The Archaeological Museum of Rethymno was founded in 1887 by the Society of the Friends of Education. Today it is housed in the pentagonal bastion in front of the central, east gate of the Fortezza. This building represents one of the fortified construction works accomplished by the Turks, who chose this location in order to defend the central entrance to the fortress. The archaeological findings are exhibited in the Museum in archaeological order and include the following collections:
- Late Neolithic and Proto-Minoan findings - Objects of the Middle-Minoan period mostly found at the archeological sites of Monasteraki, Apodoulou and Vryssina - Findings of the Late-Minoan period mainly from the cemetery of Armeni, Mastabas, Stavromenos, Pangalochori and Syvritos.Mostly the findings include bronze tools and weapons, jewellery and figures
- Findings of the Geometrical-Archaic Period mainly from the archeological sites of Axos and Eleftherna - Objects from the Classical, Hellenistic and Roman Period, mainly from the areas of Stavromenos and Argyroupolis. This unit boasts Roman oil lamps with various depictions, gold jewellery from the area of Stavromenos and glass vessels from the Hellenistic and Roman period - Collection of coins
The Municipal Gallery "L. Kanakakis" was founded in 1992. From its beginning it was housed in a Venetian building in the heart of the old, historical town of Rethymno, below the Fortezza and the Archaeological Museum (5, Chimaras Street). It houses a permanent exhibition of the work of Lefteris Kanakakis (oil paintings, sketches and aquarelles), thus representing all the stages of his achievements, as well as works of contemporary Greek artists, which cover a broad spectrum of modern Greek art as it has been accomplished from 1950 until today.
The Historical and Folklore Museum of Rethymno was founded in 1973 with the aim of collecting and starting research on folklore material from the area of Rethymno. Since 1995 it has been housed in a listed urban Venetian building dating back to the 17th century and situated at 28-30 Vernardou Street. The two-storey building with its interior yard presents a variety of particularly interesting architectural details.
The collections in the Museum come from donations and purchases and include among others hand-woven textiles, tools for the art of weaving, embroideries, lacework, ceramics, baskets, items of metalwork, coins, costumes and historical relics. One of the rooms is dedicated to traditional farming and the traditional way of preparing bread in Rethymno, while in another room traditional professions are referred to. The artefacts are exhibited in units and are equipped with explanatory labels in both Greek and English, photographs and drafts according to the demands of a modern museum management.
It is housed in the old abbey, which is situated in the old town and has been restored recently. The exhibition represents one of the most important collections in Rethymno including molluscs, sponges, fish and various fossils.
It was founded in 1994 and is situated in Mitropoleos Square. The museum includes ecclesiastical relics dating back from 1816 up until the present, such as church utensils, icons, bells as well as the clock of the belfry, which had been functioning from 1894 up until 1986.