The first excavations at Palaikastro, undertaken in the years 1902–6 by Bosanquet, Dawkins, and others, coincided with the first great period of research and discovery in Minoan Crete. They ran concurrently with Evans's early seasons at Knossos and with Hogarth's work at Zakro, not far from Palaikastro, and were in a true sense pioneer work. The series of reports which appeared in the Annual from 1901/2–1905/6, together with the later supplementary volume of Unpublished Objects and two final articles prepared for publication by various hands, built up a systematic and clear picture of one of the largest and perhaps the best preserved Minoan settlement yet excavated in Crete.
The work was undertaken on a major scale, in the third season employing up to seventy workmen for nearly three months. It produced evidence for occupation in the area from the Neolithic to the end of the Late Minoan period, with a continuing cult of Dictaean Zeus from Geometric down to Hellenistic and Roman times. In addition some careful anthropological work was done, and the phases of occupation were tied in with those of the other Minoan sites known at the time.