Crete: Rethymno – Fortezza

Fortezza of Rethymno was built by the Venetians in the 16th century with the idea of relocating the entire city of of Réthymno inside to protect against the Ottoman invasions. The fortress was built on the site of an Ancient Greek acropolis on the high promontory above the city and the sea. The Fortezza was built with massive walls and many levels of defense to withstand a sea or land attack. In 1646 however, Ottoman besieged it and after the entire town locked itself in Fortezza and slowly depleted water and food and diseases spread – it fell to the Ottoman Empire. Ottomans didn’t alter the fortress except building a mosque inside. In the 19-20th century, many people built houses inside, which were later demolished and the whole fortress is a massive museum. It’s rather empty inside but the seascape views are insane.