The Mesolongi-Aitoliko lagoon complex is located in the north part of the Gulf of Patras in the central west coast of Greece. With its shallow area of 150 sq.km. extended between Acheloos and Evinos rivers, it is one of the most important wetlands in the Mediterranean. The ecosystem comprises of six lagoons that are part of the Natura 2000 network protected by the Ramsar Convention. The open and closed type lagoons communicate with the sea along channels and receives fresh water from the drainage pump system of the region, creating a unique aquaculture environment. Fishing is mainly done with traditional methods by local fishermen in fish-pools called ‘divaria’. The area is also rich in black salt marsh and hosts one of the biggest salt factories. The mineral mud and sea-salt make the nearby beaches ideal natural spas, a daily ritual for locals during the summer months.
The name of the settlement ‘Tourlida’ was given after the marine bird species that were found in the area, the tourlides (eurasian curlew). This islet connects to Mesolongi by a causeway stretching 5 km. A landmark of Tourlida is the houses on piles. Stilt houses built by fishermen, named ‘pelades’ in Greek.