The monastery of Agios Nikolaos (Saint Nicholas) is located just off the beautiful canyon Gafaris (or Rouvas), about 48km southwest of Heraklion and 3km north of Zaros village. It is situated at the point where in 1994 a great fire burnt much of the beautiful pine forest of the gorge.
The monastery is accessible by car from Zaros, but it is also built on the path leading to the gorge (20 ‘north of Lake Zaros). Unfortunately, the architecture of the monastery is a modern and very bad anomaly inside this landscape. The only thing to interest the visitor is the old church of St. Nicholas, with the frescoes of the 14th century.
The monastery was originally operated as a second monastery of Varsamonero Monastery. It was later abandoned, but it now operates as a monastery for Old Calendarists, who built a huge modern temple and some cells, utility rooms, etc..
Nearby, you can also visit the old cavernous church of St. Efthimios, with many frescoes and an inscription of 1438.