Matala - in Timbaki
Matala is a village located within the Greek municipality of Timbaki, in Crete. This spot is often described as magical due to the fact that it counts with some ancient artificial caves as well as it is strongly related to the ancient Greek mythology. In this town, history, magic, traditions, and beauty combine in a unique way, turning it into a very appealing destination for every visitor who approaches this area of Greece.
The artificial caves in the village of Matala date from as long ago as the Neolithic Age. These caves are very attractive and interesting from the point of view of history and anthropology among other disciplines. These caves were used with the purpose of hiding or to storage merchandise, as well as they also were used as tombs in the 1st century. These caves can be seen from many different spots and add a unique and very special flavor to the general appearance of the town.
According to the ancient Greek mythology, Matala was the place where Zeus brought Princess Europa before he turned into an eagle and carried her to Gortys. Besides this story, there also are several other mythological tales where the town of Matala is named and related to this important ingredient in the Greek culture.
The beaches of Matala are not less attractive than its caves. These beaches have nice extensions of sand and attractive clear water and are surrounded by attractive landscapes provided by rock formations and caves. The main beach of Matala was chosen by hippies as an ideal place for a settlement in the sixties, remaining there for a few years and giving this town a liberty feeling and mood that can still be somehow noticed.
Other of the most interesting attractions offered by Matala is its traditional food. Matala has several unique local dishes which are part of the town's traditions and are ideal for being tasted at a tavern while meeting local people and learning more about the region. Besides these dishes, Matala is also known by producing excellent wine, ideal for accompanying a local fresh fish meal.