Malia Minoan Palace

Malia, Greece

To the east of the modern resort is the Minoan Palace of Malia. This is the third-largest Minoan palace in Crete, built in a wonderful setting near the sea, on the road linking eastern and central Crete.

This palace - the seat, according to myth, of Minos’ brother Sarpedon - was first constructed circa 1900 BC. The already large settlement, some parts of which are preserved around the palace, thus became a palace-city. This first palace was destroyed c. 1700 BC and rebuilt in c. 1650 BC on the same site and with the same layout. Finally the new palace was destroyed in c. 1450 BC and not reoccupied. During the Mycenean period a small building, probably a sanctuary, was constructed in the ruins.

At Malia we can actually walk around the actual palace, just as it was uncovered by archaeological excavations. Most of the ruins visible today belong to the Neopalatial complex - the second palace - whose rooms are set around three courts: the Central Court, the North Court and the Tower Court. The majestic size, complex plan and multiple details of the palace make it a fascinating place to visit.

References:

Comments

Your name

Website (optional)



Details

Founded: 1900 BC
Category: Prehistoric and archaeological sites in Greece

More Information

www.explorecrete.com

Rating

4.3/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

András Gaál (21 months ago)
A picturesque place with the remains of an old palace but with a lot of closed of parts that makes it a less good experience.
TAXI CRETE (21 months ago)
The ruins of the ancient palace of Maria, next to the beach. A very nice place
Dave Ormston (21 months ago)
Facinating, gives a real insight into how they lived
Ann Kielthy (22 months ago)
I'd never visited a site like this before so I found it quite interesting, entrance price of €6 is pretty reasonable considering they have staff on hand in several locations, there is a guided tour available at certain times, not sure how good it is but if you want to learn as much as possible about the artefacts and dig it would be worth considering, if you are staying in the area it's well worth a visit.
Richard Havell (2 years ago)
A really stunning example of an early Minoan Palace and surrounding town buildings. There are far fewer people than Knossos and you're free to walk through the rooms and corridors with very few roped off sections. It's far less reconstructed than other sites, meaning it's easy to understand the layout, which is all on a single level. Highlights are the circular grain silos, the altars, the remains of the staircase to the upper floor, and the pillar court with visible double-axe carvings. Parking is free and entrance very reasonable at €6 (I don't know how some other people in the reviews can complain about this, given the sheer size of the site). Most of the information is on a single sign near the entrance and there are very few information signs around the site, so it's worth bringing a guidebook with some details with you.
Powered by Google

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Luxembourg Palace

The famous Italian Medici family have given two queens to France: Catherine, the spouse of Henry II, and Marie, widow of Henry IV, who built the current Luxembourg palace. Maria di Medici had never been happy at the Louvre, still semi-medieval, where the fickle king, did not hesitate to receive his mistresses. The death of Henry IV, assassinated in 1610, left the way open for Marie's project. When she became regent, she was able to give special attention to the construction of an imposing modern residence that would be reminiscent of the Palazzo Pitti and the Boboli Gardens in Florence, where she grew up. The development of the 25-hectare park, which was to serve as a jewel-case for the palace, began immediately.

The architect, Salomon de Brosse, began the work in 1615. Only 16 years later was the palace was completed. Palace of Luxembourg affords a transition between the Renaissance and the Classical period.

In 1750, the Director of the King's Buildings installed in the wing the first public art-gallery in France, in which French and foreign canvases of the royal collections are shown. The Count of Provence and future Louis XVIII, who was living in Petit Luxembourg, had this gallery closed in 1780: leaving to emigrate, he fled from the palace in June 1791.

During the French Revolution the palace was first abandoned and then moved as a national prison. After that it was the seat of the French Directory, and in 1799, the home of the Sénat conservateur and the first residence of Napoleon Bonaparte, as First Consul of the French Republic. The old apartments of Maria di Medici were altered. The floor, which the 80 senators only occupied in 1804, was built in the middle of the present Conference Hall.

Beginning in 1835 the architect Alphonse de Gisors added a new garden wing parallel to the old corps de logis, replicating the look of the original 17th-century facade so precisely that it is difficult to distinguish at first glance the old from the new. The new senate chamber was located in what would have been the courtyard area in-between.

The new wing included a library (bibliothèque) with a cycle of paintings (1845–1847) by Eugène Delacroix. In the 1850s, at the request of Emperor Napoleon III, Gisors created the highly decorated Salle des Conférences, which influenced the nature of subsequent official interiors of the Second Empire, including those of the Palais Garnier.

During the German occupation of Paris (1940–1944), Hermann Göring took over the palace as the headquarters of the Luftwaffe in France, taking for himself a sumptuous suite of rooms to accommodate his visits to the French capital. Since 1958 the Luxembourg palace has been the seat of the French Senate of the Fifth Republic.