Kalamata, Greece

Introduction to Kalamata, Greece

Enjoy the stunning beauty and welcoming atmosphere of Messinias Capital – Kalamata - an historic Greek city that boasts an interesting historic centre, a bustling commerical hub and a beautiful coastline. 

Built on the site of ancient Pharai, Kalamata - the second largest city in Peloponnes - is a fantastic destination for museum lovers. It has a small, yet attraction filled old town, which was rebuilt after being completely destroyed by the Turks in the war of independence. Here you'll discover the Benaki Archeological Museum, the Castle of Kalamata from 1208 and the Holy Apostles - a 14th century church built by Emperor Andronicus. 

Just below the historic centre of the city you'll find Kalamata's bustling commercial centre, home to numerous shops and cafes, as well as a charming railway museum. Even further from the historic centre is Kalamata's glorious coastline, boasting a stunning marina, pretty beaches and a vibrant, welcoming atmosphere. 

See All Kalamata, Greece Cruises

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Ancient Messene

KALAMATA ARCHAEOLOGICAL MUSEUM & ANCIENT MESSENE (TOUR A)

  • Enjoy a visit to Ancient Messene, one of the most awe-inspiring sites belonging to ancient Greece
  • Discover one of the most striking aspect of the ruins - the city's circuit wall
  • Admire artefacts dating back to prehistoric and Mycenaean times

 

Activity Tour
Price£40.00-50
DurationApproximately 4.5 hours
LimitationLimited Spaces
Walking level 3 - extensive walkingExtensive walking

Uncover a rich collection of archaeological treasures as you discover the ancient site of Messene.

Located at the heart of the historical centre of Kalamata is the Archaeological Museum. A visit here will ensure you discover the rich collection of artefacts, which were discovered from various sites in Messenia, and date from the Bronze Age through to the Roman period.

From here, travel to the archaeological site of Ancient Messene, located at the foot of Mount Ithóme. During the Hellenistic period, Messene was the trading centre of Messenia. Excavations of the site began in 1957 and are still continuing today, along with restorations. During your visit you will see the remains of the Arcadian Gate (western gate) - one of the entrances into the city with an access flanked by square towers, a courtyard and an inner gateway.

You will also see the Theatre and the Asklepion; the main feature of the archaeological site. The Doric temple was built in 214 BC to celebrate the defeat of the Macedonians. The Asklepion was the centre of public life here, along with the nearby Agora, and housed works of art, particularly statues. In the distance, you can admire the Stadium and Gymnasium, which are amongst the most impressive buildings on the site.

DESCRIPTION CORRECT FOR 2015 BALMORAL FAR EAST EXPLORER.

Is this tour right for you?

TOUR NOTES: Please note that this is a strenuous tour, involving a considerable amount of walking and with some steps to negotiate. Guests are advised to wear flat, comfortable shoes with good grip. Unfortunately this tour is not suitable for guests with limited mobility or wheelchair users. Please note that photography is not permitted at the Museum. You will view the Stadium and Gymnasium from a distance only. This tour may be operated in a different order to that described.

DESCRIPTION CORRECT FOR 2015 BALMORAL FAR EAST EXPLORER.


Areopoli

MANI PANORAMIC DRIVE (TOUR C)

  •  Enjoy a journey through coastal villages surrounded by olive groves and flanked by Mount Taygetos
  •  Relax and admire Areopoli – the City of Ares

 

Activity Tour
Price£35.00-£45.00
DurationApproximately 5 hours
LimitationLimited to 120
Walking level 1 - minimal or no walkingMinimal or no walking
Free time includedFree time included

This tour is perfect for those wishing to gain an insight into this part of Greece from the comfort of your coach.

Arriving in Areopoli, also known as the City of Ares, you can enjoy a short walk with your guide before savouring some free time to explore independently. Take the time to explore the streets and the authentic Greek culture at your leisure.

You then board your coach and drive to Kardamyli - a picturesque seaside village and home to the British writer Sir Patrick Leigh Fermor, who became an honorary citizen for his participation in the Greek resistance during the Second World War. Enjoy a brief stop for refreshments, before you return to your awaiting ship.

DESCRIPTION CORRECT FOR 2015 BALMORAL FAR EAST EXPLORER.

Is this tour right for you?

TOUR NOTES: This tour involves limited compulsory walking, therefore it is considered suitable for guests with limited mobility (providing guests can board the coach unaided). Walking during the periods of free time is at the discretion of the individual. Toilet facilities are available at local cafés/bars at both Areopoli and Kardamyli. The return journey will be via the same road as the outbound route. This tour may operate in reverse order.


Mycenaean Palaces

NESTOR’S PALACE (TOUR B)

  • Discover the ruins of the best-preserved of all Mycenaean palaces – the Palace of Nestor
  • Admire artefacts found during excavations of Messinia and the Palace itself during a visit to the Archaeological Museum of Chora
Price£40.00-£50.00
DurationApproximately 4.5 hours
Walking level 2 - moderate walkingModerate walking

Step back in time to the Mycenaean era as you enjoy informative visits to the ruins of the Palace of Nestor and Archaeological Museum of Chora.

From the port of Kalamata it is an approximate 75-minute drive to the hill of Ano Eglianos and the ruins of the Palace of Nestor. The palace, which dates from the Mycenean era, was destroyed by fire in the 12th century BC. Excavations since have revealed hundreds of clay tablets bearing inscriptions, which have helped understanding of the Mycenean language – an early form of the Greek language. These tablets are now housed in the National Archaeological Museum in Athens.

Following your visit to the ruins, you will continue to the Archaeological Museum in the nearby town of Chora. Here you can find collections of pottery and small finds from cemeteries dating back to the Mycenean period and also artefacts from the Palace of Nestor.

From here, you will re-board your tour coach for the return drive to Kalamata and your awaiting ship. 

DESCRIPTION CORRECT FOR 2015 BALMORAL FAR EAST EXPLORER.

Is this tour right for you?

TOUR NOTES: This tour involves approximately one hour of walking at the Palace of Nestor ruins, some of which will be over sloping terrain, and 40 minutes at Chora Museum, over marble ground. There are approximately six steps to negotiate at the Palace of Nestor, and ten steps at the Museum. Unfortunately this tour is not suitable for guests with limited mobility or wheelchair users. Guests are advised to wear comfortable, non-slip shoes. Please note that flash photography is not permitted inside the Museum.

 


Olympia

OLYMPIA (TOUR D)

  • Discover the Classical Temple of Zeus - a must see destination when visiting the port of Kalamata
  • Explore the site of Olympia; the original home of the Olympics
Activity Tour
Price£70.00-£80.00
DurationApproximately 8.25 Hours
Walking level 2 - moderate walkingModerate walking
Snack includedSnack included
Free time includedFree time included

Let yourself relive the wonder and thrill of the original Olympic Games as you visit their first home.

Travelling through the bucolic landscape you arrive at the site of Olympia. Spend time discovering the site where the ancient athletes competed to honour their gods. Admire the great monuments including the archaic Temple of Hera and the huge Temple of Zeus which once housed one of the Seven Wonders of the World - the Golden Ivory Zeus! Admire the unique Stadium and Bouleuterion where the competitors swore on oath to play fair. Nearby, view the Phedias’ Workshop, the Palaistra and the Gymnasium. The site is beautifully shaded by the Judas and olive trees. Above all the monuments stands the perfectly shaped, conical Hill of Kronos.

Next, visit the Museum to view the wonderful marble statues from the Temple of Zeus, the famous Hermes of Praxiteles and a unique collection of ancient pieces of armour and bronze figurines which were well preserved for centuries in the mud of the adjacent Alpheios River.

Lunch will be served at a local hotel, before you can enjoy some free time (time permitting) to stroll along the main street of Olympia, prior to the return journey to Kalamata.

DESCRIPTION CORRECT FOR 2015 BALMORAL FAR EAST EXPLORER.

Is this tour right for you?

TOUR NOTES: Please note that this tour involves some downhill walking and approximately two hours of walking on the flat at both Olympia and the Museum with some steps to negotiate. Unfortunately this tour is not suitable for guests with limited mobility or wheelchair users. Please also note that the use of non-professional cameras and video-cameras is permitted at Olympia and in the museum, but flash photography in the museum is prohibited. This tour may be operated in a different order to that described. For reference, the drive to Olympia takes approximately two hours; a comfort stop will NOT be made en route.  


TOUR C - PANORAMIC MANI

Price£55.00 - £65.00
Duration5 hours
LimitationLimited capacity
Free time includedFree time included

This tour is perfect for those of us who wish to enjoy a panoramic drive from the comfort of our coach, with limited compulsory walking involved. We begin with an approximate two hour journey along coastal villages surrounded by olive groves and backed by Mount Taygetos, stretching all the way to the capital of the Mani region; Areopoli.

Once we arrive at Areopoli we will have some free time to explore independently, to relax at one of the cafés in the town, or perhaps walk along the streets and enjoy the culture at our leisure.

After our visit here, we will board the coach and drive to Kardamyli. A picturesque seaside village, Kardamyli is home to the British writer Sir Patrick Leigh Fermor, who became an honorary citizen for his participation in the Greek resistance during the war. We will have some free time here to explore at our leisure, before we join our coach for the return journey to the ship.

TOUR NOTES: This tour is primarily a driving tour, with limited compulsory walking involved, therefore it is considered suitable for guests with limited mobility (providing guests can board the coach unaided). There will be approximately 40 minutes of free time at Areopoli, and 20 minutes at Kardamyli, where the amount of walking is at the discretion of the individual. Please note that cobbled ground will be encountered at Areopoli. Toilet facilities are available at local cafés/bars at both Areopoli and Kardamyli. The return journey will be via the same road as the outbound route.

DESCRIPTION CORRECT FOR 2011 CANARIES & MEDITERRANEAN CRUISES


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