• fotini's house


The origins of life at the region where Petrokefali lies today are lost in the mists of time. Archaeological excavations have revealed evidence of a Neolithic settlement in the north-east of the village. On the rocky hill facing Phaestos, in the region of "Spyridiana", a tomb of the Late Minoan period was uncovered, with lots of pottery and weapons inside. An area called "Petra" [Rock] bears witness to the existence of a settlement during the Roman era. Everything seems to suggest that the small settlement continued to exist during the Byzantine times.

The evidence regarding Petrokefali became even more during the Venetian rule. Administratively, Petrokefali was part of the region of Kenourgios that belonged to the district of Chandakas during the 16th and 17th century. According to the census of 1583, the village had 139 inhabitants (46 men, 51 women, 40 children and 2 elderly people). The inhabitants were engaged in the cultivation of wheat and rice, as well as wine-growing. Life in Petrokefali did not stop with the Ottoman occupation of Crete in 1645. The amount of information is growing and becoming more detailed in the centuries to come.

The few, yet impressive buildings that can be found today in the historic center of Petrokefali bear witness to the evolution of the village. The houses of Giannis Petrakis (today property of Nikos and Maria Psilakis) that dates back to 1854, of Mihalis Mihelinakis that belongs to the same time period and of Manolis Kanakarakis from 1893 really stand out. One of the most characteristic examples of the architecture that prevailed at the times of the Cretan State is another building in the village that was built by Dr. Mihail D. Bornovas and has its own history.

Next to these buildings, there is the imposing temple of the Holy Spirit. It was built in 1865 by renowned builders of Karpathos, at the place where the old church that existed since the Venetian occupation used to stand. Since then, the feast day of the church has been a special event for the region. The same goes for the festival that follows.

In the 20th century, the population of Petrokefali grew significantly. Thanks to the daily efforts of its inhabitants, it flourished and had a key role in the life of Western Messara. This prestige was also gained due to some prominent people engaged in the sciences, arts, trade and other fields. Their multifaceted work has lived on up to this very day.

The old Primary School of the village, the origins of which can be found at some time in the last 20 years of the 19th century, has a long tradition. Brilliant teachers have served there at times.

Petrokefali today

Petrokefali is a beautiful village located in the plain of Messara. It belongs to the Municipality of Phaestos and has 750 inhabitants. The location of the village is very favorable for growing all types of fruit and vegetables, olives, citrus fruit, vines & cereals. Thanks to its ideal location, Petrokefali is constantly developing as young people stay and work in the village or the surrounding area. In the village there is a Primary School and a kindergarten and the patron church is the Holy Spirit. Every year in June a great Cretan traditional festival takes place in the square of the village to celebrate the feast day of the church.

In the village there are two community parks, a basketball court and a beautiful square where you can take a stroll, do your shopping at the two super markets and taste traditional dishes. As a result of our respect and love for our cultural inheritance and traditional customs, a cultural association was established, with considerable activity in cultural matters, in organizing excursions, lectures on various topics, theaters, concerts, religious trips and presentation of traditional dishes. Many of these events take place every year in August. Petrokefali is a beautiful and quiet village, ideal for anyone who wants to relax and experience the renowned Cretan hospitality.

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