The river Giofyros or Diakoniaris is located in the northern prefecture of Heraklion. It is watered by several tributaries close to the village of Profitis Ilias (Prophet Elijah) and flows next to the Pancretan Stadium, in Heraklion city.
Unfortunately, near its mouth, it looks more like a wasteland, rather than a river. Due to its shameful condition inside the city of Heraklion, almost none of Cretans can imagine that this river forms, even today, some of the most beautiful landscapes in Crete.
Indeed, close to the village of Profitis Ilias, it shapes deep valleys and on its banks rich vineyards and olive groves grow. Near the settlement Tsagarakis the valley turns to a narrow gorge and a narrow stone passage traps the water in a natural barrier. There, a small waterfall and some old mills compose an amazing landscape.
There are reports that the river once hosted a Temple of Athena, which has not been yet located. Moreover, near the village of Hani, you could visit a small stone bridge (dating back in 1690) that once connected the city of Heraklion to the plain of Messara.
In another part of Giofyros, near the village of Kyparissi, the river forms a beautiful canyon with dense vegetation and several small waterfalls.