The tranquil plateau of Lasithi, 900m above sea level, is an arrestingly beautiful expanse of green fields interspersed with almond trees and orchards, offering a sense of secluded rural Crete. It is the least touristy region of the island and even though it has some popular places, like Elounda, Sitia and Ierapetra, the rest of the region is authentic and away from mass tourism. The best beach of Lassithi is Vai, an amazing place with an impressive palm forest and crystal clear waters. Very interesting are the traditional villages on the Lassithi Plateau, keeping all the local customs and a relaxed pace of life. A drive around will bring you to ancient sites and medieval castles, such as the Minoan palace of Zakros and the famous island of Spinalonga, a leper colony until the mid-50’s. Not to be missed is the Arkadi Monastery built in the 16th century, one of the most important historic monuments of Crete.
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