Welcome to Kalamata
Built on the site of ancient Pharai, Kalamata takes its modern name from a miracle-working icon of the Virgin Mary known as kalo mata (good eye). It was discovered in the stables of the Ottoman aga (governor), who converted to Christianity as a result of the miracles it was believed to have performed. The icon now resides inside the city’s oversized cathedral, the Church of Ypapantis.
Below the kastro (fort) is the small but attractive old town, which was almost totally destroyed by the Turks during the War of Independence, rebuilt by French engineers in the 1830s, then levelled again by an earthquake in 1986.