|Distance||23 km from Heraklion|
The two villages, Ano and Kato Assites are located at the eastern foothills of mount Ida, on the elevation of 480 and 450m. respectively. The distance from Heraklion is c. 23klm. The inhabitants are mostly farmers (olives and vineyards), and animal raisers (mostly goats and sheep). In Ano Assites village, is the Byzantine church of St. Antonios, as well as the folklore Museum. Important evidence of Roman ruins, as well as Roman baths from the near by Greek-Roman town of Rizinia have come to light in the area. In the ancient cemetery, a number of 680 tombs of 3 different phases have been discovered. They range from c. Minoan Times through Roman Times and to the 6th c.AD. All the above, prove the existence of a very important settlement from the Bronze Age to the Roman Times, which was commanding central Crete. The area also offers plenty of alternatives, such as hiking and cave exploring. The gorges of Agios Antonios, and Agios Charalambos are worth visited, and among the several caves of the area the most important are: ‘Kinigospilios cave’, ‘Faragi cave’, and ‘Siderospilia cave’.
The flora of the area is quite interesting, with several species of wild flowers and trees, many of which are under protection by Greek and European laws, such as the centuries old oak in the location ‘Kouvdi’. From September to November, one can participate village activities such as wine and raki production.