In a 1937-1940 building, in the centre of the city -a fine example of the modern architectural movement in Greece- the Heraklion Archaeological Museum is located where the St. Francis church used to be (destroyed by the 1856 earthquake) during the Venetian rule.
This museum is considered one of the most important museums in Greece and Europe, as there are representative samples from Cretan Prehistoric and Historic times, covering about 5,500 years of history, from the Neolithic period up to Roman times.
The most important collection is the one with Minoan artefacts, unique creations which are presented in a way that show the evolution of the specific art. The collection of Minoan antiquities in the museum, is considered the most significant one in the world and this is the reason why the Archaeological Museum of Crete is primarily characterised as a museum of Minoan civilization.
The famous Faistos disc with hieroglyphs and ideograms, the Minoan goddesses, also known as "snake goddesses", the gold jewellery from the Minoan necropolises and the authentic parts of wall paintings from the Knossos Palace, will definitely draw your attention.