About 11 km. east of the Chora Sfakion, is the site of the old Castel Franco (Franchise Castle), built by the Venetians in 1371 as a defense against pirates, turcs and Cretan rebels. On several locations on Creta, strongholds can be found, but this one is rather particular due to its square form with a tower on each corner. It is in a rather good state. Today its ruins dominate the underlying lagoon of crystal clear blue waters.