panoramic Kissamos

Kissamos: A Gem in the Heart of Crete

Kissamos, also known as Kastelli Kissamou, is a vibrant town located in the west of the island of Crete, Greece. This charming town is part of the Chania regional unit and was once the centre of the Kissamos Province, which covered the northwest corner of the island. Kissamos is not just a town; it’s a place where history, culture, and natural beauty intertwine to create a unique and captivating atmosphere.

cafe in kissamos

A Town Steeped in History

Kissamos has a rich history that dates back to the Roman era. The town was known as Cisamus in ancient times and was a significant naval arsenal for the city of Aptera. The town’s historical significance is evident in the archaeological finds in the area, including intricate mosaics from the Roman city of Kisamos. The town museum in the old Venetian governor’s palace houses these critical archaeological finds, offering a glimpse into the town’s illustrious past.

A Hub of Activity

Today, Kissamos is a bustling port and fishing harbour with a regular ferry service from the Peloponnese via Kythira. The town’s strategic location and excellent transport links make it a hub of activity and a gateway to the stunning northwest corner of Crete.

Kavonisi kissamos

Natural Beauty and Cultural Heritage

Kissamos is not just about history and commerce; it’s also a place of stunning natural beauty. The municipality includes the Gramvousa peninsula, the adjacent Gramvousa islets, and the islet of Pontikonisi. These natural attractions, combined with the town’s rich cultural heritage, make Kissamos a must-visit destination for any traveller to Crete.

A Vibrant Community

The community of Kissamos is vibrant and welcoming. With a population of around 10,790, tradition and modernity coexist in the town. The locals, known for their warmth and hospitality, are proud of their town’s heritage and are always eager to share their love for their home with visitors.

A Testament to Resilience

Kissamos has stood the test of time. From its ancient roots as a naval arsenal to its current status as a bustling town and port, Kissamos is a testament to its people’s resilience and enduring spirit. Despite the challenges and changes over the centuries, the town has retained its unique charm and thrives.


Kissamos is more than just a town in Crete; it’s a place where every corner tells a story, where the past and present merge, and where natural beauty abounds. Whether you’re a history buff, a nature lover, or a traveller looking for a unique cultural experience, Kissamos has something to offer. So why not take the time to explore this Cretan gem? You might find that Kissamos, with its rich history, vibrant community, and stunning landscapes, is the destination you’ve been looking for.

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