The monastery of Panagia at


The monastery of Panagia Armos in Malles
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The monastery of Panagia Armos is located at position Armos, 5km southeast of Males village, very close to the nunnery of Exakousti. The area where the monastery was built is lush green and has panoramic views to the pine woords of Selakano and Malles. The monastery was one of the most historic and oldest in Crete, but is now ruined and only the church survives, dedicated to the Nativity of Virgin Mary (Panagia). The church of Panagia is a single-barrel-vaulted church with a beautiful iconostasis (templon) of 1869.

It is said that in the position of the current church, there was the Diocese of Iera, where 7 bishops of the 2nd century AD were buried. Indeed, the flourishing period of the monastery dates back to the early Christian Times (1st-2nd century AD). The current church we see today was built during the Venetian period. The monastery was used as permanent or summer residence of the local bishop during the Turkish Era, while the Diocese was possibly moved to Saint George at Loutra.


  • 1st-2nd century: According to tradition, the Diocese of Iera is founded at the position Armos.
  • 17th century: The current church of the monastery is built and the monastery of Panagia Armos is founded.
  • 1860: The small Armos monastery is attached to the Monastery Faneromeni.
  • 1873: The residents of Males ask Pasha Adosidis to receive part of the monastery funds for the operation of the school of Males, but he refuses.
  • 1878: During the revolution of 1877-78, the inhabitants of Males occupy the lands of the monastery and since then they use part of the rental income for Males school.
  • 1901: The monastery stops its operation and is passed to the parish of Males.

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Additional Info

  • Location: Lassithi Prefecture
  • Type: Church
  • Accessibility: Dirt track

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