The Peloponnese town of Nafplio is considered one of the best getaways in Greece. Impressive castles, museums with invaluable treasures, historic churches, beautiful neoclassical buildings and paved cobbled paths decorated with bougainvillea bear the grandeur of bygone days of yesteryear. A mystical place, blessed with natural beauties and culture, which for centuries now continues to bloom and fascinate the visitor.
What to See in Nafplio
There is so much to see when on a Nafplio shore excursion. All the sights are so beautiful that once you visit, you cannot help but come back to relive its charm; its narrow streets, magnificent squares, Ottoman fountains, neoclassical buildings, and all its architectural jewels.
Climb the 999 steps to see the Palamidi Fortress. This vast, spectacular citadel, reachable either on foot or a short drive, stands on the top of a 216-meter high hill and gives impressive views over the Argolic Gulf, the city of Nafplio and the surrounding country. It was built by the Venetians between 1711 and 1714 and is regarded as a masterpiece of military architecture. See also the water castle of Bourtzi, the Venetian castle built on the small island of Agioi Theodoroi in the middle of the harbor of Nafplio. Rising above the old part of town, the Akronafplia Fortress is the oldest of Nafplio's three castles. Until the 13th century, Akronafplia was a town on its own. Walk along the seaside paved road that embraces Akronafplia offering a wonderful sense of escape from reality.
At Syntagma Square there is the Archaeological Museum, which certainly deserves a visit, the Parliament that housed the first parliament and the Old Mosque. Nafplio’s award-winning Peloponnesian Folklore Foundation Museum hosts a beautifully arranged collection of folk costumes and household items from Nafplio’s 19th and 20th-century history. In Nafplio, there is also the unique in the world Komboloi Museum. This tiny museum/shop has an amazing collection of worry beads that will make the ideal Greek souvenir from your Nafplio shore excursion.
The Church of Agios Spyridon was the site where Ioannis Kapodistrias, the first president of an independent Greece was assassinated in 1831. It dates back to 1702, from the time of the Second Venetian domination of the city.
What to Do in Nafplio
The picturesque streets of Nafplio that have remained untouched through time, as well as its famous nearby sandy beaches, are a pleasure for all human senses. A short walk from the paved Syntagma Square, which is a meeting point and a point of reference for the city, can lead to one of the well-kept small tavernas. Discover the rich cuisine of Nafplio where you can eat and drink like a local or enjoy a coffee at one of the various traditional coffee houses in the area.
Nafplio's beaches are definitely worth a visit on your Nafplio shore excursion. Just a 10-minute walk south from Palamidi castle hill is the 'Blue Flag' beach of Karathona. Karathona is the favorite beach of the locals. It has small pebbles and palm trees and olive trees along the coast. Also popular in the area are the beaches of Arvanitia and Neraki.
From Nafplio, one can also explore some of the most important sites of the Greek antiquity. Mycenae, the home of Agamemnon, is often referred to as "Golden Mycenae" due to the abundance of gold that was found there in the excavations of the 19th Century. The Epidauros Theater, the largest and one of the best-preserved ancient theaters in Greece, offers exceptional acoustics without any modern means. It comes to life every summer with the Festival of Epidaurus, performing ancient comedies and tragedies. A must visit on your Nafplio shore excursion is the nearby Asclepius Healing Centre of Antiquity. Asclepius was the ancient god of medicine and healing. Even though he did not belong to the pantheon of the 12 Olympian Gods, he was one of the most important ones.
Then on to the Corinth Canal and Ancient Corinth; one of antiquity's most significant and cosmopolitan city-states, the opposing force of Athens. Visit the Agora, the public market, the impressive Temple of Apollo and of course the Bema of Saint Paul the Apostle. For all the art lovers, there is a museum with an exceptional collection of ancient pottery.
If you have a little more time, it is worth a visit to Tiryns, one of the most important archeological sites of Argolis, which is included in the UNESCO World Heritage List. It is located just outside the city, at the 8th km of Argos-Nafplio Street.
Fall in Love with Nafplio
Nafplio deserves at least one day of your undivided attention. It is the main port of the eastern Peloponnese and one of the most picturesque cities in the country. Explore the town’s wonderful attractions and the many surrounding ancient sights nearby on your Nafplio shore excursion. This charming port town accommodates cruise ships visiting some of the most significant sites of the Greek antiquity. The Travel Insiders offer Nafplio shore excursions to all the local places of interest starting from the port. Upon arrival, your driver or guide will welcome you inside the port area holding a sign with The Travel Insiders logo. You will then set off on a wonderful journey through the countryside to the nearby sites or on a walking tour to discover a place suspended in time. Embrace the feeling and let yourself fall in love Greece’s most romantic town!
How to Get to Nafplio from Athens
Whether flying into Athens or visiting the port of Piraeus on a cruise, the best way to get to Nafplio from Athens is to book one of The Travel Insiders Nafplio tours or transfers prior to departure. Avoid the inconveniences of the crowded coaches with last minute travel arrangements and travel to Nafplio in comfort and luxury. It takes approximately 1h 50m to travel from Athens to Nafplio. So, whether you are a history buff, a foodie or a beach lover, Nafplio has a little something for everyone in a most idyllic and romantic setting.
Nafplio Shore Excursions & Tours