The Peloponnese is rich in seaside and mountain villages, and a number of nearby islands can be visited from its ports. You can experience gorgeous mountains with rivers and waterfalls, excellent wines, virgin beaches, buzzing cities and ancient and Byzantine sites, all in one trip. This route is great for those who enjoy taking in the scenery en route, as it requires quite a lot of driving, but that’s half the point of a road trip anyway, right? No stop is boring on this trip, and we guarantee you’ll go home feeling as if you’ve been on five different vacations rather than just the one.
Day 1 – Driving time: approx. 2 h 40 min. Start your journey from Athens, heading towards Corinth. Pass the Corinth Canal and head to Epidaurus, where you can visit the Sanctuary of Asklepios with its famous amphitheater (open 08.00-20.00 May-August). Continue your journey south and cross either from Galata to Poros (a 5 minute car/passenger ferry ride), from Metochi to Hydra (20 minutes, passengers only), or from Porto Heli to Spetses (10 minutes, passengers only). To make your choice, read more about Poros here, Hydra here, and Spetses here. Spend the night at your island of choice.
Day 2 – Driving time: approx. 1 h 10 min – 1 h 30 min. Drive to Nafplio. This historic seaside city is chock-full of things to see, so dedicate at least one day checking out the sights, and taking it in. Driving time: approx. 4 h. Head down the second “finger” of the peninsula, and make stops in Leonidio and/or Monemvasia. Cross over from Neapoli to the little island of Elafonisos, famous for the incredible Simos beach, via a 10 minute car/passenger ferry, or to Kythira with 1 hour 15 minute car/passenger ferry ride, for an overnight stay. Learn more about Kythira here. Driving time: approx. 4 h. Continue your trip through Kalamata to the westernmost “finger”, and spend some time discovering the nearly untouched beaches around villages like Koroni, Methoni, and Foinikounta. Spend the night in Koroni, below the charming castle which is still inhabited, and so pretty it seems taken out of a fairytale.
Day 5-6 – Driving time: approx. 5 h. Continue via Pyrgos to Ancient Olympia and visit the impressive archeological site, with the athletic premises used for the Olympic Games in ancient years (open 08.00-20.00 in the summer). Continue via road 74 with a stop in the picturesque mountain village of Vytina, and then take the 66 through Nemea, for overnight stay and a wine tasting. Day 7 – Driving time: approx. 1 h 30 min. Return to Athens.