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Constantine Manos: A GREEK PORTFOLIO / 50 years later

 The Society of Cretan Historical Studies is rounding off its cycle of  temporary exhibitions for 2014 with a retrospective  exhibition from   the Benaki Museum entitled Constantine Manos /  A Greek Portfolio / 50  Years Later. The exhibition was curated last year by Yannis Dimou.  Grounded in the fruitful collaboration between the Historical  Museum and the Benaki Museum, this succeeds the temporary  exhibition  Domenicos Theotocopoulos between Venice and  Rome held to mark El Greco Year (2014), which is being  transferred to the Benaki Museum and will open in Pireos St. on  20th November 2014.
 In the new temporary exhibition at the Historical Museum of Crete,  ninety-four (94) photographs from the lens of distinguished  photographer Constantine Manos transport us to the remote  villages and islands of Greece of the 1960s – with an emphasis on  Crete – where Manos invites us as travelling companions in a scene of rural simplicity and tranquillity. Beyond ethnological and historical interest, the poetic skill of Manos' lens creates diachronic images reflecting the uniqueness of the landscape and its inhabitants.

Fire in a yaught in Marina of Ag.Nikolaos (10.12.2014)

Sifis,the Cretan crocodile

This year’s Epiphany celebrations in Amari in Rethymno on the island of Crete will feature the famous “Cretan” crocodile, Sifis, as locals will dive for the holy cross in the river dam.
The custom of the Epiphany (January 6) celebrations is called “diving for the holy cross” and is performed in all areas near water in Greece. It consists of a Christian Orthodox priest throwing a holy cross in the water to sanctify the water. Then, local men and boys dive in the water to bring it back.
The residents of Amari feel that Sifis is one of their own now and have no hesitation of jumping into the same waters where the crocodile lives in order to catch the cross and throw it back to village priest Papa-Giorgis.
“Everyone will go to the dam for the ceremony. Sifis seems harmless to humans. I see him almost every day out of the dam and when he feels the presence of people, he flees terrified and dives in the water,” said the president of the Pantanassa Cultural Association Constantinos Ieronymakis.
However, the Mayor of Amari Adam Paradeisanos, speaking to Ethnos newspaper, emphasized the need to ensure that the crocodile must stay in the area in a controlled environment as he has become the main local tourist attraction advertized in Rethymno, Crete and Greece worldwide.
The crocodile was first seen in July at the river dam in Amari, near Rethymno, and has become a major attraction. In the beginning, there were efforts to catch him, but a great number of people were opposed to his capture. There is also a Facebook page with messages of support for the crocodile, such as “Leave Sifis alone!”

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     Cretan carnival


                                        Images from the parade 2014 in Rethymnon

Archive from year 2014
One hundred years have passed since the first Rethymno Carnival in Crete, Greece. The Carnival will once again open the tourist season on the Greek island, which means one more reason for the municipality of Rethymno to celebrate.
The city is collaborating with several travel agencies of the municipality in order to offer good, cheap travel packages throughout the tourist season of the Carnival.
Deputy Mayor of Culture and Tourism in Rethymno, Pepi Birliraki, when asked about bookings from abroad said that Cypriots, Italians, Americans and other international tourists make reservations to visit the carnival season in Rethymno and experience it first hand.
During the peak of carnival season, it is estimated that approximately 3,000 beds will be occupied by visitors of the city, not taking into account visitors who come from other parts of the Greek island.
Since 1914 beautiful Renaissance Rethymnon has been celebrating the carnival with its many humoristic events. A carnival of another era leaving behind its nostalgic aroma of romantic balls and the Rethymnians through laughter and their comical antics paying their tribute to "His Excellence, The King of the Carnival."
The Treasure Hunt, an old custom dating back to when the Carnival of Rethymno began about a century ago, was the reason for the creation of 'teams' in 1990, which would give birth once again to this age-old tradition.
In 1993, the Municipality of Rethymnon decided to help fund this popular event and requested the teams to take on the challenging task of creating and organising the Carnival of Rethymnon, which has become the most popular and famous Carnival of Crete!

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Easter lamb in Crete

Very few know that traditional Greek Easter dishes and their cooking methods were known to the ancient Greeks since five thousand years ago.
When Ancient Greeks roasted lamb on a spit, as there were no brushes or lemons then, they dipped a pine tree branch into juices of unripe grapes and plums and basted the meat, giving it a special fruit and resin flavor. For the preparation of kokoretsi, they marinated the lamb’s  intestines in vinegar, water and honey. The vinegar functioned as an antiseptic and dehydrated most of the fat of the intestine, while the honey created a caramelized crust.
Nowadays, apart from the well-known spit, every region has its own Easter culinary traditions which include many different versions- from the Macedonian recipe of kleftiko (literally meaning of the thief), which is slow-roasted bone lamb, and the rifi (goat) with patouda of Naxos, to the hotpot lamb of Epirus and the Cretan gardoumia (animal entrails in lemon sauce).
On the Greek islands, in most cases, lamb is stuffed with various herbs and rice and is roasted in the oven. The rifi with patouda of Naxos is lamb with chards and poppies that grow at Easter, fennel, myronia (winter herbs) and fresh onions. In the north, in Mytilene, according to tradition, the lamb is stuffed with rice, without herbs, but with pine nuts, raisins and bowels.
In Epirus the meat is cooked in a hotpot, accompanied with local mountain herbs and when cooked, egg and lemon sauce are added. In Patras, the lamb is traditionally roasted with bellies and legs, while in Mani the so called regali, is a meat dish with tomato, with a little broth and tomato sauce.
In Crete the traditional gardoumia is prepared in any three different ways: either with the leg of the lamb wrapped with intestine, with liver, or with the intestine and the intestine slip.

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Weather in Crete

Coordinatesb35°13′N 24°55′E
 Country    Greece
 Capital Heraklion
 Regional units
 • Total 8,336 km2 (3,219 sq mi)
Highest elevation 2,456 m (8,058 ft)
Population (2011)
 • Total 623,065
 • Density 75/km2 (190/sq mi)

Crete straddles two climatic zones, the Mediterranean and the North African, mainly falling within the former. As such, the climate in Crete is primarily temperate. The atmosphere can be quite humid, depending on the proximity to the sea, while winter is fairly mild. Snowfall is common on the mountains between November and May, but rare in the low lying areas. While mountain tops remain snow-capped year long, near the coast snow only stays on the ground for a few minutes or hours. However, a truly exceptional cold snap swept the island in February 2004, during which period the whole island was blanketed with snow. During the Cretan summer, average temperatures reach the high 20s-low 30s Celsius (mid 80s to mid 90s Fahrenheit), with maxima touching the upper 30s-mid 40s.
The south coast, including the Mesara Plain and Asterousia Mountains, falls in the North African climatic zone, and thus enjoys significantly more sunny days and high temperatures throughout the year. There, date palms bear fruit, and swallows remain year-round rather than migrate to Africa. The fertile region around Ierapetra, on the southeastern corner of the island, is renowned for its exceptional year-round agricultural production, with all kinds of summer vegetables and fruit produced in greenhouses throughout the winter.

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 Heraklion international airport
 Cretan sea marine traffic
 Autumn in Crete
 Spring in Crete
 Easter Lamb in Crete
 Sifis,the Cretan crocodile
 Mediterranean diet
 Cretan Aquarium - Thalassokosmos
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 Diving points in East Crete
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Hiking or walking in Crete
+ Mountain Dikti in Lassithi  area

+ Mountain Idi or Psiloritis -  Skinakas Observatory-  Heraklion 
+Asterousia Mountains-  Heraklion

Caves in Crete

+The cave of Zoniana- Heraklion
+The Diktaian Cave (Dikteon Andro, birthplace of Zeus)- Lassithi
+The Idean Cave (Ideon Andro)
+The cave of Ag. Paraskevi Skotinou

Lakes in Crete
+Lake Voulismeni - Ag.Nikolaos(it is connected with the sea)

Address of  important museums at Heraklion - Iraklio Archaeological Museum-Address: Xanthoudidou 1, Iraklio

- Historical Museum of Crete-Address: Lysimahou Kalokerinou 7, Iraklio

- Battle of Crete Museum-Address: Doukos Beaufort and Hatzidaki, Iraklio


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1. Christmas Carols in Crete
2.Gigantic Squid Washed Ashore in    Peloponnese

3.Cretan carnival
4.Heraklion agenda

Almiros wetland in Ag. Nikolaos

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