The Peloponnese, the southern-most tip of the Balkan Peninsula, is a mountainous area, divided into two main vine growing regions by the ranges that traverse it. One region encompasses the central and northern parts, where Mantinia and Nemea are the main winemaking hubs respectively. The western part, which stretches from the northern slopes of Mount Panachaiko (near Egio and Patras) to the coastline of the Ionian Sea down to Messinia, represents the second region. Its main vine growing areas are Achaia in the north and Ilia and Messinia in the south. The vineyards of the Peloponnese and the Ionian Islands are located in areas featuring a mild Mediterranean climate, due to the moderating effect of the sea in the Gulf of Korinthos (Corinth) to the north, as well as the protection and the cool winds offered by the mountain ranges of continental Greece and the central Peloponnese. Factors such as altitude, mountain slopes, aspect and the proximity to the sea create many different mesoclimates. The vineyards of the Peloponnese and the Ionian Islands are concentrated on the mountainous and semi-mountainous areas, either on rugged terrain or on plateaus and valleys wedged in between the mountain massifs.