The southern part of the peninsula extends three long fingers of land south into the Mediterranean Sea; the three fingers are separated by two bodies of water, Messiniakós Gulf and Lakonikós Gulf. Each finger of land has its own history and character. We sailed south past the town of Methóni, praised by Homer for its wine and natural beauty. Tradition says that the grapes there are so potent that the donkeys can get drunk carrying them to market. This finger of land ends at Cape Akrítas, and we rounded it and entered Messiniakós Gulf, which we sailed across to the next finger, Mani. With its dark, craggy ridges and steep gorges leading down to the sea, Mani is a mysterious and foreboding place. It’s said to be the only region of Greece that’s never been conquered. The people who lived here were famous for their blood feuds and banditry. Descended from the Spartans, they were so fierce that they were constantly at war with neighboring families. They built homes called tower houses, which are rectangular stone structures of several stories that were erected for defense, not for comfort: They have no windows on the ground floors. Cruising along the coast of Mani, you can still see these fortress homes high up in the hills, continuing to stand vigilant. We rounded Cape Ténaro, on the tip of Mani, and entered Lakonikós Gulf, where we waited before sailing around the tip of the third finger, Cape Maléas.