There is a certain quality in the air and in the proud posture of the locals which silently denotes that this is the only place in Greece that remained untamed throughout its long history of conquerors and invaders. The locals say that Mani is “stones and castles”.
Indeed, their houses were traditionally built like castles, clustered together in complexes for safety, the windows serving as embrasures to defend themselves. Many castle-like houses still stand from the 15th century, the times of the Byzantine Empire.
In this era, the area of Mani was part of the Dominion of Mystras and occupied a central role in the kingdom of the Palaiologi Dynasty.
Today, you will find stone arches and Byzantine ruins next to inhabited houses with rose gardens. Together they form an incredible mosaic of past and present ready to be explored.