Dimitsana is an enjoyable medieval village which is built amphitheatrically in an altitude of 950m, on the top of two hills where begins the gorge of Lousios. This small area played a very important role during the Greek struggle for independence, against the Turkish rule. A Greek school which was constructed in 1764 was the ‘’incubator’’ for revolutionary ideas and plans leading to the uprising. This school ‘’born’’ two of the key-personalities of the growing revolution; Bishop Germanos of Patra and Gregory V the Patriarch. The last was hanged by the Turks in reprisal for the huge massacre of Tripoli. Bishop Germanos started the revolutionary struggle in the monastery of Agia Lavra.
During the Greek revolution, in the village were hosted many gunpowder factories as well as a branch of the famous ‘’secret Friendly Society’’ where notable Greek personalities were meeting to plan the rebel.
Nowadays, Dimitsana is a calm village but on weekends many visitors come to its springs and mountains for incredible experiences of hiking and walking. Surrounded by a rugged mountain landscape, renowned for its imposing stone and settlement of Dimitsana holds the reigns of tourism in Arcadia. Wonderful villas and stone-built mansions, cafes with a romantic atmosphere, pastries with the local spoon sweets and taverns which serve traditional Greek recipes. All these make an ideal backdrop for unforgettable holidays. It is recommended to visit some interesting sights in the area such as the Lousios Gorge, the local library, the monasteries of Prodromos and Philosopher, and the Museum of Water Power.
Stemnitsa, a majestically perched village on the edge of a gorge, with its beautiful stone-built mansions and the unique alleys, warm and inviting is the best example of the traditional Arcadian settlement. Its central square which is full of life, welcomes every guest in the warm cafes and traditional bakeries while the charming taverns offering unique local flavors and traditional dishes. The restored mansions of stone now will offer you a dream vacation full of images and experiences.
Imposing towers with arched doorways, stone cobbled streets uphill passing under the arches (reminiscent of the Byzantine “passage”) and homes lost among the walnut and cherry trees, headwaters in the shadow plane trees and a lively square full of cafes and restaurants make up one of the most beautiful villages of Arcadia. Stemnitsa is a popular accommodation base in the area (with lovely guesthouses) and classic attitude to walk the streets with the beautiful homes and eating homemade sweets; Stemnitsa is famous for its almond sweets. The school of silversmith, housed in an imposing stone building in the village centre, continues the traditional art; the residents of Stemnitsa were famous for their performance in metallurgy while the bells of some of the most famous churches of Eastern Europe said were made by them. Hence the silversmith workshops available in the village; you can buy handmade jewellery and copies of rare coins. Apart from the main road with its impressive towers (as of Roilos), the district Palamidika, the steep path leading to the Mother of Water (the water source of the village), the slope of Pera Meria full of almond and cypress trees, the Aeraki from where you can enjoy a beautiful sunset over the Ionian and the mountains of the island of Zakynthos, and the monastery of the Life Giving Source with the watermill of Tsagouris are only some proposals for short walks. It deserves to visit the Folk Museum, the path to the village of Elati, and the silversmith school and workshops.
Vytina is the most vivid and well-developed village of Menalon Mountain, 38 km northwest of Tripoli while being one of the most popular bases for skiing or excursions in the prefecture of Arcadia. In the streets of the village, you will see dominated homes of local black marble (many of which were restored and purchased during the 90s from famous Athenians), and around the square you will find good restaurants, cafes-bars and shops selling wood carvings and local products (mainly cheese and homemade pasta). One of the most popular spots for strolling is the romantic street of Love, between the rows of trees. Strategically positioned, Vytina combines easy access to the ski resorts, and to the villages of Menalon, Gortynia, Stemnitsa, Dimitsana and Langadia.
Interesting sights in the area of Dimitsana – Stemnitsa – Vytina
Menalon ski resort
It’s a small and beautiful ski resort, ideal for families and amateurs on an altitude of 1910m. In the area are available a nice chalet for rest and entertainment, snow bars on the ski slopes and an organized shelter.
The area is full of excuses for excursions. Apart from the tour of Lusios, you can visit the Museum of Water Power and the Monasteries of Baptists, Aimialon, Philosopher). During the spring and summer, you can enjoy a nice route to the ancient Gortyna for a walk to the ruins of the archaeological site and a picnic (or a bath for the adventurous) on the banks of Lusios river. You can combine it with a walk in Hellinikon, a rising village near the ancient Gortyna, with traditional colours, beautiful guest houses and taverns.
The gorge of Lousios
The gorge of Lousios is one of the most important and beautiful natural monuments of Peloponnese while has been identified with the development of the alternative tourism in Greece. It is ideal for hiking, rafting and kayaking while a drive round reveals amazing landscapes.
The Museum of Water Power
The prototypical outdoor museum, at the village of Dimitsana, highlights the importance of water power in the traditional society, inviting visitors to a walk in nature while is surrounded by traditional buildings, showing the basic pre-industrial techniques used water as the main energy source for the production of various products.
View Greece Holiday Destinations in a larger map