Located 158km (98 miles) from Athens, the Peloponnese Peninsula constitutes the southernmost mainland of Greece. Its proximity to the capital city, luxurious resorts, and sightseeing opportunities attract world travelers year-round. Along with some of Greece’s most important archeological sites (Olympia, Mycenae, and Epidaurus,), the peninsula is lined with pristine beaches lapped by waters of every shade of blue and surrounded by incredible scenery.
Some of the beaches are well-known and others are wild and untamed. Let’s explore some of the best beaches in Peloponnese, Greece.
Foneas is a small horseshoe-shaped beach in the Messenia region about an hour’s drive from Kalamata. It’s a pebbly beach without soft sand, but the 100-meter stretch of beach is popular with locals and the perfect hidden gem for travelers to discover. Nestled in a protective cove, the beach is surrounded by vistas of rocky cliffs and sea caves to explore.
In addition to swimming, visitors can go snorkeling, cliff jumping, and caving. The beach is known for a huge rock in the middle of the turquoise waters where beachgoers like to cliff jump and dive. For an unforgettable adventure, take a four-hour kayak tour of the Kardamili sea caves. The unique underwater formations and magical sea caves are as breathtaking as the rugged landscape.
Foneas Beach doesn’t have services such as lounge chairs or umbrella rentals, so pack your gear accordingly. A small canteen on the beach sells snacks and drinks. The beach also has free parking and shower facilities.
One of the largest beaches in the Peloponnese region, Mavrovouni Beach is on the east coast of the Mani Peninsula near Gytheio. Its pristine waters and perfect swimming conditions have earned it the status of Blue Flag beach. It has a six-kilometer-long span of powder-soft sand and stunning views of the sea and surrounding mountain range.
Mavrovouni Beach is an excellent destination for windsurfing and kitesurfing, and the Gytheio area is popular around the world for sailing holidays. Afternoons at the beach can get quite windy, and you’ll spot brightly colored sails out on the water.
Another unique feature of the beach is the endangered Loggerhead turtles that build nests on its shore. Keep your eye out for baby turtle hatchlings.
The beach has plenty of hotels for accommodations, and bars along the shore offer an escape from the sun for a refreshing drink. Nearby MavrovouniVillage has luxurious yet affordable resorts with mountain and sea views.
Voidokilla Beach is known throughout Europe and beyond as the best beach in Greece. Although it’s fairly remote, its beauty attracts plenty of visitors, especially during the peak season around August.
The picturesque beach is in a crescent shape resembling the Greek letter Omega. It features perfect white sand and water in dazzling shades of blue from deep navy in the middle to a vibrant cyan around the fringes.
Voidokilla Beach is in a protected wildlife area bordered by the Gialova Lagoon and home to hundreds of bird species. Another special feature is a nearby ancient Greek Navarino Castle from the 13th century. Once serving as a lookout over the bay, the old castle is perfect for hiking to enjoy sweeping views of the Mediterranean Sea.
Voidokilla is a rather remote beach without a lot of facilities. Tourists can visit the nearby seaside villages of Romanos or Petrochori for dining.
Simos is a soft sand beach on the south shore of Elafonisos, a small island off the Laconia Peninsula, a part of the larger Peloponnese Penisula. It’s reachable by a 10-minute ferry ride from the small coastal village of Pounta.
The beach is split into two distinct bays, each with its own beach. Mikros Simos is the smaller one and Megalos Simos is the larger one. White sand-covered dunes flank both beaches creating a shield from the wind. The shallow turquoise water is calm and perfect for swimming with children and the white sand is pillow-soft.
Simos is one of the most organized Peloponnese beaches and features sun loungers, umbrellas, and delightful beach bars. Private bungalows and tent pads are offered near the beach.
Pretty pebbly Avanitia Beach is the closest beach to the quaint seaside town of Nafplio situated on the Argolic Gulf on the Peloponnese Penisula’s northeast side. It’s a Blue Flag beach with excellent swimming and is a part of Greek history. During the 18th century, the Venetians used the nearby Palamidi Fortress as a castle and a prison. By climbing its 1,000 stairs, Palamidi offers a fantastic view of the region.
The beach is small—only 200 meters long, but the calm, clear water of the gulf has made it a favorite for locals. There are sun loungers and umbrellas for rent and there’s an excellent waterfront bar and restaurant right on the beach. Take a pair of reef shoes to walk more comfortably on the small rocks and pebbles.
Tolo Beach is only a 15-minute drive from Nafplio in a newer, less historic, and more-beach oriented town. The water is calm and shallow making it a great family beach for swimming.
Tolo is a newer town than Nafplion and is more geared towards the beach. Summer accommodations and seasonal hotels such as Psilli Ammos cater to beachgoers with amenities, especially for the beach as well as seaside rooms. The beach offers sun loungers, umbrellas, public showers, bathrooms, and nearby rentals for water sports fun such as pedal boats and sea canoes.
The town of Tolo has grocery stores, supermarkets, and a village port with a picturesque landscape.
Valtaki is a Blue Flag beach with excellent swimming conditions, but it’s most popular for the massive shipwreck of the Dimitrios only a stone’s throw from the sandy beach. Some say the rusting tanker is unsightly, but the shipwreck adds a dramatic twist to this Peleponnese beach.
Several theories surround the sinking of the Dimitrios. One claim is that the ship once transported illegal cigarettes and was attempting to escape smugglers. Other theories say it’s a ghost ship abandoned by its crew or that it suffered from financial problems. Whatever the reason, the shipwreck has been an iconic sight since the 1980s.
Valtaki Beach is also only one kilometer away from the charming port town of Gythio. The little town has lots of shops, cafes, and restaurants.
Selinitsa Beach is on the other side of the Dimitrios shipwreck and is often visited along with Valtaki Beach. A Blue Flag beach as well, It has the same soft white sand and beach amenities such as bathrooms and showers. One of the area’s finest beaches, it’s only one kilometer from Gythio’s town center.
Selinitsa has a variety of accommodations including hotels, campsites, and rooms. Waterfront taverns and beach bars dot the 150-meter shoreline. Sports facilities have equipment rentals for water fun.
The endangered Caretta-Caretta sea turtles come to Selinitsa Beach every summer to lay their eggs. A Greek society called Archelon works with the municipality of Gythio to make sure the beach is safe for the process and asks that visitors watch where they are stepping at night.
Located in Mani, Alypa is a smaller beach than most other Peloponnese beaches but worthy of a visit especially while staying in Kokkala. The little harborside beach has soft sand and crystal clear waters and is a beautiful place to spend the day.
If you enjoy hiking and looking for waterfalls, take a day trip from the Mani or Kokkala area to see the Neda and Polylinnio Waterfalls, some of Greece’s most beautiful waterfalls.
Porto Katsiki is one of the top attractions of Lefkada, the gateway and capital of this island in the Ionian Sea. The island is connected to the Greek mainland by a causeway. Porto Katsiki is 44 kilometers (27 miles) southwest of Lefkada.
Popular for its stunning natural beauty, Porto Katsiki has a landscape of abrupt white cliffs that contrast with the deep blue waters of the Ionian Sea. The surrounding area is lush with vegetation creating an idyllic landscape that will long be remembered by those who visit. Some travelers simply visit Porto Katsiki for its spectacular scenery.
The sandy beach has sun loungers and umbrellas, or beach goers can find shady spots underneath the cliffs. The area is frequented by private yachts and is reachable by car or taxi-boat from the village of Nidri and Vassiliki.
The beach has ample parking with bars and canteens found at the top of the stairs.
Lefki is a tiny beach situated in the western part of Elafonisos Island. Located in a small harbor, the beach is sheltered from powerful waves and south and southwest winds making it a comfortable beach for families with children. The water stays shallow for at least 20 meters from the shore.
With a reputation as the best beach on Elafonisos, Lefki is surrounded by sand dunes and brown majestic cliffs. The sand is smooth and white and the waters are crystal clear and blue. A marine steamer near the beach has the best sea and beach views.
Lefki Beach doesn’t boast an infrastructure of fancy hotels. Visitors come for camping and wilderness tourism. However, there is a cozy tavern that serves wonderful traditional Greek dishes.
There is no bus service to Lefki Beach but it can be reached by car or taxi or on foot from the main village.
Golden Beach is located in Kyllini in the northwestern part of the Peloponnese just opposite Zakynthos. True to its name, Chrissi Akto translates to Golden Beach for the golden sand dunes of breathtaking scenery that stretches for five kilometers. The waters are shallow and calm for swimming.
The antithesis of Lefki, Golden Beach is crammed with luxurious hotels. The wide-open bay has canteens, bars, and restaurants with sun loungers and umbrellas.
For an extra treat, be sure to visit the nearby thermal baths of Kyllini known for their therapeutical properties from volcanic sources.
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