Kournas Village in Chania : The traditional village of Kournas in Crete is built at a height of 250 meters and is located 5 kilometers from the beach of Kournas (Kavros, Georgioupoli municipality) and 4 km from the lake Kournas. The northern side of the village offers a beautiful view to the sea while from the southern part overlooks the valley at the foot of the White Mountains.
In this small village it seems as if time has stood still: the men of the village discuss the news of the day at the kafenion, the women ask chat about what they are going to cook for the day and the children play carefree in the street.
The visitor that strolls through the village will see many old and renovated traditional houses. The narrow streets are wide enough for a donkey to pass by, while cars can be driven in the new, wider roads.
In the valley at the south of the village you can walk the pathway of “Azilakas Street” or just stroll through the olive groves. Here you will see up close hoards of goats and sheep, beekeepers gathering the honey, farmers working on their land and picking the edible vegetables.
Kournas is well known due to the Church of Agios Georgios, one of the oldest churches in Crete, built in 1200 AD. It is also the traditional Cretan food, as served in the 3 taverns of the village that has made Kournas renowned.
Most of the inhabitants are farmers, therefore this village is a year-round lively village where you can see sheep passing by, partake in the squeezing of the grapes in September and in the October distilling of the “tsikoudia” (the Cretan raki) in the 2 “kazania” while listening to the traditional music, dancing in the taverns.
Since 1583, Kournas was already known as a vigorous village that has also played an important role during the Ottoman occupation. In 1866, Kournas was the center of the Revolutionary Government and in 1897 it became the seat of the Cretan General Assembly.
Nowadays, there are approximately 500 permanent residents in Kournas, while visitors will find at the center a small supermarket, two “kafenia” (traditional coffee shops), a bakery, the traditional shop “Mandali”, a ceramics shop, three taverns and a statue of one of the heroes of Kournas. There is also a primary school, attended by more than 100 children from the surrounding area, a Community center where you can enjoy theatre and music performances, an olive oil factory, a soccer field and a children playground.
On August 29th the villagers celebrate the feast of St. John the Baptist with live music and dancing.On August 16th , the Community of Kournas organizes the annual party with a performance by the famous musician-singer Nikos Zoidakis.