Besides, this is actually the reason why the town shed its old, Slavic name Tsimova and named after Ares, the Ancient Greek god of war, at the beginning of the 20th century. Roaming its streets today, that old military virtue is reflected in the various monuments commemorating different phases, events, and important figures of the decade-long war. A host of churches also contributes to the austere atmosphere of the town; many of them belonged to the most prominent family of the area, the Mavromichalis family, members of which played an important role in the war and well after the new Greek state was founded in 1831.
Today, modern visitors should definitely visit Areopoli, even if not at all interested in its past. The main reason for this are the picturesque towers fort-like houses that are typical of the wider area of Mani emerging at every corner, still standing tall and beautiful into the new era of tourist development, waiting to be explored and lived in. Saturdays at the main square are also an event worth attending, as local producers set up shop and sell fresh produce of the best possible quality from their makeshift stalls. After browsing and shopping to your heart's content, why not lie back and enjoy a Peloponnese-style coffee or ouzo break at one of the numerous cafes and tavernas around the square, or even forget about time with a good read at the public library.
Swimming is always a good idea all around Mani, and Areopoli is not an exception. Karavostasi and Limeni are the closest options, where clear water and small pebbles promise a refreshing dip. For those who can be bothered to take a short ride before dipping, Kotronas and Nisaki, strewn with century-old olive trees and pebbles throughout, make for a classic Mediterranean setting to cure all sorrows.
Of course, be advised that you will indeed want to return to Areopoli and its idyllic port, Limeni, by nightfall. Have a light traditional supper and prepare yourselves for an ideal night out, as there is no shortage of bars and clubs in the area make the most of your Mediterranean escape by exploring every aspect of local life.