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Featured image: Costa Navarino Facebook page
Costa Navarino, home of the Hellenic Olympic Academy, is Greece’s largest tourist development. Costa Navarino is an eco-friendly cluster of luxury resorts and golf courses in Messenia, located in the southwest Peloponnese region of Greece. The coastal destination offers a range of exciting activities for the sportier traveller. These range from yachting to water-skiing, golfing to diving, with plenty of gorgeous locations to explore along the way.
There are two luxury five-star hotels located at Costa Navarino’s main resort, Navarino Dunes. These are The Romanos and The Westin Resort Costa Navarino. The resort is also home to spas and thalassotherapy centres – so there are plenty of opportunities to pamper yourself.
There is an indoor climbing wall at Navarino Rocks while outdoor climbing aficionados can try the nearby Proti islet, providing a great opportunity to climb and take in the sights of this uninhabited rocky island. Afterwards you can cool down by taking a dip in the Ionian Sea. Ancient Olympia, the birthplace of the Olympic Games, is nearby, and guided tours provide a taste of the local history.
Cycling excursions allow you to take in Gialova Lagoon, a nature reserve where you can glimpse up to 271 recorded bird species; and the village of Gialova, where you can enjoy a traditional Greek lunch by the seaside olive groves. Voidokilia beach, a world-famous destination considered one of the best in the world, is also only a short bike ride away.
Diving and snorkelling are popular in the resort – with the Aqua Divers Club providing activities led by PADI-certified instructors. At Proti islet, divers of all experience levels can explore a WWII wreck in shallow waters.
Yachting excursions are also available, allowing visitors access to idyllic islets that can only be reached by boat, including Sfaktiria island and the Shiza islets. At the latter islet, guests can go ashore, swim and learn about secluded areas once used as hideouts by pirates. You can also try water skiing and wakeboarding at the Bay of Navarino, overlooking the picturesque town of Pylos.
There are two awarded signature golf courses: The Dunes Course and The Bay Course. This is especially timely, since the sport is being re-introduced at the 2016 Olympics. The Dunes Course was designed by former US Masters Champion and Ryder Cup Captain Bernhard Langer together with EGD. The course is 18-hole par-71, and offers delectable views of the river, sea, and olive groves. The 18-hole par-71 Bay Course was designed by Robert Trent Jones Jr. Lessons are available for beginners at the fully equipped Golf Academy.
Discover more at costanavarino.com.