The island of Elafonissos and the coast of Pounta (Stroggyli Limni biotope) form a single area. The island is 25 km2 and the coastline is 25 km long. The first inhabitants of Elafonissos date back to the Neolithic Period. During the Antiquity it was a peninsula connected to Laconia and was called Onou Gnathos. In the massive earthquake of 375 A.D. the part that connected it to the continent was engulfed in the sea, turning the peninsula into an island. The Byzantines built a fortification around the middle of the 7th century which was destroyed when the Saracen pirates passed through. During the following centuries there were a number of occupants, including the Venetians, the Turks, the French, and the British up until 1850 when it was annexed to Greece during the war of emancipation.
Today, there are approximately 800 people living permanently in Elafonissos but in the summertime the island accommodates many tourists. Ferries travel very frequently between the island and the coast of Pounta and Agios Georgios. The most beautiful beach is the one in Simos, but there are also the beaches of Sarakiniko and Panayitsa. On the island’s harbor you will find restaurants, ouzo bars, cafés, hotels and other facilities. After your sun bath we suggest you try out the traditional seafood mezes and then go for a walk on the pier and through the picturesque alleyways of the village.
Large beach with fine white sand, sea shells and shallow waters. There are ruins as well as items dating back to the Bronze Age, such as the submerged city and the cemetery right next to the coast. Elafonissos is a mere 350 m from the coast of Pounta.