The place name Neapoli
Many confuse the name of the city Neapoli (Crete) with the million city Napoli (Italian name for Naples) in Italy. Neapoli means simply Neustadt (Nea = new and poli = city). The place name exists at least 10 times in Greece.
Is it worth visiting Neapoli on Crete?
It depends on what you want to see. The big sights on Crete are certainly not in Neapoli. But if you simply want to get away from the tourist coast of Crete and see a non-touristic little town during your holiday in Crete, Neapoli is the right place for you. The city is also easy to reach by car and bus (see directions below).
Sights in Neapoli are the bishop's church, the typical Cretan Platia (main square) in front of the church. There is also a nice city park.
Sights in the surroundings of Neapoli Crete are the zoo Amazonas Park and two monasteries. These 3 sights are all a few kilometers outside the city of Neapoli and difficult to reach by public transport. Of course you can walk from the bus stop in the city centre (all about 45 to 75 minutes).
The Castle Prague, all prices, tickets...
The center of the city with the beautiful church
Since 1868 Neapoli has been a bishop's seat, very unusual for a town with only about 3,000 inhabitants. For this reason, a large church was built in the centre of the municipality only at the beginning of the 20th century. The church Megali Panagia characterizes the townscape of Neapoli (see picture above) and is absolutely worth seeing from inside and outside. Opening times of the church daily from 9 o'clock to 14:30 and 16 o'clock to 20 o'clock (conditions year 2017).
Around the Megali Panagia Church is a large square with many, at present very traditional cafes (kafenios) and taverns. Popular is the Oasis Cafe directly at the main square 50 meters from the church. Drinks and snacks are served. A good tavern in the village is the Meltemi.
In the small park next to the main square there are some big monuments.
The Pope of Neapoli (Crete)
Incredible but true: One of the popes of the late Middle Ages came from Crete and was born in Neapoli. However, he was not a pope in Rome, but one of the antipopes in Avignon (France). The Pope's real name was Pietro Philargi (born 1380, died 1410). He was pope only for a short time from 1409 to 1410. He was one of the founders of the University of Leipzig.
As far as we know, it is the only Pope from Greece in history. Today there are only about 80.000 Catholics in Greece, on Crete there are according to our information under 4.000.
Surroundings of Neapoli
The two monasteries
Our tip: Amazonas Park Crete
This is a small zoo on the other side of the highway, seen from
Neapoli. From Neapoli, follow the signs for
In the zoo there are among other things monkeys, parrots and donkeys. As soon as we have visited the zoo on Crete, we will write a few pages about it in this guide.
Admission prices (2017)
Opening hours Amazonas Park Crete: Unfortunately we did not find any information about this, we will ask you during our visit.
Name in English: Amazonas Animal Park Crete
Current note: Since 2017 there is a new page in this travel
guide about the Amazonas Park. You can find this page on