Kalamata: South Peloponnesian charm

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Welcome to Kalamata!

Kalamata is a beautiful coastal city located in the Southwestern Peloponnese. Well-known not only for its stunning beaches but also for its significant history and historical sites that date back to the ancient and medieval era, Kalamata attracts people from all over the world. The city is only 2 hours away from Athens, offering the perfect opportunity for a road trip across the western Peloponnese region as well as island-hopping as ferries from Kalamata sail daily and frequently to the magical islands of Kythira, Antikythira and Kissamos, Crete. 

#What to see

View to Kalamata and the Church of Ypapanti, Source: kalamata.gr

First, visit the impressive Medieval Castle which dominates the top of the hill and overlooks the whole city. Then, head downwards the old retro city and travel back in time exploring its narrow streets, lovely mansions, and stone-built churches. One of the best spots for sunset strolling is the port; walk from the port across the shoreline and enjoy the endless view of the blue sea combined with the colorful touches of the setting sun. On your way, you will bump into several restaurants and cafeterias lined up side by side near the coastline. Also, don’t miss to visit the Municipal Railway Park, an open-air museum that hosts steam locomotives and other vehicles; it is one of its kind in Greece. 

Tip: If you have some extra time to spare, then visit the archaeological sites of Ancient Messini, Nestor’s Palace, and the majestic castles of Methoni and Coroni, all located within a short distance of Kalamata. 

#Where to swim

One of the most beautiful beaches in Greece: Voidokilia beach, Source: autotriti.gr

Kalamata has a large, sandy shore surrounded by beach bars, which tend to get crowded in the summer. Although its largest part is organized, you will still find some quiet spots to lay your towel at and enjoy the refreshing waters. Around Kalamata you will find some of the most dreamy beaches you have ever seen; Voidokilia, Foneas, and Glossa are just some of them. No matter which one you choose, it is certain that you will be fascinated by the landscapes; turquoise and emerald waters, golden thin sand, and verdant pine forests create a dream-like setting.

#What to eat

Worldwide renowned products from Kalamata: Olives and olive oil, Source: greekfoodnews.com

Mostly famous for its extra virgin olive oil and Kalamon olives, Kalamata is definitely a gastronomic paradise with plenty of local products and delicacies. For appetizers try “sfela” (a local semi-hard cheese with strong spicy flavor usually grilled), “lalaggia” (fried dough served with cheese) or “xoirino pasto” (pork brine, boiled in olive oil and orange). As for the main dish, choose the locals’ favorite “gournopoula” (roasted piglet on a spit) or pork sausages filled with orange. For dessert try “pasteli” (a honey-sesame candy bar) made with local honey. 

Tip: Kalamata is also known for its high-quality aromatic mountain herbs, so before setting off on your trip to the islands, make sure you have also packed a herb bag as a souvenir!

#How to get there

The Castle of Methoni, Source: gtp.gr

You can visit Kalamata by bus, car or airplane. 

Just a few kilometers away from the city of Kalamata, lies the Kalamata International Airport. It is a small airport handling mostly charters flights during the busy summer months. You can travel to and from Athens Airport, Thessaloniki and Heraklion year-round, but most of the other destinations are only available on a direct flight seasonally.

If you want to travel on a budget, the best way is by bus. There are daily routes from Athens and other major cities.  

Last but not least, the best way to visit Kalamata is by renting a car. Especially if you want to make a little road trip visiting the beautiful beaches, amazing archaeological sites and picturesque villages of the region.  

Enjoy your trip!

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