Greece Part 2 – Touring through the western Peloponnese / Kyparissia and around
This Blog is the continuation of my Blog about Gytheio. Whereas we have discovered in the first part the southern area of the Peloponnese peninsula….. https://www.traveltreasuresbymarion.com/post/greece-part-1-touring-through-the-stunning-southern-peloponnese-gytheio-and-around
….we will now explore the western side, mainly the area around the little town of Kyparissia. All the general information will stay the same, so please refer to the first Blog for all the basic travel information.
Hotel Natura Club & Spa (www.hotelnaturaclub.com)
This adults-only property is situated a few kilometres away from Kyparissia. It´s exclusive hill-side location offers amazing views over the coastline. Sunsets are pure magic from here. Due to its remote location I highly recommended to come here with a rented car. This will be also necessary to reach the magnificent beaches of the area around.
The best of this hotel is definitely the location and view. The property itself is also very nice with low rise buildings and an infinity pool. However its prime location has also one major disadvantage – the hotel is exposed the whole day to the sun without any shade. So during the hot summer month it can get boiling hot. We visited in July where temperatures were already on the rise and on some days it was extremely hot, also in the rooms. The AC only works once you are inside the room, so it takes a quite long time to get the room cooled down.
Rooms in general are very nice and spacious with beautiful balconies/terraces towards the sea.
Public areas are well maintained and very clean. The pool is attractive, however if the hotel is full there are not enough sunbeds and umbrellas.
Breakfast room is also with a fantastic view. Buffet breakfast was very good and for Greek standards with many additional options.
A bit disappointing was the Spa offer in general. Due to the lack of staff the Spa was anyway closed most of the times during our visit. Not very convenient as they call them a Spa hotel in the end.
Nevertheless the overall experience was great and it is really a hotel to recommend – however if you are sensitive towards sun exposure and high temperature visit better in spring/early summer or autumn time.
There are a couple of stunning beaches in this area and the best thing is that most of them are totally unspoilt and almost empty. You can go for endless beach walks and take a swim in the crystal clear water. In between you will find several small beach sections, where you can rent sunbeds and umbrellas. Well, usually the sunbeds themselves are free, but you have to order drinks or food at the bar they belong to.
Paralia Elea beach
The white sandy beaches around Kyparissia come to a total of 44 km and are known as one of Greece most undisturbed coastal eco system. One of Europe’s largest Caretta Caretta turtle population is nesting over here. An average of around 780 nests are made every year. Volunteers are helping the turtle conservation project to protect and to mark the nests along the beach. Therefore it is very important that you stay away from the marked areas. If you come in the right time and you visit the beach area at night, you might be able to observe the natural spectacle, when the turtles are descending on the beach to lay down their eggs. For more information visit www.archelon.gr/eng/volunt.php
If you do not belong to the lucky ones who can see the turtles on the open beaches, then try to spot their smaller counterparts at the Kaiafa Lake opposite the Kaiafa Lake Thermal Springs (you can also jump in for a hot bath 😊).
Is for sure not the most beautiful town around, but it has a very nice Old Town in the upper part. From there you have fantastic views onto the city and coastline plus a nice choice of restaurants along the pedestrian area.
This part of the Peloponnese peninsula has a stunning mountain scenery and a drive around there is a recommended activity to do.
Our first stop was in the little town of Andritsena. On a coffee stop you can sit among the locals on the shady village square. The village fountain seems to come right out of the tree. Some local produce can be bought in the mini-supermarket close by.
We continued our journey to a more popular mountain village – the picturesque Dimitsana. A lot of artists have small shops over here together with some local food stores and some pretty good restaurants offering rustic mountain cuisine.
The small open-air Water-Power Museum a bit out of town and worth a visit. In various houses and open spaces you can learn about the long history of using the power of water in this region (www.piop.gr/en/diktuo-mouseiwn/Mouseio-Ydrokinisis/to-mouseio.aspx).
On a side note….
This part of the Peninsula is also home to one of Greece most historic site – the ancient Olympia, birthplace of the original Olympic Games (www.olympia-greece.org). This extensive archaeological site includes athletic training areas, a stadium, temples and a museum. However due to the hot weather and our limited time we skipped this historic walk back in time.
Another place that would deserve at least a day to explore would be the regional capital city of Kalamata. This small city,offers a couple of historic sites, museums and lots of shopping opportunities. Along the coast road beside the harbour you have numerous restaurants, bars, small city hotels and a couple of public beaches. Unfortunately we had only time for a short glimpse before our flight.
Some culinary tips at the end
Like in all parts of the Peloponnese you will find everywhere very authentic restaurants, small tavernas and bars around. A small listing below of places we have tried out and which I can highly recommend.
Petrino Balkoni in Kalo Nero - www.topetrinompalkoni.gr – great food and a fantastic sea-side setting
Palia Agora in Kyparissia - www.palia-agora.com.gr – Greek food with a twist in the middle of the Old Town
Kati Psenete in Kakovatos – very nice ambiance and super fresh food
Ammothines – www.ammothines.gr – beachside dinning
Further you can find some nice beach bars around:
Agiannakis Beach Bar
Kalola Beach Bar
Beach Bar Not
The best experience on the Peloponnese are the stunning sunsets……
Goodbye Greece – Antio Ellada – See you soon again!