roman times.
The Museum of Cretan Lyra is strongly connected with the tradition and music of Crete. This is actually a workshop of Cretan lyras and one room has been hosts a large collection of lyras and other traditional musical instruments.
In the remote village of Zoniana, 45 km from Rethymno, there is an interesting wax museum with figures from all over the Cretan history. Established in 1998, this Wax Museum is housed in a space of 1,000 sq.m.
The Historical and Folklore Museum of Rethymnon was established in 1973 and it is housed in an elegant Venetian building. The exhibits of the museum come of private collections and donations. They include traditional clothing, tools, ceramics, jewelry, coins, and other items.
Villa Claudio, a lovely mansion of Venetian architecture, was recently restored and it now houses an interesting Military Museum. This museum was inaugurated in May 2010 and hosts military uniforms, weapons of various ages and army vehicles in the yard.
This lovely Museum of Marine Life displays numerous shells, sponges, fish, and other marine items. It includes the private collection of Panagiotis Moschakis.
The Museum of Papa-Mihalis Georgoulakis is located in the village of Asomatos, southern Rethymno. This museum, that stretches for eight rooms, gives visitors a deep insight into traditional life in Crete.
Contemporary Art Gallery
In this gallery, visitors will be able to admire a rich collection of works from local artist Lefteris Kanakakis, and a collection of representative pieces of modern Greek art. Various exhibitions of modern art are regularly organized in the gallery.