Crete is full of mountain ranges, amongst which fertile plains and plateaus are formed. The largest plateau of Greece, the peaceful Lassithi Plateau is hidden between the wild peaks of Dicteos Mountains and some smaller plateaus. The Omalos Plateau, in White Mountains, is in the heart of the most mountainous area of Crete. Omalos is the starting point for several canyons of Sfakia, such as Samaria. Psiloritis Mountain also has several plateaus, with Nida being the most important. The largest plain in Crete is that of Messara, located in the southern prefecture of Iraklion. Smaller plains are scattered throughout the island, especially in coastal areas.
The small plateau of Monokara is located on Mount Ornos, at an altitude of about 750m. Access is possible from the villages Tourloti and Sfaka. On the plateau there is the picturesque temple of the Holy Cross and many cottages for stayingovernight in summer months, when locals keep crops of vines, apples, pears and walnut trees.