The awarded Maritime Museum of Chania
The Maritime Museum of Crete was opened in 1973 and has received an award for its work by the Historical and Ethnological Society. It is housed at the entrance of the Venetian fortress of Firka, which stands guard over the opening to Chania Harbor.
The two-storey building is divided into 13 units, spanning antiquity to the Battle of Crete.
The tour begins in the foyer, where the period of Venetian rule (1204-1669) is on display with models of Venetian forts and the Venetian city of Chania.
A corridor from here leads to the other four halls on the ground floor.
In the next hall, there is a display of a wide range of seashells of various sizes and colours, which come from the seabed of Greek and other seas.
Amphorae from various ancient shipwrecks are also exhibited here. Ships from the Bronze Age to Roman times are the subject of the next hall, where visitors can see the reproduction of the Minoan ship Symi, as well as a model of an Athenian trireme.
Next is the hall dedicated to shipping in Byzantine and Ottoman times, with exhibits including models of ships such as the corvette.
The other two halls contain exhibits from the Greek War of Independence of 1821 to the union of Crete with Greece, and also from the Balkan Wars (1912-13). In the large hall on the second floor, there are exhibits from World War II to the present day, and of the Greek merchant fleet.
Outstanding here are the reproductions of the cruiser Elli, the submarine Papanikolis as well as smaller merchant navy vessels, such as the Theseus and Elpis. But the most impressive exhibit is the model of the bridge of a World War II torpedo boat.
Apart from the authentic engines, tape-recorded sounds give the sense of a real torpedo boat moving across the sea.
The rest of the floor is devoted to the Battle of Crete. Here, there are models of Greek, English and New Zealand soldiers, as well as a large number of photographs.
There are also display cases containing German parachutists' equipment and other objects.
The museum also has a well-stocked library containing Greek and foreign exhibits with a nautical theme.
Its busy programme includes research objects, such as the reconstruction of the Minoan ship Minoa, by scientists from the Institute of Research into Ancient Shipbuilding and Technology.
Maritime Museum of Crete
Akti Koundourioti, Chania
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Telephone: +30-28210-91875, Fax: 74484
01/11 - 31/03 Daily 9:00 - 14:00
01/04 - 31/10 Daily 9:00 - 16:00
Adults 2.50 €
Students 1.50 €
Children up to 6 years free