The palace complex and the city of Phaistos were built on a hill, offering a panoramic view, especially to the east, to the north, and to the south. The rich and fertile plain of Messara opens up ahead to the east for a distance of 40 kilometres. On the background, one can see the mountains of Lassithi. To the right, towards the south, the Asterousia mountains come into view. On the left-hand side, to the north, majestic Psiloritis dominates the scenery, together with the verdant hills at its foot. An olive grove with centuries-old olive trees lies to the north-west. Geropotamos river (known as Litheos in ancient Greece) zig-zags beneath the trees, and the Libyan Sea opens up in the distance.
The view is magnificent all day long, especially in the afternoon this panorama alone makes Phaistos well worth visiting.
Phaistos was the second largest Minoan city, and an important administrative centre of south-central Crete its influence reached as far as the areas of Amari and Agios Vassilios in Rethymnon, and the whole of the southern part of the Prefecture of Heraklion.