Crete Day 2
Matala Travel Blog› entry 2 of 13 › view all entries
September 13th, 2008 – by: aloneinthecrowd
After about 20 - 30 minutes on a steep trail we reached the top and the view from there was amazing :) Now I know why it's called "Red Beach". From the top the sand looked red. Some more 10 minutes later we reached the beach and looked for a cosy place. It wasn't very crowded anymore. Travelling season was nearly over.
After some hours of sun bathing and swimming in the warm ocean we went back to the hotel for a shower. Then we decided to drive to the ancient place of Festos / Phaistos (there are different ways of diction). It was great to be there at late afternoon a short time before the venue closes. Less people were there and it was great to explore the place and taking photos. Phaistos is really worth a visit. It's not as big as Knossos but for me it was more interesting. It was more authentic. I let Wikipedia help me for more information ;)
Phaistos (Greek: Φαιστός), also transliterated as Phaestos, Festos and Phaestus is an ancient city on the island of Crete.
Phaistos had its own currency and had created an alliance with other autonomous Cretan cities, and with the king of Pergamon Eumenes II.
The Old Palace was built in the Protopalatial Period, then rebuilt twice due to extensive earthquake damage. When the palace was destroyed by earthquakes, the re-builders constructed a New Palace atop the old.
Pottery has been recovered at Phaistos from in the Middle and Late Minoan periods, including polychrome items and embossing in imitation of metal work.
The first palace was built about 2000 BC. This section is on a lower level than the west courtyard and has a nice facade with a plastic outer shape, a cobbled courtyard, and a tower ledge with a ramp, which leads up to a higher level. The old palace was destroyed three times in a time period of about three centuries. After the first and second disaster, reconstruction and repairs were made, so there are distinguished three construction phases. Around 1400 BC, the invading Achaeans destroyed Phaistos, as well Knossos. The palace appears to have been unused thereafter, as evidence of the Mycenaean era have not been found.
I hope I haven't bored you with too much history ;)
We enjoyed the sunset and went back to Matala for dinner.
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