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Maleme is a town 16 km to the west of Chania, in North Western Crete, Greece. It is located in Platanias municipality, in Chania regional unit. Maleme has a few large hotels and several pleasant apartments close to the beach and some bars and tavernas. It's beach is made of fine pebbles and is popular though often less crowded than the beaches of Gerani, Agia Marina and Platanias. Maleme is best known as a landing site for German paratroopers invading Crete in 1941, at the start of the Battle of Crete (Operation Mercury) during World War II. The paratroopers captured the airstrip, which is located just outside the town. Once captured, this airstrip allowed the Germans to airlift in the reinforcements needed to capture the rest of the island. Many of the paratroopers lost their lives in the attack and are buried in the German war cemetery (35.533779°N 23.831137°E) located on a hill above Maleme.
The History of Crete, the Southest piece of land of Europe continent, encompasses the ancient Minoan civilization. After this civilization was destroyed by natural catastrophes, Crete developed an Ancient Greece influenced organazition of city states, and then successinely became part of the Roman Empire, the Byzantine Empire, the Venetian Republic, and the Ottoman Empire. Modern Crete embraces all western habits and faculties with in a multilayered-multicultured attitude due its history. It's mostly touristic without loosing its traditional nature. Visitors can choose from five stars luxury hotels to traditional villas and from hidden tracks, picturesque beaches to dancing clubs, bars and wild night life. Everyone can find his choise in Crete.