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Heraklion (Iraklion) is the capital and largest city of the Greek turistøya Crete, and has approximately 173,000 inhabitants (2011).The city is located on the north coast, and is the administrative, economic and touristic center. Heraklion is also the island’s main port, and from there the passenger ferries to many other Greek islands.
Heraklion is both a dynamic and cosmopolitan city – especially in the summer when thousands of tourists come to town. One of the most important archeological museums located here, which is partly the world’s largest collection of Minoan art. The exhibits also include the discovery of Knossos from antiquity.
Many tourists find their way to the old town of Heraklion – which is surrounded by a 4 km long Venetian walls from the 1400s. Here lies the fortress “Rocca al Mare” from 1540, Agios Markos Basilica 1239, Ekaterini monastery church from 1555 (which today houses a museum) and Agios Minas Cathedral from 1895. The cathedral is one of the largest churches in neobysantiske Greece.
It also recommended a visit to the historic museum – where you can see paintings by El Greco – who was born in Heraklion.
A little south of Heraklion is the Minoan palace at Knossos, which is the capital’s main attraction.
Otherwise, the town offers good shopping and a varied nightlife with restaurants, cafés, bars and night clubs.
The city’s airport – Iraklion International Airport – is situated 5 km east of the center.