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Malia, Heraklion Crete

Situated at a distance of 36 kilometres far from Heraklion at the East, Malia is a town by the sea, a big tourist resort and a very popular tourist destination, which results in big crowds, especially in summer. It has some 3750 permanent residents.

The history of the village goes back to the Neolithic times, but it seems that it flourished mostly during the Minoan times, when Mallia was one of the most important towns of Crete.
At a distance of 3 kilometres eastern to the village, there is the famous palace of Malia, equal in fame and archaeological importance to the palaces of Knossos and Faistos, which also flourished during the same period. Actually, most of the ruins preserved go back to the New Palace period (17th - 15th centuries b.C.). According to the myth, the area was dominated by Sarpedon, the brother of Minos.

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Apart from the palace, a very important necropolis has been found near the coast, at the Northeast of the palace. The necropolis dates back to the Old Palace period and the most important part has been excavated at Chryssolakos, with a big funerary complex. It is at this place that has been found the famous necklass presenting two bees (a symbol of fertility), now housed in the Archaeological Museum of Heraklion.

Apart from the very important ruins of the Minoan period, it is also worth seeing the church of Panaghia Galatiani, with the wonderful wall painting.

A traditional feast with the revival of the old custom "Xynochondros and Mouzoudia" takes place in the town during the Carnical. As the climate is very mild and staying here very pleasant even in February, when the feast takes place, it is worth visiting the area in this period of time and enjoy it with the residents, in an atmosphere of fun and amusement.

Accommodation in Malia is plenty; many hotels of all categories, studios and rooms to let are available. Food and drink are offered in the taverns and restaurants of the town (there are several of them), as well as in the cafes. You will not miss night life and fun, as there are a lot of good haunts for young people, famous bars and clubs.

Swimming is possible at the sandy beach of the town, as well as at the nearby beaches of Stalida (3 kilometres far from Malia at the West) and Potamos, the eastern end of the long beach in front of Malia, much less crowded than the rest of the beach.

Access from Heraklion is very easy following the National road; public buses run frequently and you can always use a taxi and of course rented or private cars and motorbikes

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