In the northwestern foothills of Psiloritis, at an altitude of almost 500 meters and at a distance of about 23 kilometers from the city of Rethymnon, is the Holy Monastery of Arkadi. To get there, one can follow various routes, each of which presents a distinct natural and historical interest. According to tradition, I.M. Arkadiou was founded by the Emperor of Byzantium Heraklion while its reconstruction was done by the emperor Arkadiou in the 5th century. A.D. from whom the monastery took its name. The scientific point of view, however, maintains that both the establishment and the naming of the monastery should be due to some monk Arcadius.
The event that undoubtedly became the reason for the establishment of the Arkadiou Monastery as a historical symbol of voluntary sacrifice and freedom, was the revolution of 1866-1869 and more specifically the voluntary sacrifice of the besieged who preferred to die rather than surrender to the Turks. The brave hand of Kostis Giamboudakis from the village of Adele did not hesitate to set fire to the gunpowder warehouse where the besieged were gathered and to blow up the entire Monastery, turning it into an eternal symbol of bravery and freedom. The Holy banner of the revolution as well as other relics of the monastery, such as church utensils, gold-embroidered vestments and weapons are kept in the museum of the monastery.
Source: Department of Tourism of the Regional Unity of Rethymnon