Modern Kissamos or Kastelli is a town with a long and rich history. It stands on the site of ancient Kissamos, a flourishing, independent city with its own coinage and extensive trading links.
Ancient Kissamos was the harbour of Polyrrinia. Mentioned by Ptolemy as “Kissamos Polis”, it prospered particularly during the Roman and Byzantine periods, as the many excavation finds in the area show. A Late Minoan vessel was also found in the Kamara area , but it was lost during the German Occupation.
The low hill of Kastelli, on the east side of the harbour, was ideally placed for the establishment of a settlement known as Kydonia. The earliest evidence of human habitation and activity in the area is pottery dated to the Neolithic period (3000-2900 BC).