Gortyn, Heraklion, Greece
Only 35 minutes by car from Agia Galini.
Ancient Greek & Roman site with Byzantine Basilica of Titus and unique hand carved law stones.
A new museum situated west of the old site is expected to open in 2018.
There is evidence of human occupation in Gortyn as far back as the Neolithic era (7000 BC). Many artifacts have been found from the Minoan period, as well as some from the Dorian (c. 1100 BC). Although it is disputed whether the city was in development during the Minoan period, it is true that the city was in existence during the heroic times, because it is referenced by Homer, among the cities of Crete that were flourishing and were well fortified. The city was complimented by Plato and many others. The city of Gortyn surpassed the prominence of Phaistos during the first millennium BC, Phaistos having been the most significant city on Crete during Minoan times. The period of its great prosperity, however, coincided with the Hellenistic era. Gortyn was the most powerful and prosperous city of Crete and took hegemony of the island, dominating the entire valley from Messara to Levina and, later in the 2nd century after the destruction of Phaistos, extended its power to Matala.