A tiny paradise of Greece where you can a more quiet type of tourism, complete with unparalleled natural beauty.
Elafonisos is a tiny paradise of Greece, where you can a more quiet type of tourism, complete with unparalleled natural beauty. This small island in Laconia has some of the most stunning beaches in the country, with golden sand and turquoise waters that will make you feel like you are in a tropical destination. But Elafonisos is not only about sunbathing and swimming. It also offers a rich natural and cultural heritage that you can explore and appreciate.
One of the highlights of Elafonisos is the sunken ancient city of Pavlopetri, which dates back to 2800 BC and is one of the oldest submerged settlements in the world. You can admire the remains of this fascinating civilization by snorkeling or diving in the clear water between Pounta beach and Pavlopetri skerry. You will see houses, streets, tombs and pottery that reveal the life and culture of the ancient inhabitants.
Another attraction of Elafonisos is the unique sand dunes that are home to large-fruited junipers, a rare species of trees that are protected by the Natura 2000 network. You can find these sand dunes in Simos beach, one of the most popular and beautiful beaches on the island. Simos beach consists of two parts, Megali Paralia (Big Beach) and Mikros Simos (Small Simos), which are connected by a narrow strip of sand. The beach has a camping site, a beach bar and a taverna, but it also has plenty of space for those who seek privacy and tranquility.
If you want to experience the local traditions and culture of Elafonisos, you should visit the main village and capital of the island, also called Elafonisos. This picturesque village has white houses with colorful gardens, narrow alleys and a lovely port with fishing boats and taverns. Here you can taste some of the delicious seafood dishes that are typical of the island, such as lobster pasta, grilled octopus and fried calamari. Do visit the small church of Agios Spiridonas, which stands on a rock near the port and is the patron saint of the island.
Elafonisos is a perfect destination for ecotourism lovers who want to enjoy nature, history and culture in a serene and beautiful environment, far away from mass tourism. The island with its alternative vibe has many options for outdoor activities, such as hiking, cycling, kayaking and sailing. You can also join some of the eco-friendly tours that are organized by local agencies and learn more about the biodiversity and sustainability of Elafonisos. Whether you’re looking for an eco adventure or relaxation, Elafonisos will not disappoint.