Kefalonia

Kefalonia

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About Kefalonia

A breath-taking Greek escape

The largest in the Ionian island chain, Kefalonia is 350 square miles of beautiful countryside and rugged coastline. If you haven’t already been charmed by its role as the setting for Captain Corelli’s Mandolin, it’s sure to leave you breathless with its never-ending natural beauty – including sheer cliffs, towering mountain ranges and clear blue seas.

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While it can be tempting to base yourself at the capital, Argostóli, or one of the utilitarian ferry ports, Sámi or Póros, you’re best to choose one of the ‘name’ beach resorts as these are sure to guarantee more of a holiday experience. The three top resort towns are Ássos, Fiskárdo and Skála which each cater well towards British tourists. If you do want to stay in Argostóli, treat yourself to a stay at the plush Ionian Plaza which boasts many high-end features.

As with many of its neighbouring islands, Kefalonia’s best buys are local products. Most visitors leave with a couple of bottles of the famed robóla wine, especial the Gentilini label, which is revered for its crisp taste. Kefalonia’s honey is also prized as it has a slightly different taste, attributed to the high quantity of fir forests in the countryside. Alternatively, those in search of a more traditional shopping experience should visit the shopping district in Argostóli where it’s possible to find all manner of retailers.

Though often on the pricey side, good tavernas are scattered evenly across Kefalonia. Generally, you will be well-rewarded for nosing around off the beaten track – for example, you can discover an incredible fish restaurant, the Waterway, on the beach below the tiny Spartiá village. For an absolute treat, the Paradise Beach Taverna, outside Agía Efimía, is beloved by tourists.  

In keeping with the traditions of many island nations, Kefalonia has a unique set of events and festivals to enjoy which can form the centrepiece of any holiday to the island. Here are a few of our favourites:

Dormition of the Virgin

Quite possibly the most bizarre version of this Pan-Hellenic holiday, the Dormition of the Virgin is held in August in and around Markópoulo village church. Numerous small harmless snakes appear around the island during the festival, which are said to be the nuns of a vanished local convent transformed into serpents to avoid being abducted by pirates. The snakes bring good fortune to all who see them.

Ágios Gerásimos Monastery Pilgrimages

A celebration of the patron saint of Kefalonia, Saint Gerasimos, these pilgrimages see devout worshippers journey to an eponymous monastery near Frangáta where the Saint’s holy relics and body are kept. Monks kiss the cloth-covered feet of the Saint, who is removed partially from his habitual sarcophagus and perched in a vertical position.

Useful Information

Key facts

Language:Greek
Currency:Euro
Time zone:GMT +2 hours (GMT +3 hours in summer)
Flight time:3 hours 40 mins
Airport code:EFL
Holiday type:Beach / Summer Sun

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Kefalonia map

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