The national path Ε32 begins at Vytina, crosses the gorge of Loussios, the mountains of Arcadia and the slopes of mount Taygetus and ends in the town of Gytheio or Kardamyli. The path follows three routes and intersects with the European path E4 at the mountain shelter of Mount Taygetus.
The first route follows the route towards Portes (to Prophitis Elias summit), Siderocastro, the crest towards Spanaki and the Panagia Kapsodentra, it passes through the gorge of Rintomou and it ends at Santova in Kardamyli. This part of the path consists of a beautiful yet dangerous route of 12 to 15 hours duration that requires lots of caution and experience.
The second route has a duration of 2.5 hours and follows the path to the forest of Pentavloi at an elevation of 1200 meters, and to Agios Dimitrios, and continue until the town of Gytheio. The third route follows the same path until Agios Dimitrios where it continues to cross the gorge of Vyros and end at the shores of Kardamyli after 8-10 hours of trekking.
The routes of the Ε32 path are marked with the red and white signs of the national paths and they are maintained in a good condition throughout the region of Laconia thanks to the Hellenic Mountaineering Association of Sparti.
The long distance National paths were designed at the same time as the European ones. They consist of deviations to new routes. In the prefecture of Laconia the national path E32 consists of a branch of the European path, E4 that starts in Vytina, crosses the Lousios gorge, then passes by the villages and the monasteries of the Arcadian mountains and ends at Kardamyli. In Laconia, the path provides hikers with the possibility to walk the slopes of mount Taygetus, stop at the climbing shelter of the Hellenic Climbing Club of Sparti, that intersects with the E4 path, cross the Vyros gorge (also called Rintomos) and arrive at the coasts of Kardamyli, in the Messenian gulf. The route’s total length is 150km. The paths are marked with red and white signs. Thanks to the Hellenic Climbing Club of Sparti, the parts of the path located at the mount Taygetus are maintained in very good condition. The National path E32 offers the following routes:
Taygetus Shelter – Portes (to the summit of Prophet Elijas) – Siderokastro – ridge towards Spanakaki – Panagia Kapsodematousa – Rintomo gorge – Santova
It is a beautiful yet difficult route that lasts 12 to 15 hours depending on the walking pace and the point of exit from the gorge. The route starts from the Taygetus shelter and follows the itinerary to – Livadia – Gouves – Plakes- towards Portes and the summit of Prophet Elijas (3-3.5 hours trekking). It continues towards the summit of Spanakaki 2.024m. From that point it goes down the gorge and after 3.5-4.5 hours of walking it leads to Panagia Kapsodematousa, at 960m of altitude, where you spend the night. This particular part of the path requires experience in order to track the path as there is no signposting. In winter, because of the snow, you will need a rope. From Panagia Kapsodematousa you cross the Rintomo gorge, pass the village Pigadia with its double bridge, and after a 3-4 hour walk you continue to the exit the gorge at Santova, in Kardamyli.
Taygetus shelter – Pentavloi – Agios Demetrio – Gytheo / Vyros gorge
From the climbing shelter of mount Taygetus, in a beautiful fir and black pine forest, you go down to the forest area of Pentavloi, at an elevation of 1220m (approximately one hour walk). One hour later, you go up to Soros, at 1500m and then down again to Agios Demetrios. Here you can rest and quench your thirst with the crystal water of the spring streaming under the sanctuary. From that point, the walk continues either towards Gytheio, or towards Vyros gorge and ends, after 8-10 hours, at the coasts of Mani.