Exploring Nature on Kefalonia – The Beautiful Greek Island
Kefalonia Island – one of Greece’s most beautiful islands
Kefalonia Island is the largest in the Ionian Sea and the only one in Greece with a national park, serving as the habitat for two different turtle species. One side of the island boasts stunning golden sandy beaches, while the other features white pebble coves. Kefalonia offers rugged landscapes adorned with impressive pine trees lining every road. Its pastel-colored harbors are surrounded by the bluest waters.
Situated in an ideal location at the center of the Ionian Sea, Kefalonia has inspired many with its beauty and served as a backdrop for the famous film “Captain Corelli’s Mandolin.” Not only is Kefalonia the largest island in the Ionian part of Greece, but it is also one of the most beautiful! Proud of its breathtaking natural scenery with enchanting beaches, picturesque fishing villages, and mystical underground caves, Kefalonia is a top destination in Greece for nature lovers.
Renowned worldwide for its stunning beaches like Myrtos, Antisamos, Lourdas, and Skala, impressive landscapes, and delicious cuisine, the island attracts and captivates thousands of tourists. Its small coves, charming villages, dazzling white sands, exciting activities, mysterious caves, and vibrant atmosphere create a unique vacation paradise amidst the Ionian Sea.
Compared to some other Greek islands, Kefalonia is quite large. There is plenty to see on this island, so it’s recommended to stay at least a week, though many tourists come for day trips or even extended weekend getaways.
Discovering Kefalonia, Greece:
Hiking Mount Ainos and Exploring the National Park
Kefalonia is home to Greece’s only national park located on an island. This national park spans over 3000 hectares and is the biodiversity center of Kefalonia. The park is covered by beautiful black pine and Greek fir trees. A specific fir tree species called Abies Cephalonica is unique to Kefalonia and covers 2/3 of this stunning National Park.
Hiking up the mountain is relatively easy to explore Kefalonia. The highest point of the mountain reaches 1,628 meters, and on clear days, you can see as far as the Peloponnese, Ithaca, and Zakynthos.
Melissani Lake in Karavomylos is a must-visit when exploring Kefalonia. The lake is located within a cave with an opening right at the top. At certain times of the day, the sunlight pierces through the cave, making the water sparkle like an emerald!
There is a free parking area right next to the entrance in Karavomylos. After purchasing a ticket, you descend into the cave, where you are greeted with a beautiful ancient wooden boat floating on the water. Depending on the crowd, you may have a private tour. During peak seasons, be prepared to queue and share the boat with others. The tour lasts about half an hour and is a marvelous experience.
Hiking to Assos Castle
The castle in Assos is a beautiful example of Venetian architecture. Although now mostly in ruins, certain parts are well-preserved. The trail to the castle will take you through beautiful olive and green trees. Visit the stunning Arched gate and find some great vantage points over the picturesque village of Assos.
Assos is a picture-perfect pastel-colored village with its houses sitting right at the edge of the water. Assos has two beaches and the ruins of the Venetian castle with some breathtaking views over this scenic town. Assos has plenty of wonders to offer. Myrtos beach, the most stunning beach on the island, is just a short drive away from Assos. Visiting this town is a must on your Kefalonia journey.
Turtle Spotting at Koroni Beach
Kefalonia is home to two different turtle species, the loggerhead sea turtle and the green sea turtle. There are several spots on Kefalonia known for the frequent appearance of turtles. They can often be spotted near the Argostoli harbor trailing behind boats as they enter the port. However, Koroni beach is a remarkable destination for turtle spotting. Here, you can see the work of the wildlife organization in Kefalonia to learn about the turtle conservation efforts on the island.
Explore Argostoli, the Capital of Kefalonia
This town is the capital of Kefalonia, and it is much livelier than other areas of the island with numerous cafes, bars, and restaurants.
Although much of Argostoli was destroyed during wars and earthquakes, the capital has been rebuilt into a charming pastel town. Foodies should wander around the pastry shops, market stalls, and riverfront taverns.
Overall, Kefalonia is an island filled with natural wonders and picturesque landscapes, making it an ideal destination for anyone seeking an unforgettable experience in Greece.
The Most Beautiful Beaches in Kefalonia:
Myrtos Beach, the most beautiful beach in Kefalonia: This beach is situated between Mount Agia Dynati and Mount Kalon Oros. These two mountains create an impressive backdrop with lush greenery, pine trees, cypress trees, and olive trees, forming a beautiful contrast of green shades against the crystal-clear waters.
Myrtos Beach is well-known for its stunning turquoise waters. The waves on this beach wash small limestone pebbles, creating a magical effect that illuminates the water. This effect gives the water a deep emerald color that will make you want to jump right in.
Antisamos Beach: This beach is one of the best for sunbathing and swimming while exploring Kefalonia. It is a pebbly beach located near Sami port. There is a beautiful landscape with plenty of lush green foliage and countless hills covered in vibrant green and crystal-clear waters.
Loutro Beach: This pebble beach is a perfect place to unwind in Kefalonia. It is surrounded by lush green hills covered in trees and beautiful foliage. The stunning green hills are mirrored in the crystal-clear waters of the sea. You can walk to this beach from the town of Sami.
Foki Beach: This beautiful beach is quite unique. It is very different from the typical Greek beach you might have in mind. It is surrounded by oak and cypress trees, creating a small protected bay. The beach has a shape within a bay with a natural roof, meaning you are sheltered from the wind and have calm waters to swim in. Foki Beach is close to the colorful town of Fiskardo. There are plenty of dining options and cocktail bars to end your day on a high note.
Kefalonia’s cuisine is based on the natural flavors of the island, with ripe juicy oranges, hand-pressed olive oil, and tender young lamb. You’ll have the opportunity to enjoy Halloumi cheese dishes, perfect for cheese lovers, while the sweet treats include loukoumades – honey and sesame-coated donuts. To experience the best restaurants in Kefalonia, opt for traditional taverns like Waterway, nestled romantically on the cliff’s edge, or Tassia by the harbor in Fiskardo.