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The ancient site of Messini is located about thirty kilometers north of the bustling town of Kalamata. It is located below mount Ithomi, and it has a very nice landscape – gardens, bushes, orchards, vines and olive trees can be seen everywhere. The modern town of Messini is about seven kilometers away of Kalamata. It has one nice, but relatively small square and lots of small shops for every need. The closest village to Messini is Mavromati, located a few kilometers away.
Like most places on Peloponnese peninsula Messini has a Mediterranean climate, with hot summers and relatively warm winters. Average summer temperatures are almost 30 C, while winter temperatures almost never drop below 10 C. Probably the best period to visit Messini is in spring or autumn, when the temperatures are not extremely hot and when there are not many tourists.
Messini is a very nice historic site close to the mountains which is not very frequented by tourists. Most of the tourists go to the major historic places such as Mycenae, Delphi and Olympia, but Messini is definitely worth to be visited. Messini was built in the fourth century BC, and it covers a large area with lots of still excavations going on. One of the most impressive things you can see is the Stadium, built with large columns and stone seating. On the main road there is also one small museum, and in the close village there are a couple of tavernas with nice terraces overlooking the site. Inside Messini you will also find lots of fortifications, interesting monuments, buildings and sanctuaries. The area around Messini is full of beautiful nature. In the northeastern part of Messini is the Ithomi Mountain which serves as a natural protection to the site.
If you visit the nearby village in the mountains – Mavromati, you will get to enjoy great views on Messini ruins. You will get to see all the ruins, storehouses and ancient temples. Another impressive thing to see are the ruins around Messini sanctuary. These ruins were once part of an ancient, ten kilometer long wall that surrounded and protected the ancient city. Laconian and Arcadian ports were the two main entrances to Messini. Laconian entrance gate can be seen behind Mavromati village, while Arcadian gate can be seen when driving between town of Meligalas and Messini. Another interesting thing to see in the area is the old Voulkano monastery located behind the village of Mavromati.
Messini is a very nice place to visit for those that want to learn more about the history of the region and for archaeology enthusiasts. People usually come to see this place as a part of their daily excursions on Peloponnese Peninsula. If you want to take a break from sunbathing and swimming, Messini is ideal place for spending some time in nature and recharging batteries. A nice long walk to see the ruins and the close Mavromati village will refresh you and you will definitely enjoy the surrounding nature.
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