Travel Diaries

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Peloponnese Road Trip

This is a collection of images taken during a road trip around the Peloponnese region of Greece during May 2007. All images are taken using my E-1, 11-22mm and 50mm Digital Zuiko lenses.

  • Peloponnese Road Trip Koroni
    Koroni; A small port in the southwest corner of the Peloponnese. This boarded up building was on the harbour front; its derelict state making it an interesting subject. It was our first stopping off point after driving along the coast from Kalamata Airport.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Methoni
    Bourtzi; Part of a huge castle complex on the edge of Methoni town, these ruins were all but deserted, our only company being lizards, insects and gulls.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Methoni
    Methoni Castle, looking seaward. The castle is superbly fortified, with sea and cliffs surrounding most of it. On the landward side, a huge defensive ditch guards the entrance.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Methoni
    Methoni Castle; This image shows just how huge the site is.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Pylos
    One of the many colourful market stalls dotted around the main square at Pylos.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Ancient Pylo
    Interior of late Bronze Age tomb located near the Palace of Nestor, Pylos.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Andritsaina
    The mountainous road inland from the eastern coast of the Peloponnese is dotted with small villages like Andritsaina, where we halted for the night.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Andritsaina
    Andritsaina; There is nothing quite like the taste of chilled restina after a long journey.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Andritsaina
    The village of Andritsaina is stunningly beautiful, and hunger was the only thing to wrench us from the fabulous mountain views.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Andritsaina
    Andritsaina; An early start was required to allow sufficient time to travel from the mountainous village of Andritsaina to the east coast of the Peloponnese. An elderly local woman opened her small restaurant and served us sweet tea and biscuits before we set off.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Bassae
    Bassae; The large tent houses the superbly persevered temple of Apollo Epicurius, that was covered over in 1987 to allow restoration work to take place. Visitors are allowed inside to view the site and restoration project. I can only imagine how stunning this place must have looked before the tent was erected.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Bassae
    Temple of Apollo Epicurius; Inside the tent, this huge monument is gradually being restored. It was built around the middle of the 5th century BC, and lies deep in the Arcadian Mountains.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Bassae
    Bassae; A mountainous and wild region where wild flowers abound in May. This is a truly unspoiled area of the Peloponnese. I took many pictures of flowers whilst here and feel this represents the best of them in terms of colour and vibrancy.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Bassae
    Bassae; This series of weathered steps lead up to the Temple of Apollo Epicurius.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Bassae
    Bassae; A general view of the area surrounding the Temple of Apollo Epicurius.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Assea
    Assea; Another beautifully located village, crowned with an ancient castle.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Road to Lerni
    Dusty roads eventually led us from the mountains to the West Coast.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Lerni
    Our halt for the night was the town of Lerni, once a Mycenaean settlement.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Lerni
    Lerni harbour.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Nauplion
    A view of the town of Nauplion, from Palamidi Castle.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Nauplion
    Palamidi Castle; A Frankish/Venetian fortress towering over the port of Naplion. The walk up to the castle offers stunning views over the bay and town. This picture shows one of the watch towers looking out to sea.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Nauplion
    Nauplion; I took this image from Palamidi Castle using the Digital Zuiko 50mm lens. Its short telephoto properties allowed me to fill the frame with the terracotta rooftops of the town below.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Epidaurus
    Epidaurus; One of the best known and most visited ancient theatres in Greece.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Ancient Corinth
    Ancient Corinth; A large site located on the outskirts of modern Corinth. We visited very early in the morning, before the tour buses arrived and whilst the light was still not too strong.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Ancient Corinth
    Another view of Ancient Corinth, with the Venetian fortress of Acro Corinth on the hill behind.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Acro Corinth
    Acro Corinth; A huge fortification crowning a hill several miles from the modern town of Corinth. Due to its height, the area was still lush with wild flowers in May. The red of the poppies contrasts wonderfully with the blue sky and ancient stone walls, the latter of which are home to several lizard and snake species.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Acro Corinth
    This lizard was basking in the early morning heat outside Acro Corinth Fortress.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Corinth Canal
    Separating the Peloponnese from Central Greece, the Corinth Canal is a superb engineering feat allowing ships quick access between the Saronic and Corinth Gulfs.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Mycenae
    Mycenae; A view of the rear of the Lion Gate, showing the size of the stone blocks used in the construction of the walls.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Mycenae
    It is thought this carving of dates from around 1250 BC. It stands around three metres tall - very imposing above the gate lintel.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Mycenae
    Tholos Tomb; Thought to be the Tomb of Clytemnestra, wife of King Agamemnon who fought in the Trojan War. Legend has it that upon his return from the sack of Troy, Clytemnestra murdered him as revenge for sacrificing their daughter, Iphigenia. Agamemnon had Iphigenias throat cut as an offering to the Gods, in exchange for fair winds to carry the Greek ships from Aulis to Troy. This is just one of several stories surrounding her death.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Heraion
    The road across the Argos plain is dusty and hot, even in May. Nestled in the olive groves are countless colourful beehives. The ones pictured here were near the remains of an ancient temple, a few miles outside of Tiryns. The hive occupants became very interested in me and my jeep when I was taking this picture-the black specs in the image are not dust but dozens of bees!
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Tiryns
    Tiryns; The poppies contrast nicely with the stonework and blue sky at this ancient Mycenean site, located on the edge of the Argos Plain.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Sparta
    The modern town of Sparta has many interesting places to photograph – far too many for me to cover during my one night stopover. It is said that Helen of Troy was born here, although little remains of its ancient past. Summing Sparta up in one image is difficult, and I feel this show of vibrant red flowers, shield and spears against a blue sky sums up something of its bygone and often turbulent past.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Sparta
    A visit to Sparta is not complete without a photo of Leonidas Statue, situated at the end of the main street.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Sparta
    Driving through Sparta in the evening is a chaotic affair. However, for those out to relax, a visit to one of the many tavernas is a friendly and relaxing experience.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Menelaion
    The Menelaion; Located a few kilometers outside Sparta, this is a shrine dedicated to Helen and Menelaos. This image was taken very early in the morning; being here was a genuinely magical experience.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Mystras
    Climbing up the foothills of the Taygetus Mountains is the deserted Byzantine town of Mystras. A huge site consisting mostly of abandoned churches, convents and monastic structures, crowned by a ruined castle. The area is home to abundant flowers and wildlife and was stunningly photogenic in May, when I visited.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Mystras
    Mystras; A colorful display of pots and flowers.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Mystras
    Mystras; The view from a convent roof, across olive groves toward Sparta.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Mystras
    Mystras; Flowers amongst the monastic ruins.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Mystras
    Mystras; The architecture of Greek Orthodox churches make for an almost infinite supply of pictures.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Taygetus
    Taygetus; For a really interesting and photogenic drive, the Langada Pass that forms part of the road from Sparta to Kalamata is an excellent journey.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Taygetus
    Taygetus; Be prepared when making the trip from Sparta to Kalamata, for lots of hairpin bends like this.
  • Peloponnese Road Trip Stoupa
    A view taken from the beach in Stoupa. It was practically deserted early in May 2007, but my guess is that it would be very busy during the summer months as it is very picturesque.