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Kritinia and Skala Kamirou, Rhodes Island

Kretenia is a mountainous rural village, situated at a distance of some 54 kilometers far from the town of Rhodes at the Southwest, pretty close to the sea (the coastal settlement of Skala Kameirou is only 4-5 kilometers far from Kretenia to the North). Built on a hillside, the village offers a wonderful view of the castle, of the sea and of the islands across. The 550 permanent residents are occupied in agriculture, mainly with olive crop, viniculture and cultivation of vegetables. They are also occupied in tourism.

Skala Kameirou is the port of the village. The excursion boats to the island of Chalki depart from this small port.

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The name “Kretenia” is the new name of the village, which was called “Castelos” in the past. The new name was been given following the local myth . According to this myth, Althaimenes, a prince of Crete left his country so that he would not kill his father Catreas, as an oracle had predicted. The young prince arrived to Rhodes, where he settled the towns of Kameiros and Kretenia. However, it has not been possible to avoid the oracle. Catreas, looking for his son, came to Rhodes; his son did not recognized him, he thought that he was invading the island and killed him. When he understood what he had done, Althaimenes left the town and went to the sacred mountain Atavyros, where he established the old temple of Zeus. Apart from the myth, the name Kretenia makes allusion to the Cretan origin of the actual residents, as its etymology refers to Crete (“Krete” in Greek).

Close to the village, some 2 kilometers at the Northwest, there is the old medieval castle, established in the 16th century by the Knights of St. John, in order to protect the western coast of the island from the attacks of the Ottomans. The old name of the village, Castelos, is owed to this castle. Once here, you will have an excellent view of the area. The sunset here is breathtaking and the whole place is worth taking photos.

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At the central square of the village with the huge, old plane tree to dominate it, you will enjoy your coffee or lunch in the scenic cafés and the small taverns, all of them with excellent view to the sea.

Within the village you may also visit the small church of Aghios Ioannis (St. John), where you will see interesting frescoes dated back to the 16th century.

It is worth visiting the small Folk Museum of the village, with interesting exhibits of traditional objects of every life.

At Skala Kameirou you will see the ruins of an Early Christian basilica.

Accommodation facilities are available in the area around. In Skala Kameirou you will enjoy fresh fish and seafood in the lovely scenic sea front taverns.

Swimming is possible at the nearby beaches of Skala Kameirou (4 ,5 kilometers far from Kretenia at the North) , Mantriko (some 12 kilometers at the Northeast) and Kopria.

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The residents of the village, devout Christians of Cretan origin, have brought in their new settlement their customs. Thus, local feasts take place in the village in honor of Panaghia Amartos (Virgin Mary) on Tuesday following Easter and on the 8 th of September.

In case of health problems a local Medical Center is available at the village of Emponas , some 9 kilometers to the East .

Access to the village of Cretenia is possible by private means (rented or private car and motorbikes. If you have a yacht or boat, the small port of Skala Kameirou is suitable for mooring.
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