Don’t Miss the Heraklion Archaeological Museum

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The island of Crete has been inhabited for a long time, since the days of the Minoan civilization. There is evidence of its Minoan past sprinkled throughout the island in places such as the Knossos Palace and other Minoan ruins, such as those in Malia. Knossos, however, is by far one of the largest and most well-known, especially since it is listed as one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.

However, once an archaeological site is excavated, the artifacts don’t necessarily stay on the site. They are taken to another location where they can be protected, studied, and also enjoyed by a wide variety of people. The Heraklion Archaeological Museum is one of those places, and if you find yourself visiting Heraklion on the island of Crete, you won’t want to miss this important site. Here’s more information:

Details About the Museum

The Heraklion Archaeological Museum was first built in 1883, but back then, it was a small museum with a basic callection of artifacts. Today, the museum looks much different than that! It is one of the biggest archaeological museums in Greece and has a total of twenty rooms. Each of these rooms has a theme and covers a certain part of Crete’s history. Room I covers Ancient Greece from 6000 B.C. to the pre-palatial period, which is a period of time that predates the vast Minoan palaces that are located on the island. Room II spans from 2000 B.C. to 1700 B.C, and so on until Room XX (Room 20), which has an impressive collection of sculptures from the Classical Era of Greece.

A History that Spans 5500 Years

Since the history of Crete is so vast, this museum is fairly large and houses an impressive collection of artifacts. Besides showing the artifacts, guests will also learn about the various stages of Crete’s history, which make up a span of around 5500 years and starts with the Minoan Period, which is looked at as one of the earliest civilizations in Ancient Greece. The museum is laid out in a logical way, with each room highlighting a certain aspect of Crete’s vast history.

Types of Artifacts that Are Found in the Museum

Although much of Crete’s early history focuses on the Minoans, this isn’t all that the museum highlights. There are artifacts present from every known time period in Crete. As a result, the types of artifacts that can be found are vast. These include writing tablets featuring both Linear A and Linear B script, ancient jewelry, statues, vases and pots, grooming items, and other household items.

How to Experience the Museum

In order to get the most out of this museum, you can certainly wander around and take it all in on your own. The museum is incredibly well labeled and if you don’t mind reading plaques, this is a perfectly enoyable way to peruse through its rooms. It is also possible to take a guided tour. Depending on how interested you are in this phase of history, you could easily spend several hours or even more than one day here!

Sources:

Wikipedia – Heraklion Archaeological Museum

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This post was written by GreekBoston.com

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