The Kardamyli Beach Cottage

Kardamyli, Peloponnese, Greece
Book from GBP Book from £251 per night

The Kardamyli Beach Cottage

Kardamyli, Peloponnese, Greece

A chic little beachside bolthole with unrivalled sea views, perfect for Greek summer living (sleeps 2-4)

A chic little beachside bolthole with unrivalled sea views, perfect for Greek summer living (sleeps 2-4)

As a Kardamyli aficionado, I must have walked past this spot 100 times, coveting the prime seafront position (one of only a handful on the beachward side of the lane), and wondering how I might renovate the simple three-room shack that stood upon it. And then, on my last visit, as a new gate slid back, I saw that someone else had not only had the same idea, but had done a stunning job.

The someone in question was Dimitris Pastras, from locally based Detale Architects. Recognising that the building's footprint was small, they started with a lovely outdoor living-dining space beneath the pines, and then cleverly reworked the indoor area into a light living-kitchen room and two cosy double bedrooms, both with ensuite shower rooms.

But life is lived outdoors here, and the pine-shaded terrace, with views across gnarled rocks to the gleaming pebbles and blue waters of Ritsa Beach, is the perfect spot. A private path leads to the sea in 2 minutes; grab the SUP or kayak to explore the dramatic coastline; or follow hiking trails from your door to the gorges, hilltop chapels and mountain villages of the Taygetus range. Best of all, the classy restaurants, boutiques and bars of Kardamyli are only a 10-minute walk away. As a blissful beachside bolthole for one or two couples, or a family whose children are happy sharing a double bed, this is hard to beat. I could not have envisioned anything better.


  • Sitting on the terrace for dinner, watching the improbably orange sun set behind the watery horizon
  • The interior design: a masterclass of chic Maniot simplicity
  • Both bedrooms are super comfy, with uninterrupted sea views
  • The cottage comes with two SUPs, a sit-on kayak, fast wifi and daily cleaning
  • We loved the constant sound of waves gurgling against the lava-like rocks; when the swell is up, foam sprays through a blowhole like a geyser


  • Both bedrooms have a double bed: no twins or extra beds are possible
  • Indoor space is limited, especially if you are 4 people
  • It's quite pricey by Greek standards
  • When we visited in 2023, the small pebbled Mediterranean garden needed a bit more time to grow in

Best time to go

May, June, September and early October are the ideal months in our opinion: warm but rarely hot, with near-empty beaches and cheaper deals. In spring there are wild flowers, in autumn the sea is warm - take your pick. July and August see a modest influx of (mostly Greek) visitors, but nothing like the crowds of the islands. The cottage is normally closed from November-March.

Our top tips

If you (and the cottage) are free in May or October, see if you can coincide with either the Kardamili International Jazz Festival in late May, which hosts free evening jazz sessions in the tavernas and bars around the village harbour; or the Kardamyli (Literary) Festival in early October, which brings together top-level speakers from literature and politics in a really intimate, sparky environment (only 350 attendees).

Great for...

Great Outdoors
  • Beach Cottage
  • 2 bedrooms
  • Self-catering, restaurants nearby
  • All ages welcome (but no cots or extra beds provided)
  • Closed: Nov-mid March
  • Pool
  • Spa Treatments
  • Beach Nearby
  • Pet Friendly
  • Disabled Access
  • Car recommended
  • Parking
  • Restaurants Nearby
  • WiFi
  • Air Conditioning
  • Guest Lounge
  • Terrace
  • Garden
  • Gym
  • Daily Maid Service
  • Towels & Bedlinen
  • Concierge Service
  • Laundry Service


You enter into a calm, neutral living space, with pale plaster and creamy stone walls, an open kitchen, and two plate glass windows looking west (sea and sunset) and north (maquis covered hills). With its earthy natural hues offset by impeccably chosen artefacts - a ceramic vase of dried flowers, a retro Marshall radio - it all feels very insta- and eco-friendly. It's possibly a little cosy for four on an all-day basis, but perfect for two, or for occasional evenings in a quatre. There's also an adjustable air-con and a Bluetooth Sonos sound system running throughout the cottage.

The master double bedroom is accessed from here: not a huge space but quite enough for a queensize double bed (1.6x2m, pushed against one wall) which faces out to the sea, with French windows onto the terrace. In the open wardrobe, a beautifully minimalist curved black clothes rail is all you need in this summery environment. Behind the signature dividing wall of semicircular tile segments (which we thought lends a geometrically Greek element) is a simple glass-walled shower bathroom, with overhead rain shower and handheld nozzle, solar heated water, towels, slippers, and local toiletries from Olive Era.

The second bedroom - a near replica, but with the queensize bed in the middle of the room so you can walk around it - is reachable only from the terrace, giving it an extra degree of privacy. It also enjoys uninterrupted sea views, plus blackout blinds, underbed storage, eye-catching straw hat lampshades, and additional mini-spot reading lights which you can angle straight onto your copy of Patrick Leigh Fermor's Mani travelogue.

The only pity, but quite understandable given the space constraints, is that neither room can be set up with twin beds, nor fit an extra bed or cot.

Features include:

  • Air conditioning
  • Bluetooth sound system
  • Hairdryer
  • Iron
  • Radio
  • Toiletries
  • TV
  • WiFi


In the indoor kitchen, you'll find an easy open-plan space with cooking island, Smeg fittings, high bar stools, and low sofas running along two sides of the room. Appliances include a retro coffee maker, an oversized fridge-freezer, a four-ring induction hob with nattily integrated extractor fan, an oven, and a tasteful range of cutlery and crockery in earthy greys and burnished coppers.

There's also a simpler outdoor kitchen, with sinks, barbecue and cushioned concrete benches, as well as a shapely oak table for 4-6 under the sea-facing pines, which is no doubt where you'll take most of your meals.

If you don't fancy cooking, the acclaimed restaurant of Elies Hotel is 5 mins' walk north along the beach, while 5 mins' walk the other way brings you to the simpler Gialos restaurant. Continue another 5 mins and you're in the hearth of Kardamyli village, with 2 small but well-stocked supermarkets on your left, and several excellent eateries ahead, from simple Greek to upscale seafood. Pick of the bunch are Lela and Harilaos on the harbourfront; book ahead for these two.

Features include:

  • Bar
  • Barbecue
  • Coffee maker
  • Dishwasher
  • Fridge
  • Full kitchen
  • Hob or stove
  • Oven
  • Restaurants nearby


  • The long pebbly Ritsa beach (2 mins' walk) has mixed pebbles and sand, lovely clear water, and some loungers and parasols reserved for you
  • Grab one of the cottage's SUPs or its sit-on kayak and explore the local coastline: there are gnarled rocks and caves, as well as a small island beyond the village
  • The medieval settlement of old Kardamyli is worth a wander, for its imposing tower-house (museum) and pretty Maniot chapel
  • The rest of the village is a delight to potter around: clothes and jewellery boutiques, iced yoghurt cafés and an enclosed fishing harbour
  • Peaceful footpaths, many of them on ancient cobbled routes, lead up into the foothills of Mt. Taygetus or through dramatic limestone gorges; get yourself a map, lace up your boots and off you go
  • With a car or local bus, head south to the secluded coves of Foneas or Delfinia (4-5km, seasonal snack bars); or to the sandy beaches at Stoupa (7-8km, Kalogria has diving)
  • Hire mountain bikes or speed boats - the lovely concierge Litsa can advise - to head off the beaten track on land or sea

Activities on site or nearby include:

  • Boat trips
  • Caves
  • Hiking
  • Historical sites
  • Kayaking
  • Snorkelling
  • SUP
  • Swimming


While children of all ages are accepted, no extra beds or cots are available, so you'll have to make do with the two double (queensize) bedrooms: fine for a couple with one child, or two who are happy sharing, but not ideal for most families. The proximity to the beach is a major draw, but bear in mind it is mostly pebbles, with only small patches of coarse sand.

Best for:

Children (4-12 years)

Kids Activities on site:

  • SUPs and kayak
  • Beach 2 mins' walk away

  • Kid Friendly:


    The house is just outside the lovely coastal village of Kardamyli (or Kardamili), 45 mins' drive south of Kalamata in the Peloponnese.

    By Air
    Fly into Kalamata (45km), or Athens (300km / 3.5 hours) for a wider choice of flights.

    From the airport:
    You can either hire a car which of course will make it easier to visit the region; or take a taxi from the airport and use local buses to explore: there are 3-4 per day running from Kalamata to Itilo and back, with a stop in Kardamyli. It's 10 mins' walk into the village.

    Detailed directions will be sent when you book through i-escape.


    • Kalamata 47.0 km KLX
    • Athens 300.0 km ATH


    • Beach 0.1 km
    • Shops 0.2 km
    • Restaurant 0.2 km

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    Based on 1 independent review from i-escape guests


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