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Leontari - Oria fortress - Palaomonastiro monastery - Kato Giannei - Neochori

Trip Details

Trips inside Peloponissos
Date: Sat, 12/11/2011
Distance: 100km
Motorcyclists: Manolis, Giorgos Z., Stratos
Photographers: Manolis
Authors: Stratos
Translators: Stratos
Map: Trip map

Sightseeing map

From the half of the week I was talking with Manolis and Giorgos Z. for a weekend tour with our motorcycles. The destination until the last time had not been determined precisely, but we had some interesting destinations in our minds.

Finally after some phone calls we take the decision for our tour destination on Friday. We would visit Messinia, the place where Manolis lives, he had in his mind a route and it was the right time to share this touring experience with some friends.
Meeting place was set outside the village of Paradisia near Megalopoli at 11 pm on Saturday.

Company with Giorgos Z. who I had visited on Friday evening, we left Nafplio at 10.30 pm. We follow the route from Nafplio to Megalopoli through route of Kolosourti. The weather was but with rain, strong wind and enough cold. Something which had begun to worry us about for the rest of our tour...
At 12 pm we met Manolis at the point where we had our appointment, the weather was enough better and it seemed that we would continue dry the rest of our tour... something which finally did not apply to everyone.

From Paradisia we moved to Leontari, where we made our first stop, Leontari is a beautiful traditional village with a beautiful church in the central square.

Next destination was the fortress of Oria. The information was for a fortress built on a steep point, 8 km west of Tourkoleka. The fortress has a long history, in this castle had been given a big number of battles from the Byzantine period and during the Turkish occupation. Access to the fortress would be via the road that crosses the village Tourkoleka, a part of the route close to 4 km is dirt.We arrived at the point where the plates showing a path to the castle, we parked our motorcycles and started walking the path. We had bad luck because the condition of the path was very bud and after the first meters there were not plates. So after about half an hour walking, we went back to our motorcycles without had visiting the fortress.

Quite disappointed, but on good mood we moved to the next destination, which was Paleomonastiro monastery of Kamara, according to the history in this place (close to river Karniona) had built a large monastery that was destroyed during the Turkish occupation. Near the temple is the tap with the crystal-clear water and a stone bridge built in 1922 by craftsmen (from the village Akovos) to facilitate the crossing of the river.We sat in the courtyard of the monastery to smoke a cigarette in the beautiful natural surroundings and to take some pictures with photo camera.

We continue with next destination the village “Kato Giannei” with the traditional mill of Morogianni. Morogiannis is the name o mill owner. In reality there are two mills and a water-powered olive press. The Morogianni’s watermill is stone built, it is a traditional watermill from the early 19th century, which operated until 1973 by the Morogianni family. We were lucky enough to meet the mill’s owner Mr. Morogianni, who despite his advanced age he had the inclination to put into operation the mill in order to show us the  miller techniques.

From the mill we walked backwards the river, in order to reach the source of the river. When we got there, we show really beautiful scenery but we had and an unexpected, Manolis tripped and fell in the water. Finally we did not stay all dry and no one could blame the weather for this... We make some jokes about the unfortunate incident and we moved to our final destination. This was the village Neochori, although the motivation to visit the village was mainly a traditional restaurant we have to say that the route from the “Kato Giannei” to  Neochori was exciting in an autumnal landscape with fallen tree in such extent that in some points leaves were completely cover the road.

After a good lunch we took the road back to Manolis house. Our tour finished but our party had just started with drink and discussion.