Nestled at the Prophet Elias Mountain base, Areopolis is a charming village that sits 250 meters above sea level. It's 72 kilometres from Sparta and is known for its well-preserved architecture and traditional feel. The village's most enchanting natural harbour, Limeni, offers breathtaking views to all visitors. Areopolis, also known as "Aeropoli," has great historical significance as it served as the ancestral home of the Mavromichalis family and was a bastion of independence during the Turkish occupation.
During the Turkish occupation, Areopolis was known as Tsimova or Tzimova. The name's origin is uncertain, but it's believed to have come from a Slavic word meaning "devil's city" or "small plain." The village's founding date is unclear, with two accounts attributing it to different people. However, Areopolis played a significant role in the Greek Revolution, with the flag of the revolution first raised here on March 17, 1821. The historic flag is now on display at the National History Museum in Athens.
In 1836, Areopolis was renamed to honour the martial valour of the Mani people. The name was chosen to honour the god of war, Mars, or after the strong winds that blow through the area. Today, Areopolis is a popular tourist destination with many attractions, including stone houses, churches, towers, and cobblestone streets. Visitors can also enjoy local products producers sell in Athanaton Square every Saturday. Accommodation options range from hotels to traditional hostels, and plenty of bars and restaurants exist.
Visiting Areopolis immerses visitors in the village's rich history and charm. Its architectural wonders, cultural heritage, and warm local hospitality make it a must-see destination for anyone visiting Greece.