The castle is 15thc. Venetian and was their first and longest held on to in the Peloponnese. It is surrounded on three sides by the sea and a dry moat is on the landward side, where a fine 14 arched stone bridge crosses it. This was originally wooden, however the French replaced it with the present day stone one in later days. Today, the moat is...more
Or Gialova Lagoon, this wetland seems to go under a few different names. It is now an area of Special Scientific Interest and is a Natura 2000 site. It is at the north end of Navarino Bay, and is separated from the sea by the long, thin Divari Beach, better known as Golden Beach. At the far end, Paleokastro sits atop a hill almost touching...more
Although we had visited Methoni Castle a previous year, we decided one dull, wet day to pay a re-visit as we really hadn't done it justice before.Amazingly, this place is free admission but opening hours can be a little variable. We struck it lucky , it was open and it had stopped raining!!The castle is to one end of the village of Methoni and...more
We've visited Finikounda over a number of of years and I have to say, things are a-changing. The English holiday company Kosmar have discovered this place and each year, they have more accommodation available. The tavernas are all in English and the day of our visit this year, the Liverpool v Milan match was being advertised on big screens...more
This was another lovely expanse of sand and shingle, north of Marathopoli. Each time we had a look at this beach, it was petty rough so we never actually ended up on it. It also seemed to have collected a huge amount of weed. It did seem popular with the greeks, who arrived in droves after the peak heat of the day.There were a few apartments etc....more
Gialova's beach extends as far round to the north as Golden Beach and to the south as far as the eye can see, but only accessible on foot. It is a mixture of sand, shingle and pebble with the more popular area being just in front of Zoe hotel and restaurant. This has shade from Tamarisk trees and boards to walk across.The sea has some stones and...more
We didn't intend to visit the archaeological museum at Chora, nor Nestor's Palace but decided as they were so close, we'd better make the effort.After "doing" Nestor's Palace, we headed for Chora. It was pouring down and the roads were flooded. We took the wrong route into the town and just could not find the museum. Finally, after returning to the...more
A wonderful harbourside small town, about a ten minute drive from Gialova, Pilos is the capital of this region, Pilia. It's population is around 2,560.The enormous main square, Platia Ton Navarhon, is shaded by huge plane trees, surrounded by cafes and bars, just set back from the quayside. This is where the locals like to be seen and heard and it...more
Navarino harbour is guarded by two castles, Neo Kastro in the southeast, accessible from the town ad Paleokastro, in the northwest which you must walk to from either Voidokilia beach or Divari beach. Admission for Neokastro is €3 and it's open Tues. - Sun, 8.30am - 3pm. There are great views out over the bay from it. Paleokastro is free to enter...more
This little gem (or not so little) is to be found off the main Methoni to Finikounda road, at the end of lovely Lambes beach. Last time we visited here, there was only the taverna, now there is a massive beach bar complete with swimming pool, albeit surrounded by wind-breaks so it's not too intrusive.The taverna is set back from the beach and is a...more
Brilliant! What more can I say? This small restaurant is on the main road leading into the village and is a great place to watch the world go by from. It's also ideal for having a wander around the couple of tourist shops while you're waiting for your meal.Run by two very efficient Greek men, one cooks, the other takes orders and serves. The food...more
We ate here on our first night and thought at the time it was a lovely place. We ended up eating here three times and all were great experiences. Nicely situated on the seafront, with the sandy beach in front and tables both on this side, under the trees and on the other, outside the restaurant where it's a little warmer if there's a breeze...more
We had eaten here a couple of times in previous years and liked the proprietor and the place so decided to lunch here this year after a hectic spree of shopping for vegetables, fruit, bread and Autan.As popular as ever and as nice an experience as we remembered.It's nice to feed the fish with the large portion of bread you can't quite finish. Watch...more
Another try at getting a decent souvlaki in pitta bread!! This place again looked as though it catered more for the Greeks but was not well patronised apart from the last weekend of our holiday.There was a menu on a stand outside, like most places but the choice seemed to be mainly grilled foods again.A good position on the main street into the...more
This was another of those establishments that appeared more Greek than continental so as they were advertising souvlaki in pitta, every night. I made the decision of eating there. Oh dear, a mistake. Nick was already in a strop as he didn't fancy anything, not that thay had anything other than grilled food. I had a souvlaki in pitta and Philip and...more
Kalamata airport is a military airport, hence so few flights. English flights all arrive on a Sunday, with Excel, Mytravel, Thomas Cook,Astraeus and Air Malta flying from Manchester, Gatwick, Birmingham and East Midlands (sometimes!!!)The Dutch and Czech folks arrive on a Monday, Tuesday is Germany and Greece's turn, Wednesday is Finland and...more
Simply Greece holidays to Gialova all include car hire and you drive yourselves to your resort from the airport. The car provided with the package corresponds with the number of people in your party. We were three so this would be a two door Renault Twingo. We really needed a four door car so enquired with Simply Travel what the cheapest four door...more
Situated on the outskirts of Gialova, heading north. Martin has a tourist shop/mini-market that sells mainly beach and outdoor stuff. He also has got into the business of hiring bicycles by the hour, day, week, etc. Gialova is very flat and ideal for biking (if you have the stamina in the heat) and it is a great way of getting round the lagoon. The...more
Pilos is a mere ten minute drive from Gialova. You will find everything you need here.
There are wonderful vegetable stalls, fish stalls, clothes shops, chemist, bakers, butchers, supermarkets, banks, Post Office and a few giftie type shops. Mostly, it's traditional shops catering for the locals. We bought a juice squeezer from a hardware shop, an interesting experience. We also could not resist buying strawberries and cherries from the stall pictured.
The bakers was pure chaos, a long narrow shop, extremely busy with no room to stand and view the products. It was also very hot inside and we were glad to get out, clutching a loaf and tyropitta.
On the outskirts of Pilos, on the Methoni road, is a large supermarket with an upstairs hardware department. Parking can be tricky.
What to buy: I believe there is a fruit and veg. market on Saturdays which unfortunately, we missed. I expect it would have been another one of those hectic street scenes I'm not over fond of!!
This is an ancient local custom, the building of Tholos tombs in this area. There are a number of such tombs around Gialova and up to Chora, traditionally built on a hillside or slope. They are similar to a Beehive tomb, from the Bronze Age, are circular in shape with the burial chamber being underground and built of stone. Entry is along a very...more
I love the fact that throughout Greece there are roadside drinking fountains to quench your thirst. Often, they are sited in picturesque surroundings or where there is a good view. This one we came across one morning when Nick and I had left Philip in bed and we had a drive through various villages.It was a most luxurious affair, complete with...more
Now I have to mention the demolishing of old factories and the building of new villas and golf resorts, just to put you in the picture.At one time, Gialova's land was developed for farming , with olives being the main crop. and there were some vineyards. In the 1960's, some big-wig decided to turn the land over to the wine industry and people were...more
Pilos is a great little town, pretty as a picture, which goes about it's daily business in the usual chaotic Greek way.Coming into Pilos from Gialova direction, you have to first join the main Kalamata - Pilos road, which heading to Pilos is fine but returning, the junction is a little nasty as you are crossing the main road on a long bend and...more
Our rep told us mosquitos weren't a big problem in Gialova. I'm afraid we have to disagree. The first night, we were all bitten to death, even though we had repellent on and had two repellent machines plugged in at our accommodation. Every night, Nick, in particular as he reacts badly to the blighters, would liberally plaster himself in Autan only...more
Toiletries and Medical Supplies:
Most definitely bring mosquito repellent, mozzie machines and tablets. You can buy all these in resort, I'm sure, but to save you having to search them out on arrival, take some with you. At Hetty's there were no fly screens but we liked to keep the windows open and the shutters closed. I changed the tablet around 3am every night when the blighters started zizzing around again. We had 3 machines on the go.
Coat yourself in repellent early evening. For bite reactions, take anti-hystamine like Clarityn.
June 2009I bet every body goes hereNot much at the digThe museum is in Hore (Ghore) you need to combine the both visit the site then find the museum in Ghore. It takes a bit of finding but it is well worth it.Again like all places it closes at 3pm2 euro to get in the museum3 Euro to get in the Nestor Placemore
Methont Castle11km from PylosNice afternoon to visit one of the three castles protecting the headland.Free to get in Open until 3pm as most monuments are.Nice church in the Castle to visit and spend a few moments in reflectionEasy car parking in front of the castle2 minutes walk to the main square for a drinkmore
This is not about my favourite thing, more like my least favourite!We re-visited Romanos beaches to see how the golf resort was coming along. Oh, my word, it's going to be massive. So many buildings fronting the beautiful beach, ruining the skyline and particularly the nature around this area. Will this part of the beach become private?Thankfully...more
I was really hoping we would hear the sound of frogs this year. I wasn't to be disappointed, in fact I don't think frogs chirrupping have ever been as prolific as on this holiday!! They were even at it during the day, but come the evening and the sound was magnified magnificently. It wasn't even as if there was any water anywhere, we reckoned it...more