Limeni is a village in Mani. Mani is in the southern part of Peloponnese and is an area of unique natural beauty, tradition, and history. This place is a secret gem that is not known to many tourists, and it still has its original character.
Limeni is one of the beautiful coastal villages in Mani. It is located three kilometers north of the capital Areopoli. It is a charming place that you can easily explore in a day. Many people use it as a base to discover Mani and Laconia regions.
When you arrive at the village, the first things that strike you are turquoise waters and the imposing stone towers built around the coast. As you get into the small alleys, you get mesmerized by the simplicity and beauty of this little jewel of Peloponnese.
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A Guide to Visiting Limeni Village
Things to do in Limeni, Greece
Even though the place is small, there are a few things that you should not miss. The first is, of course, to swim in the crystal-clear waters that are hard to resist. The coast is rocky, and the municipality has created stairs to assist the access to the water. There is no beach with sand in Limeni, but you can find that in the next village called Oitilo.
One of the first things that catch the eye is the stone tower of Petrobeys Mavromichalis, a hero of the Greek independence war. The tower is imposing, with four floors and arches at its windows and balconies.
Take your time walking around the picturesque alleys of the village. You can observe the traditional architecture that is typical to the whole area of Mani: Tall, square towers made of stone, relatively small windows, and arches on the doors.
On your way, you find many chapels, a sign of the religious devotion of the locals. The chapels of Saint Sostis and Saint Nicholaos are old churches built in Byzantine style. There is also the abandoned monastery of Panagia Vretti with its bell tower that stands by the sea and forms a beautiful scenery with the fish taverns.
There are no shops, markets, or services in Limeni. You can find those at Areopoli. In Limeni there are good restaurants and cafes where you can enjoy food and drinks with a sea view.
My favorite place to eat in Limeni is ‘To magazaki tis Thodoras’, a charming tavern with a great view of the gulf. They serve delicious food, and they are always very polite. If you find yourself in Limeni, do not forget to try it!
Where to stay at Limeni, Greece
Hotels and other accommodations here are in the traditional architectural style of this region: Tower houses with small terraces and beautiful sea views. It is a scenic holiday destination to relax and enjoy. Many people choose to stay in Limeni and have it as a basis for trips around Mani.
When I was in Limeni, I was fascinated to discover that Mavromichalis tower is now a guest house called Pyrgos Mavromichali. I was so intrigued by living in such a historical place! The rooms were well designed and clean, and the staff was hospitable and kind.
Things to do around Limeni, Greece
With a rental car, you can quickly explore Mani. There are villages and towns in the surrounding area that are worth visiting.
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The closest village to Limeni is Neo Oitilo, a traditional settlement by the coast. The center of the village is at 240 m altitude, but there is also a coastal settlement lower, by the sea. Oitilo has a long beach with sand, which often brings people from Limeni here to swim.
If you drive north from Limeni you find Stoupa, the center of nightlife during summer. It is a coastal town of 750 inhabitants, which has everything: markets, doctors, pharmacies, shops. You can even find souvenir stores there. Stoupa is not as picturesque as other places in the area but is the place where you can go for a fun night out. The beach in the center of Stoupa is good, but the adjacent Kalogria beach is even better.
Very close to Limeni is the main town of the area Areopoli, which owes its name to the ancient Greek god of war, Ares. Most houses have the typical Mani architecture, built from local rock. When you are in the old town, you feel like you travel in the past.
The kafenions (Greek word for coffeeshops) and taverns have colorful chairs and tables by the stone-paved alleys. Flowers and colors in every corner give a very vibrant feeling. Areopoli is also the commercial center of the area where you can find many stores and services.
The Diros caves are about 15 kilometers southwest of Limeni. They are among the most beautiful stalactite caves in Greece. If you go on holiday in the area, a visit to the caves is a must. The length of the Diros caves is 14 kilometers and was only discovered in 1900. The tourist route has a length of 1,500 meters, of which 1,300 meters you can explore by a boat and 200 meters on foot.
From Limeni you can also get quickly to Gythio, a charming harbor town, 25 kilometers to the east. In the harbor, there are fishing boats and, in the background, neo-classical buildings in vibrant colors. The center of Gythio is around the central Plateia Mavromichali. By the jetty, there are taverns, bars, and cafes, full of people during summer.
How to get to Limeni, Greece
Limeni is in Peloponnese, so you do not need to take a boat to get there. You can reach the area by airplane or by car from other parts of the Greek mainland.
The closest airport is the international airport of Kalamata, about 88 km away. From there, you drive to the Provincial Road that connects Kalamata to Areopoli until you reach Limeni.
If you drive from Athens or Patra to Limeni you need to get to the Olympia Odos highway with direction to Sparta and follow the signs towards the Provincial Road Kalamata-Areopoli.
The area of Mani does not have good public transport. There are limited shuttle buses, but they do not have daily itineraries. Therefore, it is preferable to have a rental car to go around. Limeni is a great place, and the area around it has a lot to see, so it is very convenient to have a car for your day trips around.