Kapsa Monastery

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Kapsa monastery, is located in the southeastern edge of Crete, 5 km west of the Cape Goudouras (ancient Eritrean) in a panoramic position overlooking the Libyan Sea. Kapsa monastery is built on a fortified position on a steep and rocky hillside. There are several small and large caves in this area that have been used as cells for monks. Also, next to monastery is the exodus of the Pervolakia Gorge. Ierapetra is 37 km west and Sitia is 38 km north from Kapsa Monastery. The road that leads here is good enough.

Kapsa monastery was founded in the 15th century. In 1471 the Turks invaded the region and destroyed, among other things, the  Kapsa Monastery. Since then, the area passed into the hands of several owners. One of them was called Kapsas. From him, the monastery got its name.

400 years later, Gerontoyannis, a crook in the area, was hiding here to escape the Turks. With his family found shelter in the old cells of Kapsa monastery and the nearby gorge of Pervolakia. After his daughter’s death (burnt alive), he ceased to be an impostor. He devoted to God and re-founded the Kapsa monastery. Some say that he did miracles. Others, that just continued to be a trickster who mock believers. What matters is that he restored the monastery. Years later, his grandson continued his work.

During World War II Greek, English and Australian soldiers found shelter in Kapsa monastery, fighting the Nazi. That was the initial point of their “trip” to Egypt… The German¬†evacuated the monastery when they “smell the rat”.

Nowadays, Kapsa Monastery is an alive traditional Cretan monastery. It is visited by many people who like being in a wild Cretan landscape, prefer religion tourism and are interested in live history monuments. In the surrounding area you can also visit Goudouras village, Makrys Gialos, Kalo Nero and Analipsi. There are many sandy beaches for swimming, too.

Read also: Toplou Monastery, Makrys Gialos, Narrations

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