The area around the village is full of interesting
Christian monuments, mainly churches and Monasteries.
It is worth visiting the nearby hill of Profitis Elias, not only to
see the homonymous tiny church, but to enjoy the marvellous view of the
At a distance of 2,5 kilometres far from the village at the South close
to the village of Listaros there is the old church of Archangelos Michael
and next to it a rock where it is said that Aghios Eutychianos died a
More at the South, some 7 kilometres far from the village there is
the Holy Monastery of Panaghia Odigitria and close to it the church of
Aghios Andreas, dating back to the 14th or 15th century. The church has
interesting wall paintings. One of the characteristic features of this
church are the walled-in food plates which, according to tradition, remind
that all craftsmen involved in the construction of the church were in
fast, during all the period they worked there. The church was dedicated
to Aghios Andreas, Archbishop of Crete and is celebrated on the 4th of
July. On your way to the Monastery of Odigitria, at "Vathys Langos" you
will also see the church of Aghio Ioannis, dating back to the 14th or
The imporant Monastery of Panaghia Odigitria, dedicated to Virgin Mary,
is found at a distance of 8 kilometres far from Sivas at the South, on
the way leading to cape Lithino; it is a castle-like construction, following
the architectural features of the 14th-16th centuries. During the Venetian
domination the Monastery was a cultural and religious centre of great
importance, whereas during the Ottoman domination it was the centre of
revolutionary movements of the Cretan people which resulted first to
the sacrifice of Xopateras, the legendary abbot of the Monastery in 1829
and later on to acts of violence against the monastery during the revolution
Today only a few monks live here, but the monuments survived show something
of its old glory. The Catholicon of the Monastery is a two-aisled church,
one dedicated to the Apostles Peter and Paul and the other to the Assumption
of Virgin Mary. A big fortification wall surrounds the Monastery with
the tower of the Abbot Xopateras at the North.
Leaving Odigitria you will see at the West the ruins of the old Monastery
of Aghioi Eutychiani, whereas more at the South, at the entrance of Ayofarango
there is the tiny church of Aghia Kyriaki, dug in the rock. According
to archaeologists the place used to be a sacred place since the Minoan
From here you may take the path leading to Ayofarango, a gorge of unique
natural beuty, ending up at a marvellous beach with crystal clear blue
water in the Libyan Sea. You will arrive there after a one -hour walking
within the gorge.
Some 5 kilometres from Odigitria at the South, western to Ayofarango,
on the dirt track leading to cape Lithino there is another tiny church
of Panaghia, built in an impressive place. The church is built within
a cave and there are traces of cells for monks dug in the rocks, an evidence
that in the past there was a monastery here.
Some 20 kilometres South to Sivas there is the cape Lithino (meaning
"of stone"); the cape is the most southern end of Crete and one of the
most beautiful places of the island. On the top of the low mountain overlooking
the cape there is a small church dedicated to Jesus Christ's Transfiguration;
from here the visitor enjoys a fascinating view of the Libyan Sea.
At the Northeast of the cape there is the cave of Aghia Kassiani; according
to the religious tradition the saint lived here as an hermit and named
the cave after her.
Finally, it is worth visiting the scenic cove of Vathy, some 17 kilometres
far from Sivas at the South. The landscape is marvellous and the beach
amazing. Traces of Minoan tombs have been found in the area.
Don't miss to visit the ecological farm of the village, with many fruit
trees, herbs and, of course, olive trees. The farm has been established
by the pupils and teachers of the elementary school of the village, an
very important activity, initiating children to ecology.
A series of cultural activities are organised at Sivas by the cultural
centre "Themos Cornaros"; the events take place in late August and reach
their peak on the 29th of August, at the feast of Aghios Ioannis. Concerts,
theatric plays, conferences are some of the events included in the program,
while on the 29th a local feast ("panighyri") takes place, where the
people enjoy in the traditional way.
Another local feast ("panighyri") takes place on the 15th of August at
the Monastery of Panaghia Odigitria in honour of the the Assumption of
The village offers accommodation facilities in studios and rooms to
let. In the local taverns, the restaurants and the traditional cafes
of the village the visitor will enjoy good food and drink. And, if you...
can't leave without swimming, the beaches of Matala, Kommos, Vathy and
Aghiofarango are close enough to satisfy your desire.
Access from Heraklion is possible by public bus, runnging frequently
enough, as well as by rented and private cars and motorbikes.