The Spinalonga island is located in the eastern part of Crete next to the village of Elounda.
In 1579 the Venetians built a mighty fortress on the island on the ruins of an ancient acropolis. The Venetians kept control of the island even after the rest of Crete fell to the Ottomans in 1669 and it remained under their control for almost another half a century until its capitulation in 1715.
The island is also notable for being the last active leper colony from 1903 until 1957.
Today the island is unoccupied and it is one of the main tourist attractions in the area.