The city is built with a singular architectural plan has been based on plans of French architects of General Maison (1829). Dominate the beautiful square with the monument of three Admirals to supporters two cannons from the Battle of Navarino (1827), shaded by tall trees. A beautiful place with historical significance and monuments like the Castle, the Archaeological Museum with finds from the region from the Stone Age until the Minoan era. On Englianos hill there are some of the dilapidated pieces of Nestor palace, King of Pylos, and a vaulted tomb that is believed buried. The lagoon of Gialova, the famous beach Voidokoilia, waterfalls of Neda and exotic Polylimnio are some of the natural beauty of the area.
Voidokilia is undoubtedly the most popular beach in the Prefecture of Messinia. It seems like a colossal aquatic theater and it consists of an almost perfectly round bay of fine sand, which entraps the crystal clear turquoise waters. A big rock, which is crowned with a Venetian castle, offers its shade to the beach. The site and its indescribable natural beauty have been defined as protected by the Convention Natura 2000. Thus, civilization did not alter its profile and peace prevails despite the plethora of people that opt to visit the beach. In order to reach the beach through Petrochori, you will need to drive through the dirt road for few kilometers until you reach the beach where there is usually plenty of parking spaces.
Lagouvardos is a unique beach of incomparable beauty, a magnet of attraction for visitors that wish to spend moments of tranquility and relaxation in its transparent turquoise waters. The beach is also suitable for water sports. From October to April, Lagouvardos is ideal for board surfing, and wind surfing. It attracts tourists from all over Europe who come to enjoy these gifts of nature. The golden beach stretches over a distance of two kilometers and is located at a distance of 3 km from the famous fishing village of Marathoupoli, where the visitor can enjoy fresh seafood, local dishes, coffee and drinks and a breathtaking view of the island “Proti” with its most magnificent sunset. Lagouvardos is certainly one of the most beautiful beaches of Messinia and it is worthy of your visit, again and again.
Golden coast beach
The Golden Coast beach is characterized by the bright golden color of its sand and its vastness. Along the middle of the beach you will find a canteen and a beach bar but there is always a quiet spot for those who wish to avoid crowded places.
The beach of Vromoneri is usually a favourite with locals and residents of surrounding villages, as it is a satisfying and easily accessible beach. The beach is covered with sand, and there are several stairs in order to facilitate your visit.
In the Romanos village there is a beautiful long beach which is characterized by its fine sand and also offers various shady places. On the upper side of the beach there is plenty of parking spaces.
The natural boundary between the regional units of Messinia and Ilia is the valley of the Neda. Neda, a nymph in mythology and the goddess of water, gave her name to the only female river of Greece. The passage of Neda is a thrilling and a risky adventure, but also an opportunity to enjoy what nature has generously offered to Messinia. Neda compensates those who decide to live this unprecedented experience in the best possible way.
In the municipality of Voufrados, 39 km from the town of Marathopolis lies the gorge of Polilimnio with its lakes and waterfalls. Walking along a landscaped path for 5 minutes, passing through dense vegetation and with the help of picturesque wooden bridges, you will discover a hidden paradise of ponds and waterfalls, surrounded by olive groves and vineyards.
The well-known Gialova wetland is the southernmost wetland of international importance in the Balkans. It is integrated in the “Life Natura” programme, as it is a necessary stop in the wanderings of many species of migratory birds. It is considered as a protected area with a total of 258 species. An informational point operates in this important wetland where visitors can see various species of birds, indulge in birdwatching and observe the only kind of chameleon in Europe.
Ancient Messini is one of the most significant ancient cities in terms of its size, structure and state of preservation and still has much to be discovered. Along with the sanctuaries and public buildings it has imposing fortifications, dwellings and burial sites. It has, amongst other things the rare advantage of never having been destroyed or covered by later settlements and sits in an unspoiled inland site in a natural Mediterranean environment. This natural environment combines the mountain grandeur of Delphi and the low riverside serenity of Olympia, the dominating bare limestone mass of Mount Ithome, the ancient acropolis and the low fertile plain spread below the ancient city.
Two castles are built on the summits of the two hills at the ends of the Bay of Navarino, overlooking the town of Pylos: the older castle of Navarino, called Palaiokastron or Palaionavarinon and the more recent castle, called Niokastron. The latter was built in 1573 by the Turks, and in 1686 was given over to the Venetians. It again came under Turkish domination in 1715, along with the castle of Koroni and Palaionavarino. In 1816 it was captured by Ibrahim Pasha and remained under his control until 1828 when it was liberated by the French general Maison. During the Second World War it was used as the seat of the Italian and, later, the German headquarters. Large-scale restoration work has been carried out for many years. The restored hexagonal Fortress on the top of the hill houses the Museum and the Underwater Archaeological Research Centre.
The agricultural town of Hora, located 50 km from Kalamata, is known to all visitors as the archaeological area where the Upper Egklianou palaces of King Nestor were discovered (many compare them with Ancient Mycenae and Tiryns). Close by is the tholos tomb attributed to Nestor and his heir Thrasymidi. Findings from the palace and surrounding region that came to light by the excavations (approximately 4000 years of archaeological finds) can be found in the Archaeological Museum of Hora.
On the Upper Egklianou hill, 4 kilometres south of Hora, the palace was found that is said to be the Palace of Nestor. The excavations started in 1939, and were completed after the Second World War, brought to light earlier ruins from the Palace. The city and the Palace were destroyed in 1200 B.C., probably during the invasion of the Dorians.
The Palace of Nestor just14 km from Pylos, is among the most important monuments of Mycenaean Greece, because it is the only Mycenaean Palace which is in such good condition. The palaces were built in the 13th century B.C. by King Nestor (son of Neleus) who took part in the Trojan War with ninety ships. Ancient Pylos was the second biggest city of the Mycenaean world, after Mycenae, and King Nestor is portrayed as one of the most respected characters in the Homeric epics. The surrounding landscape was calm and the the Palace was not fortified, unlike the other Mycenaean settlements. The palace was almost completely destroyed in the early twelfth century, by fire and never reconstructed. The fire had an extremely positive result; it “baked” many ceramic tablets thus saving approximately 1200 texts with rare information on the economy, society, worship etc. of the Mycenaean times.
Heinrich Schliemann had made inquiries in the area in 1888, but didn’t manage to find the palace of Nestor. In 1912 and 1926 the archaeologist Kountouriotis discovered two Tholos tombs that Carl Blegen felt were royalist. In 1939 Kountouriotis identified the location of the prehistoric royal Palace and the excavation was continued and completed by the American archaeologist Carl Blegen. For 10 days they made excavations in 8 locations and found Mycenaean vases. On the 4th of April they had already found parts of murals, tablets with Linear B ‘ (these tablets, which are reminiscent of palm leaves, 1250 in total, were decoded in 1952 by the architect Michael Ventris and the classical scholar John Chadwick, giving us practical information on life in prehistoric Pylos), and one meter thick walls This stage of the excavations continued until 10th May, revealing much of the Palace.