Nafplio: A perfect blend of romance, history and nature

A short hop from Athens, the historic city of Nafplio is the perfect romantic getaway, boasting beautiful architecture and numerous cultural gems.


Nafplio, located only an hour and a half from Athens, is an ideal weekend getaway destination. The city of 15,000 residents has elegant guesthouses that can serve as a base for a romantic weekend getaway, and the surrounding area allows you to get closer to nature and the sea. Furthermore, numerous attractions can turn your trip into an experiential and educational safari. Whatever you choose, you will undoubtedly enjoy it.

The view from Palamidi to Acronafplia, the oldest part of the city. [Olga Charami]

From Palamidi to Acronafplia

Palamidi, one of Nafplio’s most prominent landmarks, towers above the city. The Venetians built the fortress in the late 17th century, and it was the site of a significant battle during the Greek Revolution. An Ottoman stronghold, it was captured by the Greeks in November 1822. Its stone prison cells are particularly noteworthy, as Theodoros Kolokotronis was imprisoned there for several months in 1833. The peak can be reached by car or by climbing approximately 860 stairs.

The city’s second fortress is located on the rocky islet of Acronafplia, an ancient acropolis that was fortified by the Venetians before falling into the hands of Greek revolutionaries three days after Palamidi in 1822. Until the 1960s, it was used as a prison for criminals and political prisoners.

Nafplio’s old town is a maze of cobbled streets and staircases, where you’ll find historic churches and beautiful neoclassical houses. [Olga Charami]

Walking in Arvanitia

The coastal route around the hill of Acronafplia is one of the most beautiful walks. Begin your walk at the Nafplio Nautical Club and continue to Arvanitia Beach. The best time for this walk is at sunset, as you will be walking west. The distance is only one kilometer, but if you feel like walking a bit longer, you can head to Karathona Beach, which is about another kilometer away.

Proudly standing 216 m above sea level, the Venetian fortress of Palamidi is one of Nafplio’s most iconic landmarks. To reach the top, visitors can climb the 860 steps carved into the rock. [Olga Charami]

The most romantic guesthouses

Nafplio offers a wide range of accommodation options. Most guesthouses are located in the narrow streets of the Old Town, either near the waterfront or in the area surrounding the main square.

Amymone Suites (18 Othonos, Tel. (+30) 27520.220.73) offers modern suites and rooms, and serves Greek breakfast prepared using local ingredients. The attic with a view of the castle is particularly special.

The Andromeda Hotel (13 D. Ypsilantou & 8 Kotsopoulou, Tel. (+30) 27520.964.80), housed in a renovated building dating from 1850, boasts rooms with traditional and stately decor.

The modern rooms at the boutique hotel Carpe Diem (Othonos & 41 Rigas Feraiou, Tel. (+30) 27520.294.49) are somewhat small, but some have views of the city and the Palamidi fortress.

Dafni Guesthouse (10 Fotomara, Tel. (+30) 27520.298.56) has a unique atmosphere thanks to its floral wallpapers, country furniture, and intricate lighting fixtures. They also provide excellent breakfast and brunch options.

This article appeared in Greece Is (, a Kathimerini publishing initiative.

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