Crete, Ideon Andron cave

The Ideon Andron is located in Rethymno, on the plateau of Nida, on the eastern slope of Mount Psiloritis (Idi), at an altitude of 1.500m. It is just 25 km from Anogia Mylopotamos and about 80 km from the city of Rethymno. The cave has been named so because "Ideon Antron" means cave of Ida, that of Psiloritis.

The cave is quite large and has about 800 sq.m. It consists of a central hall large separated into three chambers and even the sanctuary.

The Ideon Andron has great cultural and mythological value, and according to the legend, it is said that Zeus was born in the Dikteon Andron (Lassithi Plateau) and raised in Ideon Andron, perifrouroumenos from Kourites warriors, who were responsible for the life of that not to listen to his father, Cronus, when she was crying, and come to devour him. According to legend, Saturn ate his children as soon as they were born, so as not to get any power from his hands. Apart from the version of the myth which says that Zeus grew up in the Ideon Andron, there is another version, which says that Zeus was born and raised in this cave.

Because of the myth that exists for rearing or the birth of Zeus in Ideon Andron, the cave has acquired great fame in antiquity and was one of the largest religious centers in the Minoan, Hellenistic, and Roman times. Due to its use as a place of worship, outside the cave, there is an altar, carved in rock, where there were held in antiquity cult mysteries and ceremonies.

Inside the cave are found various kinds of findings as ceramics, jewelry, figurines, votive plates, weapons, shields, etc., which were brought to light excavations. The findings are kept in the Archaeological Museum of Heraklion.


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