The Menelaos Parlamas Museum of Rural Life is a fascinating destination, ideal to visit when you stay at Creta Maris Resort. It represents an occasion for tourists to learn all there is to know about the Cretan way of life, and about traditions such as weaving, wine and raki making, farming, and more.
The Menelaos Parlamas Museum of Rural Life opened in 1988 with an expose on the traditional life of the Cretan countryside. It is in Piskopiano, a typical Cretan village just a couple of kilometers south of coastal Hersonissos. It’s a small hamlet, counting about 450 residents or less, but it’s significant as a tourist destination because it is the home of one of the most thought-provoking museums of Crete. Here are the top reasons why you should visit the Menelaos Parlamas Museum of Rural Life.
Top Reasons to Visit the Menelaos Parlamas Museum of Rural Life
- The Menelaos Parlamas Museum of Rural Life is inside a former olive mill dating from the XIX century. It is known locally as the “fabrika.”
- It offers insight into the authentic lifestyle of a rural farmhouse on Crete from the XIX until the XX century. You will observe authentic furniture and decorations – many similar to those still used in Cretan homes today.
- It shows just how the Cretan farmers worked their land and prepared their most cherished products: wine, raki, olive oil, and others. There are many tools, earthenware, and other implements for tilling the land and processing the grain.
- The weaving exhibition of the museum is quite impressive. It boasts a collection donated by Mrs. Theano Metaxa-Kanakaki. This exhibition occupies the nearby house, donated to the Society of Cretan Historical Studies by Mrs. Liana Parlama.
- The garden of the museum is a paradise for nature lovers. In pots salvaged by locals from workshops and other sources, you will find all kinds of fragrant herbs and plants presenting a comprehensive picture of the Cretan flora.
- The views of the Hersonissos Bay from the Menelaos Parlamas Museum of Rural Life are awe-inspiring.
Other Things to Do in Piskopiano
Piskopiano is small, but it has a rich history. Mentioned for the first time in an official document in 1379, when it was part of the bishopric of Hersonissos, the village is a living museum in its own right. Stroll down its narrow streets and observe the traditional homes.
There are numerous tavernas and cafes lined along the main street of the village. You can always stop to enjoy a light meal and a glass of wine with the locals. Shopping is another favorite pastime in this village. Look for jewelry and souvenir shops.
Last, but not least, you are close to another fascinating Hersonissos attraction, the Lychnostatis Open Air Museum, which boasts beautiful ethnographic and folk-art collections, plus a variety of items relating the pre-industrial technologies employed by the locals in the not-so-distant past (and some, even today!). They offer tours in Greek, English, French, Deutsch, Dutch, and Russian. You’ll reach the Lychnostatis Open Air Museum in fifteen minutes by car after you leave the Menelaos Parlamas Museum of Rural Life.