Cruise Port Atlas | Nafplio, Greece Day Trips | Attractions

Nafplio, Greece Day Trips | Attractions

Alternate Spellings: Navplio, Navplion, Nafplion, Nauplio, Nauplion

With limited time in port, planning is the best way to make the most of your time. Should you strike out on your own? Should you hire a local guide? Or should you book a shore excursion offered by the cruise line or an international tour company? Below we have listed the attractions and activities that many other cruisers have enjoyed. This information should help you plan.

The advantage to cruise line tours is that they are timed for your visit and give you flexibility to change your mind after your trip begins. The advantage of using a large international firm is that tours are often less expensive than cruise sponsored tours. The advantage to using a local tour company or guide is that prices can be significantly lower or you may be able to get a customized trip just to see the attractions that interest you most.

Cruise lines that visit Nafplio: Azamara Club Cruises, Oceania, SeaDream Yacht Club, Silversea, Holland America

Key Attractions: Palamidi Fortress, Bourtzi Fort, Constitution Square, Archaeological Museum, Folk Art Museum, Tolo Psili Ammos Beach, Karathona Beach, Mycenae, Tiryns, Epidaurus, Argos, Nemea, Ancient Corinth, Corinth Canal

Navplio Attractions

Port to Constitution Square and Archaeological Museum - 0.5 KM, 1 minute, 6 minute walk
Port to Folk Art Museum - 3 minute walk
Port to Palamidi Fortress - 4 KM, 9 minutes
Link to Full-Page Google Map

The town of Navplion is a year-round tourist destination, with Northern Europeans arriving in the summer and Athenians visiting on weekends in the winter. The walk-able town offers tavernas, bars, restaurants and shopping on its lovely and well cared for streets and alleys. The historic center was the location of several important historical events in the early 19th century, including the assassination of the Ioannis Kapodistrias, the first Greek head of state, on the steps of the Saint Spyridon church. Constitution Square (Plateia Syntagmatos) is a lovely meeting place and the location of the Archaeological Museum. Nearby is the Folk Arts Museum that has an extensive collection of traditional Greek clothing and textiles. The Venetian-built Palamidi Fortress dominated the town on a hill just to the south. The 998 steps to the top make for a great workout.

           

   

Photo of Navplion's Constitution Square by Andreas Trepte

Epidaurus and Nemea

Port to Epidaurus - 29 KM, 35 minutes
Port to Nemea - 39 KM, 43 minutes
Link to Full-Page Google Map

Epidaurus Theater is one of the most impressive of classic Greek creations and was built in the 4th century BCE. It holds up to 15,000 and is used today for performances. No amplification is required because of the phenomenal acoustics of the setting. The designers made sure that the audience had a great view of the landscape behind the stage. The theater was built by the town as a result of their wealth from visitors looking to be healed by Asclepius, son of Apollo and the Greek god of healing. They would sleep in the large hall where their dreams would reveal how their illness should be treated. The site also contains the remains of less well-preserved ruins of the Asclepion and other buildings and a museum for the artifacts found in the area. The city of Nemea is from the same period and includes a temple of Zeus and other ruins. It can be visited on the way to Corinth, which also has a site with classic Greek ruins.

        

   

Photo of Epidaurus Amphitheater by Fingalo

Mycenae and Tiryns

Port to Mycenae - 23 KM, 28 minutes
Port to Tiryns - 4.5 KM, 6 minutes
Link to Full-Page Google Map

The ancient city of Mycenae was a center for the Bronze Age Greek culture that was the first in the area with a written language. According to Homer writing in the Iliad, King Agamemnon ruled Mycenae and led the Greek army to Troy to retake Helen who was his brother's wife. Historically, we know that the city was important from about 1600-1100 BCE, dominating the region. The earliest evidence of significant settlement are shaft graves. These graves were built over centuries and generally became richer deposits of wealth over time, attesting to the importance of the hilltop site. The golden Mask of Agamemnon and Cup of Nestor (both to be seen in Athens’ Archaeological Museum) were found in graves here. It is likely that Mycenae was selected as the location of this wealthy city for its defensible position and was used primarily by kings and others of the ruling class. Besides the tombs, there is a building known as the citadel and an entry known as the Lions Gate. The small excavation site at Tiryns also offers Mycenaean ruins, a hilltop walled fortress and town during the late Mycenaean period.

        

   

Photo of Lions Gate by Andreas Trepte

Navplio area beaches

Port to Karathona Beach - 5 KM, 12 minutes
Port to Tolo Psili Ammos Beach - 11 KM, 15 minutes
Link to Full-Page Google Map

The area is not renowned for beaches, but there are two easy- to-reach beach areas nearby. In the resort town of Tolo is the beach known as Tolo Psili Ammos, which offers a wide range of water sports in a scenic setting. Just over the hill where Palamidi Fortress sits is the Karathona beach area, which is 4 kilometers long and has a few cafes and water sports facilities.

     

   

Photo of Tolo Psili Ammos Beach by Thomas Wydra

Corinth and the Canal

Port to Ancient Corinth - 56, 53 minutes
Port to Corinth Canal - 65, 58 minutes
Link to Full-Page Google Map

The Isthmus of Corinth was the site of the ancient and important city of Corinth, the gateway to the Peloponnesian Peninsula. Since ancient times, the Greeks dreamed of cutting through this narrow strip of land to connect the Aegean Sea with the Gulf of Corinth and the Adriatic. This was the Panama dream of its era, but it did not get built until 1881-1893. Because it is so narrow, it has little importance economically. The canal was cut through more than 325 ft. of stone, of which 25 ft. is below water; it is 4 miles long. It is used primarily by tourist vessels. Also nearby is the ancient ruin of the city of Corinth, one of the classic era's political powers due to its location on the isthmus. A modern town known as Ancient Corinth sits on top of this important historic center, so excavations are limited but you are still able to see the Temple of Apollo and several other ruins. It is a great place to see the continuing excavations by archaeologists.

        

   

Photo of Corinth Canal by SreeBot

Interests Key:

Art Architecture Beach Children Wild Animals Local Cuisine Flora Gardens-Parks Geology

Diving UNESCO Views Wine Dance Music Shopping History Hiking

Walking & Wheelchair Accessibility:

No Walking Easy Walking Normal Walking Difficult Walking Accessible Limited Not Accessible