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Blick auf die Altstadt von Nafplion, Bild: Georgios Tsichlis / shutterstock

The Peloponnese: divine peninsula with history and sea

The Peloponnese peninsula adjoins the Greek mainland to the south. Its name comes from Greek mythology. It is named after Pelops, son of the legendary King Tantalus. But it is by no means only the name that makes the Peloponnese a place that is full of history. A large number of historical sites and ruins give the peninsula its special, historic flair. In addition, it attracts with a beautiful landscape, beautiful beaches and picturesque villages.

Cities and sights of the Peloponnese

Olympia, Peloponnese
The ancient city of Olympia, Image: elgreko / shutterstock

The pretty villages and towns of the Peloponnese are a great place to explore the laid-back Greek way of life. Here you can stroll through tranquil alleys, taste the good Greek cuisine in small taverns and explore the past by visiting old buildings and museums. In particular, the many historical sights of the Peloponnese can hardly be listed briefly. Interested visitors to the island should therefore either bring enough time or be spoilt for choice. Among others, the following places of the peninsula are highlights and definitely worth a visit:

Nafplion

For many, this city is considered the most beautiful in Greece. Anyone who has ever admired the picturesque townscape of the coastal town will find this attribution quite understandable.

Corinth

Both the remains of ancient Corinth and today’s modern port city are worth a visit.

Mycenae

It is one of the most famous ancient sites in Greece and has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1999. Here you can marvel at the famous Lion’s Gate and the Cyclopean walls, among other things.

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Tiryns

Tiryns is considered to be as important and impressive as Mycenae, but is smaller, less known and not as heavily visited. So it’s an insider tip!

Olympia

Of course, visitors to the Peloponnese should not miss the birthplace of the Olympic Games. The ruins of the ancient city with the former competition venues still give a good idea of the old splendour.

Epidaurus

In ancient times, this place was a health resort and place of worship. Today it is one of the most important archaeological features of Greece. The theatre in particular is breathtaking.

Mystras

This Byzantine ruined city, nestled in a mountainside, is of particular beauty and has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1989.

Distraction and relaxation between mountains and sea

As unique and impressive as the historical sites of the Peloponnese are, there is still a need for distraction and relaxation every now and then. And that can also be found here.
The Mediterranean appearance of the peninsula can be described as rich in contrasts and downright contradictory. Impressive, barren mountain landscapes and fertile, green valleys characterise the landscape and offer active holidaymakers the opportunity for a wide variety of activities. Climbing, hiking or cycling tours are a wonderful way to explore and experience the surroundings.
Nemea, an important Greek wine-growing region, is particularly recommended. About 45 wineries are located here and the endless, gentle, vine-planted hills of the dreamlike landscape invite you to take walks or hikes – and to enjoy a good drop of wine in the evening.

Argolis, Peloponnese
View of Argolis, Image: Aerial-motion / shutterstock

Of course, the wonderful beaches and picturesque bays should not go unmentioned, which make the Peloponnese a bathing paradise in the summer months. Among other things, one of the most famous beaches in Greece can be found here: the so-called “Ox Belly Bay” is almost circular and attracts with fine sand and clear, blue water. The “Simos Beach”, which consists of a fascinating double bay, is also one of the highlights for beach lovers.

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A trip to the Peloponnese…

The Peloponnese has always been a popular travel destination – and quite rightly so – but without being overcrowded. It has a correspondingly developed infrastructure. The peninsula can be reached directly by plane or from the Greek mainland. Visitors arriving from the mainland will already see a special highlight on their arrival, when they cross the famous Corinth Canal – over the bridge or by ferry.

The choice of accommodation is rich, so there should be something for everyone. From the classic small hotel with typical Greek flair, to the modern furnished holiday bungalow, everything is possible. By the way: Camping enthusiasts will also find excellent conditions here in many places!

A visit is worthwhile almost all year round. Enthusiastic beach holidaymakers will find ideal conditions in the summer months with hot, dry weather and pleasant bathing temperatures in the Mediterranean. For active holidaymakers who want to do and visit a lot, spring and autumn are recommended, when it is pleasantly warm but not too hot. Outside the high season, things are quieter and the sights can be explored in peace and without crowds. Only very early in the year, in the months of January and February, is the travel weather rather uncomfortable.

So, let’s go to the “Island of Pelops”!