Karvelas is the Municipal Compartment of Gythion Municipality; it consists of the villages Karvela, Gefiraki and Petrovouni. It has 248 inhabitants (census 2001), whereas it is built on a wooded area.

The fortresses of the village take us back to the past. Dimitrakakos’ house with the cylindrical corner cages is an architectural example. It is distinguished for its peculiar shape and imposing construction.

The structure of the villages, the lay out, the orientation, the typology, the materials, the construction follow repeated common, simple and steady principles, which have been the core of modern constructions and villages.

In the last few years, there is a tendency to preserve tradition, meaning the characteristics of this place. Although nowadays there are no more cultivated groves and folds, there are still many details that remind of the vividness of Karvelas in the past. Many generations lived in the village and this is noticeable by the collapsed stonewalls. Those who live there now cannot put the stones back in their place. The new generation now lives in other places.

The locked houses do not create a feeling of melancholy; on the contrary one thinks that the residents are sleeping. Some of the houses are open, whereas some others have been renovated and some others have collapsed. The inhabitants left mostly due to unemployment. So they abandoned their houses and they collapsed. Nowadays many people come back and in summertime the village is crowded; then everything gets back to normal.

Karvelas has many hidden beauties. If they were all discovered and developed, the villagers would be more satisfied.

Antonis Roumaneas