Kalavryta Group Tour
Excursion to Kalavryta
Diakofto Rack Railway in the Gorge: an amazing journey
A historic 750 mm gauge railway line in Greece between the towns of Diakofto and Kalavryta in Achaia in the Peloponnese.
The Vouraikos River Gorge is one of the ten most beautiful gorges in Europe, and the rack railway, which began operating in 1896, is one of the six most famous in the world, its gauge is only 0.75 m. The rack railway is unique in its kind. There are four gear sections on the railway. The slope is such that a conventional train cannot pull the wagons. These attractions have earned worldwide fame. With great respect for nature, and at the same time, in complete harmony with it, the rack railway crosses the Vouraikos gorge.
From the town of Diakofto to Kalavryta you will enjoy the wild beauty of the gorge, you will pass by the river and you will be able to see amazing places like “Court”, “Doors”, “Waterfalls” and “Soaring Zachlors”. You can also walk along the railroad tracks. It is worth sitting in small taverns in the picturesque place of Kato Zachlory.
Monuments of religion and history
The impressive eight-storey complex of the monastery Megalo Spileo (Great Cave) is built on sheer cliffs “hanging in the air”. Approaching this place, we are already experiencing slight dizziness from that wild delight that you feel while in the mountains at a decent height of 940 meters above sea level. And when you see that a monastery has nestled in a sheer wall of a rock, you are speechless. As in Meteora, here you mentally wonder what brought people here? According to legend, it was erected in the second half of the 4th century. Pilgrims come here to look at the relief icon of the Mother of God holding the baby (Cave), which is made mainly of wax and resin. It is believed that the monastery of Agia Lavra was founded in 961 on the very spot where the so-called Old Monastery is now located. In his museum, you will see the banner of the Greek National Liberation Revolution. The legend says that the monastery was associated with Archbishop Paleon Patron Germanos and that the revolution of 1821 began here.
Slalom skiing with sea view
The second-largest ski resort in Greece is located just 14 kilometers from Kalavryta and is famous for the view of the sea when descending from the mountain! The resort is considered one of the best in Greece. It has 12 slopes of all difficulty levels, a special park for snowboarding, and it is also possible to rent snowmobiles. After skiing, tourists are offered a large selection of cafes and restaurants where you can enjoy delicious national dishes.
The Magic of Silence and Water: The Cave of the Lakes
The caves simply “love” the Peloponnese! The huge, three-story lake cave of the Peloponnese is famous for its amazing stalactites, stalagmites, and a whole complex of amazingly beautiful lakes, which are surprisingly located inside. You will get unforgettable impressions in the local caves. Beautifully shaped stalactites and stalagmites sparkle all around you as you cross the “hall of bats” and approach the cave’s first lake. There are 12 more lakes in the cave, located in steps on three levels of this magical world. These lakes form the bed of an underground river. Various finds and fossilized bones, among which there are bones of a hippopotamus, prove the existence of life here already in the 6th millennium BC. eh! To date, about 2 kilometers of the cave have been studied, but, apparently, this is not all of its internal space, not all of its length.
Several legends have survived to this day regarding this place filled with mysteries. According to one version, the daughters of King Tiryns hid in this cave when they were seized with madness. This illness was for them a punishment for boasting: the sisters claimed that the palace in which they lived was more beautiful and luxurious than the temple of Hera.
Historical and hospitable city in the arms of the mountains of Helmos
Tastefully built traditional small hotels with fireplaces; restaurants, cafes, and taverns; a central, stone-paved boulevard with shops, as well as a picturesque rack railway station building. Surprisingly, in this pacifying region surrounded by lush green forests, the fierce struggle of Greece for independence from Turkey began. The most beautiful square of Kalavryta is Freedom Square or Helmu Square, above which rises a beautiful historic hotel building. The attraction of the city is the Paleologina mansion, a three-story stone building with loopholes above the entrance.
In the museum dedicated to the memory of the burnt civilians, you will learn about the tragic executions and destruction in Kalavryta by the German invaders in 1943. Kalavryta is not just a cozy old town filled with the history of bygone days, but also a major tourist center. In its vicinity, there is a popular ski resort and several unique attractions. Needless to say, even if the road to the city passes through the most beautiful places: with serpentines, gorges, mountain rivers.