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13th Gymnasium of Heraklion

ΚΑ2: 2016-1-ES01-KA219-025211_3 NAPLES: 20-24 FEBRUARY 2017


 Chania : City in the west

side of Crete

 Its history dates back to

antiquity, since the modern town of Chania is built on the site of ancient Cydonia.  Region of great importance both for commercial and military reasons, thanks to its position at the crossroads of North-South (EuropeAfrica) East - West (Europe - Asia) .

 The history of the lighthouse in

the old port of Chania goes back to more than five centuries.

 It’s the city’s distinctive landmark

all around the world.

 Its story is inseparably linked to

the history of the port as well as to the history of the region.

 In 1212 A.D Venetians conquered the

island of Crete.

 During Turkish and Venetian

domination, Chania developed a flourishing trade and an expanding shipping.

 Venetians rebuilt the town following

the venetian architectural standards and so, the city gradually grew inside the walls.

 The port’s function was soon

considered necessary and so the local authorities were obliged to take further action for its construction.


 1320 - 1356 : The construction of the port began

and the project continued for the next 200 years.  1363-1364: this port was abandoned and only Heraklion’s port was in use, as Rethimno’s port faced similar problems. .

1595 – 1601 :

the Venetians constructed a lighthouse founded on the natural rock that functioned as an open flame torch ,mentioned as the “Flashlight’’.

1830-1860 TURKISH OCCUPATION  During this period many public works

took place in the island.

The lighthouse was reconstructed on its original trapezoid basis, however, it is different from the old one and looks like a minaret.

 The tower-block of the lighthouse

consists of three parts of different cross sections: the part of the base is octagonal, the middle part has sixteen angles and the third is round. It is constructed with hewn stones made of white sandstone. The interior staircase leads to a balcony with a glass turret.  In 1847 and 1859 the lighthouse

was renovated upon its Venetian base and in 1839 it functioned with the latest technology at that time.

 At the end of the 19th century it

works as a port lantern and it consists only of the lighthouse tower, without the lighthouse keepers’ residence as it is located in a populated area.  At the end of the Turkish

occupation, a ladder of the eastern side was built at the entrance of the lighthouse.

 The lighthouse of Chania

operated in 1933 as a stable, red, “port lantern”.

 In 1941 its lighting equipment

was destroyed during the Second World War.

 It was replaced later and

operated again in 1945.

In 1962, the cargo ship “AFOVOS” crashed into the north-west corner of the lighthouse’s base.

 Today, the lighthouse still

constitutes the oldest and most precious ornament of Chania .

 It is standing proudly 21m

above the sea level and its light shines for 7 miles.

 It’s the oldest, preserved

lighthouse until today, not only in Greece but also in the Mediterranean too, and one of the oldest in the world.


Historical presentation of the lighthouse of Chania