Castles of Greece


Smerna, Zacharo, Elis,West Greece

Castle of Smerna

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Castle of Smerna
On a hill west of the village Smerna of Elis above the cave-monastery of Panayia
Region > Prefecture:   Greek Map
West Greece
Municipality > Town:
City of Zacharo
• Smerna
Elevation ≈ 730 m 
(Relative Height≈300 m)
Time of Construction   Origin
14th century  
Castle Type   Condition
Piles of stones & Ruins  
Few Remains

Remnants of a Frankish castle on Mount Smerna, at an altitude of 730 meters, west of the village Smerna in Zacharo, Elis.

An observation tower of the fire department was built in th 60s at the place of the castle’s keep. What remains of the castle today are piles of stones and traces of walls at the southern slope, under the plateau of the summit.

The castle is included in the list of fiefs of 1377 as Castello della Smirina. This is the only medieval source that mentions the castle which apparently was not among the major Frankish castles of Peloponnese.

The French archaeologist Antoine Bonn thinks that this might be the location of the legendary Araklovo, castle which however is believed to have been elsewhere, at the peak Chrysouli of Mount Minthi.

Bonn visited the location before 1960 and sketched the layout of the castle: the keep measured 8m✖10m within a polygonal fortification of maximum length circa 35m.


  • Antoine Bon, 1969, La Morée franque. Recherches historiques, topographiques et archéologiques sur la principauté d'Achaïe (1205-1430), Editions de Boccard, pp.373,375-377,646
  • Konstantinos Kourelis, “MONUMENTS OF RURAL ARCHAEOLOGY MEDIEVAL SETTLEMENTS ΙΝ ΤΗΕ NORTHWESTERN PELOPONNESE”, Presented to the Faculties of the University of Pennsylvania in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy, 2003, pp.406-407,572-573
  • Website Αριστομένης ο Μεσσήνιος - Το Κάστρο της Σμέρνας, Τριφυλία

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