Crete is full of mountain ranges, amongst which fertile plains and plateaus are formed. The largest plateau of Greece, is the peaceful Lassithi Plateau, hidden between wild peaks. It is famous for the rich agricultural production, windmills and historical caves, but above all, its autonomy and astonishing tranquility. It is located in the Lassithi prefecture in eastern Crete. It is 10km long and a 5 to 7 km wide. Its altitude ranges from 800 to 850m., making Lassithi plateau one of the few residential areas in the Mediterranean at such high altitude.
There are 18 villages, around the region built at the foot of the surrounding mountains, leaving the plains free for cultivation. The fertile soil of the plateau has attracted inhabitants since Neolithic times. Minoans and Dorians traces are found in the plateau, justified the continuously habitation. From 1293 and for over two centuries, during the Venetian occupation of Crete, a gap in habitation has been noticed. Later, in the early 15th c., refugees from the Greek mainland settled in the plain and started to cultivate the land.
The picturesque windmills of the plateau, dated back to 1950 -1960, are the official regions' trademark. During these decades the plateau was one of Europe's first wind farms, having 10-13 thousand windmills, which pumped the groundwater for cultivation growth. Also, several caves of archaeological interest are located in the plateau and the surrounding mountains. For example, Dikteon Andron, which is reputedly the birthplace of Zeus according to Greek Mythology and the cave of Psychro with stalactites and stalagmites.