Sfakiá is a mountainous area in the southwestern part of the island of Crete, in the Chania regional unit. It is considered one of the few places in Greece to never have been fully occupied by foreign powers. With a 2001 census population of 2,446 inhabitants living on a land area of 467.589 km², Sfakia is one of the largest and least densely populated municipalities on the island of Crete. The etymology of its name is disputed. According to the prevailing theory, it relates to its rugged terrain, deriving from the ancient Greek word σφαξ, meaning land chasm or gorge.