Hotels in Kalamata
Popular hotels in Kalamata
Holiday resorts in Kalamata
Travel to a charming old fishing village perched on Greece’s southern tip, within the Mani peninsula of the Peloponnese for an amazing Stoupa holiday. The lifestyle here is traditional and easy-going, so it’s the perfect place to relax. You’ll find yourself surrounded by stunning natural beauty that’s ready waiting for you to discover, with the beautiful Taygetos Mountains right on your doorstep.
You won’t want to miss out on the beach either; it’s one of the prettiest for miles around. And don’t forget to pay a visit to the historic Byzantine capital of Mystras and the mysterious Diros Caves when you’re ready for an adventure.
Things to do
The peaceful village of Stoupa really comes alive in the summer, when holidays to Stoupa bring in visitors from all over Europe and beyond. You can take your time adjusting to the warm Greek climate down on the unspoilt Stoupa Beach; it’s one of the finest shores in the region, with its gentle curve of sand and crystal-clear waters.
Not only is this a superb place to relax, but it’s also a dream destination for water sports lovers too, with diving and snorkelling just some of the highlights. When you’re feeling up to an adventure, it’s well worth taking a hike through the rolling hills of the Mani peninsula. Or you could plan a daytrip to the UNESCO-protected Mystras, the former Byzantine capital. When you get back here, balmy evenings call for mingling with the locals at welcoming tavernas and restaurants.
The Diros Caves
Stoupa has an air of mystery about it thanks to the magical Diros Caves. These caves can only be reached by boat, which gives you the chance to see the spectacular rock formations that were formed thousands of years ago. Once you arrive inside the caves you’ll be able to read all about the history and even see the perfectly preserved skeletons of the people who once called these caves home.
You’ll find great views all over Stoupa, with many areas being completely unspoilt by modern buildings. No matter where you go around the area, you’ll stumble upon quaint villages that still retain all of their rustic charm. Also make sure that you visit a local taverna while you are there to try the world-renowned Kalamata olives that are grown locally in the region.
Fun for all the children
With plenty of fun and excitement all around, Stoupa is a resort perfect for keeping the children occupied. The open-air railway museum at Kalamata gives children a chance to experience what remains of the local history. There are lots of beaches with fun activities for the whole family, such as scuba diving and snorkelling in the calm, blue waters.
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Places similar to Kalamata to visit
Tucked away between two craggy peninsulas on Corfu’s northwest coast, you’ll discover the laid-back seaside escape of Arillas. This quiet village has a golden beach that stretches over almost 2km, and it’s also one of the finest spots in the region to experience water sports. You can refuel at one of the vibrant beach bars that run along the sand, or head to a waterfront taverna for a taste of real Greek cuisine. Ideal for families, the resort is close to the popular local water park and is a perfect spot for sailing trips.
Things to do
Holidays here are all about fun and relaxation. Start by soaking up Corfu’s Mediterranean climate with a day at the beach; it’s easy to find a spot along the 2km sweep. If you’re feeling energetic, why not give wakeboarding a go? Or book a diving excursion through the crystal-clear water. There’s plenty to do with little ones, too. Corfu Town (the island capital) is a popular place for sailing excursions out to sea, or you can jump on the bus to the Hydropolis Water Park to spend a day riding the slides. When the sun goes down, spend the balmy evenings dining at a family-run taverna on the waterfront, or sipping spicy ouzo in a local bar.
Arillas is blessed with a two kilometre stretch of golden sand that shelves gently into shallow, clear and turquoise water. Magnificent cliffs, thick green hills and olive groves become the backdrop to the calming Blue Flag beach. From the shores you can see quaint little islands in the distance over the water, making the view that little bit more picturesque.
Meditation and community
Arillas is renowned for its lush landscapes and peaceful atmosphere and is humming with positive energy. There’s a very active community in Arillas that keep the streets clean and the nature thriving. Join in with local meditation sessions or yoga retreats to soak up the positive energy in Arillas’ restful setting.
Don’t let the remote location of Arillas fool you. At night the small resort comes alive as bars open, home brewed beer flows and the music begins. The nightlife can be found on the main streets where many bars offer entertainment like karaoke, quiz nights and even traditional Greek dancing.
Malibu Bar is a popular choice amongst visitors and is one of the more contemporary bars in the area. Enter to a warm welcome, drink cocktails under palm trees and muse over the delightful pond that is home to small turtles. Another great watering hole is the Coconut Bar that also shows sports, serves delicious cocktails and hosts a variety of live music in the evenings.
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Holidays to Skopelos are perfect for those in search of secluded bliss. The god of tourism seems to have overlooked this unspoiled paradise, partly due to its location. It doesn’t have an airport and can only be reached by ferry. Mostly untouched by development, Skopelos holidays give you a real sense of authentic Greek life. You’ll see locals fetching water from the fountains and hear the distant clang of goat bells as they amble across the cobbled walkways. No noisy cars rip through the Old Town either, as everybody walks.
Things to do
Skopelos is the epitome of a Greek island off-the-beaten-track. Still, there is plenty here to keep you busy, from hiking to scuba diving, island-hopping, to sunbathing. So whether you’re looking for a romantic escape, a relaxing family getaway, or a week of watersports, the ‘Emerald Island’ has a lot to offer.
One of our favourite places to visit in Skopelos is the Old Town. The settlement sits on the edge of a bustling natural harbour on a spectacular bay. You can follow its fascinating maze of terracotta roofs, cerulean blue shutters and arrow paved steps all the way up to the 17th-century castle. From here, soak up panoramic views over the Aegean waters. At the bottom of the town, you’ll find quaint taverns, shops and restaurants lining the port. On your way down, stop by the Museum of Folklore; it’ll bring you closer to the Skopelos culture.
An island of the arts, you’ll find exceptional textiles, carvings, ceramics and glassware here. To peruse the artisanal olive oils, hand-made jewellery and traditional amphora bowls, head into the Old Town or along its waterfront. If you feel like spending those euros on something really fancy, take a trip to Stafilos, and you’ll find rows of silver moulded bracelets in the onsite workshops. For some classic syrup-soaked Skopeliot fruit, island honey and fresh produce, make your way to the small village of Glossa. Greece is very much a cash-based society, so be sure to order your travel money before you go.
While there are no all-night clubs in Skopelos, you can certainly enjoy a late evening in one of the lounge bars in the Old Town or Glossa. The island has a very chilled out atmosphere, but there are some great music venues where you can go for a few cocktails and a dance. Many are lit up at night, with views over the Aegean and piles of cosy cushions, setting a great atmosphere for couples and intimate groups of friends.
Historical & Culture
While the emphasis is on relaxation, authentic Greek life and sun-soaked beaches, there are plenty of things to see and do in Skopelos. The ruined Venetian fortress is a must-see and gives a glimpse into the island's military past. Residents are also deeply religious, following the Greek Orthodox faith. Which is why you’ll find churches at almost every turn. An estimated 360 of them are dotted around the hillsides, while 100 are situated in the town alone.
If you’re looking for the sandiest beach on the island, with plenty of amenities, then Kastani is a must. Here you can enjoy cocktails and snacks at the bar before unfurling on the loungers or cabanas. The waters are clear, and the sand is mostly fine with tiny pebbles around the shoreline. The conditions are perfect for paddling with your little ones or snorkelling together for marine life. At night, the beach comes alive with music events hosted in the summer.
Thanks to its shallow shores, holidays to Skopelos have become a hit with families with younger children. If they love the sea, treat them to a BBQ sailing trip. They’ll not only get to become part of the crew for the day, but you'll reach some incredibly remote beaches, only accessible by boat. You might also spot a pod of dolphins on your tour. Another great experience is visiting the ruins of the Venetian Fortress in Skopelos Town or cycling through the scenic roads of Alonissos. There are plenty of things to do with the family in Skopelos, from sandcastle building on secluded sand spots to exploring ancient sites.
Amply named ‘the Emerald Island’, pine forests and olive groves engulf the landscape, making Skopelos holidays a hikers dream. You’ll find eight mountains to explore, with Mount Delphi (681m) being the highest. It sits in the centre of the island, in the dense Vathia forest. You can access the start of the 3km trek from Sentoukia. The second highest is Palouki which can be reached from Skopelos Town. This trail will lead you to some of the great monasteries along the way.
The sheets of green tumble down the hills of Skopelos onto unspoilt pebble beaches, graced by crystal clear waters. And while there are plenty of secluded bays to while away the hours, its underwater world begs to be explored by scuba or snorkel. Find dive centres along the north side at the port of Skopelos and over on the south side in Panormos. A great way to see the sheltered caves is by paddleboard or kayak, with tours and rentals available on Milia Beach. At Milia, you can also water ski, jet ski and tube across the Aegean.
Skopelos was thrown into the spotlight in 2008 when its sun-bleached beaches and lush greenery acted as the backdrop to the movie Mamma Mia! Abba fans might like to recreate movie moments while foodies will enjoy a slice of traditional Greek cuisine. Take a boat tour of the island to see the iconic Agios Ioannis Chapel, aka the wedding church. From here, you’ll head along the coast past Armaratos, where Sophie reads Donna’s diary, and then over to the Glysteri rock, which featured in Our Last Summer.
A short one-hour ferry ride will take you to the shores of the neighbouring island, Skiathos. Just as green and blue as its secluded counterpart, Skiathos is a cosmopolitan location, attracting A-listers with its glistening harbours and gourmet restaurants. Here you’ll find livelier bars and taverns. There are also over 60 beaches here, with the bustling Koukounaries and Big Banana drawing in the crowds. And don’t miss a trip to the small peninsula, Bourtzi. It’s drenched in lush vegetation, with a Venetian Fortress at its centre.
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We also have travel guides available for destinations, including Athens | Corfu | Crete | Halkidiki | Kalamata | Kefalonia | Kos | Lefkas | Lesbos | Mykonos | Olympius Riviera | Parga | Rhodes | Santorini | Skiathos | Thassos | Zante