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Arkoudospilia (Cave of Bear)

Between Gouvernetou Monastery and the abbey of Katholicon, roughly in half the path, there is a cave called Arkoudospilia (cave of bear).

It is named cave of the bear by the form that has the stalagmite in the centre of the cave near the small reservoir of water.

According to the legend, Virgin Mary transformed in stone the big bear that tried to drink the water of Saint Ioannis. It is an enough spacious cavity which narrows to its interior, between innumerable stalagmites in paradoxical formations. In the entry of cave there is a chapel dedicated in Panagia Arkoudiotisa.

The walls to the interior of the cave are covered with thick layer of mining salt. At the antiquity the space was dedicated in a Minoan goddess (Potnia) of hunting and later, in the Greek goddess Artemide.