One of the most beautiful and traditional Cretan villages of Crete is Ethia in the Archanes-Asterousia Municipality.
The village is about 55 kilometers from Heraclion, 740 meters above the sea level in the south western foot of the hummock of Asphentilias. Administratively, the community of Ethia includes the settlements of Rotasi and Agia Anna. 19 residents live in the small village and their main occupations are livestock and agriculture.
The settlement is surrounded by the verdant, man-made forest that was planted in the 90s. It is worth to walk in the streets of the small village and admire its traditional architecture.
If you live for the adventure, you should cross the gorge of Ethia or follow the path from Ethia to Achentrias.
The village is mentioned for the first time in 1577. In 1583, Kastrofilakas refers to it as Ettea with 46 residents. In 1834, 10 Christian and 5 Turkish families lived in the settlement and, in 1887, the Christians were 127. When Ethia became a community, Rotasi came under it.
The name of the village refers to the plant Itia ( i.e. willow in Greek).
In Ethia, there are the churches of Profitis Ilias, Panagia, Agios Georgios (St George), Agioi Pantes and Agioi Anrgiroi. There also some country churches, suchs as Agios Eymenios and Agia Anna.
The foundation of Agios Antonios church was recently happened.
Every year Profitis Ilias is celebrated and its festival is held.
A guest house was built and inaugurated in 2007 at the centre of the village in the honor of Agios Eymenios. Many festivities are held there with the help and contribution of its hospitable residents.