Palaikastro village – Beaches, caves, archaeological sights

Palaikastro is about 19km away from Sitia and 7km away from the famous palm forest of Vai. It is the easternmost and biggest village of all in the area of Sitia, with about 1300 permanent residents. The scenery of the area is varied and the visitor has the chance to see, kilometers of beautiful seashores, villages, caves, archaeological sites.

Among the beaches of the wider area, are: Itanos, a small picturesque beach, 9 km from Palaikastro

Vai, the beach with the famous palm forest, only 1 km south of Itanos, Kouremenos, a long sandy beach near Palaikastro (1,5 km), where the sea is ideal for windsurfing, Hiona, an ideal beach for the whole family, only 1,5 km from Palaikastro, too, Karoumes, a lovely beach perfect for swimming and fishing, etc.


Vai, it is the largest oasis of palm trees in Europe with rare flora and fauna. The history of the palm forest has been lost through the centuries while the Phoenix Palm was a holy symbol of the Minoan Civilization.

Itanos, the ancient coastial city of Itanos, had been the most important one from the Minoan years until the first Christian era.

Toplou Monastery, Toplou is a famous monastery in the eastern part of Crete, located 10km east of Sitia and 6 km north of Palaikastro.

The Folklore Museum of Palaikastro,  is lodged in a rebuilt traditional Cretan house. The museum exhibits common items and tools that were used from the times of the Turkish Occupation until 1960.

The Gorge of Chohlakies, is a wild beauty canyon situated 5km away from Palaikastro with about 2,5-3 km length which ends up at a virgin and unspoiled beach ideal for swimming, and fishing.

Pelekita Cave, located about 5 kilometers away from K. Zakros, is a cave of unparalleled beauty.

Kato Zakros – Minoan Palace, the picturesque beach of Kato Zakros is one of the most quiet spots in Crete.This was the place where Minoans chose to build one of the most important Palaces of Crete.

Karydi Village, Karydi, is the most beautiful among the mountain villages of the Itanos municipality, that remains unchanged throughout the years. It is about 15 kilometres away from Palaikastro while it is abandoned during the winter. In the area there are very important archaeological discoveries.