"Frangokastello..." Frangocastello Tip by lua2

Frangocastello, Crete Island: 7 reviews and 11 photos

About 70km from Rethymno, on the South coast of Crete, in front of a nice sandy beach, stands one of the most beautiful Venetian fortresses, Fragokastello (Castel Franco), built by Venetians in 1371 in order to protect the South coast of Crete against pirates, Turks and Cretan rebelds.

The Battle of Fragokastello:

In 1828 during the War of Independence against the Turks, the troops of Hatzimihalis Dalianis took refuge in the casstle during the Battle of Fragokastello. The leader of the Turks, Mustafabey, besieged the castle for seven days. During the siege Dalianis himself and 350 of his troops died. Locals, however, closed in on the Turkish army from behind and with their help, Mustafabey retreated and allowed to the troops to exit the castle unharmed. Afterwards, he demolished a big part of the castle and started to proceed towards northeast. But the locals, waited for them in the gorges and slaughtered many his army.

The Phenomenon of Drosoulites:

According to a local legend, every year, on the anniversay of the Battle of Fragokastello, when the dawn breaks, the visitor sees a long procession of visions.
There are people, dressed in black, with their weapons shining under the morning sun, walkers and riders, marching from the ruined church of Agios Charalambos and advancing towards the fort. The phenomenos is observed whrn the sea is calm and the atmosphere is moist and it usually last about 10 minuts.
they reach the sea and disappear into it, with the first rays of the sun. They are called Drosoulites.
The procession could be well observed from the valley at a distance of 1000m.
This phenomenon has been well attested over a period of time. Many have tried to explain this in a scientific way, and at one time it was explained as a mirage from the coast of north Africa, but still there is no accepted consensus.

Fragokastello, is a good base for those who want to explore the South west coast of Crete.

tip under construction!

Address: Prefecture of Rethymnon
Directions: About 11 kms east of the Chora Sfakion

Review Helpfulness: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Was this review helpful?

  • Updated Aug 3, 2006
  • Send to a Friend
  • Add to your Trip Planner
  • Report Abuse


lua2 Lives Here!


“Sin prisa pero sin pausa...”

Online Now


Top 5,000 Travel Writer
Member Rank:
0 1 9 7 9

Have you been to Crete Island?

  Share Your Travels