Lassithi is the fourth prefecture of Crete, on the east part of the island, covering an area of 1,820 square kilometres. It is filled with long sandy beaches and beautiful green valleys with traditional small villages.
Lassithi prefecture consists a huge part of the long Cretan history. It is a place with many remarkable venetian and turkish monuments and with a variety of minoan or postminoan archaeological sites. The most well-known of these, are the town/villages of Lato, Gournia, Itanos, Mohlos and Zakros. Across the region, you can also visit many historical sights of the venetian era, Turkish mosques and Byzantine churches. Historically, there are two theories as to the origin of the name "lassithi": the first relates it to the ancient Greek word "lasios", which means fertile area - and indeed Lassithi has been verdant since ancient times - while the second, attributed to Paul Favre, relates the name to Sitia, which the Venetians rendered "La Sitti".
The capital of the prefecture is Agios Nikolaos, a picturesque harbour built on the Mirabello Bay. This cosmopolitan port gathers all the elements a visitor may come across in the prefecture. The wonderful sight of the harbour including the fishing boats and a variety of traditional cafes and taverns, the huge developed tourism as well as people's hospitality, indicate a fullfill atmosphere fot all different visitors "tastes".
At the south of the prefecture is located Ieraperta, the southernmost town of Europe, a significant port with the majestic fortress and the long beach, facing the Libyan Sea. Close to Ierapetra is plased Chrissi island with its remarkable golden beaches that you can visit on daytrip schedules.
Other developed towns are Sitia on the east part and the cosmopolitan and famous Elounda with the beautiful Spinaloga. Many villages present a special beauty in the prefecture, such as the beautiful Lassithi plateau, with hundreds of windmills, the famous Vai area, with a dense forest of 5,000 palm trees and Neapoli that lies on a green valley, full of olive trees and vineyards.
The main products of the prefecture are cereals, olive oil, olives, carobs and currants, potatoes, oranges and mandarins. The most of the ammount are normally exported and well known for their quality.
During your visit to Lassithi prefecture you will find that life has its own rhythm, the traditions are carefully followed and the people always take the time to enjoy their most precious possession, the wonderful landscape of Lassithi prefecture.