Firkas Fortress


The Firkas Fortress at the western tip of the harbour heads the best-preserved section of the massive fortifications that were built by the Venetians to protect the city from marauding pirates and invading Turks. The Turks invaded anyway, in 1645, and turned the fortress into a barracks and a prison. Today, parts of it house the Maritime Museum of Crete. There's a great view of the harbour from the top.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Hania attractions

1. Venetian Fortifications

0.01 MILES

Part of a defensive system begun in 1538 by Michele Sanmichele, who also designed Iraklio’s defences, Hania’s massive fortifications remain impressive…

2. Maritime Museum of Crete

0.02 MILES

Part of the hulking Venetian-built Firkas Fortress at the western port entrance, this museum celebrates Crete’s nautical tradition with model ships, naval…

3. Byzantine & Post-Byzantine Collection

0.05 MILES

In the impressively restored Venetian Church of San Salvatore, this small but fascinating collection of artefacts, icons, jewellery and coins spans the…

4. Lighthouse

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The lighthouse at the mouth of the Venetian Harbour is one of Hania's landmarks, sparkling at sunset and then illuminated after dark. The stone tower…

5. Venetian Harbour

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There are few places where Hania's historic charm and grandeur are more palpable than in the old Venetian Harbour. It's lined by pastel-coloured buildings…

6. Mosque of Kioutsouk Hasan

0.18 MILES

One of the prettiest and most dominant vestiges of the Turkish era is this dusky-pink multidomed former mosque on the eastern side of the Venetian Harbour…

7. Etz Hayyim Synagogue

0.23 MILES

Crete’s only remaining synagogue (dating from the 15th century) was badly damaged in WWII and reopened only in 1999. It sports a mikveh (ritual bath),…

8. Grand Arsenal

0.24 MILES

Impressively restored from a roofless ruin, the 16th-century Venetian arsenal was the last of the 17 shipyard buildings in Hania's Venetian Harbour. After…