Tseria

Tseria is a mountainous village in the municipality of Western Mani at the foot of Mount Taygetos, 36 km southeast of Kalamata. It consists of the settlements Ano Tseria, Giatreika, Zacharias (formerly Lympochova), Katafygio (formerly Kopsolaimeika), Pedino (formerly Kotsimareika) and Leptini. The settlements of Tseria are built in an impressive circular array for better control of the access to the area and easier escape in case of an attack, at an altitude of 600 – 750m on the slope of Taygetos, offering their panoramic views, thus they are fairly called the “balcony of Mani”.

To the east there is the Gorge of Viros that reaches Kardamyli, protective mountains of 1000 – 1500m rise to the north, while the horizon is open to the west and south.

Although the word Tseria, of Slavic origin, means “settlements”, there is the version that it comes from the many tseria (acorns) or tseratsia (carobs) which abound in the area. The exact date of the establishment of the settlements is not known, although there are reports that they began to be created in the late 17th century by the residents of Androuvista.

The oldest houses in Tseria are dated after 1800 and are truly folk art monuments of stone craftsmen. Indeed, the village was the center of renowned builders and stone hewers while still today we can see the places of mining stone and “tikla” for the roofs. The main products of the region, apart from the extraordinary olive oil, are fine stockbreeding goods (cheese, sheep, goats).