Many Faces of Chania

Chania, Crete

Jan 2, 2023

The catch of the day lies on slabs waiting to wind as dinner, probably much as it has for centuries on these shores. Like most modern cities, the everyday hums along predictable lines. In the pedestrian center are the glut of shops and cafes leading up to and around the much-touted Venetian harbor. With the lighthouse at the end it is picture postcard perfect. But fails to trigger the awe factor.

This is a city that has morphed over the centuries from the ancient to the middle ages, and many a kingdom has lorded over it. And like all the others, this city changed with the changing times. It shows in the glimpse of ancient Kydonia, in the massive walls that the Venetians built, in the old warehouses along the harbor, in the statues that grace parks, in the church that sprouted a minaret during the Turkish conquest and the domed structure of an old hammam.

Most intriguing perhaps is the way the new buildings seem to grow out of the old walls. As are the narrow lanes that wind through the old town, often barely a couple of meters wide, sometimes meeting overhead like in most old cities around the world. They wind at random and I wander, hoping to get lost.


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