History/Description: Old Kardamyli barely qualifies as a castle, but is rather a fortified settlement (what the French would call a 'bastide). The few experts who have concerned themselves with it agree the church is 18th century and that it shows a great deal of Venetian influence (as does the church at Areopoli). There's a number of fascinating carvings in the stonework, quite possibly re-used from older buildings. Its pleasant to imagine the guide-book tale of local Maniote chieftans Mavromichalis and Kolokotronis standing in the belltower, and playing chess - with their warriors as live chessmen in the courtyard down below - though this tale is probably a myth.
Directions: Its a few minutes stroll from the resort of Kardamyli. Kardamyli itself is a pleasant resort on the Messenian Gulf, served by buses from Kalamata (and UK package firms).
Carving from stonework at Old Kardamyli.
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