Argolis / Nafplion
10.Jul.2015

Greece’s first capital is at the present a traditional settlement of international renown and one of the most picturesque and historical towns of the country.

One of the most popular destinations in Peloponnese. Visit Argos, the oldest continuously inhabited town of Europe, with its ancient castle overseeing the modern city.

argos castle

Discover a rare geological phenomenon in Didyma and look for the cave awakening from the depths of time in Frachthi. Enjoy the endless beaches and admire the ancient theater of Epidaurus, a monument of world renown.

argos epidavros

Walk around ancient Mycenae and let the ruins speak of the drama that divided a royal family and the tragedy of Agamemnon and his family. It is a land disseminated with archaeological monuments, a true paradise for cultural tourism. Ask Homer and he will tell you that we all descend from the Argians!

argos mycenae

Delicious products, unique recipes
Besides tourism the inhabitants engaged in agriculture fisheries and livestock farming. The terrain, the proximity with the sea, the mild climate, gives superior products. One of them the orange, "Gold Argolida," as it is called. .

Popular worldwide is the oil of Argolida with excellent quality unique color and flavor, the result of both the soil and proper cultivation of olive trees.

The vineyards of Argolida are characterized perfect because of the mild climate.
Agiorgitiko keeps Superiority in the production as part of the Argolis vineyard belonging to Nemea zone of PDO. Other wine varieties include: Athiri, Lagothri, Malagouzia, Moshofilero (Mantinia), Roditis, Cabernet Aspoudes, Kalliniatino Mavroudi etc.

argos nemea
Many also produce, tomatoes, beans, peas, cucumbers, lettuce, eggplant, etc. famous are the artichokes Irion, with special taste, flavor and nutritional value. They are produced on 12,000 acres, and make up most of Greek production. The Feast of Artichoke is organized every May, featuring recipes with artichoke as the main ingredient.

argos artichokes
Besides the natural beauty and history of Argolida, is the gastronomy. Recipes are based on local products.

Visitors will find here traditional recipes cooked the authentic way using modern technology. Taste dishes such as boiled goat, rooster cooked in lemon sauce, pork roast, pork grilled on coals, Tigania (stir fry with meat and oregano), pork prasoselino (pork cooked with leeks and celery), chicken soup, homemade pies filled with seasonal vegetables, local wood burning oven bread, stuffed vegetables with rice and ground meat, gkiosa ( roast lamb), kontosouvli (pieces of meat cooked on the spit), fish soup, grilled fish, tyrolagano, poumeki (milk pie without dough) briam, and traditional Greek sweets.

nafplio tables

Executive chef Panos Kokkalas suggests Gkogkes with local mizithra cheese

nafplio gogesThe Gkogkes is a traditional, handmade pasta of the region of Argolida. It is made with flour, water and salt. It is served with local manouromyzithra (local creamy cottage cheese) and hot oil.
Although the preparation is not particularly difficult, it is a food that needs "art" to succeed. The secret is in the cheese, which essentially melts with the hot oil and the pasta gets a special flavor. If you are lucky enough to get invited to a local home, particularly in the surrounding villages, you will definitely get the chance to taste it.

Gkogkes or gkogkizes it’s a dish traditionally made over carnival season.
You can buy them at traditional grocers of the city or you can order them in selected taverns and restaurants. (recipe)

Nafplio

One of the most beautiful towns in the area of Argolis (in eastern Peloponnese) as well as one of the most romantic cities all over Greece, Nafplio was the first capital of the newly born Greek state between 1823 and 1834.

nafplio gate
According to mythology, the town was founded by Náfplios, the son of god Poseidon and the daughter of Danaus (Danaida) Anymone. The town’s history traces back to the prehistoric era when soldiers from here participated in the Argonautic expedition and the Trojan War alike.

nafplio blue

The town declined during the Roman times and flourished again during the Byzantine times. Frankish, Venetian and Turkish conquerors left their mark in the town and strongly influenced its culture, architecture and traditions during the centuries.

Ancient walls, medieval castles, monuments and statues, Ottoman fountains and Venetian or neoclassical buildings mesmerize the visitor with their unique architecture and beauty.

While you are here:
• Follow a dream trail to discover Nafplios precious gems starting from the medieval Old Town, the narrow cobblestone alleys, the neoclassical well preserved mansions with the Bougainvillea trees adorning their yards and balconies and the Turkish fountains.

nafplio home
• In the very heart of the city stands the Italianate Syntagma Square where you can admire important historic buildings and monuments. Two Turkish mosques (the first used to house the first “Mutual Learning” School which now operates as a cinema/theatre and the second was home to the first Greek Parliament).

Two other buildings that stand out are Archaeological Museum with important artifacts from the Prehistoric and Mycenaean Era and the Municipal Gallery.
Very close to the modern city stand the church of Agios Spyridonas, in front of which Governor Ioannis Kapodistrias was assassinated, and the church of Agios Georgios boasting important murals such as a copy of the famous Leonardo Da Vinci work “The Secret Dinner”.

nafplio view

• Next stop: Palamidi Castle, which proudly stands 216 m above sea level. In order to reach it you have to climb all of its 999 steps carved into the rock. Not to worry, though: the view from above is totally breathtaking! Venture into a place drenched in history, where the famous hero of the Greek Revolution Theodoros Kolokotronis had been imprisoned; it seems as if its barricades-named after the renowned ancient heroes Themistocles, Achilles, Fokion, Leonidas, Epaminondas and Miltiades- are still carefully protecting the city.

nafplion palamidi

Agios Andrea’s barricade built at the top of the Castle by Venetian conquerors undoubtedly offers stunning views to the Argolic gulf and the Mycenaean plain.

Akronafplia is the historic rock at the foot of Palamidi hill, also known by its Turkish name “Its Kale” (meaning inner castle). Inhabited since prehistoric times, the peninsula consists of three levels, among which stand three independent castles, the oldest being the western one. It was there that the ancient acropolis was situated, fortified with polygonic Cyclopean walls.

nafplio topview
The most photographed spot of Nafplio –and its point of reference as well– is Bourtzi, the Venetian small fortress standing on the rocky islet of Agioi Theodoroi. During the Venetian rule it was connected to Akronafplia through a huge metal chain that secured the port against enemy ship attacks.

nafplio burgi

At the beginning of 1860 Bourtzi was used to house the executioners of Palamidi prisoners. In the summer you can reach the fortress by boat departing regularly from the port. If you are lucky enough you may even be able to attend one of the fascinating festivals taking place on the islet!

nafplio waiter
In the summer, take an invigorating swim on the beaches of Arvanitia, Karathonas, Nea Kios, Miloi and Kiveri. You will also find a nice beach offering all kinds of facilities in Tolo, only 15 min away from the town.

by: Chef Kokkalas, Grecofood

photos: TGC

  • Latest
  • Popular
  • Harvest season is hundreds years of tradition in Greece, with all family members helping to produce the must, making the...

  • Winemakers on the Greek island of Crete are eager to introduce you to grapes like vidiano and kotsifali. Family winegrowers...

  • To eat because you have to eat is a habit. To eat clever, is an art. To eat your mother’s...

  • Greek exhibitors show their competence and efficiency in the scope of the biggest trade fair for food and beverages
    Promoting exports...

  • A good friend Chef Peter Minakis reminded me of this great dish that somehow was always available in our home....