Photo gallery: In my previous post, Falling for Nafplio, I described some of the elements and attractions that make the eastern Peloponnese port town of Nafplio one of our favourite places in all of Greece.
That report was packed with pictures, but since I had dozens more that I wanted to share, I have gathered many of them here to further illustrate why we enjoy Nafplio so much. I have grouped them into the 10 specific sights, features and attractions that we consider our favourites:
♦ the Old Town
♦ the scenery and views
♦ the waterfront
♦ the Arvanitia promenade
♦ the coastal path to Karathona beach
♦ the three castles: Acronauplia, Bourtzi and Palamidi
♦ the beaches and swimming spots
♦ the food and wine
♦ the hotel we stayed at, and
♦ Nafplio’s convenient location for daytrips to other places in the Argolida region of the Peloponnese.
There are far more than 10 reasons why Nafplio is worth visiting, of course, but I will leave them for you to discover and experience yourself. I’m certain there will be plenty of things you will like about Nafplio besides those shown in our pictures.
Please click on the link below to see the photo sets on page 2.
The Old Town of Nafplio rises on the north side of a steep peninsula, directly beneath fortification walls and buildings of Acronauplia — one of three castles situated in the historic town. Nafplio was the capital of Greece from 1821 until the country’s Parliament relocated to Athens in 1834.
Fast favourite: It wasn’t love at first sight, but it was pretty darned close.
Within minutes of arriving at Nafplio and walking from the waterfront car park into the historic Old Town area, we couldn’t help but wonder why it had taken us so long to finally visit what is widely considered one of the prettiest and most romantic towns in Greece. In person, Nafplio looked more beautiful and impressive than it did in the countless pictures and videos we had seen, and the Old Town’s historic ambiance instantly made us feel comfortable and welcome.
As we wound our way down narrow lanes and alleys then up steep stairs to our hotel, we felt eager to drop off our luggage so we could get out and about to explore our scenic surroundings — even though we were sluggish and jet-lagged from our overnight transatlantic flight. Napping would have to wait — we didn’t want to waste any time getting acquainted with Nafplio!
After going for lunch with a friend and wandering around the town, we realized we were falling for Nafplio — in a big way. We had been there only a few hours, and yet Nafplio had quickly charmed its way into our hearts. By dinnertime, we were telling our friend how Nafplio had already become one of our favourite places in Greece. We had suspected that we were really going to like Nafplio — she had long assured us we would — but we’d never expected that we were going to love it so much, or so fast.
That was late May 2016 and, after more than a dozen years of island hopping holidays that usually concluded with time in Athens, we were making our first foray into the Peloponnese. We had scheduled Nafplio for the first full week of our vacation itinerary, but were concerned this might be too long. Would there be enough attractions and activities to keep us interested and occupied for seven days?
Although I had read hundreds of online travel reviews and commentaries describing Nafplio as ideal for a daytrip from Athens, an overnight stay, or a weekend getaway, I couldn’t recall anyone recommending it for a week-long stay. But we didn’t get bored for a minute, and when it came time to depart for our next destination, we realized there were still quite a few sights and attractions we didn’t manage to see. We even felt a tinge of regret to be leaving with so much left unexplored. For us, one week in Nafplio simply had not been long enough.
Now, nearly a year later, we continue to talk about how much we loved Nafplio, and we often discuss what we would like to see and do whenever we go back.
Behind this palm tree at Syndagma Square stands the first Greek Parliament building. Towering above it on the hilltop are the clock tower and a stone fortification wall of the Acronauplia fortress.
So what exactly did we like about Nafplio? It would be difficult to name just one or two main reasons, since there were so many appealing characteristics and elements that combined to make Nafplio such a perfect vacation destination for us. But I can easily describe the Nafplio features that rank among our favourites.
There’s the Old Town, of course, which fascinates with its colourful streets and buildings, attractive parks and squares, historic sites and monuments (including three castles), and an extensive selection of shops, restaurants, bars and hotels.
We also enjoyed the long waterfront walkways, the scenic coastlines offering plenty of places to swim in the tempting turquoise waters of the Argolic Gulf, and the exhilarating views of hills, mountains, sea and sky.
I describe those features, and others, with a series of photos on page 2 of this post. Click here to see and read more about why we fell for this amazing and enchanting place.
If you haven’t been to Nafplio before, this 10-minute video will show you exactly what you would see if you were to wander the Old Town’s charming streets, lanes and squares. The film was published in February 2017 by YouTube contributor Le Monde en Video.
Η χιονισμένη Ακρόπολη από ψηλά (The snowy Acropolis from above), is a 1-minute video filmed for the Eurokinissi news agency. It shows drone views of the Acropolis, the Parthenon and nearby historic sites following a light snowfall in Athens in early January 2017
Winter wonders: I previously published a 2-part post containing dozens of photos of winter scenes from Greece — pictures that had been shared on social media after severely harsh northern weather systems brought freezing temperatures and snowfalls to many parts of Greece, including islands, the Peloponnese, and the mainland. Dozens of winter scene videos have been published online, too, and in this post I’m sharing some of the many films that I have enjoyed watching.
On this page you’ll find films showing breathtaking aerial views of snowy Athens, Kastoria, Kavala, Ioannina and Nafplio. The videos on page 2 feature stunning storm and après-snowfall scenes from Alonissos, Skiathos, Skopelos, Sparta, Thessaloniki, Volos, Evia, Chios, Crete, Naxos, Lake Plastiras near Karditsa, and more of Athens and Nafplio.
International news reports about the snow and cold weather that struck Greece and other European countries earlier this month, along with the scores of snow photos and videos shared on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube, have surprised many people around the world who don’t realize that Greece gets winter weather, too.
Many mistakenly believe Greece enjoys balmy temperatures and sunny skies year-round, so some people have been absolutely astounded to see pictures showing snow on beaches, monuments and villages they have visited during summer trips to Greece. (In the various Greece travel forum pages on TripAdvisor, I regularly see posts from people who are planning Greek island holidays for winter months because they believe it’s a good time to visit for swimming, sunbathing and beach parties. I would love to see the looks on their faces when they see videos like the ones in this post — or actually show up at a Mykonos beach in mid February!)
While the winter scenery in these videos is amazing to see, it simply confirms that Greece looks marvellous and is well worth visiting even in the off season. The island and mainland landscapes, the historic ruins and monuments, and the cities, towns and villages are breathtaking all year long.
If you can’t make it to Greece in spring, summer or autumn, why not consider a winter trip? You’ll find the scenery is just as lovely as it is in peak travel season, the locals are warm and friendly, and best of all — there are no crowds.
Studiotrasias created this superb aerial film of gorgeous winter scenery at Kastoria
These drone views of Kavala were filmed by Tetracopterakias after the city endured three consecutive days of snowfalls
Nikos Roussis captures the winter beauty of Ioannina in this 4.5-minute film
Captivating aerial views of Nafplio, filmed by Kostas Ko
Please click on the link below to view more videos on page 2 of this post.
There is snow as far as the eye can see along the road to Kalavrita Ski Center in the northern Peloponnese. The picture was posted to the ski resort’s Facebook page on January 6
Winter wonders: This is the second set of photos I’m publishing on the blog to profile remarkable winter scenery in different regions of Greece — images that have been shared on social media after much of the nation was struck by icy cold temperatures and some surprisingly heavy snowfalls during the 2016 Christmas holidays and up to the second week of January 2017.
Part 1 of the photo feature included snow scenes from Athens, Ioannina, Corinth, Chios, Evia, Rhodes, Sparta, Mystras, Skiathos, Skopelos and Skyros.
Here in Part 2 I have collected photos from Crete, Nafplio, Epidaurus, Thessaloniki, some of the Cyclades and Ionian islands, plus various locations in the Peloponnese and mainland Greece. Many of the photo captions include links to social media pages or websites where you can find countless more pictures of snowy sites in Greece. (It could be spring by the time you manage to finish looking at the photos on all of the links!)
Click on the link beneath the next photo to view the full series of pictures on page 2 of this post.
One of my favourite Greece winter scenes is this spectacular photograph by Thanos Komninos, which captures dark, fluffy storm clouds swirling above and around the Nafplio Old Town and Acronauplia fortress, before leaving the town dusted with a layer of light snow. The photo appeared on the Nafplio Kalimera page on Facebook.
The beautiful golden sand seafront at Tolo stretches for approximately one kilometer from Psili Ammos beach (seen here) to a harbour barely visible in the center-top area of this photo
Extreme temps: We’re never happy after we return home from one of our Greek holidays, as we did three days ago — we always wish we were still in Greece. But this time we’re actually a bit relieved that we’re not there — we simply could not have handled the heat wave currently sweeping across the country.
Sunshine and temperatures hitting the low 30s (Celsius) hindered some of our walking and sightseeing in Nafplio, Monemvasia, Tolo and Hydra on several days of our vacation from May 30 to June 16, but since we left Greece on Thursday temperatures have soared even higher, approaching and even exceeding an absolutely sweltering 40 degrees in many places, particularly on the mainland.
On Saturday, for instance, the temperature reached 43.4 at Sparta, which we had found hot when it was in the low 30s during the day we spent there. As I write this post today, it’s 37 in Nafplio, where a few 30-degree days forced us to limit our activities during the first week of June. And temperatures are forecast to remain scorching hot for several more days. If we were still in Greece, we would either be hiding inside our air-conditioned hotel rooms, or swimming as much as possible.
Fortunately there were plenty of excellent places to take a dip in the sea at most of the destinations we visited. Click on the link below to turn to page 2 and see photos of the great swimming spots we discovered near Epidaurus, Hydra, Monemvasia, Nafplio and Tolo.
Bathers cool off in the gorgeous turquoise waters at Hydronetta, a popular coastal swimming spot on Hydra island