Majestic Peloponnese – a route that includes the most wonderful places
Peloponnese is one of the favourite destinations of the Greeks. A good kept secret and that is definitely not without a reason … It has the very best that Greece offers and is a perfect combination of classic culture and crystal clear waters, ancient theatres, olive groves, mountains, lemon trees, charming villages, beautiful beaches, local wineries and genuine Greek hospitality.
We have planned a route for you and made sure that your trip includes the most wonderful places. The adventures are up to you; there are so much to explore, and a tour around Peloponnese will make you want to return and explore even more. You will find good and safe roads all the way and a detailed map or a GPS will make it easy to find your way. Should you like to extend your stay, or stay longer in some of our destinations, we will be happy to assist you and make sure that your holiday will be customized according to your exact wishes.
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Peloponnese | 7 nights / 8 days
Day 1: Athens airport – Corinth-canal – Nafplion, 160 km/100 miles.
Driving directly from the airport towards the Corinth Canal, which is reached after one hour. Make your first stop at the river bank – at Istmia – and study the old and fascinating bridge. It sinks into the bottom of the canal, every time a ship is crossing ... The 6 km. long canal was consecrated in 1893 and saves the seafarers a day trip round Peloponnese. Continue through Argos, the most beautiful and fertile part of Peloponnese, passing valleys full of fruit plantations and the known and acknowledged wine district of Nemea. Some of the biggest cultural treasures are located in here, such as the Royal Tombs and the “Lions Gate” at Mycenae and the Ancient Theatre of Epidaurus with the cult of the God of Medicine Asklepios. You will recognize his holly snake, which symbolizes the art and practice of medicine. Right in the middle of this nature- and cultural richness, you find Nafplion. The city was the former capital of Greece, and is one of the prettiest cities in Europe. Small, but with a tremendous charm, the old part of town is leaning up against the Akronafplio-hill, with the impressive Venetian castle Palamidi on the top. Life here can be enjoyed in full. Stroll around the small and narrow streets among the neo-classical houses with the finest architectonic details, or take a seat at one of the many cafes and restaurants along the harbour, enjoying the sea and the landmark of the city: the fortress of Burtzi. Nafplion also offers a fine and small beach. If you wish to visit a bigger beach area, you can find this in Tolo, just 12 km. from Nafplion. First and second overnights in Nafplion.
Day 3: Nafplion – Sparti (Mystras) – Monemvassia, 215 km/135 miles.
The journey continues south via Tripoli, to the mountain village of Sparti. From here you can visit the unique Byzantine state and UNESCO Wold Heritage of Mystras. Built as an amphitheatre around a fortress erected in 1249 by the Buzantines and later occupied by the Turks and the Venetians and abandoned in 1832, Mystras is left with the breathtaking medieval ruins which stands in a beautiful landscape. A reminder of a glorious era of power and culture and many of the small churches are still in function today. From Mystras the journey continues to Monemvassia, a hidden gem and powerful medieval fortress. Not many visitors have the privileged to visit this places! Bulit on a small island connected by a causeway to Peloponnese and with only one entrance, hence -the name (Monem=one, Vassia=access). You will simply love this place and it is an absolute “must” the island. Old stone built mansions, now used as inns and hotels, arcades and local shops will remind you of a “Harry Potter Town”. Third overnight in Monemvassia.
Day 4: Monemvassia – Areopolis (Diros caves) – Kalamata, 155 km/97 miles.
You will leave Monemvassia behind and head “Into the Wild”; the Mani area. The landscape is bare and rocky, and until the War of Liberation was won, the Maniots were constantly fighting each other for the limited, but fertile soil in this area. Visit Areopolis and stop by the bustling market centre that hosts one of Greece’s best traditional bakeries, and visit the famous ”Diros Caves”, discovered in 1895. Some people insist that they stretch all the way to Sparti. The underground lake is one of the most beautiful in the world. Continuing towards Kalamata, you will pass from small picturesque villages. In Thalernes you can buy local delicacies - products such as delicious marmalade, wine and olive oil. Make a stop in Stoupa and Kardamili, two of the most charming villages, and enjoy life among the locals. You can find an excellent choice of fish-taverns and very nice beaches here. The region has a rich tradition in handicraft and among the specialities that one shouldn’t miss, are the Kalamata olives, figs and ”Pasteli” made of nuts, honey and raisins. Fourth and fifth overnights in the outskirts of Kalamata.
Day 6: Kalamata – Methoni – Pylos – Olympia, 180 km/113 miles.
It’s time to experience the era of the crusades and visit the Venetian castles of Koroni and Methoni. Methoni is one of the riches areas of wine production in the southern part of Peloponnese. According to the Greek poet Homer, Methoni has been given its name from the donkeys that were (and still are) used at the wine harvest... In Greek the word ”Onoi” means donkey and ”Methoun” means to get drunk. The donkeys simply gets drunk by the scent of the grapes during the harvest period...! Leaving Methoni behind and driving north, you should make a stop in the theatrically built fishing village of Pylos. Enjoy a refreshment and the atmosphere around the small harbour. Driving a bit further north, you reach Olympia. The athletes met here for the first time in 776 B.C. and this is where the Olympic Flame is lit every 4th year. Do not miss the museum and the ancient stadium. This place has an aura, which is not to be found anywhere else in the world! Sixth overnight in Olympia.
Day 7: Olympia – Tripotama – Kalavrita, 120 km/75 miles.
Departing the peaceful Olympia via the mountain villages of Lalas, Tripotama and Kleitoria towards Kalavrita. If you did not visit the “Diros Caves”, here is another chance to experience yet another amazing Cave, the “Cave of Lakes” at Kastria. It contains of 13 lakes and is unique throughout the world with its area of 20,000 square meters, of which only 2,000 has been explored. Continue to Kalavrita, a very popular resort among the Greeks, which is found at an altitude of 750m, on the Helmos-mountain. This is a village with many historical memories. Visit the beautiful monastery of Agia Lavra, constructed in an altitude of 961m; it once had 961 monks. Kalavrita was the village where the call for "freedom of death" first rang out in 1821, commanding Greeks to defend their heritage and throw off the Turkish oppressors. In Kalavrita you will find a huge selection of local spices, mountain tea, pasta, honey and wine and you can take a ride with the small train, through the cliffs and valleys of the Helmos Mountain, to the seaside and the small village of Diakofto. The train runs on the narrowest trail in Europe. Seventh overnight in Kalavrita.
Day 8: Kalavrita – Athens airport, 200 km/125 miles.
Returning to Athens Airport, along the northern highway and crossing the Corinth canal.
Discover: The Corinth Canal, Mycenae, The Ancient Theatre of Epidaurus, Nafplion, Sparti, Mystras, Monemvassia, Areopolis, Kalamata, Methoni, Pylos, Olympia, Kalavrita