Cycling in Kalamata, the cycling hub of the Peloponnese
Main city in the Southern Peloponnese
Main city in the Southern Peloponnese
Kalamata is a beautiful city in southern Greece. It may not be the first destination you think of for a cycling holiday, but it has everything a cyclist could desire.
Thanks to the combination of stunning seaside towns, glorious sandy beaches and rugged mountains just a stone's throw away, it makes the perfect cycling destination for all ages and abilities. Here are just some of the reasons that Kalamata should be on your bucket list of cycling destinations.
The beautiful scenery is enough of a reason by itself, but that is not the only reason Kalamata is so popular with cyclists. For a road cyclist, the rolling tarmac, plethora of old stone houses and springs with crystal clear water make it a charming place to cycle through.
Only thirty-five kilometres southeast of Kalamata, you have Kardamili. Kardamili is a striking seaside town that is understated but has plenty to offer a passing cyclist. If you want to indulge yourself, you can roll down a small path that passes through an olive grove leading you to the famous Kardamili beach. En route from Kalamata, follow a flat coastal path or challenge yourself and take a diversion inland to give your legs a test on some rolling mountain climbs.
A short ride east from Kalamata, you will come across towns such as Koroni and Foinikounta. Foinikounta is a must-see when you are in the area. It is a relatively small town, with a large sandy beach that draws in many visitors during the summer.
Carry on west from Foinikountas sandy Beach, and you will come across Methoni. Methoni is most well known for its rugged and alluring castle. It is an incredible piece of history in these parts of southern Greece that more than justifies a few hours to explore its vast grounds. Thanks to it being surrounded by three sides of crystal clear blue water Methoni Castle is one of its kind.
Not too far out of Kalamata is the Taygetus mountain. You may not associate the Peloponnese as a cycling destination with challenging hill climbs, but you just wait until you can soak in the picturesque views from the summit of the Taygetus, looking out on beautiful greenery and the neighbouring snow-capped peaks.
The mountain range near Kalamata is sparsely populated, but residents will welcome you with open arms in all of the remote villages you roll through on and around the Taygetus. Thanks to the lack of inhabitants, the roads are tranquil, making it a lovely experience on the incline and decline without worrying too much about speeding motorists.
One of the best things, aside from the friendly people, delicious Kalamata Olives, incredible cycling weather (all year round), is the terrain's versatility. Cycling in and around Kalamata is enjoyable for all abilities. It can easily make for a lovely family holiday or a couples retreat, where one or both of you want to challenge your legs on a few mountain climbs.
The sheer number of stunning beaches accompanied by the welcoming locals and quiet roads means that even if you do not want to cycle up inclines, you can easily meander around the coast and never get bored.
You may not have heard about cycling in Kalamata until now, but this truly is a gem of a destination for road cyclists of all abilities. We could carry on for hours about all the beauty that Kalamata and Peloponnese have to offer. Also, the climate in this area is perfect for cyclists. Even as an off-season retreat, it still averages 20 degrees in November in Kalamata. Imagine coming back from a Europe retreat in November with your signature lycra tan.
There may not be a lot of information online about cycling in Kalamata, but you will soon realise why it is becoming more and more popular once you arrive.