There are hidden landscape treasures throughout mainland Greece, but the region which packs the most variety into the smallest space is the Peloponnese. From the beaches of Arcadia to the fir forests of Mt Parnon, from the olive groves of Kalamata to the pyramidal peak of Prophet Elijah, from classical Sparta to medieval Mani, this compact semi-island has it all.
Though the ancients called it 'the island of Pelops', after their mythical king, this three-fingered landmass is joined to the mainland by a narrow isthmus at Corinth. Only in the 19th century was a canal finally cut through the isthmus, but it retains the cultural diversity and spectacular scenery of the mainland.
This is an exciting region to explore by car or on foot. A way of life that is slowly disappearing can still be glimpsed in many parts of the region. There are hundreds of small villages populated by just a few souls, most of whom extend a warm welcome to visitors.
Walking, as well as being a lovely way of unwinding, staying healthy and meeting strangers, is often the only way of reaching the most beautiful or historic spots. In handy pocket-size format, this guide features dozens of unforgettable walks for all ages and abilities, with highly detailed walking maps.
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