Castles of Greece


Chora, Sfakia, Chania,Crete

Sfakia Fortress

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Sfakia Fortress
Chora, Sfakia, south-eastern coast of Crete
Region > Prefecture:   Greek Map
Municipality > Town:
City of Sfakia
• Chora
Elevation ≈ 20 m 
Time of Construction   Origin
15th-16th century  
Castle Type   Condition
Coastal Fortress  
Not Good

The fort of Sfakia (Castel di Sfacia) was built on Kastelli hill, on the eastern edge of Sfakia town and was the last fort built by the Venetians in Crete. It was built during the 15th-16th century on the site of a previous Byzantine fort and an older Venetian castle. The existence of the fortress is documented for the first time in 1526.


It was a small castle with one tower and its garrison consisted of just 15 men, with their head called Kapouletos. This fort is known for the story of the "Golden Hair" girl: The officer of the guard (Kapouletos) met once a beautiful blond girl in the central fountain of the village, called Chrysi Skordyli. Fascinated by her beauty, he tried to kiss her. The girl slapped him and the knight got so furious that he cut her hair with his sword. She immediately started screaming and got heard by her parents. The Sfakians ran to the fort and killed Kapouleto and the entire garrison and destroyed the fortress. A conflict between Sfakia and the Venetians started since thereafter, which lasted 1.5 years (1320-1321). They Sfakians were also helped by the Byzantine Emperor, Andronicus.

During the Turkish occupation, the occupiers tried to restore the fort, but Sfakians did not allow them. Once built, they immediately tore that down. Today only some remains on the small pine grove in the hill Castelli remain from this fort.


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