The picturesque town of Gythion is in southern Peloponnese, in the Laconia Prefecture and it was the port of Sparta in ancient times. It is the gateway to the dramatic Mani peninsula and an attractive seaside town. It is the capital town of Mani, and is situated between Sparta and Monemvasia. Gythion is a mountainous and barren area well-known for its brave fighters who fought in for Greek Independence.
It is interesting to wander through its neoclassical houses, old apartment buildings and shops that spread from the slopes of Mount Koumaros to the sea.
A Little Bit of History
There is a legend that this port town was found by Heracles and Apollo. The Tolmides burned the city in 455 BC, but the city was rebuilt. The combined fleet of Roman, Rhodian and Pergamese captured the town thereafter.
Gythion in Greece
The city became the major base for the Union of Free Laconians and they maintained their struggle for autonomy against Sparta.
Eventually Caesar Augustus declared the city free. The availability of murex made Gythion the center for purple dye trade.
During the Roman Era, the port city continued its export of purple dye and along with it also exported porphyry and marble. The 4th century earthquake destroyed the city and it was abandoned completely.
Church of Agios Petros, Gythion
The refugees from the War of Independence started to inhabit Mani and the port city regained its population. The opening of the port in 1960 was a milestone in the modern history of the city.
Gythion celebrates many festivals and events, and the popular among them are the New Year’s Eve, Carnival, Marathonisia Festival, the Exaltation of the Holy Cross and a festival dedicated to the local fishermen.
The View of Gythion
The city is famous for its virgin olive oil, local wine, jams and ceramic statues.
Where is Gythion?
- 26.5 miles/ 42.8 km from Sparta, Greece
- 16.2 miles/ 26.1 km from Areopoli, Greece
- 41.3 miles/ 66.5 km from Monemvasia, Greece
- 159 miles/ 256 km from Athens, Greece
- 67.7 miles/ 109 km from Kalamata Airport, Greece
- 195.1 miles/ 314 km from Zakynthos Airport, Greece
Things to See
- Agioi Pantes Church
- Ancient Theatre
- The Lighthouse
- The Historical and Ethnological Museum
- Archeological Museum
- The Castle of Passava
- Ageranos Beach
- Trinisa Beach
- Skoutari Beach
- Diros Cave
- Ageranos Village
Gythion is a destination where the architecture and scenic atmosphere will surely captivate visitors.
Its colorful houses and easy-going lifestyle will help you relax, Greek-style.
We wish you a fantastic Mediterranean cruise!