Castles of Greece


Karytaina, Megalopoli, Arcadia,Peloponnese

Castle of Karytaina

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Castle of Karytaina
Karytaina, Arcadia, central Peloponnese
Region > Prefecture:   Greek Map
Municipality > Town:
City of Megalopoli
• Karytaina
Elevation ≈ 582 m 
(Relative Height≈150 m)
Time of Construction   Origin
13th century  
Castle Type   Condition
Not Good


The castle was built during the Frankish occupation in the 13th century (probably in 1245) by the glorious French knight Geoffroy de Briel, Baron of Karytaina. De Briel, born in Greece, is one of the leading figures in the Chronicle of the Morea. He inherited Karytaina from his father Hugo, who in the sharing of the Peloponnese by the Franks, in 1209, took one of the 12 baronies of the Principality of Achaia.

There are indications, however, that in the position preexisted a Byzantine and perhaps an ancient castle.

In 1324, the commander of the castle was bribed by the Despot of Mystras Andronikos II Palaeologus ( nicknamed "Asanis") and Karytaina was taken by the Byzantines .

In 1460, Karytaina was conquered by the Ottomans.

It continued to be an important castle during the Turkish occupation, as it was the center of a Kizas (Administrative Region).

For a short period during the Second Venetian domination in the Peloponnese, between 1687 and 1715, the castle was occupied by the Venetians.

In 1821, it was one of the first castles that were liberated, following the first victory of the Greek Revolutionaries, under Theodoros Kolokotronis in the battle of Karytaina (March 27, 1821). This first historic victory is the reason why Karytaina was depicted, together with Kolokotronis on the old 5000 Drachma bank notes.

In1826, Kolokotronis fortified again the castle, to be used as a base and a shelter against the Egyptian troops of Ibrahim pasha that raided Peloponnese. Ibrahim tried but could not capture the castle.


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