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Westin Dubai Mina Seyahi Beach Resort
Westin Dubai Mina Seyahi Beach Resort Hotel is on the pristine shoreline of Dubai, UA Emirates just 0.5km from Dubai marina and within 2km of large corporate offices. For golf enthusiasts, the Emirates Golf Club is just 2km away from this 5 star Dubai hotel. ...
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Sheraton Hotel, Boston
Sheraton Hotel in Boston, Massachusetts, USA is in the Back Bay, Boston, a stones throw away from over 200 shops and restaurants in the Prudential Centre and Copley Place Mall. A superb 4 star Boston hotel close to the designer boutiques in Newbury Street. ...
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Timoulay Hotel, Agadir
Timoulay Hotel is within a few minutes by taxi to the centre of Agadir, Morocco and the 10 kilometre stretch of beautiful sandy beach. A 4 star Agadir hotel that is a fusion between the Bereber culture and the latest trends in design and architecture. ...
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You are in:  Top  →  Europe  →  GREECE  →  Crete  →  LASITHI  →  Spinalonga


The small island at the entrance of Elounda bay is best known as Spinalonga although it has been renamed Kalydon by decree.

View an interactive map of Crete.

The etymology of Spinalonga is interesting. It is Italian and means long thorn (Spina-longa). The reason the Venetians called it so, however, is not because it resembles a long thorn but because they adapted to their own language a Greek composite word "Stinelounda" meaning "to Elounda" (sten-Elounda). Thus, the name of the island is of linguistic interest.

The fortress of Spinalonga is one of the strongest on the whole island of Crete. The Venetians built it while they occupied the island and was considered impregnable.

Throughout the 17th century the fortress remained in Venetian hands and was a refuge for Christians fleeing from the Turks. In 1715, however, a Turkish Pasha managed to conquer the castle; after a long siege the Venetians capitulated and a treaty was signed.

After that, Turkish families who were afraid of the Christians inhabited the castle. After the Turks were driven out of Crete in 1903, the fortress was turned into a leper colony.

Nowadays the island is the main tourist attraction of the area. Several daily boat trips from Agios Nikolaos visit the island.

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