stdClass Object
    [image_intro] => 
    [float_intro] => 
    [image_intro_alt] => 
    [image_intro_caption] => 
    [image_fulltext] => 
    [float_fulltext] => 
    [image_fulltext_alt] => 
    [image_fulltext_caption] => 

Leonidio, Kynouria, Arcadia - The oldest Greek shop

Many things are being sold in the store, even authentic national costumes made by the owners themselves.

"My great-grandfather was traveling from Crete and because of the rough sea, the ship stopped at Maleas Cape of South Peloponnese. He lived a big adventure that he used to talk about all the in the following years, he used to talk about it so often that we gave him the nickname Maleas. That is why I am also called Maleas".

Before 1821
The shop's entrance.

Costas Kanakis, along with his wife Popi, nee Rousali, own the oldest Greek shop, situated in the main street of Leonidio. "The first license  was issued in 1874 under the name of Cosmas Rousalis, but the shop existed two generations before that under different ownership. Based on family data we believe that the shop operated for the first time before the revolution of 1821".

Only Costas and his wife know where everything is in the shop. There are so many goods inside, that the shop looks like a labyrinthine. No one can find what he or she wants on their own, they wouldn't have been able to even if they had a map. Everything you can imagine is sold there; novelties, clothes, mattresses, even traditional costumes.

"We make the uniforms ourselves, using the old SINGER sewing machine. Fabric quality and the harmony of colors are very important to us. Back in the day, we used to sell shirts of great quality packed in wooden boxes. We also sold coffee brought by ship from Brazil to Leonidio. Unfortunately, nowadays, all our old suppliers have passed away".

In some corners of the shop, apart from the merchandise, there are also some documents that prove the Tsakonian origin of Leonidio. The crest with the date 1864 written on it, even though the shop pre-existed for decades."We named our local football team Leonidas, but unfortunately, the local authorities took the name away from us. They gave it to Sparta and they 'baptized' us the Athletic Club of Leonidio. Whatever". 

Costas is making a grimace and a derogatory gesture when he tells me the name given to his favorite team. "We fought with the Spartans for the name Leonidas, like the Skopjans did with the Greeks for the name Macedonia. Only they are not Macedonians while the Tsakonians are more genuinely from Laconia".

Enlivens the past

Costas Kanakis lives with his family in the apartment above the shop. It is an excellent neoclassical building. Its crest, dated 1864, and monogrammed by the Rousalis family has been decorating the building since the store opened during the 19th century. 93-year-old Eftychia Rousali, Popi's aunt and the oldest descendant of the store's owners lives in the same house.

Costas Kanakis with his wife Popi Rousali, a descendant of the initial owners of the shop."Yes my child, this is the oldest shop. We lost our father very early in life and our mother, who had ten children, worked here all alone. She was well respected by the merchants and was never indebted. If I went to Patras or Syros to order goods for the shop, holding her picture, the people would fall over one another in order to help me. She was an honest and energetic woman. We respected her without her needing to yell at us. All of us finished high school and learned to speak French".

Aunt Eftychia speaks French fluently and when she was young they used to call her Félicité. Since she was born, the world has dramatically changed, except the shop and her house that have stayed the same. I wonder how many more years this shop is going to live in the past. Until when is Félicité going to charm everyone with her memories and until when are Costas with Popi going to sew national costumes using high-quality fabrics and harmoniously chosen colors?


Aunt Eftychia or Félicité, descendant of the first owners. Aunt Eftychia or Félicité, descendant of the first owners.
The exceptionally furnished and decorated house of the family was made in 1864 and it is over the store. The exceptionally furnished and decorated house of the family was made in 1864 and it is over the store.
A traditional bell rings when someone enters the shop. A traditional bell rings when someone enters the shop.
View of Leonidio. View of Leonidio.


*Mandatory Fields


The Temple of Poseidon, Sounio - A background of endless blue

The view from the temple is breathtaking. From hear, Theseus began his journey to Crete in order to kill the Minotaur. From hear also, his father, Aegeus, fell to his death from the cliffs thinking his son had been killed. In honor of the fallen king the sea was named the Aegean.

A magic performance - The Apology of Socrates by Plato

Next to the actor stood a liquid filled hourglass that slowly dripped during the play. There were times that it could be perceived like a harsh, eerie beat inside the audience’s head. Time was running out for Socrates…

Poros Island - Pine trees as far as the eye can see

Island of the Saronic Gulf full of pine trees, with traditional neoclassical houses and many easily accessible beaches.

Ioulida, Kea Island - Like an eagle’s nest on the rocks

The densely built houses with the tile roofs on the top of the mountain compose a rare architectural ensemble.

Gortynia, Arcadia - Alpic Winters

Winter is harsh in the villages of Arcadian Mount Mainalon. The dense forests of firs sigh by the weight of the snow and the sceneries are alpic. These villages during almost all winter are covered by deep clouds.

Halki (Heybeliada) Theological School - Ready to operate

Even though has been closed for 46 whole years, since 1971, it is kept in perfect condition and is always ready for the great restart.

Oia, Santorini Island - The worship of the sun

Every afternoon, crowds from every corner of the earth are gathered at Oia in order to enjoy the sunset in the Aegean sea.

Fragkocastelo, Chania, Crete - Legends and majestic beaches

It can't be farther south, in front of the Libyan Sea, with castles, legends and african type vast beaches.