Kampos

In a purely rural area, 22 km away from Kalamata there is one of the most picturesque villages of Mani, Kampos of Avia. In the heart of the vast groves of Messinian land, Kampos succeeded ancient Gerinia (or Gerina) and earlier Mycenaean Enopi, one of the region of Agamemnon according to Homer. According to Pausanias, Nestor, king of Pylos resorted there, when the city was occupied by Hercules, bringing and burying the bones of Machaon, son of Asclepius, who was killed in the Trojan War.

In Garmpelia of Kampos, within the single archaeological site, archeologists have found in good condition the royal Mycenaean vaulted “tomb of Machaon”, dated around 1250 BC just as well as another building that is either another tomb or ancient “Trikkaion Asklepieion” of Gerinia. In the same area, the visitor will see the Castle of Zarnata as well as a building of special historical value, the ruined tower of Koumoundouros where Turks besieged and exterminated the Bey of Mani, Captain Koumoundouros, where his progeny, Alexandros Koumoundouros, was born and became Prime Minister of Greece.

Seven more buildings in Kampos, including the Church of Zoodochou Pigi with carved temple and frescoes and the Byzantine church of Saint Theodoros  with the great frescoes are classified as historical monuments.

It is also worth visiting the twin cross-shaped church of St. John the Baptist (13th century).

On 4 December, in celebration of the patron saint of Kampos, Sainte Varvara, local associations present traditional dances and offer local dishes.

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