Lassithi Plateau

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The agricultural wealth of the Lassithi plateau required the existence of the necessary
traditional productive lands for the processing of the products produced by the fertile land
area. Τhe bare ridge on the northwestern hill of the plateau called “Afchena Ampelou”,
was the most important place with mills not only in the wider area of ​​the plateau but also
in the whole of Crete. Οn the ridge of the hill that develops in a direction from northeast
to southwest, a single system of 27 single-windmills was developed, which took
advantage of the extremely favorable wind potential of the area with the northwest winds.
Τhe bare ridge of the neck of the vine on which the mills grow offers plenty of limestone
that served as a raw material for the construction of the mills. Τoday there are traces of
24 of them with different degrees of preservation of their structural and mechanical parts
The Lassithi Plateau is a high endorheic plateau, located in the Lassithi regional unit in
eastern Crete, Greece. Since the 1997 Kapodistrias reform, it is a municipality whose
seat is Tzermiado and the second biggest village is Agios Georgios. Lassithi Plateau is a
quite big area. It is approximately 70 km. An attraction  at the Lassithi Plateau are the
traditional windmills, the cave diktaion-antron, the convent of Kera Kardiotissa,
moni Vidianis, Roza Gorge.

The Windmills

lasithi_plateau
lassithi_plateau
Windmills were an important source of power until the Industrial Revolution. The first
windmill was designed by Heron in the 10th century AD. It was a horizontal axis of
rotation and had four wings. Αround 700 BC in Mesopotamia and China began to build
windmills with a vertical axis of rotation. These windmills were brought to Europe first by
the Crusaders, after the First Crusade and later by Chinese explorers. They spread to
Iberian and southern Europe. Later around 1500 they were used in the Netherlands as
part of the country’s flood defense system. They were mainly used for grinding
agricultural products and pumping water. The windmills, according to their special
construction characteristics, are classified into horizontal vertical fixed sawmills, tower
mills and American type. Due to the changing direction of the wind, the most efficient
mills were those that had the ability to rotate in order to bring their sails against the wind
each time. In the area of ​​the municipality of Lassithi plateau as well as in the wider area
of ​​eastern Crete the appearance of the mills has been made since the Byzantine period
and they are widely developed in the Venetian period, due to the strategic position of the
area for growing cereals in the plateau. Most windmills on the plateau are one-time, ie
the axis of rotation is firmly oriented in the dominant direction of the wind.

Diktaion Antron

diktaion antron
diktaion antron
Diktaio Andro is located on the north side of Dikti mountain in Crete, above the village of
Psychro in the municipality of Lassithi Plateau, Crete, at an altitude of 1020 m. It is
considered one of the most important internationally known caves, with great
mythological and archaeological interest. There Rhea, hidden from the fury of Saturn,
gave birth to Zeus. The cave has attracted the interest of many Greek and foreign
archaeologists who have occasionally excavated its interior. Neolithic, Minoan, Late
Minoan, geometric, archaic, classical, Hellenistic and Roman finds prove its continuous
use by humans, mainly for worship purposes. The cave has an area of ​​2,200 sqm and
can be visited. The total length of the tourist route is 250 m. Inside there is a rich
decoration of stalactites, stalagmites and a picturesque lake.

Convent of Kera Kardiotissa

kera_monastery
kera_monastery
The monastery of Kera Kardiotissa is old and belongs to the Community of Kera
Pediados, at an altitude of 630 m. At 49.6 km of the central artery of Heraklion – Lassithi
Plateau at the western foot of the Karfi hill, in a valley overgrown with trees. In 2011, 26
people were registered. The church is dedicated to the Genesis of the Virgin. It belongs
to the region of the Holy Metropolis of Petra and Herronissos. It celebrates on September
8.

Moni Vidianis

vidiani
vidiani
The holy monastery of Vidiani is located on the northwest side of the Lassithi plateau of
Crete near the village of Kato Metochi. The monastery was founded around 1850 by the
monk Methodius Perakis but is considered to be built on the ruins of an older monastery
that was part of the Vida family (hence the name Vidiani).

The Roza Gorge

roza gorge
roza gorge
The gorge of Rosa is a branch of the gorge of Ampelos. It starts from a point next to the
rural road that crosses the gorge of Ampelos and in an east-southeast direction, leads to
Kera. The slope of the gorge bed is very large, but may have a path for mountaineering.
Also, its slopes are impressively raised, with the obvious geological formations, which
attract the visitor’s gaze with the special beauty that they present.
lasithi plateau view
lasithi plateau view
Lassithi Plateau Panoramic View
windmills in lasithi plateau
windmills in lasithi plateau
Windmills in lasithi plateau
lasithi_plateau
lasithi_plateau

Greek Tourist Organisation

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