Asteri village

Asteri, Rethymno 74100 - Tel.: (+30) 697 001 4120

"Asteri" village

A picturesque village, at an altitude of 80 meters, built on a hill and in the lateral part of Arsaniotikou stream that passes from its west side.

It belongs to the district Hamalevri, Municipality of Rethymnon, in Rethymnon Prefecture.

Asteri is located 2km South of both highways and is only 15km from the center of Rethymnon and 70 km from the two major cities of Crete, Chania and Heraklion.

Although still not been established, it is speculated that the village was named Asteri (which means star), after a faucet that was in the center of the village and had a marble lionhead shining like star (the faucet was probably plundered).

In the revolution of 1866 Asteri and Hamalevri villages were plundered by the Turks, who completely destroyed the homes of Christians. Similar disasters occurred in 1889, where only a few buildings have survived from the Venetian era. Nevertheless Asteri has managed to maintain its own identity unchanged over time.

The village also hosts a monument to those people who fell in the German resistance. The Germans came first time on 31 May 1941 and after thorough searches at the homes of the nearby villages arrested two persons who possessed war material. On June 1st, they encircled the village and arrested the few men they found (they did not hurt the elderly and the children). They executed a total of 14 people (one of the first mass executions in Crete) in retaliation for the participation of citizens in the war. Women and children left the village. After two days, the Germans returned, executed an elderly couple who had remained in the village and burned all the houses. Poliou House, due to flammable materials, was smoking for 11 days and suffered significant damages.

Today many of the destroyed homes have been restored and there are numerous new buildings since many of the residents who had fled the village decided to return to their roots .