Spending your holiday at an agritourism accommodation, in a settlement without power, cars and modern conveniences may sound a utopian scenario for most people. Still, in the centre of Kissamos district, at a distance of 18 km south of the namesake town and an altitude of 550 m lies a unique eco-friendly village, attracting – not only – nature lovers; it’s called Milia, and it’s a settlement, abandoned for over forty years, which Iakovos Tsourounakis and Yorgos Makrakis had wished to rebuild, fully respecting the environment while keeping true to the Cretan history and tradition. Initially, they reforested the area by planting an assortment of trees, farmed the fertile stretches of land, built a herding unit, reconstructed the Medieval settlement up from its ruins and along the way came the idea of remodelling the old houses into lodgings. They restored all buildings to their original form with all but a few interventions, namely plumbing and outdoor landscaping of yards and cobblestone alleys, maintaining their amphitheatric setting as it fully integrates with the surrounding nature.

Materials used were mainly stone and wood from Milia and nearby areas. They used the original building technique working with local craftsmen, who finished up in 1993. Essentially, this is an originally themed village-hotel with 13 houses-rooms, each individually decorated, and a fully equipped restaurant, all built to blend harmoniously with the stunning forestal setting that will initiate travellers in an alternative holiday experience. The houses are solar powered via photovoltaics but make use of complementary oil lamps as well; heat comes from wood log burners or fireplaces and water is supplied by local springs.

The restaurant’s cuisine is purely Mediterranean using top notch ingredients, like cabbages straight from the organic garden, meat from the herding unit of the settlement, home produced wine, while all food is cooked in wood log ovens or burners. This unparalleled mix of urban and natural habitat that seems to have sprung from the Cretan soil, reminds the traveller that man can live in absolute harmony with nature, promotes an eco-friendly conscience and is Greece’s most unique village! That’s why it is dubbed – by world renowned magazine ‘LonelyPlanet’ – as a destination everyone should visit once in their lifetime!

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