As we all know, Summer feels like it gets shorter every year, the good weather just doesn’t seem to last these days and before you know it we’re talking about AW. With that, we decided to jet off to Kefalonia and squeeze in one final SS17 shoot with some of our friends.
(By booking at the right time flights can cost as little as £28.99 one way, which is a fantastic deal to fly to Greece, we found easyJet offered some of the cheapest flights going when travelling to Kefalonia.)
Kefalonia is one of the few islands in the world special enough to portray a perfect harmony of greens and blues that define paradise. The lush green hills coupled with the with breathtaking beaches and crystal clear waters will leave you lost for words. The largest of the Ionian islands, Kefalonia is roughly 304 square miles; 80 square miles bigger than Ibiza, with only a quarter of the population. For that reason it never feels crowded, even in high season on the photogenic sands of Myrtos, or among the swanky, marina-side restaurants of Fiscardo.
We were lucky enough to stay in the magnificent Villa Daphni. Positioned on the side of the valley of Pylaros our luxurious detached villa provided amazing panoramic views both down to the azure Ionian waters of the Bay of Sami and around to the valley surrounded by the mountains.
With a lovely pool on a beautiful pebble-paved terrace, a nice pergola and an elevated garden for relaxing and unwinding outside, we had numerous barbecues on an evening after days spent shooting and exploring the island.
Our local village was a quaint little fishing port, Agia Efimia. As far as local villages go you couldn’t ask for better; of course there’s the essentials such as supermarkets, a bakers and a butchers but the restaurants along the front offered top notch authentic Greek food which was delicious!
The locals were very friendly too and regularly go out of their way to assist tourists. In particular, a special mention has to be reserved for the local butcher; consistent barbecues meant we were visiting his establishment most days and he always gave us a great deal!
Things to see and do:
With the crystal blue water and the relaxing atmosphere, the exotic beaches are probably the top reason to visit Kefalonia. Myrtos and Antisamos are the ‘go to’ beaches, however you will also find numerous other gorgeous places to swim. Fiscardo, Argostoli and Assos are fine villages to walk around with traditional architecture, cosmopolitan style and delicious restaurants. Also, be sure to check out the Drogarati and Melissani caves for a truly unique experience.
As mentioned, close by Agia Efimia has ample restaurants and bars to choose from, on top of this there are a large number of boat rentals, trips and ‘island taxis’ available to explore Greece in style.
Possibly one of the most beautiful beaches I’ve ever seen. Evidently a playground for the rich and famous from the amount of yachts around, this beach is one of the top ranked in the world and one of the places to go when visiting Kefalonia.
This is a fabulous place to spend a day at the sun. Surrounded by impressive white rocky cliffs and lush vegetation, the semi-circular shape of the beach creates a spectacular isolated setting.
Of course the temperatures are high, but fortunately, as a result of the composition of the area there is a regular refreshing breeze which helps you to remain comfortable. On top of this, the exotic waters, with different shades of blues are perfect for a quick swim.
Before making the descent down to the sands be sure to stop off at the top off the road for some unbelievable views and photo opportunities!
Antisamos is a large beautiful bay surrounded by greenery and easily my favourite destination for swimming, activities and sunbathing in Kefalonia.
The green hills and lush vegetation that overlook the pebbled sands are perfect for exploring and seeking out more secluded parts of the beach.
The beach is partly organised with a water sports centre where you can take out a couple of jet skis or go on a speed boat whilst a beach bar provides food and drink for those not chasing any thrills out on the water.
Antisamos has gained worldwide reputation from the Hollywood movie Captain Corelli’s Mandolin.
Located on the northern side of Kefalonia is the lovely port village of Fiscardo. Fiscardo village is located around 50 km north of Argostoli and is very much based around its waterfront. Boasting many private yachts amongst the local fishing boats, this lovely spot offers incredible views to the neighbouring island of Ithaca.
This picturesque fishing village is one of the few villages that remained untouched from the major earthquake of 1953. Today it’s known for its cosmopolitan and warm atmosphere whilst maintaining a unique charm through the traditional buildings – this area truly reflects the rich heritage of Kefalonia.
Argostoli is the the capital of Kefalonia and has a population of 14,000 inhabitants. The area has been completely rebuilt since the earthquake which destroyed the entirety of the town, and perhaps the most striking structure of the rebuild is a magnificent stone bridge. 650 metres long, the ‘Drapano Bridge’ stands at the entrance of the capital and is a must see when stopping off at Argostoli.
Now, a modern and cosmopolitan town, Argostoli does get quite busy during the summer season as it offers a plethora of interesting features and activities.
Be sure to check out the central square called Plateia Valianou (Vallianos Square). The square is lined with many restaurants, cafes and bars and during the evenings the square has a brilliantly warm and friendly atmosphere.
Assos was one of my favourite places we visited, a lovely seaside village with colourful houses dominated by the ruins of a 16th century Venetian castle.
Charming is the best word to describe Assos; a fishing port lined with impressive cafes and restaurants with no more than a few hundred inhabitants.
The traditional architecture, the peaceful landscape and the pebbled beaches compose the natural beauty of Assos. A stroll around the narrow alleys reveals colourful houses, lovely paths and old churches. We set up camp on one of the many tavernas perched on the quayside overlooking the bay and enjoyed a few Mythos.
Drogarati Caves and the Melissani Cave
Located a short drive from Sami are the caves of Drogarati. At first I was sceptical about visiting the caves however I did find it very interesting a great way to spend some time out of the sun; well worth a visit!
Speleologists say that the Drogarati Caves are about 150 million years old and constitutes a rare geological phenomenon. Scientists have discovered that the caves have extensions that are not reachable and believe that through this extension there are possible connections to other sea caves on the island. The Drogarati Caves are therefore a natural art masterpiece that has taken its present form over thousands of years of continual changes.
Close by to the Drogarati caves sits the Melissani cave and lake. The Melissani cave itself is B-shaped with two chambers or halls separated with land. The roof of one of the halls caved in centuries ago letting sunlight filter in. We visited around lunch time, we were told this is the best time, as the sun is right overhead at noon. The sunlight hitting the turquoise-blue waters creates an unbelievable spectacle and the whole cave suddenly feels lit with blue light.
What are you waiting for…