Before reaching this superlative gem,we were appraised of the character of the Spartan peoples by our host at the beaut lodge we were staying at. He waxed laconically about how laconic they were: sparring of words,brief and concise in their speech. We were further appraised,that neither humour or any frippery seem to have played much part in Spartan life which,like their unremarkable capital was,well spartan. Boom- Boom!
Lakonia today,at least in its most bleak and defiant region, The Mani, preserves its sense of austere,unyielding apartness.
The village of Kyparissia can only be reached by one of the most breathtaking drives in Greece. Shortly after Harakas Village,you enter a short,narrow, very high,gorge ,only to discover the right hand side of it drops away to reveal the sea below.. the ensuing descent into Kyparissia hits every superlative,with wonderful views to the islands off-shore,a fort above,and chapels built into rock. Check out the old water-mill,like a lot of abandoned olive wheels and presses,is a lovely reminder of how life was everywhere.... bloody hard!.
Vrissi and Paralia are interesting in passing. Boating is the only way in and out,unless you want to sit on a mule all the way back to Athens
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