Arsani Monastery and Holy Church of Saint Mark the Deaf

If you are planning a monastery visit while in Western Crete, the Arkadi Monastery is probably your destination but why not stop on the way at the less crowded Arsani Monastery? It might not be as expansive as the well-known option, but it certainly has its own, more tranquil charm.

Inside the monastery you will find the Holy Church of Saint Mark the Deaf, the Church of Agios Giorgos and a museum with icons from churches of the Rethymno area. Unfortunately the Church of Agios Giorgos and the museum where closed during our visit end of March.

Arsani Monastery is a roughly 20 minute (12km) drive west of Rethymno with easy access from the National Road.

How to get there

We hope to be able to bring you some pictures of the inside of Agios Giorgos and the museum at a later time, but for now we hope you enjoy below gallery…we had the whole monastery for ourselves!

A little bit of history: There are a couple of theories about how the monastery got its name and the most common one is that it was founded by a monk called Arsenios. References to the monastery can be found as far back as 1601, but unfortunately there is hardly a trace of the original buildings to be found. The late 19th century build of the main church was restored in 1970 and the Ecclesiastical Museum was founded in 1971. Definitely worth a visit in our book!