The archaeological site of Itanos
The remains of ancient Itanos are located close to the Palm Forest of Vai in an area nowadays known as Erimoupoli. Ancient Itanos was an important city-state – Crete’s easternmost.
Although legends say the city was founded by settlers from Thera (Santorini) who were led to the location by the fisherman Porphyras, archaeological research supports claims that a Minoan settlement existed here. Itanos was one of Crete’s first cities that produced coins. During the early Byzantine period, a city developed on the site of a Hellenistic and Roman settlement; the remains of an Early Christian basilica still exist today. The city was eventually destroyed, either by an earthquake in 795 AD or the 9th century Arab invasion.