Famous for his charateristic and olives, it is a city and a territory to be a discovered
Kalamata, capital and central port of Messinia, is situated on the site of the ancient Farai approximately 238 km from Athens and 140 km from Patras, overlooking the Ionian Sea. It is located among a land of indented coastlinessandy dunesvalleys and fertile plains, and dotted with interesting archaeological sites.
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After independence from the Turks, it became a wealthy urban centre and important tourist port where numerous sailing boats stop or pass through.
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Isabeau Castle in Kalamata
The point of reference par excellence of the city is the legendary Castle of Isabeau, where each year the renownedInternational Dance Festival takes place. The castle is situated on the site of the Acropolis of Farai, which offers an exceptionalpanoramic view of the city. Constructed in the 13th century by William Villehardouin, it underwent subsequent renovation by the Venetians and the Turks. Nowadays, it is an ideal open-air venue for theatre, music and dance shows.
Equally fascinating is the old city (Palia Poli), at the foot of the castle.
Panagia Ipapanti Metropolitan ChurchPhoto:, Shutterstock
The churches in Kalamata
Other important monuments and cultural highlights of the city include the Panagia Ipapanti Metropolitan Church (1873), dedicated to the patron saint of Kalamata celebrated on 2nd February, the 12th century Kalograion Monastery with a silk weaving workshop, and the Agioi Apostoloi Byzantine Church dating back to the 13th century. 
 The museums in Kalamata
Tourist attractions not to be missed in the city centre are the Greek Gallery of Modern Art, which displays paintings, sculptures and etchings, and the Benakeion Archaeology Museum housed in a neoclassical building in the old city with finds dating back from the Bronze Age to the Roman era. Another interesting museum is the Museum of Folklore and History housed in the Kiriakou Palace, with traditional objects and artefacts dating back to 1821.
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Shopping in Kalamata
The large central Vassileos Georgiou (King George) square offers many shops, meeting places and venues and is ideal for strolling andshopping. The pedestrian area of Aristomenous Street starts here, which is full of shops and inviting patisseries and coffee shops. 
To the west of the square the neighbourhood unfolds around the picturesque railway station, which features a network of pedestrian walkways, small coffee shops, bars and taverns where you can try traditional dishes, the world-famous Kalamata olives and local olive oil produced in Messinia.
The entire area is a lively spot for the city’s youth and the beating heart of the nightlife in Kalamata where fun is to be had until late at night.
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      Beach of KalamataPhoto:, Shutterstock
Beaches and aquatic sport in Kalamata
In addition to its cultural and historic offer, the city has some beautiful natural areas and beaches. The city’s sea front extends for 4 km and sparkles due to its spectacular waters. Along the sea font, residents and tourists swim in crystal-clear waters and sunbathe on clean beaches with “Blue Flag” status. Sea lovers can enjoy any type of aquatic sport and for cyclists the western beach, near the city’s marina, is connected to the city centre by a cycle path for pedalling in tranquillity.
Visitors wishing to find an exclusive beach will find, just outside the city at distances of between 8 and 17 kilometres, a series of bays with distinctive beaches such as VergaMikri MandineiaAvia and Kitries, which have good tourist facilities and a lively nightlife in the summer months.
Kalamata olives and fetaPhoto:, Shutterstock
Kalamata olives and Greek cuisine
Kalamata Olives are produced throughout the Messinia region south of the Peloponnese, and take the name from the main town. The Kalamata Olives are used as table olives, preserved in vinegar or in olive oil and accompanied with feta or additions to salads. Typical dish is the Kagianas based on smoked meat, eggs and tomato while the typical sweets of the region are the Galatopita, made with milk, the Lalangides pancakes served with grape syrup.
The Messinia
Those who prefer to take a trip can go in discovery of the small village of Messini to visit the Byzantine Church of Agios Dimitrios, the prominent Municipal Mansion (1870) and, in particular the Τ. Katsoulidis Museum of Carvings. Well worth visiting are the typicalmountain villages, on the western slope of the imposing Mount Taigeto, along a route that leads from the city to Sparta, a road considered one of the most beautiful in Greece for its breathtaking views.
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Kalamata is also the ideal starting point for discovery of all Messinia’s secrets as it is located in a central position in the region and all tourist and cultural destinations are only about an hour away by car. Other fantastic destinations to enrich any holiday are therefore only a short distance away.

Text by Alisè Vitri
Avion Tourism Magazine
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Where to sleep in Kalamata
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Kalamata is a welcoming city and offers different possibilities for accommodation.
To find the ideal hotel and the best offers you can do a search for the stars but also for districts or landmarks.
Hotels for stars, differentiated by type of services:
Hotels in the districts
WHERE TO GO in kalamata
Monuments in Kalamata
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Every year, at the Castle of Isabeau, the renowned International Dance Festival takes place. The structure is an amphitheater built on the site of the Acropolis Farai and offers a bird's eye view of the city. Built in the 13th century by William Villehardouin, it underwent later additions and modifications by the Venetians and the Turks. Today it is an ideal outdoor venue for theater, music and dance performances.
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The Church of the Holy Apostles of Kalamata is a small Byzantine church dedicated to the Holy Apostles and dating back to 1317. It is located in the historic center of Kalamata and from here, in 1821, the revolt against Ottoman rule began.
Museums in Kalamata
Papazoglou 6
The Mpenakeio Archaeological Museum is housed in a beautiful Venetian-style building built in 1742. Many interesting archaeological finds are on display, including a mosaic of Koroni representing scenes from the cult of the God Bacchus.
Kyriakou e Ag.Ioannou 20
The Historical and Folklore Museum of Kalamata is located in a small restored building. Inside it is possible to admire objects that date back to the Revolution of 1821, as well as to know the details on the agricultural and productive life of the inhabitants of Messinia during the last century.
 Excursions in Kalamata
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The International Dance Festival of Kalamata is the most important event of the year for the International Dance Center of the city, which was founded in the spring of 1995 to support and promote the art of dance through research and teaching. Active presence in the Greek dance scene, currently the Kalamata Festival has earned a special place among the festivals of the southern Mediterranean, thus enhancing the creativity of its dance at the international level.
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Surrounded by the Taigeto and Parnon Mountains, with avenues full of trees, large squares, Neoclassical buildings, perfumed by olive trees, orange and lemon trees of the nearby Eurota river valley, Sparta was the kingdom of Menelaus and his beautiful queen Elena, the most beautiful of all the mortal women of his time. But Aphrodite had promised Paris of Troy the most beautiful woman on earth in exchange for a favor, so the Trojan prince came to Sparta to claim his "trophy". He kidnapped Elena and then went back home. Menelaus, to recover his wife, persuaded the other kings of Greece to make war on the Trojans. For this reason began the most famous war of the myths.
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