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This small coastal town in the eastern Peloponnese is one of the most beautiful in the Argolis area, and often considered one of the most romantic places in Greece. The first capital of the new Modern Greek state from 1823 to 1834, it boasts a dramatic Venetian fort that overlooks another fort in the middle of the harbor, a picturesque Old Town with neoclassical mansions, fantastic museums, a lovely central square and lively markets along with outstanding tavernas and cafes, posh boutiques and a wide range of accommodation options.
Nafplio At A Glance
Population of Nafplio 33,500
What to See in Nafplio Visit the imposing Palamidi Fortress, Nafplio Archaeological Museum, Peloponnesian Folklore Foundation Museum & several beautiful beaches
Towns or islands to visit near Nafplio Athens, Corinth, Sporadic Islands, towns & villages in the Peloponnese: Stoupa, Kalamata, Sparti, Pilos
Things to do in Nafplio
You’ll be able to enjoy the most stunning views around, including the city and Argolic Gulf, by climbing some 900 steps to the top of Palamidi Fortress which stands high on an over 700-foot-tall outcrop of rock. It also offers a fascinating slice of history, built by the Venetians in the 17th century. From 1840 on, for nearly 100 years, the fort was used as a prison. Visitors can walk through history across the well-worn stones, between buildings and massive walls, and even sit in the jail cell that once housed freedom fighter Kolokotronis.
Nafplio Archaeological Museum
This museum sits within a beautiful Venetian building, tracing the development of Argolis, all the way from the times of hunter-gatherers to Mycenaean-era civilizations. It has an excellent collection that provides a good overview of the Mycenaean centers in and around the city, including Lerna and Tiryns. One of its most famous pieces dates all the way back to around 1200 BC, a bronze armor worn by a Mycenaean aristocrat.
Peloponnesian Folklore Foundation Museum.
This award-winning museum was established by a philanthropist and includes a collection of items from the city’s 19th– and early-20th centuries. There are household items and a collection of traditional folk costumes with incredibly intricate embroidery as well as silver adornments. The museum gift shop offers some excellent, high quality local crafts for sale.
The sand and the sea
You’ll find a number of beautiful beaches for relaxing and swimming, including Blue Flag accredited Karathona. Hidden between two bays behind the rock of Palamidi, it’s an especially photogenic circular cove with soft sands and crystal-clear waters. Arvanitia beach is the city’s main beach located below Palamidi, a 10-minute walk from anywhere in Nafplio. It’s also Blue Flag awarded and sheltered by winds making it popular for swimming, while also offering loungers and umbrellas for rent along with other facilities.
Our Favorite Restaurants & Bars
This charming taverna located in the heart of Nafplio overlooking Palamidi offers a friendly and welcoming environment with exceptional service and genuine, authentic Greek flavors, including traditional meze. Located on a quiet street away from the tourist crowds, you’ll discover wonderful touches from a time gone by that make it especially atmospheric.
Prices are reasonable and portions are very generous, including dishes like smoked tsiros, spicy mussels, moussaka, eggplant with tomato sauce and zucchini balls. If you’re in need of a pick me up, be sure to try the authentic Italian espresso.
This warm and cozy traditional tavern offers well-cooked hearty Greek fare. It’s the kind of place you’ll want to hang out in, talking until the wee hours of the night with its intimate space and convivial atmosphere. Dine inside or out, with 10 tables inside and several more in the alley outside for alfresco feasting on everything from cheeses and salads to seafood and mouthwatering desserts like walnut pie.
Many of the ingredients are grown by the owners for freshness and quality. There’s also an excellent selection of local wines and unique beers like Zeus, unfiltered and non-pasteurized.
This taverna/restaurant sits at the foot of Palamidi just a short walk from the Old Town, offering creative Greek, traditional and European cuisine. Frequently ranked among the top restaurants in Nafplio, except to be impressed with everything from the impeccable service, food quality and the prices. The menu features tasty appetizers, seafood, meat and pasta dishes, including items like stuffed zucchini and fried cheese, fava with fresh onions, octopus with eggplant, goat meat and smoked mackerel. Try to save room to top it off with the complimentary dessert like a local chocolate pastry.
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