Areopoli is the capital of Lakoniki Mani and formerly known as Tzimova. Its current name took it during the reign od King Otto after the Greek Revolution of 1821 by the ancient Greek god of war, Ares (Mars). This name was given to the city in order to honor the military skill and offer of Mani people in the liberation of Greece in which the inhabitants of Mani, men and women contributed the most.
The exact day that the city was built is not known only a few legends exists about the city’s creation. It is certain that Areopoli retained its independece during the Ottoman domination and is the motherland of the great Mavromichalis family. From there, the year 1821 revolution began as Mani inhabitants were the first to raise the war banners on March 17, 1821. The revolutionary flag of Areopoli that rose on that day still exists today at the National Historical Museum in Athens.
Today, Areopoli is a beautiful preserved settlement that is an excellent destination for every traveller who wants to admire the beauty of Mani. It is built at the foot of Mount Agios Elias at the altitude of 250 meters and is definitely one of the most beautiful settlements in Greece. The wild and yet beautiful landscape of Areopoli is exactly what you would expect from the capital of heroic Mani. A walk in Areopoli can take you to ancient times, giving you the opportunity to admire wonderful attractions that have been unchanged for centuries and show up the history of the place.
In Areopoli you will find many traditional churches such as the church of Taxiarchis, which is the cathedral of Areopoli. In this temple, the inhabitants of Mani were congregated before commencing the fight for liberation on 17th of March and they sworn ”Victory or Death”. In the temple you will be impressed by the exceptional art sculptured altarpiece and its multi-storey bell tower which is built in 1836 and it is a trademark for the area.
Areopoli’s growth of tourism has been rapid in recent years. Nevertheless, the historic town has managed to keep its traditional character unaltered. The stone alleys and the old stone houses contribute to the beautiful traditional image that every traveler can enjoy while strolling around the city. The hospitable character of Mani people which has remained stable and unchanged for centuries, plays a major role in preserving the traditional greek atmosphere. Any traveler who will have the chance to stay in Areopoli will enjoy the hospitality of the residents and the experience will be unforgettable.
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