Hidden beauties of Laconia
Mani Horses Equestrian Club in Diro Mani
Diros, known for its dreamy caves, is home to a modern free riding center run by Michalis and Efi. Experienced riders and instructors, give daily to younger and older riders a unique experience in the heart of Mani. Their primary goal is the safety of the riders and the smooth interaction with their wonderful horses. Here you forget the stress of the city, you are captivated by the beauty of Zeus, the kindness of Vanda and the stability of Rico. All the horses are unique with their own personality, all gentle and well trained so that even the youngest riders can ride them (photo of little Iris riding)
Mrs. Effie is always smiling, strict enough that the children have the right posture while managing to lead the horse with their feet and “Let’s go”. With patience and perseverance even the youngest rider manages after 3 visits to free ride these wonderful creatures and learn to impose on the animals. Of course, the grooming of the horses is also essential for the rider as it enables bonding and getting to know your horse. If left with enough time, in addition to the free riding lesson, one can bathe and comb the horses so that they look shiny and even more beautiful.
Adults can experience free riding in the stone-built alleys of Mani accompanied by Mr. Michalis as their guide, who will surely charm you with his stories about the region of Mani. (photos from his website).
If you’re lucky Mr. Michalis has the horses put on demonstrations. A unique spectacle with the horses on 2 legs following the instructions of their beloved rider and caretaker. (https://www.manihorses.gr/portal/fotografies)
Clay workshop “Zervobeakos“ in Diros Mani
In Diros, next to Mani Horses, there is a wonderful pottery workshop that makes beautiful handmade clay objects in unique designs and colours. In Zervobeakos’ workshop you can see the craftsman working the clay on his potter’s wheel. The designs are inspired by Greek folk tradition and culture, just as it was done thousands of years ago. (https://zervobeakospottery.com/el/)
The plates and glasses he makes are unique and will become ornaments for your table, while you will find original options for baptism or wedding favors or souvenir gifts with the toponym “Mani”. It is certainly a unique experience that takes you back in time, to an ancient profession that is in danger of being lost.