Kourouta is a beautiful sandy beach nestled between Arkoudi and Katakolo. It has been awarded the prestigious Blue Flag every year for its remarkably clear water. Kourouta is a popular destination, offering a wide range of hotels, guesthouses, and campsites to ensure a relaxing and enjoyable vacation. Along the beach, you’ll find an abundance of restaurants, taverns, cafes, bars, and clubs to satisfy your culinary and entertainment desires. If you’re a fan of surfing and water sports, this beach is ideal for you.
The beach is conveniently located just 2 kilometers away from the town of Amaliada, which also provides excellent accommodation options. Nearby, you’ll discover Palouki, a charming settlement boasting a picturesque dock, fishing boats, and delightful fish taverns!
The settlement of Kourouta has a fascinating history that began in the late 19th century after the Greek War of Independence. During this period, agriculture and trade thrived, with raisins being a particularly popular product. The exportation of local goods to Europe played a significant role in the city’s development. Notably, Kourouta became known for its large raisin factory, which was constructed by the sea in 1911.
Although the exportation through Illia’s harbors gradually declined, the area continued to prosper by capitalizing on its natural beauty. The long beach with its crystal-clear water and breathtaking sunsets attracts an increasing number of travelers each year. As a result, numerous tourist investments have been made, creating a cosmopolitan atmosphere in the region.
Even more beach!
If you find that Kourouta beach and the nearby Palouki beach aren’t enough, there are other fantastic options to explore:
- Marathia beach seamlessly extends from Kourouta beach, offering a mesmerizing seaside forest adorned with pine trees.
- Roviata beach and Savalia beach are also within close proximity to Kourouta.
- Thines Beach, located approximately 4 kilometers away near the town of Vartholomio, is a lengthy sandy beach and one of the area’s most popular destinations.
- To the north of Kourouta, you’ll find the village of Arkoudi, boasting a beautiful sandy beach. To the south, don’t miss the opportunity to visit the beaches of Katakolo.
When it comes to activities, water-based adventures are the highlight of Kourouta beach. The beach offers a wide range of water sports, making it a favorite among surfers. Additionally, there’s an organized facility with stables where you can enjoy horseback riding along the stunning beach. If you’re a biking enthusiast, you can also relish in scenic bike rides next to Kourouta beach. For more experienced bikers, a beautiful 66-kilometer route awaits, taking you through the charming inland areas of Kourouta-Amaliada, Gastouni, Vartholomio, Kastro, and back to Kourouta. Depending on your mood and physical condition, you can adjust the length of your route accordingly.
Places to visit
Kourouta serves as an exceptional starting point for exploring remarkable Byzantine monuments, significant archaeological sites, and popular summer destinations. Here are some must-visit places in the area:
- The Monastery of Fragavillas, located approximately 6.5 kilometers from Kourouta, is one of the most important monasteries in Illia. It dates back to the Middle Byzantine period and offers a glimpse into the region’s rich history.
- Panagia Katholiki Church, an impressive Byzantine monument from the 12th century, is situated about 14 kilometers away from Kourouta and is well worth a visit.
- Ancient Ilida, one of the most important ancient cities in the Peloponnese, is only 24 kilometers from Kourouta. As the former capital of Illia and the host of the ancient Olympic Games, this site holds immense historical significance. Don’t miss the opportunity to explore the ancient theater, which now hosts notable theatrical festivals.
- Near the village of Kentro, close to Ancient Ilida, you’ll find the magnificent Pinios Dam. This dam, one of the largest in Europe, was completed in 1968. According to Greek mythology, Hercules diverted the flow of the Pinios and Alfios Rivers to clean the Augean Stables, a remarkable feat accomplished during his fifth labor.
- Heading north from Kourouta, you’ll encounter exceptional places to visit, featuring beautiful beaches and historical monuments. Arkoudi and Loutra Killinis offer pristine, crystal-clear waters for a memorable summer vacation. While in the village of Ligia, near Arkoudi, consider visiting the Agia Eleousa Monastery, a marvel of Byzantine architecture dating back to the 9th century.
- Further afield, you can explore Kyllini and the awe-inspiring Chlemoutsi Castle, which stands as a testament to the area’s rich history. Additionally, the Panagia Vlacherna Monastery, believed to have been built in the 13th century, offers a glimpse into the region’s cultural heritage.
- Ancient Olympia, the most important archaeological site in Illia County, is approximately 38 kilometers away from Kourouta. This is the legendary birthplace of the Ancient Olympic Games. Explore the sacred grounds where athletes once competed and marvel at the incredible exhibits housed in the nearby Archaeological Museum. Among its treasures, you’ll find the renowned statue of Hermes by Praxiteles, a true masterpiece.
By visiting Kourouta and its surroundings, you’ll embark on an unforgettable journey through history, nature, and stunning beaches. Enjoy your explorations and make lasting memories in this captivating part of Greece.