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Administrative Region : Crete
Regional unit : Chania

Xirosterni (Ξηροστέρνι ) Chania

Xirosterni (Greek: Ξηροστέρνι) is a village and a community located in the Apokoronas region close to the northwest coast of the island of Crete, Greece, in Chania regional unit. The community consists of the settlements Xirosterni and Litsarda. It is approximately 25 kilometres (16 mi) from Chania.


It is a small, traditional village located between Kefalas and Vamos. The village mainly consists of old traditional homes with fine views to the Cretan White Mountains or to the sea. There are no hotels, rental rooms or restaurants here - it is strictly residential. There is however a small café which sometimes serves snacks.The old name used to be "Viola", which is a beautiful Cretan flower.The new name Xirosterni means "dry cistern",or"dry well". During the Ottoman rule a Turk ordered a villager to pull water out of the cistern for his horse to drink. The villager replied that there is no water,to avoid the humiliation of serving the enemy.The Turk then said angrily "why do you call the town Viola? You should call it Xirosterni.(Dry sistern) Every 6th of August a three-day local festival takes place. There is lots of Cretan music, fun, dance, and food, prepared by the towns people. The people of Xirosterni never miss it. An old time lyra player (lyra is the main musical instrument in Crete)singing in the town for his friends said: To Xerosterniano nero lene pos ehi avdeles, ma kino to marioliko vgazi omorfous glentzedes. Meaning: "They say that the water of Xirosterni has leeches, but this beautiful town gives birth to handsome dancers-singers". Later Nikos Xilouris, a famous singer from Anogia Crete, changed it to: " They say that the water of Xirosterni has leeches, but this beautiful town gives birth to beautiful young women". Every year people from all over the world come to celebrate with the Xirosternians

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