The grand Mount Taygetos spills into Messinia and offers a hiking haven for trekking enthusiasts. Its highest peak is over 2400 meters (Profitis Ilias) in addition to a number of higher peaks. There are now detailed maps available locally for hikers and climbers, including a good labelling system.
All the routes that once linked the mountain villages to one another have now been restored, with a choice of difficulty levels. One interesting way to discover the mountains is to follow their rivers, delighting in the nature and gorges, as well as the diverse fauna and flora. A hiking cane and good athletic shoes are advisable for the following routes:
At the 18th kilometre of the Kalamata-Sparta main road head to the village of Nedousa. Start your hike just after you pass a bridge to reach Lagou Hani, where there is a wooded path that goes up to Limnatida. The Nedontas River will by below you.
The highest part of the path does not afford us a view of the river or the road, and while it takes a few confusing turns, it eventually leads us back to the river. The walk along here is pleasant, without sharp inclines. Passing by a goat shed, we reach the Velanidia Monastery. This is a good place for a short break. We continue down the faded path, which is traversed by roads, to Nea Agora and the Kalamata coach station. Cars can also be left at the monastery.
Start from Lagou Hani heading away from the town and to the village of Alagonia. Follow the Nedontas river past the church to get to the path, which will take you across stunning scenery with stone bridges and remains of different sites. Climb to Alagonia where you can have a bite. You may return to Kalamata using public transport or by using the same route.
Begin from the path across the spring right before Karveli village. After 15 minutes you will see a stone bridge connecting Pano Karveli and Emialos villages. Continue walking up to Ladas village through Emialos for a break. Walk up past the village houses towards Agios Georgios mountain. After almost 2 hours between road and path, you will reach the Kalamata-Sparta highway. Cross carefully and go around for 20 minutes back to the visitors' centre.
There's a stone path above Selitsa (also known as Verga village), which goes up the west side of the mountain. The path comes across a little church and then to Pano Selitsa (upper Selitsa), which has very few inhabitants. There is a small spring for water and a snack bar, which serve you will for continuing to Profitis Ilias. The path passes near a fir-tree forest with views to the beaches far below, then goes to an area called Portes and up to the Church of Profitis Ilias.