Paradise getaway in the Peloponnese
A paradise getaway when traveling with children? I can see you raise your eyebrows. Totally with you on that one, but Zoe’s resort in Gialova truly is a perfect accommodation for both parents and kids. Far from the tourist crowd at the west coast of Greece’s Peloponnese, you have breakfast on the beach, read a book at the pool area and stroll around Gialova’s boulevard after dinner.
Breakfast at the beach
We stayed at Zoe Resort for a few days last summer, happy days they were. We stayed in a clean two-bedroom apartment with a kitchen and balcony on the ground floor. Breakfast is served on tables at the beach, in the shade of tropical trees and flower bushes. Eating Greek yoghurt and honey with your bare feet in the sand, blissful. Zoe Resort is right at the beach, which is perfect for children due to a slow slope and soft sand. Guests at the resort have access to the pool which is located close to the apartments. Our children spent two full days in the pool, jumping in and climbing out. I actually read a book, while sunbathing. Yes, I know!
The Messinia region in the south-western part of the Pelopponese is a favorite holiday area for well-off Greek. Even in August the area is not as dusty and dry as most of Greece in mid-summer. Driving from Olympia to the coast, you pass numerous orange tree plantations and more villa’s with lush gardens than you can count. The village of Gialova is a bit touristy, but not in an in-your-face kind of way. There are many local – most of them specialized in fish – restaurants to choose from along its boulevard, most of which have a terrace at the beach side.
To be honest, we did not see much of the surroundings when staying in Gialova. We had been traveling through Greece’s mainland for a few weeks by then, all four us just wanted to relax by the pool for a few days. If you are looking for day trips in Gialova’s surroundings, however, there is actually a lot to choose from. Gialova Lagoon is just around the corner, a magnificent stretch of wetlands and a stunning white sand beach. Although it is a nature conservation area, famous for its range of bird species, you can access the area and swim in the lagoon. We had dinner one evening in Pylos, a small harbour town close to Gialova. The children chose the catch of the day from the menu, tiny fish for our daughter and grilled octopus for our son. It was one of those rare evenings they actually chose something local and healthy, normally they ask for something fried…
If you stay in Gialova for more than the three days we enjoyed at Zoe Resort, be sure to check out some important historical sites in the Peloponnese. You can drive to Olympia, Epidaurus or Sparta, but there is much more to explore.