Elika/Marathias is a beautiful destination worth visiting.
It is a picturesque village located at Vatika of Peloponnese, amphitheatrically built at the foot of the mountain with a gorgeous view to the Laconian Gulf. In the area there is the agricultural settlement of Agios Mamas and the seaside settlement of Marathias with its famous Panariti, Limnes and Platanistos beaches which steal the heart of every visitor with their crystal clear, blue waters.
In addition to its natural beauties, the region of Elika/Marathias is also blessed by being in a close distance from other beautiful places of Peloponnese, all accessible within 60 minutes. That’s why we present to you 7 magical day trips from Marathias, within an hour distance from the well-known village, which you will full-heartedly enjoy.
Approximately 20 kilometers from Marathias and just 20 minutes by car you will meet the adorable Elafonisos with its vast white sand beaches and the turquoise waters. Its lovely harbor, the camp which is the meeting point for thousands of visitors, the cedar trees, the dunes and the paths that are fading under its waters, make it an ideal destination for every tourist.
In less than 40 minutes you will reach the castle city that adorns the Myrtoo Sea, that beautiful “jewel” of the Laconian land, where you can only stand across it in awe. Some people refer to it as the “Gibraltar of the East” thanks to its incomparable beauty.
The Venetian Castle, “dromikes” (the characteristic vaulted alleys of the Castle), strolling uphill towards the Upper town, and the necessary visit to the house of the poet Giannis Ritsos are a must for every visitor.
But most importantly the best part is overlooking the sea from this “Lady” of Peloponnese, which always looks like the love-struck teenager’s stare to the subject of his desire as he sees them for the first time.
It is within 20 kilometers distance and you need 25 minutes to reach the also well-known Neapoli. For many years the travelers in Peloponnese often made a stop in Neapoli before they reached the cosmopolitan Elafonisos and the beloved Kythira.
However, in the last few years the wild beauty of this place cannot go unnoticed. It is the ideal destination for hikers thanks to its magical paths and the diversity of its soil.
You will need approximately 50 minutes to cross the 34 kilometers that separate you from the Kastania Cave. It is impossible not to be astonished by this three million year old “jewel”. That’s how long nature needed to create its one of a kind rock formations and shape those bodies of incomparable imagination.
Among these gigantic red and white cascades, the enormous multi-shaped columns, the “sheets and the curtains” that are spread everywhere reminding of wax figures hanging from the ceiling, you can see hidden “octopuses”, “corals”, “tiny elephants” and “mushrooms”, as well as “birds”, “exotic plants”, and other “creatures”.
So, it’s impossible not to fall in love with it at first sight. The area of the cave is 1.500 m2, it is divided in two levels and visitors can visit a route of 500m.
In a close distance from Elika/Marathias, (just 18 kilometers away) you will find two of the most beautiful beaches of the country hidden in the well-known Laconian Gulf.
The combination of golden sand and green waters is captivating for the visitor, who stands in awe in front of the enchanting scenery.
Under the waters of the area you’ll see the sunken city of Pavlopetri that already counts 5 millenniums of existence and it is a pole of attraction in the area as it’s the most ancient sunken city.
As you stare at the spectacular view to Elafonisos we also suggest you make a stop at the famous wetland of Stroggyli Lake.
An hour away from Elika/Marathias, in 39 kilometers, you will find the Wild Life Refuge Vavila Kounos which was founded in 1985 and spreads in area of more than 10 thousand acres.
The species of fauna that live there are thrushes, foxes, the mountainous partridge, various predator birds, hares, jackals, quails and black birds. As for the flora of the area there is a wide variety of the thermo-Mediterranean grassland of the eastern Mediterranean kinds, mostly bushes like ever green-leaved and broad-leaved types. It is a natural landscape of unparalleled beauty that it’s hard to forget.
It is located in 36 kilometers distance and an hour away from the village. The well renowned Geopark of the coastal zone of Agios Nikolaos is included in the Atlas of Geological Monuments of the Aegean and claims strongly a place in the Network of Geoparks in Europe.
It is a place of rare beauty, a natural “treasure” hidden in this blessed land of Laconia. In coastal sites Agia Marina, Korakas and Spitha, the petrified witnesses of a distant past hold the secrets and codes of their era. You can only admire this Petrified Forest which counts more than two million years of existence.
7 magical day trips from Marathias
What more can anyone ask for?
Your visit in Laconia is completed with day trips to nature, to civilization and to the best beaches.
Live a full experience at the destinations of Laconia.The most beautiful beaches of the (Laconian) Mani.