317 Holy fathers monastery

Kalo Horafi

318 Holy fathers monastery at Kalo Chorafi
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On the national road and between Bali and Sises, province Mylopotamos, in the area of Kalo Chorafi or Kala Chorafia is the church of the 318 Holy Fathers. The church celebrates οn June 1 and crowds gather every year. The Holy Fathers are the ones who took part in the First Ecumenical Council of Nicaea of Bithynia in the year 325 AD. and its purpose was to condemn the teaching of Arius.

There are few temples dedicated to them. The Holy Fathers' temple is located in a very beautiful corner of the north coast just above the sea in a place with a beautiful view of the two successive sandy beaches below and on the Vrachi peninsula. Behind the temple to the south rise the peaks of the Kouloukonas mountain range. In the area of ​​the temple there was an ancient sanctuary. Due to the rough terrain of the area and before the opening of the highway, this area was completely isolated from the rest of the world and thus was an ideal place for the numerous hermits who were on the island during the Venetian occupation.

The construction of the temple, which was part of the monastery, dates back to the Venetian era. A short distance away is the Monastery of Panagia Harakiani. The whole area is full of residential remains and archeological sites that represent a large part of the history of Crete. The name Kalo Chorafi is due to the fact that a small part of land holds a little fertile soil in the generally barren and rocky landscape of the area. In this small fertile area, the monks have for years had some fruit trees and few crops to produce the food they needed. Even today, some centuries-old olive trees and carob trees survive around the chapel. But what really gives color and beauty to the area are the countless oleanders that in summer give a unique color to the area.

The temple is very simple and inside there are no frescoes, but it is assumed that there murals in its original condition. On the west side of the temple above the lintel, the coat of arms of the Kallergis family, the most important Christian family of the Venetian period in Crete, is preserved in excellent condition. And indeed the temple belongs to the area defined by the family of these Cretan lords. The monastery probably ceased to exist with the arrival of the Turks in Crete, as did most of the island's monasteries. Next to the church today there is a tavern and a dirt road that descends to the sandy beaches just below.

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Additional Info

  • Location: Rethymnon Prefecture
  • Type: Church
  • Accessibility: Paved road

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