The Municipality of

Map of the area
Main page
Map of Iraklion area


The municipality of Gorgolaini is located approximately 18 km south west of Iraklion and is surrounded by the municipalities of Iraklion, Gazi, Kroussonas, Tetrahori, Agia Varvara and Rouva.

Gorgolaini is a semi mountainous municipality with an average altitude of 420m and includes six of the former communities: Agios Myron, Ano Asites, Kato Asites, Pentamodi, Petrokefalo and Pyrgou.

The name is taken from the monastery of St. George Gorgolaini which lies on the foot of the mountain Psiloritis near the village Kato Asites.

The municipality covers a surface of about 4.200 ha., and has over 3.000 inhabitants.

The main sources of production are agriculture (olive trees and vineyards) and cattle raising (sheep) and beekeeping. Other activities in the region are the following: olive oil production, cheese and dairy production, which is a significant attraction for the visitors to the area, as well as traditional weaving, commercial activities and public services.

• Top



Agios Myron, with 708 inhabitants, is the seat of the municipality. It lies 18 km from the city of Iraklion to the south west. Its one of the most important villages of the area with interesting town planning and impressive samples of traditional architecture. Built between two hills it commands a panoramic view and the school's clock, its main characteristic, is visible from almost everywhere in the area of Malevizi.
Agios Myron has been totally destroyed by an earthquake in 1856.

The village was named after the local Saint "Agios Myron" (249 - 251) , bishop of Gortys at the end of the 4th century who was born in the ancient town RAFKOS (a significant city -state with its one coins on the remnants of which the village was built).
At the church the visitor can admire the wonderful frescoes and visit the hermitage and the burial of the Saint. There is a village feast on the 8th August organized by the cultural association in his honour.
Another feast organized also by the cultural association is the celebration of KLIDONAS (fortune telling).

The water of Agios Myron is of excellent quality and is considered to be one of the most important resources for the village.

Places worth a visit in the village are also the chapel of Agii Apostoloi with important frescoes, the chapel of Agia Paraskevi (part of the "Agion Oros" community) with a perennial eucalyptus in its yard. There are also three stone made fountains from the beginning of the 20th century related to the local custom of Klidonas.

A rare phenomenon of sounds created by the wind can be observed at the area of "Drakos".
In the area there are three caves: "Agiasma", Anonymo" and "tou Manoura o spilios".

• Villages | • Top

The villages lies 24km from Iraklion and 6km from Agios Myron at 480m a.s.l with 423 inhabitants.

A big part of the surrounding area is covered by forest on the eastern side of the mountain Psiloritis.

Near the village there is the Byzantine chapel of Agios Antonios located in the ravine with the same name a place of exceptional natural beauty. From here passes the European Hiking Path (E4) which leads to the shelter "Prinos" ( of the Mountaineering Club of Iraklion - altitude 1100 m a.s.l.) located in a holly (=prinos) forest.

On the south of the village is the ravine of Agios Haralambos and Mihalopotamos (river) where can be found "nyhteridospilios" (= bat-cave) a cave 100m deep with water and plenty of bats.

Other important sights in the area are: the caves "kynigospilios" and "siderospilia" and the perennial oak at Kouvdi.

According to many archaeologists, the ancient town of Panona was located here. Around the village there are Roman thermae close to the place where the ancient city of Rizinia used to be.
There is also a cemetery where 680 tombs were unearthed from the Minoan up to the Roman period.
The above findings show that the area played a significant role in the history of central Crete during the ages. The continuous human presence in the area is also proved by the "nekropolis" at the location "Siderospilia" (iron - cave).

The patron Saint is "Agios Ioannis" and there is a village feast on the 29th August in his honour.

• Villages | • Top

Kato Asites lies 23km from Iraklion and 5km from Agios Myron at 450m a.s.l with 1113 inhabitants.

Beautiful village with traditional architecture especially the quarters "Notiko", "Prinos" and "Kastella" close to the monastery of Gorgolaini.

The monastery of Gorgolaini one of the oldest monasteries in Crete were the center of the Cretan revolution against the Turks.
In the monastery there is the tomb of Fragios Mastrahas a comrade-in-arms of "Kapetan Korakas" one of the leaders of the revolution. Fragios Mastrahas was killed in 1868.
In the yard of the monastery the visitor can see the wingy lion of St. Marcos dated from the 1617 and an old cypress which is characterized as a landmark.

Other interesting sights are:
The thermae of the king of Prinias,
The uninhabited settlement of Nisi with traditional houses,
the caves "Lesta spilios" at Marias aloni, "Astirakou spilios", "Sarakina" and "Katsivli spilios" at Lyssogremia and "Melissa",
The chapels of "Pamnagia" aged 800 years, "Agios Antonios" aged 1000 years, "Agios Georgios" and "Agia Paraskevi".

The patron Saint is "Agia Paraskevi" celebrated on the 26th July .

• Villages | • Top

Pentamodi one of the oldest villages in Crete, is located in the valley of Gazanos river, 17km from Iraklion and 4km from Agios Myron at 350m a.s.l with 278 inhabitants.

At "Agia Paraskevi" a place with rich vegetation are organized every summer a series of cultural festivals.

A fountain of the 15th century with the blazon of the house of "Quirini" is one of the significant monuments of the area.

The patron Saint is "Agios Nikolaos" and there is a village feast on the 26th July in his honour.

• Villages | • Top

Petrokefalo lies 16km from Iraklion and 3km from Agios Myron at 340m a.s.l with 248 inhabitants.

It is built on a rocky hillside. The hill' shape resembles to a human head and it is supposed that the village owes its name to this (petrokefali = stone head) .

The settlement was fortified and lately were discovered significant ancient findings.

The patron Saint is "Agia Paraskevi" and there is a village feast on the 8th September in her honour.

• Villages | • Top

Pyrgou lies 20 km from Iraklion and 1km from Agios Myron at 400m a.s.l with 354 inhabitants.

It is built on a hillside overlooking the area, with panoramic view to the village of Kroussonas and the ravine of "Agia Irini".

At the village's perimeter there are well maintained tower-like houses.

Significant archaeological and historical monuments of the area are:
The chapel of "Agios Ioannis" with the emblem of Frangiskanon family dated from 1601, the chapel of "Panagia" which was burned by the Turks and has been renovated later and the chapel of "Agios Georgios Messambelitis" with old wine press, clay channels and storehouse.
The monastery of "Hryssopigi" part of the monastery of Gorgolaini.
Many traditional houses and two mills at "Kazola"
The cave "Mertzani spilios" at Mertzani.

The patron Saint is "Panagia" and there is a village feast on the 15th August in her honour.

• Villages | • Top

Search interkriti