The scenery here is wild and beautiful. Hiking, nature walks, cycling and fishing are also popular activities in the area. Those who prefer to enjoy outdoor activities will ultimately be rewarded with breathtaking natural scenery and exceptional panoramic views of the forests and plains, the mountains, and the sea…
This region brings together all the clichés: historical villages, ancient monuments, impressive gorges and small chapels with polychrome mosaic or frescoes decorations, traditional ceramics handicrafts alternate with fantastic wines and traditional food.
Unspoilt trails wind through unique nature reserves, there are deserted beaches with crystal clear waters, as well as cultural treasures.
Perched on the mountain slopes of the southern Crete the villages of Kandanos challenge you to explore their mysteries. Because of their remote location the villages and settlements in this region are considered to be among the most beautiful and well-preserved villages of Crete.
Some of them are not only great examples of traditional stone architecture, but of a still living tradition, full of myths and cultural expressions. At Kandanos, you’ll always enjoy great views, even when swimming in the Libyan Sea.
The villages in Kandanos-Selinos are connected by ancient paths which along with the E4 European long distance path, make this an excellent base for stunning scenic walks. There is minimal tourism, the climate is perfect with plenty of sunshine and the people are friendly and hospitable.
Kandanos or Kantanos, also Candanos, is a lovely village located 52 km from the center of Chania and 15 km from Paleochora and its magnificent beaches. The village is one of the most stunning regions of Crete spread with olive and citrus groves, vineyards and wild flowers, incredible light, authentic Cretan cuisine and great people.
It is quite far from the Chania International Airport, but it is a million miles from the tourist crowded resorts on the Chania Prefecture. There are churches, a lovely square, spectacular gorges, Ottoman and Venetian monuments, excellent food shops, cafes and restaurants all in easy walking distance.
Kandanos is home to many Byzantine churches with lots of things and frescoes to admire, but the village surroundings offer a glimpse back in time along with a slower pace where the authentic Crete lives and breathes.
By climbing to the top of the village, you can take in some remarkable views while enjoying the opportunity to admire the beautiful backdrops. The region around the village has also got some massive ancient olive trees with their huge, extraordinary trunks, shaped like living sculptures.
The name of the village comes from the word “Kandores”, meaning “prisoners “, or according to an alternative explanation Kandanos originates from the ancient word “Kandania”, which means “the Town of Victory”.
Kandanos reached its peak during the Byzantine ages, something which is evident from the plenty beautiful Byzantine churches and chapels dating back to the 13 th – 15 th century, which are worth seeing, both for their architecture, frescoes and for their icons.
However, the village throughout its long history was also flourished during the Venetian domination and occupied a strategic position, as the ruins of several stone buildings around the village indicate.
The village took part in the revolutionary fights against the Ottomans, in the 19th century however, Kandanos is well known for its resistance against the Nazi’s invasion. On June 3 1941, the Nazis burnt and razed Kandanos, as a retaliation against the armed resistance of the inhabitants of Floria and Kandanos, who killed 25 Nazis.
It is also the only place in Europe where the Nazis have constructed three inscriptions commemorating the resistance they met while destroying the place. After the massacre, they put the two signs-inscriptions on the entrances to Kandanos village from Chania and Palaiochora. The third one was brought to the village in 1943 to accompany the monument they would construct at the central square in Greek and German to inform about the incident.
In the picturesque square of the village, visitors can taste the excellent traditional sweets and the excellent food from local products in the taverns, accompanied with abundant wine, tsikoudia and the traditional Cretan hospitality.
There are also some rooms to rent, mini-markets, bakery, butcher, a traditional grocery shop, many cafés (with free Wi-Fi), a post-office, bank (ATM), pharmacy, health center and three petrol stations.
The rest of the villages of Kandanos, like Kakodiki, Plemeniana, Floria with many worthwhile byzantine churches, hospitable kafeneia (cafes) and lovely routes for walking or cycling in the magnificent nature of Selino are also worth visiting.
Kandanos gorge covers an area of 5 square kilometers and is located in the northern part of the plateau of Kandanos and between the settlements Spina Pano Florion and the plain of Kandanos. The small stream «Koukiza» or «Spiniotisraquo; flows through the gorge and forms beautiful ravines.
Aromatic and therapeutic plants, bushes and trees flourish in the gorge: sage, marjoran, winter savory, white thyme, genista acanthoclada (broom), Sarcopoterium spinosum (thorny burnet), arbutus, holn-oaks, plane trees, , carob trees and the rare species of bush, “andrachlo” of Crete.
With its stunning seaside scenery and the snow-capped magnificent White Mountains (Lefka Ori), Kandanos-Selinos lives up to the label, “Region of Beauty.” Along the coast are many lovely small beaches with crystal clear water, and the hillsides are dotted with picturesque villages.
Kandanos-Selinos is a paradise for beach lovers and outdoor sports enthusiasts. The rugged landscape with its stunning gorges inspires hikers, while the sandy beaches are prized by sunbathers, and the translucent waters are perfect for snorkeling or scuba diving.
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In these cases, our in-depth local knowledge as well as working synergies with third party real estate firms help us to identify the ideal property in Kandanos or Palaiochora based on specific needs.
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