Europe & Britain | Destination Guides

5 reasons to visit the beautiful Peloponnese region in Greece

Blissful golden beaches. Ancient vineyards and olive groves. Charming seaside towns and millennia-old archaeological sites. All located just an hour from Athens? The Peloponnese ticks all our boxes for the ultimate holiday. Whether it’s ancient Greek history, superb food wine, or glorious nature, the locals claim to have the best of everything here. And they really do. From paradise islands to iconic ancient sites, here are just five of the endless reasons to visit the Peloponnese region in Greece

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1. The ancient wonders

Whether you’re a big history buff – or you just love exploring the myths and legends of Ancient Greece – the Peloponnese region in Greece is the place for you. The region boasts a myriad of iconic archaeological sites that tell the story of Ancient Greece from the Spartans and the Romans to the Venetians and the Ottomans, who all left a legacy of temples, castles, shipwrecks, and cities. 

There’s the ancient city-state of Messene, the palace of Nestor in Pylos, and the Temple of Apollo Epicurius, hidden in the mountains of Arcadia. Be sure to visit the Sanctuary of Zeus in Ancient Olympia, where the world’s first Olympic Games were held. There’s also the UNESCO-listed site at Mycenae, once home to the Bronze Age Mycenaean civilisation and the Trojan war hero Agamemnon

And don’t miss the most famous archaeological site – the Ancient Theatre of Epidaurus and the Shrine of Asclepius, God of Medicine. Built in the 4th Century BC, this theatre is truly magnificent. There are 55 stone rows which can seat 14,000 people and the perfect acoustics mean you can hear every word from the stage, even on the highest row. Whether you explore the site during the daytime or go there for an evening show during the Athens & Epidaurus Festival in the summer, the Peloponnese region is well worth a visit for the Theatre of Epidaurus alone. 

When you visit the Peloponnese with Trafalgar, we’ll take you exploring around all the top ancient sites including the Theatre of Epidaurus, Ancient Olympia, and Ancient Mycenae where you’ll see the famous Lion Gate and Agamemnon’s Royal Palace.

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2. The glorious beaches

We only need one reason to travel to the Peloponnese region in Greece – the beaches. The spectacular Peloponnese coastline is impressive as any in Greece or the world, with long stretches of unspoiled golden sand and sparkling turquoise waters spanning from the Aegean to the Ionian. It’s all ringed by stunning cliffs, emerald forests, and charming fishing villages making for a picture-perfect scene. 

So where to dive in first? We love Gialova beach in Navarino Bay and the soft sandy beach in Kaiafas. You also have to see the perfectly curved Voidokilia Bay near Pylos, featured in Homer’s epic Odyssey poem. 

If you love to go island-hopping, take a boat to the island oasis of Elafonisos, just off-shore between the Peloponnese and Kythira. With white-sand beaches and crystal clear waters, Elafonisos feels like paradise on earth.  

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3. The charming towns

The Peloponnese peninsula is dotted with stunning towns and villages, where gorgeous architecture and local eats line the cobbled streets. One of our favourites is Napfolio, a beautiful waterfront city home to the Palamidi citadel, and Venetian and Ottoman architecture. You can visit Napfolio on our Greece tours, to explore the Neoclassical mansions and dine in taverns with the locals. You’ll even sample some homemade ice cream!

There’s also Monemvasia, a medieval castle town built in the Middle Ages, with cobbled streets and stone houses. Or you could visit Arcadia, famed for its soaring mountains and local Arcadians, said to be one of the oldest peoples in Greece. From Mystras to Methoni, Pylos to Koroni, you’ll feel like you’ve wandered into the Game of Thrones when you tour the dreamy towns of the Peloponnese.

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4. The outdoor fun

The Peloponnese is more than just a pretty beach! This beautifully diverse region is a playground for nature lovers, with everything from pine and oak forests to sand dunes, lush valleys, waterfalls, towering gorges, and rugged mountains. In winter, you can go skiing in the snowy north, while in summer you can rafting on the rivers. 

Go hiking along the 225km Peloponnese Way or the 75km Menalon Trail and see all the spectacular nature up close. You can even see hundreds of native and migratory birds and other wildlife along the lakes and wetlands. Whether you want to go sailing, walking, kayaking, or swimming, the Peloponnese region in Greece has it all.

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5. The home-grown food and wine

We all know Greek cuisine is divine… But they really turn it up a notch in the Peloponnese peninsula. The region is one of the oldest wine-making areas in the world, producing delicious wines for over 6,500 years. You can also head to Kalamata in the south for the famous olive groves, home to around 65% of Greece’s olive trees. This is the place where olive trees outnumber people nearly 100 to one, and you can sample world-class olives and olive oil. Or visit Argos for their aromatic citrus groves and Mount Taygetos for an incredible array of herbs. 

You’ll also find small family farms across the Peloponnese, producing everything from honey, cheeses, and seafood, to fresh fruit and vegetables like tomatoes and pomegranates. You’ll get to meet one of these families when you travel to the Peloponnese with Trafalgar. We’ll join the Karambellas family on their olive and wine farm for a traditional Be My Guest experience. With dinner, dancing, and lots of Greek fun, this is sure to be an evening you’ll never forget.

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Are you dreaming of visiting the Peloponnese region in Greece? Let us know in the comments below!

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