Monemvasia, the site of a medieval fortress, is located on a small island off the east coast of the Peloponnese and linked to the mainland via a short causeway. Its name originates from two Greek words, mone and emvasia meaning “single entrance”. This refers to the causeway which is the only entrance.
Monemvasia is a fascinating place where the castle overlooks endless blue waters. It’s Byzantine, Ottoman and Venetian history dates back to the 13th century and many Churches remain from the medieval period. Multiple buildings have been restored and now house hotels and restaurants that are scattered throughout the laneways. I only got to spend the day here and cannot wait to return to this medieval paradise.
This icon, titled “The Crucifixion”, dates back to the 2nd half of the 14th century and is made from Egg tempera, gold leaves on cloth and wood. It was stolen in 1979 by looters who caused severe damage. It has since been preserved and now housed at St John’s Chapel in the Church of Christ Elkomenos, Monemvasia.
If you have time and can drive further south, visit Elafonisos. See here for more details.
My travel tip: This rock beach is within walking distance to the entrance of Monemvasia so if you’re visiting during the summer months bring your cozzie.