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Chrissi Island

Chrissi Bonsai Cedar

Chrissi Bonsai Cedar

Welcome to Chrissi Island!

Chrissi or Gaidouronisi (donkey) Island is one of the 81 uninhabited islands of Crete. It lies in the Libyan Sea, 8 nautical miles away from the Cretan southern coast.

The landscape is strikingly similar to the one of Africa's northern coast, of volcanic origin, with sand dunes and golden sand beaches. Go up to the top of the low hill, Kefalas, and enjoy the view of the (possibly last existing in Europe) Lebanon Cedar (Cedrus libani) tree forest, which is more than 200 years old. Visit the Aghios Georgios chapel, the roman graves, the old port, the Minoan ruins, the light-house and the salt gathering installations that were a source of income to the island's inhabitants; or, you can enjoy the multicolored sea-life while snorkeling in the island's shallow turquoise waters along its serene coves.

The island was deserted by its inhabitants some centuries ago, who were chased away by pirates intending to use the island as a hide-out. Treasure hunting is NOT the case here, yet one could stumble on different kinds of treasures: any strange-looking stone which you find is possibly one of the 54 species of fossils of shells, petrified approximately 350000 to 70000 years ago!

For all these reasons Chrissi Island is protected by Unesco as an "Area of Intense Natural Beauty."