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The Mani is a rugged and remote peninsula located at the very southern tip of mainland Greece. It makes up the central of the three fingers of the Peloponnese stretching south from the city of Kalamata, the land of fabulous olives and the main airport for the area. The northwestern section makes up the Laconian region, northeastern is Messinian and the Taygetos Mountains. High rocks and inaccessible rock shores of Mani complete the picture of a wild and deserted place.

The scenery is outstanding where you’ll find stark mountains, frescoed churches and sleepy villages. It has been said that there are so many ancient churches in the Mani that it is viewed by many archaeologists as an ‘open-air Byzantine museum’. Another striking and characteristic feature of the Mani is the numerous medieval stone towers perched here and there on hilltops and cliff edges. In total there are about 800 of them as well as 6 castles in the area. The Mani is heaven for hikers and walkers with innumerable trails with scenic highlights which include the spectacular Vyros Gorge and the striking heights of the Taygetos Mountans.

The region is home to the popular village of Kardamyli, once the harbour for Sparta and now perfect for those who enjoy sitting at waterside tavernas and swimming at pebbled beaches. Further south, the seaside villages of Stoupa and Agios Nikolaos are a must when visiting the area. Inland, there is Exohorio gorge as well as the fascinating ruins of Sparta. And last but not least, Mani holidays wouldn't be complete without marveling at the magical, river-filled caves of nearby Diros.

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With amazing beaches, pine-clad mountains and the kind of authentic Greek atmosphere that sweeps away stresses in seconds, the Mani is an unusual and unspoiled side of Greece which independent travelers search for.AGIOS GIANNIS - Fishing Port Pretty much unknown by the usual holiday hordes, this corner of Greece is a complete escape from the modern world. Most visitors here fly into the main town, Kalamata, and then head south to the Mani or west to Messinia.

AGIOS GIANNIS - Fishing Port

In Messinia, you’ll find picturesque ports like Yialova and Koroni where sleepy flower-filled lanes are overlooked by medieval castles. And nearby are some of the finest beaches in the entire country. Historically speaking, Messinia has got plenty of sites and diversity from the old Ottoman citadels, eons-old Mycenean ruins and famous classical sites like Olympia. All nestled into gentle hills covered with fruit trees and small villages. The Mani is cut in half by the Taygetos Mountains making this peninsula is wild and wonderful all at once. Jagged slopes make way for deep ravines and forests that are perfect for hiking. Stone villages with castle-tower-houses show their diverse and interesting past. Wonderful pebble beaches promise long, lazy days in the sun. And picturesque towns like Kardamyle beckon with beautiful beaches, red-roofed houses and waterside tavernas. All in all, if you are in search of the authentic Greece of the past, you won’t find much better than the Mani.

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