Nafplion TownThe town of Nafplion (or Nafplio) is steeped in history with narrow Venetian streets, classical buildings, many monuments, museums, churches and places of interest and such attracts visitors all the year round. The old town is a great place to wander about, have a coffee or a drink in one of the many bars and cafeterias along the harbour or in the quaint streets with their overhanging Venetian style balconies. Take a short boat ride and visit the Bourtzi fortress on the island in the harbour or relax on one of the beaches closeby. Visit the art gallery or one of the many events at the Fougaro Cultural Centre.
Pronoia is the area of Nafplion where Anemos is located. It is a suburb just ourside of the main town and it takes about 10 minutes at the most to walk there. Pronoia is like a small village within Nafplion where the locals are friendly and traditional. Just a few steps from Anemos Rooms there is a straight road that goes into the centre and it is lined both sides with every kind of shop that you may need during your stay including mini-market, bakers, butchers, greengrocers, pharmacy etc. plus tavernas, cafe and other shops.
Nafplion MuseumsThere are many interesting museums in Nafplion to visit including the Archaelogical museum in Syntagma square, the folklore museum, the Military museum, the Worry Bead museum & the Ouzo museum (one of a kind). Once a year in May the museums take part in a special event 'A Night at the Museum' when they are open all evening and are accompanied by local shows and readings.
Nafplion BeachesNafplion's beaches are Karathona and Arvantitia.
Karathona is accessible by car or local bus (during the summer months) and is a beautiful half-moon shaped bay, sandy beach and crystal clear water. It is one of the 3 beaches in the Argolida to be awarded the Blue Flag for clean beaches which is awarded by the EU each year. It is a well organised beach and has manay beach bars that offer free sunbeds, tables & chairs and umbrellas included in the price of a coffee or a drink. Most of them also serve snacks. There are organised water sports on the beach, windsurfing, sailing and waterskiing plus the snorkelling is great.
Arvantita is what's known as 'the town's beach' as it is easily accessible and frequented by locals for a quick dip. In recent years Arvanitia has had a great makeover from the beach bar's owners who have successfully turned it into one of the most popular hotspots in Nafplion day and night! It is a concrete platform built into the rocks of the coastline and has wonderful views of the Palamidi & Acronafplia fortresses and the whole bay.
Nafplion CastlesNafplion has three castles, the Palamidi castle that overlooks the whole town from high on its hilltop, the Acronafplia castle located at the foot of the Palamidi and the Bourtzi castle located on the island in the harbour. From any one of the three the views are spectacular so don't forget your camera!
The Palamidi Fortress is accessible both by a 999 step staircase or by road (either by car or the hop on - hop off bus. Built in the early 18th century by the Venetians (1711-1715) and then captured by the Turkish the Palamidi was held until their demise in 1822 liberation.
The Bourtzi Castle, located in the middle of the harbour, is one of the most photographed castles in Greece. First built in 1473 the Bourtzi has a rich history having been built by the Venetians, captured by the Ottomans, re-captured by the Venetians, recpatured by the Ottomans and then eventually coming into Greek hands. It has been used as a fortress, a prison, an executioner's residence, a hotel, a restaurant, a concert venue and, as the present day, a tourist attraction. It is possible to get a water taxi from the promenade and visit the island.
The Acronafplia Castle is the most historic of all Nafplion's castles. With history reaching as far back as the Bronze ages and walls first constructed in 4 B.C. it attracts visitors all through the year. It lies at the foot of the Palamidi and if the fortifications had not been made to the Palamidi, Acronafplia would have continued to be the citadel of Nafplion, maybe even up to the present day.
Historical Monuments in Nafplion
The first capital of the newly liberated Greece in 1822, Nafplion has much to offer in the way of monuments and architecture. Visit some of the following:
the old mosque (the Jami) close to Syntagma square, orignally a mosque and now used as a theatre
the Vouleftikon, the first parliament building of liberated Greece
the Venetian Headquarters and arsenal, now the archeological museum in the sqaure
St Spyridon church, where the first governor of Greece, Ioannis Kapodistrias was assasinated and the bullet hole is still evident
The churches of St George, (17th century), St Nikolaos, (18th century), the Frankoekklisia, the oldest church in the town, which still has traces of the old Catholic (Franc) Monastery
Some other interesting buildings are:
the First New Greek Gymnasium School (built 1833)
the old Town Hall building
the house of the Viceroy
the Alevras-Lambiris building (1830)
the old train station (1890)