Take a tour of stunning Kefalonia in Greece
Magical Kefalonia (also known as Cephalonia) is the largest of the Ionian Islands and probably the most varied in its landscapes and pretty harbour-front villages. Here, visitors can relax on the beaches in the pretty coves, overlooking crystal-clear waters teeming with colourful fish. For those seeking silence, the interior of the island features wild meadows, vineyards, oleander shrubs and Mediterranean oak forests. While much of the island’s historic Venetian architecture was tragically razed by the 1953 earthquake, pretty harbour-front villages like Assos and Fiskardo retain their Italianate good looks and quaint streets to explore.
The island also offers a range of quality accommodation options, including bed & breakfasts and hotels. However, a comfortable way to stay is in one of the many luxurious holiday rental villas in Kefalonia. Kefalonia also offers some fascinating geological wonders to explore, including a beguiling lake and a truly spectacular cave in Sami.
Melissani Lake, Sami, Kefalonia
Sami on the island of Kefalonia features two spectacular geological oddities, located a short distance from each other. The first is Melissani Lake, which got its name following archaeological excavations in 1951 and 1962. While exploring the area, the archaeologists discovered depictions of the nymph Melissanthia and the god Pan, and decided it was a good idea to name the lake after the nymph.
The lake was created many years ago after an underground cavern collapsed, leaving a huge circular opening to the surface. On sunny days, between 11 am and 1 pm, Lake Melissani turns an otherworldly and spectacular blue.
Drogarati Cave, Sami, Kefalonia
A short distance away from Lake Melissani lies the Drogarati Cave. An entrance to the cave was opened 300 years ago during an earthquake. However, the cave was only eventually opened to the public in 1963.
The interior of the cave features beautiful stalagmites and stalactites, but the largest room in the cave is best known and has been named, “Sala of Apotheosis.” The 900 sq m room is illuminated and is regularly used for music concerts, due to its incredible acoustics.
Activity sports in Kefalonia
Due to its remarkable geological formations, Kefalonia has become a popular diving destination. This is due to the several reefs and underwater caves on the island’s coastline. A number of diving centres have been opened, offering courses and diving trips into the Ionian Sea. Divers can even explore the Melissani Lake mentioned above where they can explore the bottom of the lake.
Several of the island’s beaches, including Xi and Antisamos, offer water sports centres where many activities can be enjoyed and the Lixouri peninsula is ideal for windsurfing and paragliding. For those who prefer hiking, many old footpaths on the island have been signposted, taking hikers to mountain villages, monasteries, Medieval castles and secluded beaches.
Experience Kefalonia on your next Greek Island adventure – take in the landscapes, fascinating geological formations and more.
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Latest update: April 21, 2021