Avia (Greek: Αβία) is a municipality in Messenia, Greece. Population 3089 (2001). The seat of the municipality is in Kampos Area 179.8 km2. The municipality is named after Abia, a daughter of Heracles. An ancient city was renamed by Cresphontes calling it Abia (or Avia). Abia existed until the 3rd century AD. In 181 BC it was part of the Achaean League. In Abia was an Asclepius sanctuary in the ruins of which the church Koimisis tis Theotokou was built in 1775.
The municipality of Avia was formed in 1835 with Almyro as seat. It included the villages Selitsa (today Ano Verga), Mikra Mantineia, Megali Mantineia and Sotirianika. In 1841 also the municipality Gerinia was included with the villages Kampos, Varousi (Stavropigi), Malta, Gaitses (Kentro), Brinta, Nerinta, Bilova, Doloi, Kitries, Altomira. Kampos was the seat of the larger municipality which existed until 1914. In 1998 again the municipality Avia was formed with the Kapodistrias plan. The municipality is part of the so-called Messenian Mani. The mayor of the municipality is Panagiotis Basakos re-elected in 2006
Division of the municipality
Avia is a seaside village, part of the department of Avia which includes the settlements Akrogiali and Megali Mantineia. Before 1926 it was known as Paliochora.
Kampos is a village of the Avia municipality, 22 km from Kalamata. The byzantine church Agion Theodoron from the 12th century is an attraction for the visitors. The Venetian castle Zarnata is near the village and a Mycenaean Tholos Also the house of Alexandros Koumoundouros is in Kampos.
Megali Mantineia is a village (alt. 200 m) part of the district of Avia. It was mentioned 1463 as Ano Mantineia or Ano Chora.
In 1704 the population was 59 families. In the end of the 18th century a new settlement was form called Mikri Mantineia as result Ano Mantineia was renamed to Megali Mantineia. From the 19th centrury part of the population moved towards the coast region forming the settlement Paliochora (renamed to Avia)
Stavropigi is a small village, known earlier as Varousia, renamed to Pigi and then to Stavropigi.
http://www.aviasdimos.gr/ (Greek Site)