At a distance of 4 km from the settlement of Elafonisos, on the southern side of the island are the twin beaches of Simos (small beach) and Sarakiniko (long beach or Tseratsiniko for the locals).

The beach of Sarakiniko was used as a base by the Saracen pirates, after whom it was named.

The Bay of Sarakiniko (or Tseratsiniko) or Porto di Cervi, according to cartographers, was a refuge of wild Cilics, Saracens, Ottomans, Barbary pirates, Maltese Knights, English, French, people from Mani and others pirates and corsairs. Mass graves, with broken human skulls, found on the beaches of Simos and Sarakiniko, testify the brutality that these beautiful areas once witnessed. Victor Hugo, in his poem on Kythera, refers to the corsairs of the region (Strait of Elafonisos) as well as Jules Verne.

The First Ottoman–Venetian Naval Battle of Elafonisos began in Sarakiniko in 1572 AD. Don Juan, Ulutzalis and Cervantes (author of Don Quixote) were among those who participated in this naval battle (Dr Mentis K. 1993: 53-56).

At Sarakiniko the decision for Navarino's naval battle was also taken. On 8 October 1827, on Saturday, at dawn, the Admiral's War Council (Kodrington, Derigny, Heyden) delivered one of the most critical ultimatums in Modern Greek History while in the clear waters of Sarakiniko: "either Ibrahim Pasha immediately ceases all hostilities and returns with his fleet and all of his forces in Alexandria, or he will immediately face the united fire of the Allied Fleet "..." (Dr. Mentis K. 1993: 89-91).

 

Sources

Mentis, K., 1994, S. Peloponnesus and its “smigopelaga” islands. - Il Peloponneso meridionale e le sue isole “smigopelaga”, Elafonisos: Library of Elafonisos/Bibliotheca di Elafonisos

 

Cape Elena. Where Simos meets Sarakiniko

 

 

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