The capital of Messenia

Kalamata

Kalamata is the capital of Messenia, in the Southwestern Peloponnese, located at 260 km from Athens. Financial center and main port of the Southern Peloponnese – 176 nm from Piraeus – in the north cove of the Messinian Gulf, at the estuary of River Nedon. The great Messinian Gulf has an opening of 23 nm at the entrance and the distance from the entrance to the coast is 18 nm. City with history and tradition, Kalamata is full of vitality and motion, with nice coastal suburbs in the east, and offers to the visitor everything needed for a pleasant stay.

The name Kalamata appeared after 1204, when the Frankish rule began in Greece. In 1209 the city was taken by Geoffrey de Villehardouin. At that time, the medieval castle was built in the position of the Byzantine fortifications. In the 14th century, the city was claimed by several Frankish knights and then, as all the Peloponnese, was under the Turkish rule. In 1659, it was burnt by the Venetian fleet of Francesco Morosini. In 1669, it was conquered by the Venetians, but in 1715 the Turks returned.

From the 18th century it became the commercial and export center of the rich agricultural region of Messenia and spread below the castle, with the square of the Holy Apostles as a center. In the early 19th century, the first settlement around the harbor was created.

It was the first city conquered by the Greeks with the outbreak of the Greek Revolution in March 1821. It was occupied on March 22 – 23, and on March 24 the Messenian Senate, twelve-member local government, was established, which sent a declaration to the European countries explaining the reasons of the revolt and calling for help. It was the first declaration of the Greek nation.

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