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Kefalonia

Kefalonia

One of the Greece’s most treasured islands, this sun-drenched escape is ideal for holiday-makers who want to enjoy the natural luxury that is Greek island life. Perfect for either a relaxing beach holiday, or to explore the rich history and charm of this ancient culture, here you can immerse yourself in the best of everything that Greece has to offer. Particular attractions to Kefalonia include a local passion and expertise for the making of fine wine, a thriving collection of tourist and traditional towns and not to forget the amazing offering of delicious cuisine available from the island’s many taverna’s.

It’s best to base yourself at one of the ‘name’ beach resorts rather than the capital Argostóli (though this does have a beach annexe in Lássi) or utilitarian ferry ports Sámi or Póros. Castle-stooked Ássos (mostly studios/apartments), Fiskárdo in the far north, which escaped 1953 earthquake damage (again, self-catering predominantly), and sandy Skála in the far southeast (home to the friendly beachside Anassa Hotel) are especially popular. Exceptions to this pattern include much-praised Trapezaki Bay Hotel (Trapezáki Beach, below Lourdáta), and the intimate (22-room) Odyssey Hotel in Agía Efimía. If you do end up in Argostóli for any reason, pamper yourself at the central, plush Ionian Plaza (Platía Vallianoú).

As on so many Greek islands, the best buys are local products. Cephalonia is famed for its crisp white robóla wine, especially Gentilini label (visit their winery at Miniés, on the road between Argostóli and the airport). Mavrodaphne is a dry, intensely red wine, not to be confused with the Mavrodaphne dessert wine produced in the Peloponnese. Island honey may well have a soupçon of fir to it, courtesy of the dense fir forests on Mt Énos. In Argostóli, the main shopping district is pedestrianised Lithóstrato, with all manner of retailers; elsewhere, Fiskárdo has the densest concentration of tourist boutiques.

Good tavernas are scattered fairly evenly across giant Kefaloniá, though often on the pricey side (especially in yacht-crammed Fiskárdo). Nosing around off the beaten track is amply rewarded – for instance, on the beach below tiny Spartiá village, where Waterway has freshly caught fish on the menu, or at Xouras (Petáni Beach), a great all-rounder with casserole dishes. Paradise Beach Taverna, outside Agía Efimía, is uniformly praised, while in castle-stooked Ássos, jolly Platanos features spit-roasted suckling pig and Panos’ own-grown ingredients. In the two largest, untouristy towns, Lixoúri’s Akrogiali (south end of quay) is ace for cooked dishes, or grills by night, while Argostóli’s Kyani Akti (Andóni Trítsi 1) is an expensive but excellent seafood tavern cantilevered over the water

Dormition of the Virgin
August
In and around Markópoulo village church, this is quite possibly the most bizarre version of this important pan-Hellenic holiday. Annually, on or around 15 August, numerous small harmless snakes appear, said in legend to be the nuns of a vanished local convent so transformed to avoid being abducted by pirates. They of course bring luck to the villagers.


Ágios Gerásimos Monastery Pilgrimages
August and October
Gerasimos, although not born on Cephalonia, is the much-loved patron saint of the island, and his relics are kept at the eponymous monastery near Frangáta. On 15-16 August and 19-20 October especially, devout pilgrims come to kiss the cloth-covered feet of the man, removed partially from his habitual sarcophagus and perched in a vertical position.


Wine Festival
August
Each August, Frangáta village hosts a three-day wine-tasting bash, conveniently after the Ágios Gerásimos feast, with robóla wine of course assiduously promoted.


International Argostóli Music Festival
August
Greek and international artists perform at various venues (some outdoor) in the island capital.


Lixoúri Music Festival
September
The big bash in the island’s second town, with the local filarmonikí (brass band), which runs a music school here, duly prominent.

TIMETABLES

This is a Summer only destination

ESSENTIALS

Language
Greek
Currency
Euro
Time zone
GMT +2
Flight time
3 Hours 40
Holiday type
Beach , Sightseeing , Summer Sun

WEATHER

26/11/14
Partly cloudy skies
Partly cloudy skies
16°C
min
18°C
max
27/11/14
Moderate rain
Moderate rain
17°C
min
18°C
max
28/11/14
Light rain shower
Light rain shower
18°C
min
19°C
max
29/11/14
Cloudy skies
Cloudy skies
19°C
min
21°C
max
30/11/14
Sunny skies
Sunny skies
19°C
min
23°C
max
01/12/14
Moderate or heavy rain shower
Moderate or heavy rain shower
18°C
min
21°C
max
Jan
14°C max
9°C min
Feb
14°C max
9°C min
Mar
16°C max
10°C min
Apr
18°C max
12°C min
May
23°C max
16°C min
Jun
27°C max
20°C min
Jul
30°C max
22°C min
Aug
30°C max
22°C min
Sep
27°C max
20°C min
Oct
24°C max
17°C min
Nov
19°C max
14°C min
Dec
15°C max
10°C min

AIRLINES

TODAY'S WEATHER

Partly cloudy skies 18°C
16°C
min
18°C
max
76%
huimidity

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