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Agia Marina monastery by Voni

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Agia Marina Monastery is situated 500 meters south of Voni village, and on its feast day (July 17), it attracts massive crowds from all across Greece. The number of visitors to Agia Marina is the highest in Crete, resulting in car queues stretching for kilometers. Numerous vendors can be found along the way to the church. Many devotees make vows to Agia Marina and walk to the monastery from Heraklion city.

Established in 1895 by John Kaparounakis, the monastery was built at the site where he claimed to have miraculously recovered from a severe illness after drinking water from a spring. A small chapel already existed there, but it was owned by a Turk, Hosref Pasha, who refused to permit the monastery’s construction. Legend has it that Agia Marina intervened, causing Pasha’s three children to fall ill. Upon realizing what had occurred, Pasha sold his property to Kaparounakis, who then renovated the existing church and built the Agia Marina Convent.

Agia Marina is considered the patron saint of sick children, and numerous miraculous events have been reported at the monastery. Visitors are often struck by the room filled with personal items from those who have experienced miracles, such as crutches.

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