The caves of Matala.The artificial caves in the cliff of the Matala bay were created in the Neolithic Age. Matala was the port of Phaistos during the Minoan period. In the year 220 BC. Matala was occupied by the Gortynians and during the Roman period Matala became the port of Gortys. In the 1st and 2nd century the caves were used as tombs. One of the caves is called "Brutospeliana" because according to the legend it was frequented by the Roman general Brutus.
Matala was then a fishing village. In the 1960s the caves were occupied by hippies which were later driven out. Now Matala is a small village living mainly from tourism.
Canadian folk singer Joni Mitchell's experiences with the Matala hippies were immortalised in her 1971 song Carey.
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