Kefalonia (or Cephalonia), is the 6th largest island in Greece and the largest of the Ionian Islands which are also traditionally known as The Heptanese (Seven Islands) which are located in the most Westerly part of Greece. However, it remains one of the least populated in terms of its size, making it feel like you have the whole island to yourself at times.
An Ionian Paradise of Green and Blue™, Kefalonia is a truly spectacular destination and one that has captured the hearts, souls and imaginations of many, including being immortalized in the Hollywood blockbuster – Captain Corelli’s Mandolin – for which Kefalonia has often been regarded as the real ‘star’.
From the soaring mountains of Mount Ainos National Park cloaked in ancient Black Fir Trees, peaking at 1628m, that plunges dramatically towards unbelievably hued, crystal clear waters that play host to an abundance of protected marine life, lapping shores of fine, tropical style sandy beaches and secluded coves, many only accessible by boat, Kefalonia delivers on a relentless, jaw dropping scale.
It’s natural beauty is matched by an abundance of flora and fauna, it’s fertile land producing a gourmet feast of delicious fruits, nuts, world class premium olive oils, award winning wines as well as fragrant herbs to compliment locally made cheeses and reared meats.
With a turbulent, diverse history that dates back to at least 1200BC, Kefalonia is truly a place where you will experience the real Greece and everything she has to offer.
ARGOSTOLI: KEFALONIA’S CAPITAL
Argostoli is the capital of Kefalonia and a hub of activity all year round. Yachts of all shapes and sizes moor alongside traditional fishing boats during the summer, the fisherman ensuring the endangered Loggerhead Turtles that reside in the harbour never go hungry! A walk along the main promenade will bring you to the De Bosset Bridge (also known as Drapano) the longest stone bridge over the sea in the world, with views across the Koutavos Lagoon which is home to a variety of bird species and also a perfect place to talk a leisurely scenic walk or exercise.
At the opposite end of Argostoli lies the natural water phenomenon known as Katavothres, followed by the lighthouse of Saint Theodoroi.
The main pedestrianised shopping area of Lithostrotou, plays host to a variety of shops selling everything from traditional Kefalonian produce to novelty tourist items. By night, Argostoli truly comes alive and takes on a cosmopolitan vibe, with an abundance of cafes, bars and restaurants serving everything from traditional Greek cuisine to more cosmopolitan delights such as Sushi, with some pretty serious cocktails thrown in for good measure. And for the disco diva’s, Kefalonia’s ‘Go To’ nightclub – Katavothres – will have you dancing until the early hours while watching the sun rise from its outdoor terrace.
Assos, a beautiful Venetian architecture style village located on the West coast of the island, located just after the world famous Myrtos Beach.
Founded under Venetian rule, it served as the administrative capital of Northern Cephalonia from 1593 onwards. Assos has a couple of small pebbly beaches, lapped by crystal clear waters, set around a picture postcard little harbour, the perfect place to enjoy a delicious, leisurely lunch or dinner in one of its cafes or tavernas.
And, if you over indulge, then you can always take a trek up to the ruins of the Venetian Fortress that sit atop the peninsula which affords spectacular, photographic opportunities and views down to the harbour and village.
Fiscardo is located on the most Northern point of Kefalonia and is one of the islands most famous villages and harbours. Although small by comparison to other harbours on the island, Fiscardo attracts its fair share of Super / Mega Yachts during the summer season and is a wonderful place to simply indulge in a bit of People Watching. Chic cafes and eateries line the harbour side – the perfect place to perfect your ‘Volta’ (the Greek art of walking very slowly so everyone can admire you!) alongside boutique stores.
The energetic and adventurous can hire a self-drive boat to explore the many hidden coves along the rocky shoreline just outside Fiscardo, or get your boots on and explore one of the many hiking trails that weave through the forests of Cypress.
Just a short drive from Kefalonia Escape Suites is the tranquil village of Katelios.
A small number of traditional tavernas line its small seafront, with a partly sandy beach (no shade!) stretching in the opposite direction.
From here you can take a day out aboard your own boat with one of our preferred partners, for a thoroughly unique boating experience.
A small sandy beach literally 5 minutes away, Koroni is one of Kefalonias ‘hidden’ gems. Backed by towering cliffs and vegetation it has always been a beautiful beach to visit and never over populated.
However, it is always best to check in advance if it is accessible before heading down as sometimes it is closed due to the access path being closed as it crosses private property.
LASSI / PLATIS & MAKRIS GIALOS
Platis Gialos (Small Beach) and Makris Gialos (Long Beach) in the popular tourist resort area of Lassi, are two of Kefalonia’s most famous beaches – and quite rightly so. Known for their unspoiled beauty, each consists of white sand and crystalline waters and are extremely popular with locals and tourists alike. Not beaches for pure total quiet and relaxation, but if you want a great atmosphere, do some people watching, exhilarating watersports, watch the locals play volleyball, snorkel or just chillout on a beach cabana, then these are the beaches that deliver it all.
Only a 5 minute drive to / from the capital of Argostoli, you can combine a morning out exploring the capital with an afternoon on the beach.
Located about a 20 minute drive North from Kefalonia Escape Suites, is the commercial resort of Lourdas, popular with a lot of holidaymakers to Kefalonia. Lourdas beach itself is pebble and not the most picturesque, but there are a number of eateries and bars along its seafront.
Tucked around the right hand corner is Kanali Beach – also pebbly but with great waters for swimming and if you prefer to go for that All Over tan, then the 2nd and 3rd section of this beach are one of the few secluded beaches where you can be ‘At One’ with nature and no one should mind.
The spectacular sweeping bay of Mounda is just a short 20 minute drive away, just before you reach the resort of Skala. It’s sweeping arc of golden sand stretches way into the distance to the left (with the beach of Kaminia stretching equally off in the distance to its right) and is a protected area for the Loggerhead Turtles that nest there – although not so much in recent years.
There is little in the way of facilities on Mounda beach itself, so you need to go prepared. Far left end if you want that All Over Tan without anyone caring!
Kefalonia’s most famous beach and one of the most photographed in the world, Myrtos is a photographic gem. From 1km above, a pure white pebble beach is framed by dramatic limestone cliffs that plunge almost vertically into a sea that is a multitude of turquoise hues that only an artistic genius could recreate.
However, its spectacular beauty disguises its dangers which are a strong undertow that has challenged even the strongest swimmers, so caution is advised when taking a dip. But you must not forget to take the obligatory photo from above and it is without doubt one of the best places to witness one Kefalonia’s spectacular sunsets at the end of the day.
A famous destination for the summer offering plenty of modern amenities mostly gathered on the main street of the village. Skala is the largest resort of the southern part of Kefalonia.
The village reveals interesting ruins of a Roman Villa dating back from the 2nd century BC with magnificent mosaic floors.
The Skala beach offers an excellent view to the Ionian sea.