Starting in Moires and heading north along the road to Zaros, we come to Panagia ton Angelon (Virgin Mary of the Angels) at the now-deserted hamlet of Fradio and the Church of Panagia Kyrmousi slightly north of Moroni, near the village of Makres. After visiting the Church of Panagia in the village of the same name and the Church of Panagia and Agios Haralampos in Paliama, we will reach Zaros, the picturesque head village with many streams, where we can visit the Churches of Agios Georgios and Agia Kyriaki and which features the religious Museum housed in a renovated traditional house within the village.

We will then head northwest to the foothills of Psiloritis to visit Vrontisi Monastery, one of the most historic monasteries on Crete, with its mural-decorated church and artful marble fountain.

From Vrontisi, we will head west and, passing through the village of Vorizia, we will reach Varsamonero Monastery. The interior of the church of Agios Fanourios is decorated with frescoes of exceptional artistry and historical value.

From Zaros, we follow the route along Koutsoulidis river and, north of Vori, we will visit Panagia Kardiotissa, a glebe of Vrontisi Monastery, before heading for Kaliviani Convent, a monastic state with significant charity work of the foundations established the late Archbishop Timothy of Crete.

Beside the antiquities of Phaistos, we will visit the Church of Agios Georgios Flandras before heading to Hodegetria Monastery.

We will pass the Byzantine church of Agios Ioannis in the hamlet of the same name. One of the largest monastic communities of the island flourished in the small canyons of Agiofaraggo and Martsalo, south of Hodegetria Monastery.

The church of Agios Antonios in Agiofaraggo and the cavernous church of Panagia in Martsalo survive to this day.


Agiofaraggo of the Holy Monastery of Odegetria

The Agiofaraggo [Holy Gorge] is found within the boundaries, and belongs to, the Monastery of Odegetria. Within the surrounding area, which followed the apostolic tradition of the Church of the Gortynians, with the beneficial morphology of the land and a mild climate, the Agiofaraggo thrived as a place where Christian monasticism developed, particularly in its […]


Church of Agios Haralampos & Panagia (St. Charalampus & Mother Mary) (Paliama)

North of the village of Moroni, at the ruins of the small village of Paliama, there is a two-aisled church dedicated to the Virgin Mary and Saint Charalampus, featuring ancient architectural elements in its masonry.  


Panagia (Mother Mary) at Kirmousi

The church of Panagia survives south of the hamlet of Makres, in the completely deserted hamlet of Kirmousi. This is a 15th century single-aisled church, beside which traces of buildings and tombs have been excavating, findings that indicate the existence of a monastery.


Koimisi tis Theotokou (Dormition of Mother Mary) (Panagia)

This is a 15th century three-aisled basilica dedicated to the Dormition of Mother Mary with many interesting construction details. The hamlet of Panagia, one of the best-preserved traditional villages in central Crete, was named after the church.


Agia Kyriaki (St. Kyriake) (Zaros)

This is a small two-aisled church that may be the oldest church in Zaros. The southern aisle dates back to the 14th century and it was later extended with the addition of a second aisle in the 17th or 18th century. The wood-carved chancel screen is particularly artful, while many of the church’s icons are […]


Holy monastery of Kalyviani

The monastery of Kalyviani is located in the valley of Messara, at a distance of four kilometres from Moires. The monastic compound developed around the single-nave church of the 14th century. This church, probably the catholicon of an older monastery of hut-dwelling monks, acquired great fame because of its miraculous icon and became an important […]


Holy Monastery of Odegetria

The monastery of Odegetria [All-Holy Virgin ‘She who leads the Way’] is located to the southwest of the sierra of Asterousia between the settlement of Listaro and the bay of Kaloi Limenes in an area with a continuous monastic ­presence for centuries. Even though the catholicon of the monastery has mural paintings of the 14th […]


Holy Monastery of Valsamonero

Even though the exact date of the foundation of the monastery is unknown, it may have been constructed in the 14th century, the same date as the original church, which today is the aisle of the All-Holy Virgin. The abbot, Jonas Palamas, was a leading figure of the monastery in the early 15th century, who […]


Holy Monastery of Vrontisi

The monastery of St. Anthony at Vrontisi is located at the southern feet of the sierra of Psiloreites, at a distance of around 2 kilometres from the settlement of Zaros. Even though the first written references to the monastery date to the early 15th century, it is possible that it was founded much earlier. The […]