Frangokastello Fortress

Frangokastello fortress is located on the southern coast of Crete roughly 80 km south of Chania city and 12 km east of Sfakia. The name Frangokastello comes from the castle of Franks which is the name the locals used for the Venetians.

The fortress was built by the Venetians between 1371 and 1374 as a mean to protect the southern coast of Crete from the attacks of the pirates and also as a base to withhold any uprisings. The local Sfakians led by the six Patsos brothers would destroy at night what was built during the day making the construction impossible. The Venetians brought more soldiers and the Patsos brothers were arrested and hanged at the entrance of the fortress.

On the 17th of May 1828, hundreds of Cretans led by Hatzimichalis Dalianis occupied the castle in an attempt to uprise against the Turks, but the fortress was besieged by thousands of Turks and eventually the battle ended in a massacre. As tradition has it, each year on the anniversary of the battle, shadows of the fallen Cretans appear at dawn marching towards the fortress. They are called Drosoulites meaning dew men.

Admission Fee: Full ticket 1.50 euro, under 12 go free.

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