The weather is cooler now, and we've taken out out long pants at last. The tourist season ends here in a couple of weeks, when the rainy season starts and it won't be as nice to be outside all the time. The restaurants all have tables outside. The men next door play backgammon in the street. It feels almost surreal, like a movie set. You walk in and out of places and the air feels the same. It's like the buildings are furniture within a greater space.
There is so much history here! The Venetians built here in the 13th Century, on top of Minoan walls, and possibly older cultures. The Minoans were here BC; Chania is one of the oldest continually occupied cities in the world. Noone knows exactly what happened to the Minoans, who just disappeared, but they might have been wiped out by a tidal wave from a volcanic eruption. The rocks around the shore look volcanic, with holes and irregular texture. The mountains rise quickly and steeply from the sea, and may be rather young, as mountains go. The Venetians built a walled city to protect against pirates, including the famous Barbarossa. They built a second wall a century or so later, enclosing a larger city, probably also to ward off pirates. The pieces of the wall hold corner bastions, with what look like gun turrets along the outer edge, really just holes in the wall, surrounded by strong stone to hold the guns.
The ocean below the outer wall is shallow and full of fossils, which may be sharp on the feet. The White Mountains rise up behind the city. The island is only 38 miles wide, although 168 miles long, so the mountains have to rise up and fall again in a hurry.