The road between Sparta and Kalamata that cuts through The Taygetos Mountains is a wonderful drive. The views are stupendous and you may well feel the urge to stop on numerous occasions to take photos. I would urge anyone to take this route as opposed to the toll motorway if you have the time.
It’s a great place to have a picnic and there are one or two picnic areas with superb views. There are some isolated villages off the main road with tavernas if you have forgotten your picnic basket.
On a previous visit, heading East on the way to Sparta, we allowed time to take a detour through the small villages of Nedousa and Algonia before rejoining the main pass. We saw no other traffic, the road was a bit rough at times but the views it offered were really special.
On our last visit we drove through the pass from the other direction, heading west from Sparta. The pass is worth doing in both directions as it looks so different depending on which way you are travelling.
We took another detour, this time taking a small turning that led us slowly to the villages of Nadas and Karveli before rejoining the main road.