Patric Leigh Fermor “Mani – Travels in the Southern Peloponnese”
John Murray Travel Classics
Connected with Mani nature and culture, Monolithoi Houses are ideal to bridge the privacy of luxurious leisure with the discovery of the area’s history, architecture, art, gastronomy and traditions. From here, guests can bond with the ancient spirit of
Exo Mani (Outer Mani), West Mani or Messinian Mani, that is spread with byzantine churches, towers and cobblestone street villages surrounded by olive trees.
In close distance from Monolithoi, the traditional mountainous village of Pigi, invites visitors to an authentic slow living experience, that comes with striking views of Taigetos mountain and the Messinian bay.
The settlement of Platsa, is a seductive blend of unrefined beauty, culture and history. Its well-known open theater, built by the awarded architect Manos Perrakis, is a cultural landmark that, in harmony with the unique landscape, offers breathtaking sea and sunset views. The 10th century church of Agios Nikolaos in Kampinari and the Byzantine churches of Agia Paraskevi, Agios Ioannis and Panagia are only some of the medieval Mani churches whose beautiful frescoes stand proud in time.
Stoupa, Agios Nikolaos and Trachila are the characteristic seaside Greek havens that shine through picture-perfect yet unpretentious beauty. Also by the sea, Kardamyli is a symbol for Mani; a place that embodies its awe-inspiring core. An ideal introduction to the area’s culture, Kardamyli holds its ancient name for more than three millennia; it derives from the word Κardama; the cresses that used to overgrow in the area. Ancient Kardamyli that featured a well-fortified
Acropolis, was the main port of the ancient city-state of Sparti; the two cities were connected through the “Royal Road”, traces of which we can still see along the natural path of the gorge of Viros, a beautiful place to hike. Myths and history blend for Kardamily, one of the “seven well-governed and well- inhabited cities” that Agamemnon would give to Achilles as a dowry if he married one of his daughters and eternal resting place of the Dioscuri -twin brothers of Helen of Troy. Holding a key role during Byzantine times and the declaration of the Greek revolution in 1821, Kardamyli’s significant imprint is unveiled during a visit to the Tower of Mourtzinos, that houses the Museum of Mourtzinos. The city also exhibits the well-known Patrick Leigh Fermor house, -the most beautiful house in the Mediterranean, according to travel guides.
The area’s amazing beaches that follow the laced peninsula contour, offer great options for swimming in organized or more quiet and isolated beaches. The organized beaches of Stoupa, Kalogria and Ritsa, the white sand Pantazis beach, the serene Kalamitsi, or the rocky Katafygio which is ideal for diving, mesmerize visitors with the transparent turquoise color of the water.
Limeni, Areopoli, the astonishing Diros Caves, Oitilo, Gerolimenas, Vatheia and Cape Tainaron, are some of the peninsula’s treasures that fulfill visitor’s experiences, inspiring them to perceive the essence Mani.