10th century – altitude ≈ 450m.
It is positioned on a hill 2.5km south of Katalagari. At the southern tip of the village of Katalagari there is a 2.5km dirt road that leads to Castello. Like most isolated and neglected castles, access is free.
Castello of Katalagari or Paliochora fortress or Castello del Corner or Castello of the Cornaros is located on Kastellos Hill, south of Katalagari, in an area full of olive trees and vineyards, at the location of the ancient city of Skilloudia. It is a Byzantine Period fort directly connected to overseeing the crops of the region, like Meleson Castello and Melisses Castello. It is strategically placed, as it looked over the area from Archanes to Castello Pediadas (Castle of the Plain). According to tradition, it was built by Nikephoros Phokas after the liberation of Crete from the Arabs in 961 A.D. During Venetian rule it was the seat of the fiefdom and belonged to the Corner family and oversaw their fortunes.
Structural, Architectural, Fortification Elements
Not much has been preserved to this day, apart from a section of the courtyard and the foundations of the buildings. A few metres to the west there are many stomping vats, carved out of the rock, which are believed to have been used during the Minoan Period. During Venetian rule this area, like the rest of Crete, produced great quantities of Malvasia wine, one of the best-known wines of the time in Europe. Directly next to the courtyard there is the small Zoodochos Pigi (Life-Giving Spring) church, but none of its murals have been salvaged. It should be noted that a similar fortress with stomping vats, dedicated to Zoodochos Pigi (the Life-giving Spring) is the Melissa Fortress near Agios Thomas.