WEST OF ARGOS
There are several reasons to drive to the mountains and visit a few of the charming villages west of Argos. On hot summer days, the air is noticeably cooler and fresher the further up you go. Delicious! In addition, life seems more peaceful, and you can enjoy good, homemade food at most taverns, or drink a coffee with the old boys in a very authentic kafenion. Also, the houses are pretty diffrent from Nafplio. These towns are made by two-storeyed, gray stone houses, some with wooden loggias. Here we’ll mention just a few towns, find your own favorite!
KARYA is perhaps the most beautiful of these mountain villages. It is located at the foot of the Artemisio Mountain, which stands 1771 meters high. The village, located at about 700 meters above sea level, is known for its fresh and vibrant spring waters, and an inviting platia, square, surrounded by taverns and cafés. Settle down under the huge trees, and if you are hungry order grilled meat, for that is what they are famous for serving here.
On the road between Argos and Karya you can take the little detour to CHOUNI, and visit the mountain church and a small monastery.
If you carry on from Karya over the mountain, on the new (but not very good) road to Nestani (see box below), you’ll see several small churches and monasteries, including the PANAGIA (Virgin Mary). This small church is located at about 1100 meters above sea level, and originally belonged to a monastery. (I guess the ruins of the monastery can be seen on the other side of the road, but I’m not sure.) The church is located in a beautiful garden, and in case you did not eat a plateful of grilled meat in Karya, this is an excellent picnic spot. Fresh water can be found in the spring close by. The landscape here is green and inviting, all the fresh water from the mountains makes it so lush.
Also check out a couple of hikes from Karya!
ACHLADOKAMPOS is a lovely mountain village on the border of Arcadia. The small town is located about 450 meters above sea-level, and above the traditional house stands sturdy, white and modern windmills. And it's actually a pretty sight, we think!
KEFALOVRYSSO is one of the finest mountain villages in Argolis. It’s located about 35 km west of Argos, at the foot of Lyrkia Mountain. The town is beautifully situated in the landscape, and offers a cave, springs, a pleasant square and good food.
The pretty villages in the mountains
AN UNKNOWN LITTLE GEM: NESTANI
We’ll also mention Nestani, which admittedly is located just across the border of Arcadia County, just off the highway between Corinth and Tripoli. This is a small gem of a city that we haven’t seen mentioned in a single guidebook, with the exception of its beautiful, high-altitude monastery Panagia Giorgoepikoou. The town itself has a nice plateia with leafy trees and cafes. Walk to the top of the town, and you'll see Filippo’s fountain and the city's acropolis (top left picture), where the ancient Nestani lay. The gate is from about 465 BC ... and there are not many other remnants of the ancient city. But the area is very beautiful, filled with pine trees and shady paths, and it offers lovely views over the landscape (and highway) below.
Karya (above and below)