Arcadian Gate


It’s well worth heading 800m along the road from Mavromati village, past the museum to the celebrated Arcadian Gate. This unusual stone portal with a circular courtyard between the double gates and an immense, half-collapsed gatepost guarded the ancient route to Megalopoli – now a modern road – which runs through the gate. Flanking the gate is the finest surviving section of the mighty defensive wall built by Epaminondas. Through the gate are ornate columned tombs of notables: burials were not permitted within the city.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Messinia attractions

1. Museum of Ancient Messini

0.42 MILES

The compact museum, by the turn-off for Ancient Messini, houses some wonderful statuary from the site – including a copy of one of the best-known statues…

2. Ancient Messini


The remains of this vast ancient city are as extensive as those of Olympia and Epidavros, yet Ancient Messini receives only a fraction of their visitors…

3. Chora Archaeological Museum

14.06 MILES

This old-style museum houses finds from the palace site and other Mycenaean weaponry, jewellery and pottery from tombs around Messinia. The prize pieces…

4. History & Folklore Museum of Kalamata

14.8 MILES

This quaint eggshell-blue building holds an exquisite collection of donated local artefacts – from tools and looms to household items and clothes – that…

5. Archaeological Museum of Messenia

14.8 MILES

This partially interactive, child-friendly museum focuses on treasures found in four regions – Kalamata, Pylia, Messini and Trifylia. Exhibits include…

6. Kastro

14.85 MILES

Looming over the town is the 13th-century kastro (fort). Remarkably, it survived the powerful 1986 earthquake that levelled the city. The entry gate is…

7. Church of Ypapantis

14.88 MILES

Kalamata's massive 19th-century cathedral is home to the icon after which the town takes its modern name. Pilgrims visit for its miracle-working icon of…

8. Military Museum

14.92 MILES

One for war buffs, this museum's displays depict Greek military history from the Turkish occupation to the Greek Resistance to Nazi occupation and 21st…