The Bourtzi of Methoni

A virtual visit to the Bourtzi of Methoni.

INTRODUCTION

In my last post I gave you a photographic tour of the main castle at Methoni, finishing at the gateway to the Bourtzi, a small outpost castle that guarded the sea, which I shall now focus on.

THE WORD BOURTZI

Here are the origins of the word Bourtzi:

Bourzti Info BoardBourtzi - English text

THE BOURTZI OF METHONI IN PICTURES

The Bourtzi of MethoniThe bridge connecting the Bourtzi to the main castleThe main castle from the BourtziBourtziBourtzi IIBourtzi IIIFront of BourtziIsland

Entering the Bourtzi
This passage leads into the Bourtzi. This style of brickwork is a feature of Byzantine architecture.

Looking back towards the main castleBreaking waves IBreaking waves IIIsland IIBridge viewed from the BourtziClose of Bourtzi BridgePictures of BourtziInside of a domeThe centre of the BourtziThe internal structure of the main domePanel of dome supportByzantine brickwork, the BourtziLoose piece of stoneworkColumn baseBridge - close upwall mounted spherical stone

LEAVING METHONI CASTLE

There were a few final photograophs as we headed back to the car preparatory to moving on to Nestor’s palace.

Methoni Castle Info BoardMehtoni Castle PicturesRestoration of Methoni Castle

Sea defences, Methoni castle
Coastal defences for Methoni castle.
Heraldic lion, Methoni
The Lion of St Mark – the emblem of Venice.

Methoni Castle 1: The Main Castle

A photographic of the main part of Methoni Castle, setting the scene for the Bourtzi of Methoni, the subject of the my next post in this series.

INTRODUCTION

Followijng on from my last post which described the journey to Methoni this post covers the main castle, while my next post will deal with the Bourtzi of Methoni. 

A VENETIAN MASTERPIECE

Methoni castle was first built by the Venetians in the 13th century, and then massively expanded when the retook possession of it from the Turks in the late 17th century. Here is some official information:

Restoration of Methoni CastleMehtoni Castle PicturesMethoni Castle Info BoardWalls of Methoni information board

Here is the approach to the Castle:

Sea view at Methoni
Looking towards the sea as one approaches the castle
The approach to the castle
The bridge across the moat
The gateway to the castle
The gateway to the castle
Me at the gateway to Methoni Castle
Those who have read my preliminary post to this series have already seen this picture once, and it is of the course the origin of my current profile picture.

Cannon

Here are some pictures from inside the castle…

Inside the castleWalls from the insideWall sectionPiazza d'armi information boardColumnColumn IITurkish buildingsrear gatePyramidChapelTurkish buildings IITurkish buildings IIIstone blocksSea viewSmall yachtRood screendecorated chair

Hammam roofs
This castle was first built in the 13th century during the first expansion of Venetian power, then the Turks took over until 1685, when the Venetians retook the place and held it for thirty years, before the Turks took it back again and held it until Greece gained its independence in 1821. This building is very obviously an old Hammam (a Turkish bath house)

TowerTowersSea Gaterestored archesInfo boardClose up of castle map

Braille info board
A braille information board.

Sea view IISea view IIISea view IVStone shieldWalls and seaLooking out at the seaSea View VWall section IIWell

Caper plant
A caper plant growing in the castle grounds.

Towards the BourtziBridge to the Bourtzi

Gateway to the Bourtzi
The entrance to the Bourtzi of Methoni, the subject of the next post in this series.

Welcome to Sunday Social

Why not join in the fun at Rachel’s Sunday Social…

Rachel McKee~Illuminated Literation

Sunday Social is a place to mingle, collaborate, and share our blogs. Sunday Social is one more place where you can share a post that maybe didn’t get as much feedback as you were hoping for. Sunday Social is a place to meet new bloggers.

This weekly post is a “wild card” of sorts. There aren’t many rules but I do ask that you follow a few guidelines.

  • Give honest, constructive feedback, but always be courteous.
  • If someone takes the time to comment on your post, please return the favor and check out their endeavors too.

How do you participate?

It’s very easy.

  • Copy and paste the link to your blog or a specific blog post in the comment section below.
  • Give us a little blurb about your blog, the feedback you are looking for, or if you are just hoping to meet some new blogger buddies.

Voila! That’s it.

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Greece: The Journey to Methoni

Setting the scene for the accounts of Methoni and Nestor’s palace.

INTRODUCTION

On the Tuesday of my Greek holiday (Tuesday 15th May) we visited first the Venetian castle at Methoni and then Nestor’s palace at Pylos. This post sets the scene for the rest of that day by describing things up to the point at which we were poised to visit the castle.

UNDER WAY

We had intended to get underway by nine o’clock and we did. Although being in the back of a hatchback with small rear windows is somewhat limiting of what one can photograph I got a few shots as we approached our main destination.

sea view through the car windowView across the bayMarina IMarina IIMarina IIIMarina IV

Aqueduct through car window I
This is a Turkish built medieval aqueduct, and I got three shots of it from the car, before we stopped because there was an information board about it.

Aqueduct through car window IIAqueduct through car window III

THE AQUEDUCT CLOSE UP

I took full advantage of our brief stop…

Aqueduct information board
The Information board.

Aqueduct segmentThrough an archSegment including towercacticacti II

THE FINAL APPROACH TO METHONI

We passed a scene that featured both good and bad…

The best and worst of Greece

The wind turbines on the hill are a positive sign, but the derelict shell of a building at the bottom is unfortunate to say the least. After parking in Methoni we passed the Venetial Well en route to a cafe…

Venetian well storyboardThe Venetian well at Methoni

At the cafe we were served water and decided to sample their chocolate crepes, which proved to be ill-advised. These were served in absurd quantities, and the principal covering was nutella. I realised after eating one of the three crepes I was served that I needed to scrape away the nutella before continuing with the others. Half way through the second I gave up, realising that trouble was in store if I continued eating the stuff. This decision came too late to entirely save me from adverse consequences, but at least meant that I only became a little nauseous rather than ever actually feeling or being sick. 

Once we were all finished it was time to visit the castle, which will form the subject of my next post.

Greece: Day 1-2 – Getting to Tseria

The beginning of full coverage of my holiday, starting atv the beginning with the journey to Tseria and the rest of that day.

INTRODUCTION

Yes folks, after yesterday’s little offering I am now able to start the story of my Greek holiday in earnest, and my usual logical fashion I am beginning at the beginning.

THE JOURNEY TO TSERIA

The flight to Kalamata (nearest airport to my parent’s house in Tseria) takes off at 5:40AM (the return flight leaves Kalamata at 12:00 Greek time, enabling the same crew to do both flights), which means that for a public transport user who lives in Norfolk the only way to get to the airport is to travel down the night before. I did this, arriving at Gatwick as planned just after 1AM, and making my way via the automatic monorail to the North terminal, where I waited landside until the EasyJet check in desks opened just after 3AM. An uneventful passage through security and I was safely airside and had about 90 minutes to wait for gate information to appear on the screen. I had had a beer landside, and now airside I had a bagel and a coffee while waiting. 

There were equally few dramas boarding the plane. I had an aisle seat, which meant no chance of seeing anything through the windows (they are too small to be of use unless you are in a window seat) and also that I had to get up more often than would have been the case had I been in a window seat.

I had had the forethought to equip myself with plenty of reading matter. We landed at Kalamata fractionally ahead of schedule, a gain that was more than lost to slow baggage handling at that end. My parents collected me in their hire car, a nice sensible Skoda Citigo, very economical on the fuel, and suitably robust for handling rural Greek roads (which are much better than they were when I visited Greece in the early 1980s, but still a fair way from being describable as ‘good’). 

Inspite of a sleepless night I managed to get through the day without napping and went to bed at a sensible time, following a meal at the new taverna that has opened in the village. It was good of its kind and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

PHOTOGRAPHS

Network MapLondon Underground MapBathroom mosaic, Tseriatelephone teapot, TseriaJazz poster, TseriaKardamili Jazz Festival ads, TseriaPoster

Church just below my parents house
This is the first of a number of pictures taken from the balcony outside my parent’s house.

View towards the seaLeptiniView down the mountainsOlive posterbird mosaic photographsMosaic over the stairs

New tower, Tseria
This tower is newly built since I was last in Tseria.

Coloured posterModel TortoiseThe view of Kardamili

Kardamili from above
A distant view of Kardamili and the mouth of the Viros Gorge.
artwork, local church I
There is a lot of fascinating artwork set into the walls of the church just below my parent’s house in Tseria and I captured some of it.

artwork, local church IIartwork, local church IIIartwork, local church IV

Welcome to Sunday Social

Why not join in with Rachel’s Sunday Social….

Rachel McKee~Illuminated Literation

Sunday Social is a place to mingle, collaborate, and share our blogs. Sunday Social is one more place where you can share a post that maybe didn’t get as much feedback as you were hoping for. Sunday Social is a place to meet new bloggers.

This weekly post is a “wild card” of sorts. There aren’t many rules but I do ask that you follow a few guidelines.

  • Give honest, constructive feedback, but always be courteous.
  • If someone takes the time to comment on your post, please return the favor and check out their endeavors too.

How do you participate?

It’s very easy.

  • Copy and paste the link to your blog or a specific blog post in the comment section below.
  • Give us a little blurb about your blog, the feedback you are looking for, or if you are just hoping to meet some new blogger buddies.

Voila! That’s it.

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Greece – an Aperitif

Introducing what will be a series about my holiday in Greece.

INTRODUCTION

I am just back from a week in Greece, mainly in places without internet connections. I have huge numbers of photos to edit, so to keep things going for the moment I am presenting a selection from across the week, plus the return flight, on which I had a window seat.

THE PHOTOGRAPHS

Lizard I
The first few pictures here are from in and arouns Tseria, where I was staying.

Lizard IICleopatraLizard IIIButterflyButterfly IIHeraldic Double EagleButterfly - folded wingsMule trackButterfly on spiky plant

Map
This map is part of the decor of the shop from which my new Sandals came.

Fish in rockpoolred beetleOrange Butterfly

Me at the gateway to Methoni Castle
My new profile pic – me at the gateway to Methoni Castle.

View at Methoni Castle

The Bourtzi of Methoni
The Bourtzi of Methoni.
The bridge connecting the Bourtzi to the main castle
The bridge linking the main castle and the Bourtzi
The main castle from the Bourtzi
The main castle from the Bourtzi
Heraldic lion, Methoni
A heraldic lion set into the stonework of the outer wall of the castle

Giant green beetle

The Bath of Nestor
The bath of Nestor, Pylos

Yellow butterflyHopping insectNatural Window

House Martin nests
House Martin nests, Agios Nikolaos
Adult House Martin visits one of the nests
An adult House Martin visits one of the nests
Distant view of Karytaina Castle
Karytaina Castle
Waterfall, open-air museum Dimitsana
The next three shots show water power – all taken at the open-air museum of water-power, Dimitsana

Waterfall, DimitsanaWater power, Dimitsana

Karytaina Castle from below I
Two shots of Karytaina Castle from below

Karytaina Castle from below II

Lousios bridges I
The first of four shots of the bridges over the Lousios.

Lousious bridges II

Alfios
The Alfios, the other river guarded by Karytaina

Lousios bridges IIIruins at KarytainaLousios bridges IV

Small castle between Tseria and Kalamata
A tower between Tseria and Kalamata, the last picture taken from ground level to feature in this post.
Major bridge from 37,000 feet up
Even with 37,000 feet of vertical distance between me and it this bridge looked impressive.

Seaside town from the airOverhead shot of a near sea townCoastal land from the airCoastal developmentCoastal Town

Bridge links two landmasses
Another fine bridge (two shots)

bridge closer-upAerial View

Sharing our airspace
This aeroplane was flying at a lesser altitude than the Airbus A320 that I was aboard
Stretch of coastline
A stretch of French coastline.
White cliffs
The approach to Britain – I believe we flew directly over Brighton, if the combination of a large pier and a major cricket ground (Sussex CCC’s HQ if I am correct) is anything to go on.