The Prefecture of Heraklion lies between Lassithi and Rethimnon. The land follows the pattern of the rest of Crete, mountains - bare in places, filled with cypress and oak trees elsewhere - plains, the most important one being that of Messara, fields covered with fruit trees of all varieties, sandy beaches and beautiful hidden coves. The terrain makes for interesting geographic formations, such as the cave of Ilithias.
This part of Crete has been inhabited since antiquity and it is the richest part of the island in terms of archaeological sites with: Knossos, Phaestos, Mallia and their exhibits can be viewed in the Archaeological Museum of Heraklion.
The rule of the Venetians and Turks over Crete has also left it's traces here in Heraklion. The Loggia, the Fortress of Koule, the Moslem Temples and as well as numerous castles throughout the area prove the existence of Turks and Venetians on the island.
The Prefecture is also home to unique samples of ecclesiastic architecture and the monasteries of Vrontissio and Varsamonero as well as the church of Agios Titos. Not to be missed out is also the grave of famous Greek author Nikos Kazantzakis near the Venetian Wall which surrounds the old city of Heraklion.