Want to experience a little bit of history? Head to the archaeological site of Ancient Eleftherna that is the most important archaeological site in the Rethymno prefecture. The excavations that begun in 1985 by the University of Crete - Greece in the area of the modern villages of Eleftherna and Archaia Eleftherna have brought to light important sections of the ancient city.
The city was inhabited uninterruptedly from the second millennium B.C. up to the later Roman, the first Byzantine and Byzantine years (13th century A.D.). The city prospered especially during the Archaic, Hellenistic, the Roman and the first Byzantine period. It was destroyed many times by conquerors and terrible earthquakes and was rebuilt again and again from the ruins. During its prosperity, it was one of the most powerful cities of Crete and Greece.
Looking for a place where history meets nature? Then the cave of Melidoni is for you. Located on the "Old Heraklion Road" between Rethymno and Heraklion., not far from Panormo, it is one of the three largest caves on Crete.
The Melidoni cave has been inhabited almost continuously since the Stone Age. During the Minoan times it was used for religious ceremonies. During this age the Great Mother Goddess was worshipped here, but probably also the bronze giant Talos. During the 19th century the Melidoni cave played an important role in the resistance against the Turkish rulers.
The cave itself consists of three separate rooms, of which one is accessible for visitors. The chamber consists of one big room with stalagmites and stalactites. In the cave it can be very slippery, so be careful when walking around.
If you are a keen hiker, you will enjoy following the E4 walking route that crosses Greece and Crete and passes near Panormo. The E4 European Long Distance Path begins at the Pyrenees in Spain, crosses the Bulgarian-Greek borders, runs through Greece and then goes through Crete from the prefecture of Rethymno to the prefecture of Lasithi and, finally, goes to Pafos (Cyprus) and ends up at Larnaka. It, thus, offers hikers or mountaineers the chance to get to know the whole variety of these landscapes and the richness of Greek and Cypriot nature. The path in Crete can be walked year-round, although spring and summer are the best times, as the weather is milder then.
For more information, visit the E4 official site http://www.e4nar.gr/index.php?l=1
Margarites is a traditional village, only a few kilometers away from Panormo, better known as a pottery center in the heart of Crete. Besides the beautiful scenery, here you can find many artists using traditional techniques to make beautiful clay artifacts. Here you can watch the entire process of pottery making, from the right choice of clayto their firing inspecial kilns, getting thus a unique insight to one of the traditional arts of Crete.
Rethymno is a town of approximately 40,000 people, the capital of Rethymno peripheral unit on the island of Crete, Greece. A town full of history that still maintains its old aristocratic appearance, with its buildings dating from the 16th century, arched doorways, venetian-era castle, Byzantine and Hellenic-Roman remains, its small Venetian harbor and narrow streets.
The visitor has plenty to see here, from historical sites to modern museums and shops. You can enjoy local food and drinks in the numerous restaurants, cafes and bars and immerse oneself in the local way of life.