The history of Sitia

The town of Itia and mainly the Eastern department of  the town, the region of  Petras, inhabited  from the copper season and experienced greater growth in the 2nd century BC. Itia had  its own currency and the prosperity continued during the Roman and the Byzantine period. 
 
The period of the Venetian domination Sitia that was written in the Venetian documents as Sittia or Sithia or Settia progressed so much and the Venetians described Sitia as "the radiant focal point of the island" (maximum statum et lumen insulae) and refer to it in Regno di Candia as a major commercial hub for the East and Africa. 

That period builded several castles and fortresses. Of those even today fortress Kazarma, dominates above the Sitia. 

Sitia had active part in all the revolutions against the conquerors.  

In the revolution of 1362 in which participated mainly the Venetian settlers became nomination of Crete as autonomous Democracy of Saint Titou. 

In 1508 a terrible earthquake affected the city of Sitia and caused big destructions. Thirty years later the town looted from pirates.  

In 1538  pirate Barbarossa attacked in the town and caused irreparable destructions. 

In 1648  when the Turks besieged Sitia began the abandonment of the town. The guards of the town defended until 1651. With the retirement of the guards became also destruction of the walls and of the most important buildings. The destruction was done from the guards in order not to fall in the hands of Turks. 

In 1870 Houssein Avni pasha decided to buy the region of the old Sitia and  to transfer there the capital of his province.  Avni pasha designed the town plan himself and new city in honor of Avni was named Avnie. This name was used only from the Ottomans, the Greeks called it Harbour of Sitia or Stia. From the first public buildings that erected in the new town was the Courthouse that unfortunately is not saved today.  

Sitia occupied in 1941 from the Italians, who remained in town up to their retirement and the arrival of German army.  
During the bondage the people of Sitia organised resistance against the Germans. In the resistance took part and the monks of the Toploy Monastery, that  destroyed almost completely from the Nazis.

 
Tourist guide for Sitia
www.insitia.gr