Keras Kardiotissas Monastery

Chersónisos, Greece

The Eastern Orthodox Keras Kardiotissas is dedicated to Virgin Mary that is situated near the village of Kera of the Heraklion regional unit in Crete. It is built on the north slopes of Mt. Dikti, at an altitude of 650 m and a location that is approximately 50 km east of Heraklion, next to the road to Lasithi Plateau.

The exact date of the monastery's establishment is unknown. However, references to it are made in manuscripts dating from the early fourteenth century. The monastery was named after an old icon of Theotokos that according to tradition was miraculous. That icon was stolen in 1498 by a wine merchant and transferred to Rome where it is now permanently enshrined in the Church of St. Alphonsus near the Esquiline Hill. The stolen icon was replaced by another one in 1735 that is also regarded as miraculous. During the Ottoman occupation of Crete, the monastery often served as a local revolutionary center and suffered several retaliatory attacks as a result. In 1720, Kera monastery became Stauropegic (independent of the local Bishop).

The monastery is surrounded by fortified walls. The main church (katholikon) was originally built as an arch-covered single space structure and was later expanded with two narthexes and a smaller chapel. The church features murals dating to the 14th and 15th centuries.

Today, the monastery functions as a nunnery. It celebrates the birth of Mary on September 8th every year.

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Details

Founded: 14th century
Category: Religious sites in Greece

More Information

en.wikipedia.org

Rating

4.6/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

WestmaN W (39 days ago)
Nice and very beautiful place ?? Entrance 2€. No photo inside churche.
Eric Gierman (40 days ago)
Stunning overview!!! Please explore and you must bring something special home from there great gift shop!
Uwe Menz (45 days ago)
Scenic drive throuh the mountains to the small monastary. On the way to the Lasithi Plateau with the Zeus Cave. Admission of 2 Euros for renovation of the Monastery.
Paul Lamot (54 days ago)
Nice old Byzantine style monastery with lots of original elements preserved notwithstanding it having been destroyed
Chris Oh! Boylesque (2 months ago)
This is a stunningly picturesque Monastery with an absolutely gorgeous panoramic view of the countryside below. It offers a small museum of ecclesiastical documents, icons, jewellery and even robes. The church is small and considering withstanding centuries of war, wear and tear, graffiti and use it still manages to display some original frescoes which were uncovered In the recent 70's. The entire site is worth the visit if you are on your way from the Palace of Malia to the Dictean Cave in Psichro (or vice versa) and came at a steal for only 2€.
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