For a Swim at Foneas Beach
Despite its ominous name, which in Greek means murderer, Foneas beach is the loveliest in the area. With pebbles and stones, crystal clear waters, small caves on the coast and an impressive characteristic rock in the middle, it differs from the sandy beaches of the area. It is located between Kardamyli and Stoupa, at the end of a green gorge, and a short path from the main road will lead you there.
For a Bike Ride to Trachila
Physical fitness permitting, try cycling the route from Stoupa to Trachila, which is about 10 kilometers long. The lush nature and the wonderful light of Mani sparkling in the sea by your side, make the activity highly enjoyable. From popular Stoupa you will follow the 3-kilometer long cycling path to the small port of Aghios Nikolaos, without cars and among olive groves and the sea. Then you will continue on the coastal road from Aghios Dimitrios and its beaches. When you enter the territory of Trachila, the traffic on the road will decrease and the landscape will change dramatically: red rocks and prickly pear on one side, the sea on the other and at the end of the road a secret village with the stone houses. Indescribably charming.
To Climb in Kalamitsi
Swimming and sunbathing are nice, but on holiday it’s also fun to get some adventures in, especially when you are in a place with such spectacular nature. In Kalamitsi there is an organized climbing zone with more than 30 routes, up to 60 meters high, which appeals to both experienced climbers and beginners. If you belong to the second category and want to try your height performance for the first time, the instructors of 2407 Mountain Activities (2407m.com, Tel. (+30) 27210.737.52) will introduce you to the secrets of the sport. They also organize mountain bike excursions or hikes in the gorges and peaks of the Taygetos.
For a stroll around Old Kardamyli
The most beautiful walk is in Old Kardamyli. One afternoon, in the wonderful golden light of the area, head towards the old stone houses to see the historic complex of Aghios Spyridon and the Troupakis-Mourtzinos tower. The beautiful church is from the 18th century, as is the tower of the famous family, which today functions as a museum-guided tour space and familiarizes you with Mani’s architecture and the peculiarities of the local society. It’s open daily, except Tuesday, 08:00-20:00. Entrance is 3 euros.
For the evenings in the mountains
There is no greater privilege than being able to combine mountains and the sea, and this is exactly what you will enjoy in Mani. The day may be spent on the beaches of the Messinian Gulf, but the evenings are worth spending up on the slopes of Taygetos and in the villages with their cool squares and authentic cafés. We love Karyovouni (or “Arachova”) with its large square with a huge plane tree, fountain with cool gushing water, the Goudelis tower and, of course, the taverna Arachova, with home cooked dishes and good company (Tel. (+30) 27210.782.89).