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monument lies to the NW of Astros, in the area of ancient Thyreatis, which is full of antiquities. It was probably built on the site of an Early Christian church of the 5th century AD. The catholicon is a domed church of the composite four columned, cross-in-square type. It is decorated with fine wall paintings and its floor is paved with coloured marble slabs. The wall masonry imitates a careless "cloisonne", and includes ancient architectural parts and brick ornaments. The iconostasis (chancel barrier) is decorated with portable icons dated to the 17th century.
The first literary reference to the monastery is in the "Geographica" of Meletios, the Metropolitan Bishop of Athens in 1690. The English traveller J. Leake visited the monastery in 1805.
Regarding the name "Loukou", several theories have appeared:
the monastery was dedicated to St. Lucia,
it was due to the ancient cult of Hera (Juno Lucina),
it was named Lykou after the wolves (lykoi) living in the area,
the monastery was dedicated to St. Luke,
it was related to the "Lucus Feroniae"(woods of prey) in which
the Villa of Herodes Atticus was located.
The roof of the catholicon (main church) has been retiled, the two-storeyed
tower has been supported and the cells have been restored. In the 1980's the painted
decoration of the church was systematically preserved and in 1994-95 the mosaic
floor of the catholicon was restored. Today the monument is a convent for nuns.
Twenty seven villages and communities constitute the Municipality
of Irea with the districts of Agios Ioanis, Arahova, Kakoureika, Kokinorahi, Kokoras,
Liodora, Lutra of Irea and Likouresi, Lisarea, Ochthia, Paluba, which is the administrative
centre, Pirris, Rafti, Sarakini of Irea, Servo, Chrisohori and Psari. The Municipality
is seated in the Prefecture of Arcadia, and holds and area of 144082 square meters.
Population: 3059 citizens (according to the 2001 cesnus).
The village of Palouba, the seat of the municipality, is the starting
point for tours around the other villages, while visitors may seize the opportunity
of tasting traditional foods and relishes at its coffeehouses and restaurants.
The road to Zatuna and Dimitsana passes through the picturesque large village
of Rafti, where there is a traditional hostel and three restaurants still in operation,
while the picturesque country church of Taxiarhes (Archangels) attracts our attention.
Agalo is situated close the Rafti, with its picturesque stone-built houses and
its high quality dairy products. Three km away from Raftis there is Arachova,
where the picturesque villages of Kokoras and Kakoureirka, the church of Agiow
Athanasios of Christianoupoli, the "Cave of Lagaftis" and the remains of Aga's
Tower House are unfolded before our eyes down the valley of Irea. The village
of Palouba is the starting point of a marvelous route to the village of Sarakini,
where a visit to the community office with the excellent folk collection, is worthwhile.
In close proximity to Sarakini there is Lisarea; one road from there leads to Ochthia, a village with a lovely view, while the other one lead to Kokinorahi. Moving on from Ochthia, we pass through Liodora, where it's worth having a rest enjoying the traditional raki. One of the major villages of the Municipality of Irea is the one of Servo; it is amphitheatrically built, surrounded by lush vegetation, with many interesting folk heirlooms. The church of Zoodochos Pigi (lifi-giving spring), the church of the Panagia (Virgin Mary), "tou papa to lithari" ("the stone of the priest") next to the church of Agia Paraskevi (St Paraskevi), "o Soros tis Grias" ("the corpse of the old woman") with the ancient tomb and the house of the chieftain Daras in the village are all of special interest; coffee-shops and taverns are open throughout the year.
From Servos, the road leads to Likouresi and Psari, two picturesque
villages ideal for tranquil walks. Moving on from Servos, we meet the marvelous
canyon of Gura coming down to the village of Kokinorahi (red slope). One of the
main characteristics of the municipality of Irea is its exquisite mineral water
springs situated in the village of Lutra Ireas (Spas of Irea) and consisting of
twenty luxurious cabins and bathtubs; they are considered to be the best in Greece
marked out for their healing properties (tel. 0970 25000). Inside the village
there are coffee-shops and taverns that are opened throughout the year.
Moving on from the Spas of Irea, the road leads to the villages of
Loti and Agios Ioannis. The ancient Irea was once situated in this area, whose
remains are nowadays scattered all over. All the villages of the Municipality
of Irea offer a unique opportunity of experiencing splendid moments of beauty;
also the visitor should by no means fail to taste their wine and local raki, their
cheeses and frumenty, all of which are traditional products of the Municipality.
This text is cited Feb 2003 from the Municipality of Irea URL below, which contains image.
Lagadia is a very picturesque Arcadia n town. Situated on a mountainous
august landscape with fresh water springs, it offers an imposing sight to every
visitor. The two and three storey stone houses that are amphitheatrically built
on a steep slope create the impression of a stone-built work of art. Furthermore,
it is the fatherland of Delegianneon and other chieftains and veterans of the
Lagadia is the homeland of skilled craftsmen and artisans who had
an excellent knowledge of the art of stone and for generations built houses, churches
and schools all over Arcadia, Messinia and the rest of Greece. In this way their
reputation was spread everywhere. A strong proof of their talent and fame is the
view of the village houses. It is said (Balafouti, "Workmen: Lagadiani")
that the tradition of Lagadian stone-artisans dates back to villager-workmen coming
mainly from Laggadia. The villager-workmen had gone away to Italy after the victory
of Byzantium but years later they returned and settled in Akovo , which is located
near Vyziki . At around 1210 a villager-workman who had the position of secretary,
stole plans from the Frankish castle of Akovo that belonged to the architects.
Since then, Laggadian people preserve and carry on the tradition in architecture.
In addition, they passed on their artistry to other capable continuers as the
workmen of Kosma Kynourias.
Laggadia is built on a steep canyon on an altitude of 900 meters.
The houses that are amphitheatrically built on the slope are facing the ravine.
Due to the slope, many of those are designed to have one storey at the one side
of the road and three at the other. The Central Square of the village stands on
the edge of a deep ravine rich in walnut trees, plane trees and fresh water streams.
At this point Thoa canyon begins and stretches crossing a big part of Gortynia
and eventually ending up at river Ladona. Laggadia is also known for its developed
local weaving mill handicraft. The upper part of the village, Pano Geitonia, apart
from having a magnificent view, is unique in picturesqueness. The most important
sights are the house of Deligiannis, and the old historic churches of "Agion
Taxiarhon" (1805) and "Agion Apostolon" (1845) that are characterized
by their peculiar belfries. Especially at the front of Taxiarhon church, one will
notice the stone-made artistic belfry, which is equipped with a clock. Some other
remarkable stone-made structures are the Gymnasium and many elegant fountains
that decorate the village.
To get to Lagadia one must go through Vytina . This road continues
towards Ilia passing through Olympia. An interesting route is the one that leads
to Tropea and Byziki.
The Municipality of Mantineia is situated at the northeastern side
in the county of Arcadia and it is 205.393.000 m2 in extent. It spreads on the
tableland of Mantineia between the mountain Mainalo on the west, Lirkeon on the
northeast and Artemisio on the east. It borders on the east and northeast the
county of Argolida, on northwest the municipality of Levidi, on southwest the
municipality of Phalanthos and on south with the municipalities of Tripoli and
The population of the municipality comes up to 3.628 inhabitants,
according to the census of 1991. The municipality of Mantineia consists of seven
Municipal Departments, that is Nestani (1112 inhabitants), Artemision (621 inhabitants),
Kapsia (460 inhabitants), Louca (674 inhabitants), Pikerni (237 inhabitants),
Sagka (285 inhabitants) and Simiades (239 inhabitants). The seat of the municipality
is at the settlement of Nestani.
The majority of the settlements of the municipality are built at
the foot of the mountain Artemision, except of the M.D. Kapsia and Simiades that
are built at the foot of the mountain Mainalo. The settlements are semi-mountainous
because of the terrain morphology, except the M.D. of Sagka, that is mountainous.
The main production of the municipality area is based on the cereals, vegetable,
apples, honey, potatoes, pears, grapes for vinification and stock-raising products.
Specially, we have to refer the famous wines of the region, having "MANTINEIA"
as their name of origin.
In the geographic area of the municipality, there is the historical
place of ancient Mantineia, the "πολυάμπελος χώρα"  of Homers. The archaeological
area of Ancient Mantineia is 14 kms far away from Tripoli and consists of the
ancient theater, of which the stage is saved untouched, the remains of the temple
of Zeus, and the chamber of deputies and the remains of the market.
This text is cited Feb 2003 from the Municipality of Mantinia URL below, which contains image.
Tel: +30 27960 31233, 31288
Tel: +30 27920 31243
- Municipality of Mantineia WebPage
- Municipality of Mantineia WebPage