The Spinalonga - Fort & Island
Spinalonga is located in the gulf of Elounda, it is one of the most famous places on the island! The rocky island is situated directly opposite the village of Plaka, the fortified islet is a classic excursions.The history of Spinalonga goes back to the antiquity when the islet contained an ancient acropolis and protected the ancient sunken city of Olous.The trips to the Island Spinalonga from Agios Nikolaos, Elounda or Plaka are organized tours. The archaeological sites are opened at least 9am to 5:45pm but it can be from 8am in Summer. In the wintertime from Noveber to March it is closed, sometimes it may open on weekends if the weather is good.
By touring the fortifications, you ´ll be fascinated from the combination of turquoise water and the walls. The path around the fortified takes 20 min. Spinalonga was built by the Venetians between 1579-1586 which, the most important Mediterranean defensive sea fortresses of its time. The island was held by the Venetians until 1715 when it fell to the Turks until the Cretans evicted the few hundred remaining Turks from the island of Spinalonga in 1903. This time leprosy had broken out and the Cretans needed to establish a leper colony to keep the people who were infected isolated from the healthy population. Spinalonga was the perfect location as it was close enough, that patients could easily be transported and supplied by boat.
Best Conditions for the patients until the 1930’s the patients built their own cimmunity. A cafe opening up, music in the street, and marriage between patients being allowed. We recommend the Film "The Island" from Indigo View. This film shows the damatic strory of the Island Spinalonga and the patients.
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