Explore Crete


The small town of Asimi in the province of Monofatsi is built on a fertile plain between the southern extensions of Mount Kasteriotis and the top of Kofinas in the Asterousia Mountains. The Geropotamos and Livaditis rivers start from the area.

The town has developed as the economic center of the villages of eastern Messara plane. The inhabitants are mainly engaged in agriculture (vine and olive), but also in animal husbandry.

According to tradition, Asimi got its name from a girl from the Peloponnese named Asimina. The town was first mentioned in a document from 1280.

There are the churches of Agios Titos (patron of Asimi), Zoodochos Pigi, Agios Georgios, Agia Paraskevi, Agios Charalambos and Sotiras. Also, although the initial view of the city does not arouse the interest of the visitor, there is the center of the old village with its picturesque alleys and the fountain of Agios Titos.

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Koudoumas monastery

Koudoumas monastery is located at the exit of Katarraktis gorge in Asterousia Mountains, 80km south of Iraklion and only 40m from a beautiful beach. It is one of the most secluded monasteries of Crete, as access from Heraklion requires 2.5 hours. There is a safe 24km long dirt road that starts from the village Sternes (accessible from Charakas), at an altitude of 1000m near the peak Kofinas (1231m).


Castel Bonifacio (Monofatsi Fort)

The Fort Bonifacio or Apano Castelli is located west of the current Tsifout Kastelli village, 44km south of Heraklion, on a hill now called Apano Kasteli or Psilo Aloni. The fort is reported since 1212 and was built by the Genoese pirate Henry Pescatore.


Kofinas Peak Sanctuary

Kofinas is the highest peak in the wild Asterousia Range with an altitude of 1231m and gets its name from its shape resembles an inverted basket (kofini in Greek). The top, with stunning views to the Libyan Sea, today hosts a temple of the Holy Cross (Timios Stavros), celebrating on September 14.


Fort Harakas

The village Charakas took its name after a large rock (charakas in Cretan dialect) on which we still see the ruins of the small Venetian fort and the church of the Transfiguration, which was restored recently. The fort consists of three rooms in which the floor is carved into the rock and covered with plaster.


Saint Nikolaos monastery by Sternes

Between the village Sternes and the Monastery Koudoumas, on the wild and arid range of Asterousia, we meet the abandoned village and the church of St. Nicholas (celebrating on December 6th). The church was a dependency of the monastery Koudoumas.


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