The Monastery of Panagia Faneromeni (Revealed Holy Mary) or Virgin Mary of Gournia is located northwest of Pachia Ammos, 24km south of Agios Nikolaos. It is a male monastery built on a steep slope at an altitude of 540 meters with stunning sea views. The defensive character of the monastery is revealed by its strategic position and the fortress-like architecture. Indeed, even today you’ll see bastions and battlements, like in most monasteries of the same period. The church, which is the oldest surviving part of the monastery, dates to the period of the late Venetian occupation. Moreover, it is told that the first secret school in Crete operated here. Today the monastery is practically deserted, with the exception of the 15th of August when it is crowded by the pilgrims arriving from the surrounding area. On that day a traditional ceremony takes place, when the icon of the Virgin Mary, is transferred on foot from the church of St George in Skopi, accompanied by pilgrims.