Overview of Elounda
|Population statistics (as of 2001)|
|Time zone:||EET/EEST (UTC+2/3)|
|Elevation (center):||5 m (16 ft)|
|Postal code:||720 53|
Elounda (Greek: Ελούντα), alternative transliterations Elounta or Elouda, is a small fishing town on the northern coast of the island of Crete, Greece. It is part of the municipality of Agios Nikolaos, until recently (2010) belonging to the prefecture of Lasithi and as of the passage of new legislation, the periphery of Crete.
Elounda is formed of seven towns and an un-inhabitant island area. The town of Schisma is by far the most populated one and is often understood as 'Elounda Centre'. The city of Elounda has a total of 2.185 inhabitants according to countings from 2001. The areas making up the city are (at least since the re-organisation of 2011-01-01) with Greek names and head count:
- Agia Paraskevi – Αγία Παρασκευή – 39
- Epano Elounda – Επάνω Ελούντα – 154
- Epano Pines – Επάνω Πινές – 59
- Kalydon – Καλυδών (un-inhabitant island area)
- Kato Elounda – Κάτω Ελούντα – 63
- Kato Pines – Κάτω Πινές – 66
- Mavrikiano – Μαυρικιανό – 149
- Schisma – Σχίσμα – 1.655
Geography and Neighbourhood
The road into Elounda from Agios Nikolaos is approximately 12 km in length and follows the shore as it climbs to the top of a small mountain. The view from the top is incomparable; on a clear day it is possible to see the whole of Mirabello Bay and all the way to the eastern tip of Crete.
The small fishing village of Plaka (Lasithi), which overlooks the island of Spinalonga and the Kolikithia Peninsula, can be reached a mere 5 km from the main square of Elounda heading north away from Agios Nikolaos.
Elounda is a famous tourist attraction, heavily visited by VIPs for its seaside luxury resorts. Prime Minister Andreas Papandreou used to spend his summers in Elounda; today, it is visited almost every year by the royal family of Saudi Arabia.
The earliest recorded settlement at Elounda was the ancient Greek city of Olous, whose people were in intermittent conflict with the citizens of Dorian Lato, until a peace treaty was eventually reached. Elounda has a later history as part of the Venetian era. Elounda has changed considerably during its lifespan. The bulk of the ancient city of Olous was reclaimed by the sea towards the end of the Ancient Greek period and is still visible, in part, when diving in the bay of Elounda.
Elounda was used for the filming of the popular BBC television series Who Pays the Ferryman? in the late 1970s. It is the setting for the Belinda Jones novel Out of the Blue. It features in Victoria Hislop's novel The Island, the novel is also being adapted for Greek television, set to air as a mini series starting in October 2010.
Hislop, Victoria (2005). The Island. Also see the Moonspinners by Disney. Together with 'The Island', by Victoria Hislop there is also available a much more substantial work on the same subject called YANNIS by Beryl Darby who also wrote the first guide book to Spinalonga.
- De Facto Population of Greece Population and Housing Census of March 18th, 2001 (PDF 793 KB). National Statistical Service of Greece. 2003.
- C.Michael Hogan, Lato Fieldnotes, The Modern Antiquarian, Jan 10, 2008
- Alain Rouvez, Michel Coco, Jean-Paul Paddack, Disconsolate empires: French, British and Belgian military involvement in post-colonial Sub-Saharan Africa, 1994
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