Knossos is the site of the most important and better known palace of Minoan civilisation. According to tradition, it was the seat of the legendary king Minos. The Palace is also connected with thrilling legends, such as the myth of the Labyrinth with the Minotaur, and the story of Daidalos and Icaros.
The site was continuously inhabited from the Neolithic period (7000-3000 B.C.) until Roman times. The Linear B tablets (Mycenaean script) of the 14th century B.C. mention the city as ko-no-so.
Intensive habitation occured mostly in the Minoan period, when the so-called first (19th-17th centuries B.C.) and second palaces (16th-14th centuries B.C.) were built along with luxurious houses, a hospice and various other structures. After its partial destruction in 1450 B.C., Knossos was settled by Mycenaeans from the Greek Mainland.
The site of Castello a Mare was possibly first fortified by the Arabs in the 9th or 10th centuries. By the Byzantine period, a tower known as Castellum Comunis stood on the site. In 1303, the tower was destroyed in an earthquake but was repaired.
In 1462, the Venetian Senate approved a programme to improve the fortifications of Candia. Eventually, the Byzantine tower was demolished in 1523, and the Castello a Mare began to be built instead. Old ships were filled with stone, and were sunk to form a breakwater and increase the area of the platform on which the fortress was built. The fortress was completed in 1540.
In 1630, the fort was armed with 18 cannons on the ground floor, and 25 cannons on the pathway leading to the roof.
During the 21-year long Siege of Candia, Ottoman batteries easily neutralized the fort's firepower. The Ottomans eventually took the fort in 1669, after the Venetians surrendered the entire city. They did not make any major alterations to the fort, except for the additions of some battlements and embrasures. They built a small fort known as Little Koules on the landward side, but this was demolished in 1936 while the city was being modernized.
The fortress has been restored, and it is now open to the public. Art exhibitions and cultural activities are occasionally held at the fort.
Lions - Fountain Morosini.
The Morosini Fountain in Lions Square is located opposite the Basilica of San Marco, in the center of Heraklion. Considered one of the most beautiful monuments of Venetian Candia and preserved in very good condition. The construction ratio was not aesthetic but the water supply in the city of Heraklion. The water coming from the mountain Zeus in Archanes with a 15 km aqueduct that reached in Heraklion.
The inauguration took place on April 25, 1628 - Feast of St. Mark's then patron of the city. Initiator of the project was Francesco Morosini, who gave the fountain its name. The oktalovo shape of the tank due to the increase of the region to get water most people. In each semicircle can stand five, ie throughout the fountain forty individuals simultaneously to plunge their pots and fill them. Faucets (taps) did not exist. The topics of the relief shows the lobes is taken from the Greek mythology and mainly from sea world.
In 1847 the Turks changed the form of the fountain adding to the brink of oktalovis basin, marble columns that surrounded the marble top with tape on which is written with golden letters "Fountain Abdul Mejit". Also they pierced lobes and placed fountains, destroying the reliefs.
In 1900 the monument was restored to its original form.