Kefalonia Greece Travel Guide & Best Things To Do

The island of Kefalonia in Greece (also spelled Cephalonia) is amazingly scenic, and it’s still not as crowded as other Greek islands like Zakynthos or Santorini .

You can visit Kefalonia on a day trip from Zakynthos and see some of the top sights in one full day, but in my opinion it’s better to stay at least a few days on the island and spend more time sightseeing.

The most famous thing to see in Kefalonia island is the Melissani lake and cave, but the island also has loads of good beaches with soft white pebbles and turquoise water.

This travel blog will explain some of the best things to do in Kefalonia Greece, how to get there, where to stay, and the best transport options and tour packages. I’ve also included a map of the island for planning your trip!

Best Kefalonia Tours

First of all, if you only have a short stay in Kefalonia, such as a few days or less, then a day tour can be a great way to see the island.

We recommend GetYourGuide for Kefalonia tours! They have high rated private tours that go to a bunch of the best sights like Melissani Cave, Antisamos Beach, and Myrtos Viewpoint.

If you’re a solo traveler on a budget, they also have shared tours by bus. These tours usually include free hotel pickup and drop-off from most of the popular areas in Kefalonia.

We’ve used this company for lots of day tours and activities around the world, and they’re great! Highly recommended.

Book Now: Kefalonia Private Tour / Bus Tour

Where Is Kefalonia Island?

Kefalonia (also spelled Cephalonia) is an island located in the Ionian Sea, west of mainland Greece.

There are a total of seven Ionian Islands in Greece, and the distance from Athens to Kefalonia is only about 260 kilometers (160 miles) in a straight line.

Kefalonia Greece Island Best Things To Do Cephalonia Fteri Beach Paralia

Fteri Beach — one of the best things to do in Kefalonia Greece!

How To Get To Kefalonia Greece

Kefalonia island can be reached by flight or ferry.

Flying to Kefalonia is the easiest, fastest, and most expensive (but recommended) way to get there. The Kefalonia airport (EFL) is served by daily nonstop flights from Athens, as well as some international cities like Amsterdam, London, and Munich.

The flight time to Kefalonia from Athens is 1 hour, and it costs anywhere from 50 to 100 Euros for a one way ticket with Aegean/Olympic Air or Sky Express.

The best airline to use is Aegean (or its subsidiary Olympic Air) instead of Sky Express if you have a choice, but any of them are fine. Free checked baggage is usually included in the ticket prices.

Shop Now: Kefalonia flights at Skyscanner

Kefalonia Greece Island Best Things To Do Cephalonia Assos Village

Drone view of Assos village

Taking the ferry to Kefalonia from Athens is cheaper than flying, but it’s slower and a bit more complicated.

You first have to take a 4 hour bus ride from Athens to Kyllini (which costs 25 Euros), and then hop on the ferry there. The boat ride from Kyllini to Kefalonia takes around 1.5 hours and costs about 14 Euros.

There are also ferries running from nearby islands like Zakynthos and Ithaca, so if you’re interested in doing some island hopping in Greece and you want to see more than just Kefalonia, you can mix up the itinerary a bit.

For example, you can fly into Kefalonia for a few days, take the ferry to Zakynthos , and then fly from Zakynthos back to Athens. Or do the same thing in the opposite direction. That’s what we did, and it worked out great!

There are even day tours to Kefalonia from Zakynthos if you’re short on time and want to see some of the highlights of the island.

Kefalonia Greece Island Best Things To Do Cephalonia Myrtos Viewpoint Beach

Myrtos Viewpoint — one of the best things to do in Kefalonia island!

Transport: How To Get Around On Kefalonia

Kefalonia is a pretty good sized island (almost twice as big as Zakynthos ), and driving from one side to the other can take hours. If you want to do the island justice, then you’ll need transport.

For short distance trips near town, there’s no Uber but you can hire a taxi. We used Welcome Pickups for our airport transfers in Greece, and had a great experience. They have clean cars and safe drivers who will bring you from the airport to your hotel, and vice versa.

The main way to get around on Kefalonia island is by renting a car. There are many companies offering car rentals on the island, but we recommend DiscoverCars !

Driving in Kefalonia is a little stressful, but not too hard, and most of the roads are in good condition. We found it to be a bit easier than Zakynthos. It’s a more mountainous island, so you’ll occasionally have steep roads, but these are well paved.

Kefalonia Greece Island Best Things To Do Cephalonia Assos Village Drone

Another view of Assos village

A few remote roads in Cephalonia may still be gravel with occasional potholes, but even those roads are quickly improving as the island becomes more accessible and popular with travelers.

The main difficulty is driving in Argostoli town, where there’s more traffic and the roads are narrow, with lots of cars parked on both sides. Drive slowly in town and stay alert. Once you get out of town, the roads are smooth sailing for the most part.

Greeks drive on the right side of the road, similar to the US and Canada. The locals like to drive fast, and they frequently ignore speed limits and pass on double yellow lines. Just be aware of this, and move over to let them pass.

Kefalonia Greece Island Best Things To Do Cephalonia Petani Beach

Petani Beach — blue water and white pebbles

Since the law was changed in 2021, foreign tourists from Australia, Canada, UK and the United States do not need an International Driving Permit (IDP) to drive in Greece anymore.

The actual text of the new law (in Greek language) can be found in Law 4850, art. 25, par. η, page 10697 , and it’s also been confirmed by the U.S. Embassy in Greece .

With that said, it still doesn’t hurt to have an IDP for Kefalonia in case there’s confusion from the authorities or your local car rental company. Many people in Greece still seem to be unaware of this change.

If you don’t feel like driving in Kefalonia, it’s also possible to see the island with a private tour or bus tour .  

Where To Stay In Kefalonia

Argostoli Marina

Argostoli Marina

Garbis Villas

Garbis Villas

Mouikis Hotel

Mouikis Hotel

Aenos Hotel

Aenos Hotel

Best Things To Do In Kefalonia Greece

• melissani cave lake.

Melissani is a spectacular underground lake and cave in Kefalonia with an open ceiling that lights up its stunning blue water.

You can go into this cave and take a short paddleboat tour around the lake, and it’s easily one of the best things to do in Kefalonia! If you visit Melissani cave at the right time of day, the ceiling lets in just enough light to make the water color go crazy, turning a transparent bright blue.

I would almost say this is a bucket list item that every world traveler needs to see, although the boat ride is a bit short and the lake is really dependent on the right lighting in order to look its best.

Kefalonia Greece Island Best Things To Do Cephalonia Melissani Cave Lake

Melissani Cave Lake

Because of its beauty, Melissani has become one of the most popular places to visit in Kefalonia, so you’ll usually have to queue to see it. During the high season months, the line can take anywhere from 10 to 40 minutes.

Mid-day is the best time to see the cave because that’s when the sun is highest in the sky, lighting up the colors of the lake. Unfortunately, that’s also the busiest time to visit, so be prepared to wait.

Even though the boat ride is short (about 10 minutes), it’s loaded with good photo opportunities! If you’re lucky, you can sometimes see eels swimming around in the lake too. It’s a great little adventure.

Read More: Melissani Cave Lake

Book Now: Melissani Lake Private Tour / Half-Day Tour / Bus Tour

Kefalonia Greece Island Best Things To Do Cephalonia Melissani Cave Lake

Rowboats on the stunning Melissani Lake

• Antisamos Beach

Antisamos is a beautiful beach with clear water and soft waves, and it’s surrounded by green hills on all sides. The water at this beach is clear as glass and great for swimming.

It used to be a quiet, hidden beach, but nowadays it’s quite commercial and busy. There’s easy access on a paved road from the harbor town of Sami, and the beach has restaurants with lots of umbrellas, bathrooms, and parking.

Because of the proximity to Sami, this beach is easy to combine with a visit to the nearby Melissani Lake and Drogarati Cave.

Overall, it’s a great beach to bring the family for swimming and relaxing!

Antisamos Beach Paralia

Relaxing at Antisamos Beach

• Myrtos Beach

Myrtos is one of the most spectacular locations in Kefalonia, with a snow white pebble beach surrounded by steep cliffs on both sides, and a viewpoint where you can look down at the beach from above.

Make sure you stop at the roadside viewpoint (located here ) before going down to the beach. It has some of the best scenery in Kefalonia, and you don’t have to pay or do any hiking to see it!

This spot has amazing views of the Kefalonia coastline and the steep road leading down to the beach. Parking is limited, but there’s usually space since cars continually come and go.

Kefalonia Greece Island Best Things To Do Cephalonia Myrtos Viewpoint Beach

Myrtos Viewpoint

Myrtos Beach is accessed by a steep paved road that can be a little unnerving at times, especially since you have to share it with other cars going back up the hill.

In the high season, it’s best to come here early for parking because Myrtos is very popular. However, the beach is more than 700 meters long so it never feels too crowded at all. Waves can be rough here, so it’s probably not a great spot for kids to swim.

The bright pebbles and cliffs at Myrtos Beach are almost blindingly white, with colorful turquoise water. It’s probably Kefalonia’s most beautiful beach!

Myrtos Beach Paralia

Myrtos Beach

• Assos Village

Assos is a little seaside village on a peninsula in northern Kefalonia. A visit to this spot is definitely one of the best things to do in Kefalonia island!

It’s a quaint and colorful town that’s great for pictures, and we would’ve loved to stay longer. There’s a nice little protected beach where you can go for a swim, and plenty of shops and restaurants by the coast.

Shade trees and benches by the water make it a great place to sit and relax.

Kefalonia Greece Island Best Things To Do Cephalonia Assos Village

Assos village

Assos once served as the administrative capital of northern Cephalonia under Venetian rule, starting in 1593.

If you have extra time, climb the hill to the Venetian Castle of Assos for a great view of the town from the opposite side. You can reach the castle ruins in about 30-40 minutes from the car park, and it’s free to visit.

Parking at Assos is limited and can fill up in the high season months, so you’ll want to arrive early if possible.

Where To Stay In Assos: Romanza Studios

Kefalonia Greece Island Best Things To Do Cephalonia Assos Village Drone

• Fiskardo Village

Fiskardo is a historic harbor town on the northern tip of Kefalonia island, with a ferry that runs to the nearby Greek islands of Ithaca and Lefkada.

Even if you don’t plan on using the ferry, Fiskardo is a great place to visit to walk around the harbor and enjoy the seaside views. We had a great lunch of Greek gyros in Fiskardo and bought some souvenirs.

I have to say the town of Fiskardo was more crowded than Assos and not quite as photogenic. It’s still worth a visit, but if you have to choose only one of these towns to see then I would pick Assos for sure.

Where To Stay: Fiscardo Studios

Fiskardo Village Fiscardo Drone

Fiskardo village

Old Venetian Lighthouse Fiskardo

The old Venetian lighthouse at Fiskardo village

• Fteri Beach

Fteri is a secluded beach that’s reachable by boat (‘ water taxi ‘) from the town of Zola.

The boat ride is easy and comfy, and takes less than 10 minutes each way. You can stay at the beach for hours if you like, and the boat captain will give you a WhatsApp number to call when you’re ready to go back to Zola.

I had my doubts about this setup at first, but it worked really smoothly for us. You don’t have to book anything in advance, and during the high season there are plenty of boats coming and going.

Fteri is a beautiful beach and very photogenic, with a turquoise water color that almost looks unreal. The beach was empty when we arrived, although it started to fill up with people by the time we left.

Fteri Beach Paralia

Fteri Beach

Fteri Beach Paralia Water Taxi Boat

The beach is reachable by boat (‘ water taxi ‘)

The waves at Fteri are calm so it’s great for swimming, although water shoes help for walking on the hard white pebbles. If you want, you can pay extra to explore some of the other nearby beaches and sea caves by boat.

If you’re on a budget, you can also reach Fteri by hiking for about 30-45 minutes on a trail , but the path is rough and unmarked so most people use the water taxi instead.

Prices for the water taxis are pretty reasonable, and if you’re a solo traveler you don’t have to rent your own boat, you can join a boat with other people to save costs. Overall, it’s a very fun experience!

Kefalonia Greece Island Best Things To Do Cephalonia Fteri Beach Paralia Drone

Drone view of Fteri Beach

• Petani Beach

Petani Beach might be tied with Fteri as the most beautiful beach on the island of Kefalonia. This one is located on the western peninsula of the island.

This is an easy access beach with all the facilities: restaurants and bars, showers, and lots of umbrellas. Like the other top beaches in Kefalonia, it can get very busy during the peak season, so it’s a good idea to show up early.

The water at this beach is crystal clear and it’s surrounded by limestone mountains. It’s very nice!

Petani Beach Paralia

Petani Beach

Best Kefalonia Photo Spot

I would have to say the best photo spot in Kefalonia is probably the Melissani cave and lake. It was my favorite of the many places we saw in Kefalonia.

The viewpoint above Myrtos Beach is also amazing, and Assos village is highly photogenic at any time of day. Kefalonia is a great place for photographers.

For drone pilots, it’s possible to take amazing photos on Kefalonia island. The locals in Greece aren’t strict about drones here, and there are lots of quiet places to fly without disturbing anyone. If in doubt, just ask before you fly.

Kefalonia Greece Island Best Things To Do Cephalonia Myrtos Viewpoint

Best Beaches In Kefalonia

The island of Cephalonia is loaded with great beaches. It has a much better selection of beaches than nearby Zakynthos island .

If you’re mainly just looking for the popular beaches with easy access and beachfront accommodation, check out the beaches on the southern coast of the island, such as Kalamia, Xi, Makris Gialos, Skala, and Ragia Beach.

For the really scenic beaches, check out Antisamos, Myrtos, Fteri, and Petani Beach. All of these have colorful turquoise water, white pebble shores, and dramatic limestone mountains.

Myrtos Beach Paralia

Snow white pebbles at Myrtos Beach

Map Of Kefalonia

Here’s a map of Kefalonia island you can use to plan your trip in Greece.

You can click the icons on this map to get more info and directions for each point of interest, but keep in mind some of the locations may be approximate.

What To Bring

Here are some packing suggestions for your trip to Kefalonia.

Most of the items below can probably be found on the island in a pinch, but the quality of stuff you buy on the street won’t be guaranteed (personally, I’m not about to use a junky knockoff bag from a street vendor to protect my expensive camera gear).

It’s best to buy vetted products online!

  • Waterproof Bag: Essential for keeping your electronics safe on the boats. I brought a 30 liter bag and was able to fit my drone, tablet, camera, phone, and a bunch of other stuff inside. Everything was kept dry, even when I took the bag swimming a few times!
  • Waterproof Phone Pouch: Same as above, but these are for your phone only. Great if you don’t have other electronics and just need something small to protect your phone.
  • Snorkeling Gear: Good for exploring the clear waters around Kefalonia, and sometimes you can even see turtles. Snorkels and masks can be borrowed or rented from the boat companies too, but if you plan to do multiple tours it’s better to bring your own gear.
  • Water Shoes: Save your feet some grief and wear water shoes! Many of the beaches in Kefalonia have pebbles instead of sand, so water shoes will feel better for getting in and out of the water.

White Rocks Beach Drone

White Rocks Beach

Kefalonia Greece Island Best Things To Do Cephalonia Fteri Beach Paralia

Fteri Beach is one of our favorites

Other Tips For Kefalonia

  • Credit Cards: You can pay by credit card for most hotels, restaurants, and other things in Kefalonia, but it’s still a good idea to carry cash (in Euros). Some smaller restaurants only take cash, or the card machines may go down. If you show up at a harbor and want to book a boat tour on the spot, then they’ll ask you to pay in cash.
  • ATM: There are ATMs within reach of every corner of the island. We usually pulled 200 Euros at a time, and never had any issues. One thing to note is that the ATMs will offer you their own conversion rate (which is a really bad rate), or you can continue in Euros. Make sure you choose Euros without their silly conversion rate. This is a well known scam at ATMs in Greece, but it’s easily avoided if you know what you’re doing.
  • Cell Service: Phone reception is strong across most of Kefalonia island, although you may lose service in some places while driving around because the island is fairly mountainous.
  • WiFi: Internet quality in Kefalonia is not the greatest, but it’s improving, especially in the main town areas. Don’t expect WiFi speeds on par with Athens (or other European countries), but it’s generally good enough for emails, browsing, and maybe a little bit of streaming.

Myrtos Beach Paralia

Kefalonia views at Myrtos Beach

  • Language: The local language in Kefalonia is Greek, of course, but almost everyone speaks and understands enough English for conversation. Lots of UK tourists visit the Ionian islands, so the locals are accustomed to speaking English with travelers.
  • Mosquitoes: We never saw any mosquitoes in Kefalonia, and the island isn’t known to be home to the West Nile Virus, so it’s not really a significant concern here.
  • Water: The tap water in Kefalonia is supposed to be safe to drink, but it doesn’t taste good. It’s better to drink bottled water, which is cheap and can be found at any mini market. You can use the tap water for cooking or brushing your teeth.

Is Kefalonia Safe?

Yes, Kefalonia is a very safe place to visit!

Greece has one of the lowest homicide rates in the world. Just take normal precautions and you shouldn’t have any issues with crime.

Kefalonia island is not so touristy that you might feel resented, and the locals were very friendly in our experience.

Sacred Monastery of Agios Gerasimos Church

Bird crossing at the Monastery of Agios Gerasimos

Is Kefalonia Worth It?

Yes, I think Kefalonia is worth it. We really enjoyed our time spent on the island, and some of the sights like Melissani Lake and Myrtos Beach are spectacular.

If you’re looking for an island with amazing scenery, beaches, and not too many people, Cephalonia is a great option!  

How Long To Stay In Kefalonia Greece

Three or four days is enough time to see the highlights of Kefalonia, although a week or two would be more relaxed.

There are many nice beaches and hidden spots in Kefalonia island, and it’s less expensive than Zakynthos , so you could definitely stay longer if you want! We only stayed 4 days, and we felt like we needed more time.

If you only have one day in Kefalonia (i.e. on a day trip from Zakynthos or something), then make sure you go to the Melissani cave. It’s one of the single best sights in Cephalonia Greece!

Melissani Cave Lake

Melissani Cave Lake — one of the best things to do in Kefalonia!

Kefalonia Greece Island Best Things To Do Cephalonia Fteri Beach

Fteri beach cliffs

Kefalonia Itinerary

Here’s what a sample 4-day itinerary for Cephalonia island could look like:

  • Day 1: Central/East Kefalonia . Drive over to Sami to see the amazing Melissani Lake and Drogarati Cave, then relax at Antisamos Beach before continuing the road trip over to the east coast of Kefalonia, stopping at some of the more hidden beaches like Ragia, Limenia, Kako Lagadi, and Skala Beach.
  • Day 2: North Kefalonia . Head to the north end of Kefalonia, stopping at Myrtos Viewpoint and the seaside town of Assos along the way. Drive all the way to the far northern tip of Kefalonia island and visit the harbor town of Fiskardo, where you can grab lunch. Visit the nearby Foki Beach and then start the drive back to south Kefalonia. Stop at Myrtos Beach on the way back!
  • Day 3: West Kefalonia . Start the day by visiting some spectacular beaches at Zola. Take the short water taxi over to Fteri Beach, and then afterwards see Vouti and/or Kiriaki Beach. Drive around Kefalonia’s western peninsula, seeing some amazing spots like Petani Beach and Xi Beach.
  • Day 4: South Kefalonia . Take a slow day exploring sights in Argostoli, including the De Bosset Bridge, Fanari Lighthouse, and Kalamia Beach. End the day at the Castle of Agios Georgios, and get an early dinner at Kastro Cafe , one of the best restaurants in Kefalonia!

I hope this sample itinerary gives you some ideas for your own trip to Cephalonia. As always, feel free to ask any questions if you have them.

Kefalonia Greece Island Best Things To Do Cephalonia Fteri Beach Paralia Drone

Kefalonia Hotels

Best time to visit kefalonia.

The best time to visit Kefalonia island depends on what you’re looking for, but generally the nicest weather is from early May to late October. All of these months are mostly warm and sunny. The shoulder months in spring and autumn can be nice if you’re wanting good weather without the crowds.

The hottest months in Greece are July and August, and Kefalonia during this time has temperatures of up to 27 °C (82 °F) during the day time, and lows of 19 °C (67 °F). This can be great for swimming in a pool or lounging at the beach, although these two months can also be a bit more busy with tourists.

Winter in Kefalonia is fairly mild, but it’s wetter, cooler, and more overcast, and there may be some snowfall, especially on the Ainos mountains. High temperatures are around 11 °C (53 °F), and lows are around 6 °C (43 °F). Not as many boats and tours are running at this time, but you may get a good deal on hotels and things.

Regardless of when you decide to visit Cephalonia, you’re sure to have a memorable trip!

Myrtos Beach Paralia

A sunny afternoon on Myrtos Beach

More Travel Guides For Greece

Thanks for looking! I hope you enjoyed this travel guide for the best things to do in Kefalonia Greece.

We have more travel guides for the Greek islands coming soon, so don’t forget to check back later!

Pinterest Kefalonia Travel Guide

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Thank you for the great article! Husband and I are planning our honeymoon for September and this was helpful.

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Nice! Have a great trip.

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Really helpful thank you can you tell me what the public transport like as I won’t feel comfortable driving.

Hi Brenda. Since the island is pretty big, it’s not very well connected by public transport. If you don’t feel comfortable driving, I would recommend staying in a popular area like Argostoli that has all the things you need, and then perhaps booking a day tour (with transport included) so you can see some of the main sights on the island.

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Travel Guides and Travel Planning. By Katie & Jack.

Europe , Greece , Travel Guides · March 21, 2021

The Ultimate Travel Guide to Kefalonia, a stunning Greek Island

The island of Kefalonia is the largest in the Ionian sea. It is the only Greek island to have a national park, and it is home to two different turtle species. Kefalonia is such an incredible island will such diverse offerings. One side of the island has beautiful golden sandy beaches, and the other side is full of white pebble beaches. This island has the most rugged landscape yet full of impressive pine trees framing every road. Pastel coloured harbours surrounded by the bluest water. With many tourists overlooking Kefalonia and heading to Zakynthos’ neighbour island, Kefalonia is typically a lot quieter than other Greek islands. Here is our complete travel guide to Kefalonia island.

things to do in kephalonia, Travel Guide to Kefalonia, the town of Assos

How long do you need in Kefalonia?

Compared to some other Greek islands, Kefalonia is quite large. There is plenty to see on this island, so you want to make the most of it. We would recommend staying for a week at the minimum, but many tourists come for day trips or even for a long weekend.

Travel Guide to Kefalonia:  Things to do

First up on our travel guide to Kefalonia is a guide to the  best things to do in Kefalonia.  Because of this islands diversity, you can spend one day hiking a mountain and the next day relaxing on the beach, soaking up the sun.

Hike up Mount Ainos and Explore the National Park

Kefalonia is home to the only national park to be situated on a Greek island. This national park spans over 3000 hectares and is the hub of Kefalonia’s biodiversity. The park is covered in beautiful black pin trees and Greek Fir. A fir species called Abies Cephalonica exists only in Kefalonia and covered two-thirds of this stunning National Park.

There are also wild ponies that call this National Park home! We were fortunate enough to have two sightings of these rare ponies. Hopefully, you will be able to spot them too.

Climbing the mountain itself is relatively easy. You can drive most of the way up and then follow the well-trodden path. The highest point of the mountain reaches 1,628 meters! On clear days you will be able to see as far as the Peloponnese, Ithaca and Zakynthos. The hike up is worth it for the incredible views.

kefalonia travel advice

Melissani Lake

Melissani Lake in Karavmylos is a must when exploring Kefalonia. The lake is set in a cave with an opening directly at the top. At certain times of the day, the sun shines through the cave and illuminates the water to a bright turquoise!

There is a free car park right by the entrance to Karavmylos. After you have brought your tickets, head down into the cave, you will be greeted with a fleet of stunning old wooden boats floating on the water. Depending on how busy it is, you might be lucky enough to get a private tour. We visited at the end of the season (October) and were lucky enough to have this place to ourselves. At peak season, be prepared to queue and to share a boat with others. The tour lasts around half an hour, and it is a magical experience. Despite the fact this cave can be busy, Melissani cave is still certainly one of the  best things to do in Kefalonia.


  • The  cave’s opening hours  depend on the season, as there are few visitors during the winter. During the summertime (May until the end of October), the caves are open from 9 am each morning until 7 pm. However, during the winter season, the caves only open on Thursdays and the Weekend days, from 10 am and close at 4 pm.
  • The cost is 7 euros per person and includes the price of the boat trip.
  • The best times to visit  the lake are around midday. This is when the sun shines through the opening in the cave roof to illuminate the underground lake’s waters. From 11:30 am until 2:00 pm are the best. The earlier you arrive, the more likely it is the crowds will be less.

Tourist boat on the lake in Melissani Cave, Cephalonia Island, Greece, Travel Guide to Kefalonia.

Hire a boat and explore the Hidden Beaches

There are so many places across the whole of Kefalonia where you can hire boats. We hired one from Fiskardo, but there are also many rentals in Sami, Agia Efimia and many other places.

Boat Rental in Fiskardo –  Reginas Rent a Boat

There is no denying the best way to experience Kefalonia is by boat! With so many beaches only accessible by boat, this is a great way to access them. This company has some really reasonable prices and provides lots of guidance on the best places to head too.

Our Top Hotels in Kefalonia

  • Emelisse Nature Resort

kefalonia travel advice

Kefalonia Grand Hotel

kefalonia travel advice

Hike to the Castle of Assos

The castle in Asos is a stunning example of Venetian Architecture. Although it is mostly ruins today, certain parts are well-preserved. From Assos itself to reach the castle, follow the path up to the ruins. The route will take you through stunning Olive trees and greenery. There isn’t much shade here, so bring lots of water. Make sure to check out the beautiful Arched entrance gate and find some incredible viewpoints over Assos village itself.

Travel Guide to Kefalonia view from Assos Castle

Go Turtle Spotting on Koroni Beach

Kefalonia is home to two different species of Turtles. The loggerhead turtle and the green sea turtle. There are a few destinations in Kefalonia known for regular turtle spotting. They can often be spotted in Argostoli harbour following the boats as they make their way into the port. However, Koroni beach is an incredible destination for Turtle sighting that is slightly off the tourist track and a beach loved by the locals. Check out the work that wildlife sense do in Kefalonia to learn about turtle conservation efforts on the island.

Please note: Please only observe the turtles and not attempt to interact or touch them, as with any animal encounter.

Travel Guide to Kefalonia, Turtles in Argostoli

Drive the Coastal Road

The Coastal road between Argostoli and Assos hugs the cliff sides and provides some of the best viewpoints in Kefalonia. The road is never too busy, and many places pull over to get out and admire the views. Many goats call this road home; you will most likely hear the ringing of their bells before you see them. Although, make sure to drive this road slowly to keep the goats safe.


  • Viewpoint over Myrtos Beach; find  it here.
  • Outlook to Assos with  hidden cove.
  • Great  view over Assos.

kefalonia travel advice

Drogorati caves

These impressive caves are situated in Karamylos near Melissiani lake. The caves are full of beautiful formations and undoubtedly worth a visit. A strong earthquake revealed the entrance of the cave. Karavomylos Lake

Karavomylos is a beautiful lake next to the sea surrounded by a beautiful church, green foliage and an idyllic cafe. This lake is part of a strange geological phenomenon. Waters from the western side of the island travel underground and mix with freshwater making this lake even more beautiful.

Take a day trip to Ithaka

A day trip to the serene island of Ithaka is a must whilst in Kefalonia. This neighbouring island is tranquil and beautiful. It can be really  reasonably priced . A  day trip to Itaka  gives you the chance to spot Dolphins, Turtles and unique birds. Itaka itself is just breathtaking; you will get to experience Vathy Bay and hidden beaches.

Kefalonia Travel Guide: The Best Towns and Villages to Explore

The pastel-coloured village of Fiskardo is the absolute gem of Kefalonia. This harbour is simply stunning. Fiskardo has a  rich green background  and full of  Venetian architecture.  It is easy to see why this is one of the most popular sports in the Ionian sea. Kefalonia was hit by an earthquake back in 1953. Most of the Venetian architecture was ruined on the island. Fiskardo was lucky enough to escape without the architecture getting destroyed. This makes Fiksardo an exceptional part of Kefalonia.

This village is full of incredible restaurants and cocktail bars

  • Local food:  Nicolas Taverna . This Taverna offers the best views over Fiskardo bay itself. This restaurant is known for its impeccable service and fantastic local food, especially seafood and fresh fish.
  • Romantic dinners :  Irida Café Bar restaurant . They have outdoor seating right by the water’s edge, and it makes for a perfect romantic setting. Make sure you try their Traditional Greek Kolokithokeftedes with Skordilla dip. Their produce is as authentic as it can be, with the food brought from the local farms from the mountains of the islands.
  • Breakfast :  Milos/Windmill . One of the few places open for breakfast. There is nothing more perfect than a cup of coffee with the sound of boats in the harbour sitting right by the sea. Heading to the bay early for breakfast gives you a chance to enjoy Fiskardo before the rush of tourists later in the day.

Fiskardo Things to do, Kefalonia Travel Guide.

Assos is the most stunning pastel perfect village. Its Venetian style houses sit right on the water’s edge. Assos has two beaches and a Venetian castle’s ruins with some incredible viewpoints over this picturesque town. Assos is full of  magical things to do . Myrtos beach is the most incredible beach on the island, as it is only a quick drive from Assos. Whilst in Kefalonia, visiting this town is an essential addition to your itinerary.

Where to eat in Assos Village

  • Hellenic Bistro: A restaurant with incredible views of the sunset. Authentic Greek cuisine and friendly service, this is a must-visit when you are in Kefalonia.
  • Platanos :  This restaurant has fantastic food and is great for vegan and vegetarian options.

Assos Kefalonia viewpoinr

Argostoli, Kefalonia’s Capital

This town is the Captial of Kefalonia. It is much busier than other parts of the island and is full of cafes, bars and restaurants.

De Bosset Bridge in Argostoli

This is a fascinating bridge and the largest stone bridge over a sea in the world. It is an excellent place for a walk, and it’s an exciting part of the architecture.

Turtles in Argostoli

This part of the island is well-known turtles that frequently appear. Kefalonia has two different types of turtles that call this island home. The loggerhead turtles and Green sea turtles. Turtles will often follow the fishermen boats in the harbour when they return from night fishing. To be in with a chance of seeing them head down early. There is a wildlife conservation group called wildlife sense who focus on turtle conservation.

The best places to eat in Argostoli

  • El Greco , the best place in Argostoli for local food.
  • Ampelaki , great for traditional Greek food and caters well for vegetarians.
  • Libretto , this cute café serves insane Waffles.

Argostoli, Kefalonia Town

The three towns of Agia Efimia, Sami and Karavomylos, make up Sami bay. We loved Agia Efimia the most, and it is a must add to your Kefalonia Plans. For more information on the other towns,  check out our guide.

Agia Efimia

Once a fishing village, this town has retained all its original charm. It is an intimate and cosy bay with cute houses perched on the water’s edge. Agia Efimia is an impressive town lined with cosy taverns and shops with a backdrop of rich green hills.

  • Paradise Beach Bar  – If you visit this small town, you simply must eat at Paradise Beach bar. It was our favourite restaurant out of all the ones we visited during our week-long stay. The views of this restaurant are excellent, and the food was just incredible. If you fancy a treat, order their Chocolate souffle.
  • The Pergola  – If you are looking for incredible local food, this is the place to come. Check out their  TripAdvisor .

things to do in kephalonia, Agia Efimia, Travel Guide to Kefalonia

Travel Guide to Kefalonia: The Best Beaches

1. head to myrtos beach, the most stunning beach in kefalonia..

This beach sits between mount Agia Dynati and Mount Kalon Oros. These two mountains create the most dramatic backdrop. With a backdrop of green, pine, cypress and olive trees, it makes a stunning mix of greens that contrast with the bright blue water.

Mytros beach is well-known because of its outstandingly beautiful blue water. The waves on this beach pick up tiny pieces of Marble, creating a magical effect and illuminating the water. This effect makes the water a shade of turquoise so stunning you will want to jump right in.

Once you make it to Mytros beach, there is an incredible sea cave and plenty of rocks to jump off of. You could easily spend the whole day playing on the beach, soaking up the Greek sun and swimming in the sea. Myrtos beach is the best beach in Kefalonia and a must for any trip to this island.

Kefalonia Myrtos beach, Kefalonia things to do

2. Antisamos Beach

This beach is one of the best beaches for sunbathing and swimming in Kefalonia. It is a pebble beach near to the port of Sami. This incredible beach was used as a backdrop for Captain Corelli’s Mandolin. There is a stunning backdrop full of green foliage and an abundance of green hills and crystal clear turquoise water.

Antisamos Beach Bar

Visiting this beach bar is a perfect place to spend the day. It is the best place for lunch when spending your day at Antisamos beach.

3. Loutro beach

This pebble beach is a perfect place to relax in Kefalonia. They are surrounded by rich green hills covered in beautiful foliage and trees. The stunning green hills reflect into the crystal clear blue sea. You can walk to this beach from Sami town. Loutro beach is a well-kept local secret, ideal for snorkelling. Swimming in the ocean is only made more memorable by the views of the surrounding scenery.

4. Fooki Beach

This stunning beach is so unique. it is very different from your typical Greek beach. It is surrounded by oak trees and cypresses, creating a protected cove. The beach is shaped in a sheltered bay, meaning you are protected from winds and with clear water to swim in. Fooki beach is really close to the colourful town of Fiskardo. This town was one of our favourite towns in Kefalonia. It is full of incredible places to eat and cocktails bars to end your day in.

Check out our Guide to Fiskardo to read more about this magical town.

Fiskardo, Foki beach near small town Fiskardo at Kefalonia, Ionian islands, Greece. Private yacht boats in the small lagoon.

5. Makris Gialos Beach

This is a beautiful beach. It was perfect during the low season. This beach was peaceful and quiet at the time we visited. Unlike most of the other beaches on this list, this beach has stunning beautiful golden sand. There is a beach hut called white beach bar that provided a fantastic lunch. Parking is only two minutes away, and it’s free.

The only potential downside of this beach is that resorts and hotels surround it. Whilst it was quiet for us, we imagine it might be busier at peak time. This beach is situated really near Argostoli and the Airport. This allows you to visit as part of a trip to Argostoli or on your way to the Airport.

Enjoying our travel guide to Kefalonia? Check out our beach guide here.

Tips for Visiting Kefalonia

Transfer from kefalonia airport.

When planning your travels to Kefalonia, an important thing to note is that no bus transfers run from the Airport. Whether you hire a car or a moped, make sure to plan your arrival transport ahead of time.

Depending on where to chose to stay in Kefalonia, it might be best to hire a car instead of a Moped. If your villa is up in the hills, some of the roads are very questionable and fairly steep. For this reason, a car makes more sense. We read online that hiring a car just outside of Kefalonia airport is cheaper than any of the car companies inside. However, we found the price differences to be marginal, so we went with a reputable brand inside the Airport. Note: We visited during the COVID 19 pandemic, so our experience with prices might of been different.

Travel Guide to Kefalonia, view over Assos town, Assos Castle and dense green foliage.

The best area to stay in Kefalonia

If you are coming here to lay on the beach and to have a relaxing holiday, places like Skala and Lassi are more suitable. However, these towns are built for tourists so although they have everything you need, they are also quite commercial.

When we visited, we wanted to be able to explore the towns of Assos and Fiskardo. We also wanted to stay up in the Hills, away from the touristy towns. We chose to stay a 10-minute drive away from Fiskardo in the town of Agilas and one night near Argostoli. This was perfect for heading to Fiskardo Bay for dinner and to the beaches at sunset. It allowed us to explore the towns of Assos and Argostoli easily and conveniently. We would recommend Fiskardo. It is the perfect place to stay. However, to stay near Argostoli would also allow you to easily explore the island and access sandy beaches.

Sami is also very central and a popular destination to stay in Kefalonia. However, we thought it was too touristy to stay in. Other parts of Kefalonia are more authentic and represent a true insight into the Greek way of life.

Depending on how long you are staying, we would recommend moving around if possible. A couple of nights in different parts of the island makes for a truly unique experience. This will allow you to immerse yourself into island life.

For more check out our guide to the best towns and villages in Kefalonia here.

kefalonia travel advice

Travel Guide to Kefalonia: Accommodation Options

Kefalonia is full of incredible hotels and villas. We decided to stay in a villa for our week-long stay. The main reason we had a great pool and view of the sunset.


We found the northern part of Kefalonia to be the nicest. Towns like Fiskardo and Assos are undeniably beautiful and worth the drive up to experience them. Near the Airport is more touristy but has sandy beaches. All of the different towns and villages and lovely in their own right, but Assos and Fiskardo are the most excellent parts of Kefalonia island. Both are easy to get to each other, and Assos sits next to the famous Myrtos beach.

Hotels in Kefalonia

This resort is so beautiful! It is enclosed with cypress and cedar trees and panoramic views of the mountains and sea; this resort is simply stunning.

Perfect for couples and only a 10-minute walk to Fiskardo bay. An ideal location for those looking to have a peaceful getaway only a stone’s throw away from the hustle and bustle of Fiskardo Bay

Featured Image

F Zeen is a beautiful hotel near the incredible Loutro beach. This is the perfect combination of luxury and nature and is ideal for couples.

Gallery image of this property

3. Tourist Boutique Hotel Argostoli

If you wish to stay in the heart of Argostoli, this is the perfect place. Right on the water’s edge and modern rooms. This hotel is near to eh beach famous for nesting turtles and near to the famous Lithostroto. A historic pedestrian walkway lined with cafes and shops.

Gallery image of this property

Enjoying our Travel Guide to Kefalonia? Check out our guide to the best Hotels in Kefalonia .

Airbnbs in Kefalonia

Top villa in fiskardo with heated pool & hot tub.

This Airbnb is nestled within acres of serene cypress trees with incredible views out to Ithaca and Lefkada. This villa is by far the most stunning in Fiskardo. Both beaches of Emblisi and Foki are only 10 minutes on foot. The Best thing about this Airbnb is that it is within walking distance of Fiskardo. But allows you to escape to a peaceful villa protected from the noise of Fiskardo town.

  • Sleeps:  7 Guest
  • Size:  3 bedrooms / 5 beds / 3.5 baths
  • Price:  Check out the latest prices  here.

Beautiful Little Stone House in Kefalonia

The most perfect Airbnb for a couple. The perfect love nest. This villa is perched on the side of Mount Ainos, 2 minutes away from the pretty fishing village of  Katelios . Enjoy dinners out on your private terrace. This Airbnb is simply stunning. It is perfect if you are looking to climb Mount Ainos and would like to stay somewhere slightly less touristy than some of the other towns and villages in Kefalonia.

  • Sleeps:  4 guests
  • Size:  1 bedroom / 1 bed / 1.5 baths
  • Price:   Check out the latest prices here.

Villa Agapi Luxury Villa Kefalonia Assos

This Airbnb is so stunning! It is so modern and offers some of the best views of  Assos village . This villa has everything that you need for a memorable experience, including a BBQ terrace, romantic setting, insane views, in addition to beautiful details inside the villa.

  • Sleeps:  4 guests
  • Size:  2 bedrooms / 3 beds / 1 baths
  • Price:  Check out prices here.

Enjoying our Travel Guide to Kefalonia? Check out our guide to the best Villas in Kefalonia.

Summary of our Travel Guide to Kefalonia

We hope you enjoyed our travel guide to Kefalonia. The island of Kefalonia is stunning and is an incredible destination for any type of getaway.

What’s Next?

  • 10 Beautiful things to do in Kefalonia
  • Stunning Kefalonia Towns and Villages to Discover
  • Fiskardo: Discover the most beautiful place in Kefalonia
  • Assos Kefalonia A Guide to this Charming Village
  • 12 of the Best Kefalonia Beaches
  • Beautiful Hotels in Kefalonia
  • Where to stay in Kefalonia, The Best Towns, Hotels & Villas.
  • Discover Agia Efimia, a Beautiful village in Kefalonia.

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Kefalonia travel guide: the complete 2024 guide to kefalonia, greece.

April 7, 2023


Welcome to my Kefalonia travel guide – the ultimate travel guide to Kefalonia, and the only guide you’ll ever need to plan your dream vacation to this beautiful Greek island!

I stumbled across Kefalonia when looking for summer holidays in 2022. Since I had never heard of it, I didn’t have too many expectations, but boy, does this island have a lot to offer!

Kefalonia, also known as Cephalonia or Kefallinia, is the largest of the Ionian islands in western Greece . The island is known for its stunning beaches, crystal-clear waters, and picturesque villages.

With so many attractions and activities to enjoy, suffice it to say that planning a trip to Kefalonia can be a little overwhelming.

But fear not – because in this comprehensive travel guide, I’ll cover everything you need to know to make the most of your time on this stunning island.

Read more: The ultimate Europe backpacking packing list for summer

Kefalonia travel guide: table of contents, where is kefalonia.

  • Top 3 reasons to visit Kefalonia

Kefalonia climate

Best time to visit kefalonia, kefalonia out of season.

  • Recommended timeframe
  • Kefalonia tourist map
  • Best Viator tour in Kefalonia
  • The best beaches in Kefalonia
  • Public transportation
  • Where to eat and drink in Kefalonia
  • Best hotels
  • Best resorts
  • Best hostels
  • Top Kefalonia travel tips
  • Planning your trip to Kefalonia
  • Pinterest gallery

Kefalonia travel guide pinterest pin 2

Kefalonia Travel Guide: About Kefalonia

Kefalonia travel guide drone shot

If you’ve never heard of Kefalonia island before, you’re probably like I was and are wondering:

Where in the heck is this island, anyway?

Kefalonia is a beautiful island located in the Ionian Sea, just 30 miles west of mainland Greece.

The island is known for its rugged landscapes, stunning beaches, and brilliant, clear, turquoise water.

Kefalonia is the largest of the Ionian islands, with a total area of about 300 square miles (781 square kilometers) and a population of around 35,000 people.

The island is divided into four main regions: Argostoli, Paliki, Sami, and Erisos.

(More on that below on my Kefalonia tourist map .)

Did you know? Kefalonia is just 6 miles west of the tiny island of Ithaca. Kefalonia island has even been suggested to be the original Ithaca, the homeland of Odysseus!

Kefalonia travel guide Myrtos beach

Is Kefalonia nice?

I would be remiss if I didn’t make it clear in this Kefalonia guide just how nice this Greek island really is.

So yes, Kefalonia is nice – and likely exceptionally more than you would expect.

Why do I love Kefalonia so much? Here’s are my top three reasons:

  • Stunning beaches: In my opinion, Kefalonia is home to some of the most beautiful beaches in Greece. This includes the famous Myrtos Beach, Antisamos Beach and many more. These beaches offer crystal-clear waters, stunning scenery, and a wide range of water activites such as swimming, snorkeling, and diving! I mean seriously , have you ever seen water so blue?!
  • Unspoiled nature: Kefalonia is a nature lover’s paradise that hasn’t been fully discovered by the masses yet. It has a diverse landscape including mountains, forests, and lakes. You can explore the island’s natural wonders by hiking in Mount Ainos National Park, taking a boat through Melissani Cave, or visiting the picturesque village of Assos.
  • Budget traveler friendly: While there are some luxury options, it’s otherwise pretty difficult to spend a lot on Kefalonia island. Perfect for travelers on a budget!

So, if you’re looking for the ultimate summer Europe vacation filled with sun and the sea at an affordable price, then a Kefalonia holiday is for you!

Kefalonia Travel Guide: When to Visit Kefalonia

Kefalonia travel guide best-time-to-visit-kefalonia-greece-infographic

When planning a trip to Kefalonia, there are a few key things to bear in mind about the climate first. That’s why I’ve included a little bit of information on this Kefalonia travel guide about the climate, the best time to visit, and what it’s like in the off-season, below.

Kefalonia is overall dry, sunny, and hot in the summer. Conversely, the winters are mild, but see a lot of rain.

Since Kefalonia is also home to the highest peak in the Ionian Sea, Mount Ainos, sometimes there’s even snow in the winter on the peak!

Daily average temperatures during peak summer in Kefalonia range from highs of 84°F (29°C) during the day to lows of 64°F (18°C) at night. If you’re visiting during shoulder season, lows are likely to reach closer to 54°F (12°C). So if you visit during shoulder season, be prepared with a light jacket and sweater!

For more detailed information during the particular month you’re visiting, I like this website.

Interested in more travel tips I don’t share on the blog? Follow me on Instagram and don’t miss a thing!



🇺🇸 Neuro in Oxford 🇬🇧 for my PhD ✈️ Mindfulness | Solo female travel | Expat life 🌍 40+ countries traveled | 7 lived 👇 Germany eSIM guide

The best time to visit Kefalonia is from May to mid-September. This, unsurprisingly, is also peak season in Kefalonia.

So, to get the best balance between great weather, fewer crowds, and lower prices, I always recommend visiting during shoulder season during the European summer.

This means May and September will be the best months to visit Kefalonia overall!

However, I visited in July and while the beaches could get busy in the middle of the day, I was still able to enjoy the fact that Kefalonia is still a hidden gem.

So rest assured if you visit in peak season, you’ll probably still be able to avoid massive crowds. But maybe not for long – more people are bound to discover this magical Greek island every year! 😉

Outside of May-September (and maybe October), many hotels and restaurants on the island of Kefalonia will be shut down.

This is especially true of resort towns like Lassi, Skala, and Sami. Lixouri and Fiskardo are still open to some extent.

Remember, Kefalonia is still relatively undiscovered by foreigners, so outside of the high season, a lot of facilities that cater to tourists will be closed! 🙂

Be strategic and visit in May or September to experience the best of Kefalonia “off-season.” There will be lower prices and no crowds while still being relatively sunny and warm. However, you’ll also avoid everything being shut down.

Read more: How to visit Santorini on a budget

Kefalonia travel guide: how to get to kefalonia.

Kefalonia travel guide

Flying to Kefalonia is by far the easiest way to get to Kefalonia. However, you can of course always take a ferry, too. It is Greece, after all!

The island of Kefalonia, Greece has its own airport, “Anna Pollatou” (abbreviated with IATA airport code EFL).

Many flights go in and out daily on large carriers and budget airlines alike. This is great news for budget travelers – you can probably get a flight out of your airport of choice with easyJet, Jet2, Vueling, or TUI!

If you’re flying from the United States, you’ll probably need to catch a connecting flight to Kefalonia. Luckily, there are direct flights to Kefalonia from most major airports around Europe, including London, Amsterdam, Paris, Frankfurt, and Athens!

Kefalonia airport is modern and comfortable with air conditioning. I had to wait inside for a delayed flight back home and was generally comfortable. (Or, at least as comfortable as waiting for a delayed flight can really be. 🙂 )

Have I convinced you to book your flight to Kefalonia yet? 🙂 I’ve made it easy for you to start your search with Skyscanner below, my go-to flight search engine for the best deals!

Since Kefalonia is ideally located in the Ionian sea, you can also take a ferry to Kefalonia from either mainland Greece or other islands like Lefkada or Zakynthos.

From mainland Greece

You can take a ferry from Killini in mainland Peloponnese to Poros on Kefalonia island that operates 3-4 times daily. The journey takes about 1 hour and 30 minutes.

During high season, you can also take a daily ferry from Killini to Argostoli, the capital of Kefalonia.

Alternatively, you can take a ferry to the port town of Sami, Kefalonia from Patras in the northern Peloponnese. This ferry continues to the neighboring island of Ithaca.

Looking for an Athens to Kefalonia ferry? Unfortunately, there aren’t any currently. You’re better off flying if you’re looking to take this route!

From other islands

It’s also possible to get to Kefalonia by ferry from the neighboring islands of Ithaca, Zakynthos, and Lefkada.

If you’re wondering how to get from Corfu to Kefalonia, you’d have to take a ferry from Corfu to Lefkada first. Then, another ferry from Lefkada to Corfu.

PRO TIP: Book your ferry tickets ahead of time so you don’t have to worry about them selling out!

Kefalonia Travel Guide: Recommended Timeframe

kefalonia travel advice

How long do you need in Kefalonia?

Next up on this complete Kefalonia travel guide is a very important question: how long do you really need in Kefalonia?

The amount of time you need in Kefalonia largely depends on your travel style and interests.

If you want to explore the island thoroughly and take part in various activities, I recommend spending at least five to seven days on the island.

This will give you enough time to visit the top attractions, like Myrtos Beach, Melisanni Cave, and Mount Ainos National Park. It will also allow you to explore some of the lesser-known villages and beaches.

However, if you’re short on time, you can still get a taste of Kefalonia in as little as three to four days.

During this time, you can choose to visit some of the island’s highlights. This could include beautiful Antisamos Beach or the charming fishing village of Fiskardo.

But it’s worth noting that the amount of time you spend in Kefalonia also depends on your budget and schedule.

If you have a limited budget or a tight schedule, you may have to prioritize which places to visit and which activities to do. Luckily, my guide can help you with that! 🙂

But if you have more time and resources, you can take your time and fully experience all that Kefalonia has to offer at a more relaxed pace.

Personally, I spent five full days on Kefalonia and felt it was enough for a short little holiday – that is, if you arrive armed with the knowledge of the best things to do in Kefalonia!

Keep reading if you’re interested in that. 😉

Kefalonia Travel Guide: Kefalonia Tourist Map

Kefalonia travel guide tourist Kefalonia tourist map Google maps

Kefalonia Travel Guide: What to Do in Kefalonia

kefalonia travel guide 12 things to do in Kefalonia

1. Myrtos Beach + viewpoinT

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Myrtos Beach is a stunning, crescent-shaped beach located on the northwest coast of Kefalonia.

It’s widely regarded not only as one of the best beaches in Greece, but also as one of the most picturesque beaches in the world – and for good reason.

Its turquoise waters, dramatic limestone cliffs, and pristine white pebble beach make Myrtos a Kefalonia must-see on this Kefalonia travel guide.

In addition to its natural beauty, Myrtos Beach itself also offers a variety of activities that you can enjoy!

Sunbathing, swimming, and snorkeling are popular activities here, and the surrounding cliffs provide an excellent backdrop for adventurous cliff jumping too!

Visitors can also rent beach chairs and umbrellas or grab a refreshing drink at the nearby beach bar.

While of course the beach is best enjoyed during the heat of the day, I recommend visiting the viewpoint just north of the beach in the hours leading to sunset for the best lighting.

You can find this viewpoint on Google maps by searching “Myrtos Beach Viewpoint.”

I promise you the view will not disappoint!

Read more: My top 10 tips for flying internationally after 8+ years of independent international travel

2. explore the melissani cave.

Melissani Cave is actually a partially-collapsed underground cave that’s also home to a beautiful underground lake.

Visitors can take a boat ride through this unique geological formation and marvel at the clear, bright blue water and the natural beauty of the surrounding rock formations.

The sun shines through the partially-collapsed roof and into the water, giving off an almost mystical feeling!

Your boat captain will even bring you a bit inside the cave for a look around at the stalactites and stalagmites. 

If you’re lucky, you’ll get a captain who sings for you too so that you can hear the amazing acoustics the rock formations offer! 🙂

How much does it cost to visit Melissani cave?

Entry to the cave is €7 (reduced for children), which you purchase at the entrance. This includes the boat ride. To get to the edge of the lake, you’ll go down a series of stairs and a walkway which descends about 20 meters into the cave. There, you’ll get in the next boat that’s available. And then away you go!

When is the best time to visit Melissani cave?

It’s best to visit Melissani cave between 11:30 am and 2 pm. This is when the sun shines through the cave opening and illuminates the water inside, giving it a magical, blue glow! To avoid the crowds at noon and 1 pm, arrive right at 11:30 am or closer to 2 pm.

Did you know? The water that feeds Melissani Lake comes from a freshwater stream that runs underground for approximately 12 ½ miles (20 kilometers)! It then mixes with seawater due to its proximity to the eastern coast of Kefalonia, creating a brackish mix that is unique only to Melissani Cave.

Short on time? I recommend booking a private tour with transportation that will bring you to Kefalonia’s highlights, including Melissani Cave! (⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ 18 reviews)

3. hike in mount ainos national park.

Kefalonia travel guide Mount Ainos National Park summit view

Mount Ainos is the highest peak not only on Kefalonia, but also of the Ionian islands. It offers stunning views of the island and the surrounding sea.

It’s located within Mount Ainos National Park, the only national park situated on a Greek island!

The hike to the top of Mount Ainos isn’t too challenging if you have the right shoes , and it’s worth it for the stunning views.

I recommend you drive as far as you can up to the parking lot with a big radio tower. This is labelled as “Ainos National Park Parking” on Google Maps.

From there, walk down the gravel road until you find a sign directing you up and to the right. That’s your summit hike to the peak of Mount Ainos!

You can also hike elsewhere around the national park to discover the wide variety of flora and fauna, like the iconic fir trees that cover the area.

Want to know more about hiking in Ainos National Park? Check out the trails guide on

4. Rent a boat for the day

One of the best things to do in Kefalonia is rent a boat.

Here’s why: since so many gorgeous beaches on Kefalonia aren’t accessible on land, a boat is the only way you’ll be able to see them and enjoy them!

(Plus, you’ll have these beaches almost completely to yourself!)

You might be wondering: do I need a boat license to drive a boat in Kefalonia?

In Kefalonia, you can get a boat rental of up to 30 horsepower without a boat license! This is plenty of power to explore the beaches around Argostoli bay, for example.

I rented a boat through Viator from Argostoli for the day and loved it. It was only $200 for the entire day, could hold up to 5 people, and was super easy to pick up and drop off the boat in the harbor.

I highly recommend it for anyone visiting Kefalonia, as it was a highlight of my trip and I think the best Viator tour in Kefalonia!

Just don’t forget to pack your own beach umbrella for the harsh midday sun if you plan to camp out at one of these wild beaches for the day!

5. Visit Assos Village

Kefalonia travel guide Assos village

Assos (sometimes spelled ‘Asos’) is a picturesque village located on a narrow peninsula on the west coast of Kefalonia.

It’s home to a charming harbor, narrow streets, and traditional houses that are perfect for a leisurely stroll.

Assos is also another great place to rent a boat in Kefalonia so that you can access stunning, wild beaches between Assos and Myrtos Beach that aren’t accessible by land.

There are a few boat rental companies in the center of Assos on the harbor that you can go into and ask about these beaches. They’re well-kept secrets of the locals that I don’t want to give away here! 🙂

Read more: Check out more of the best things to do and where to eat and stay in Assos with my ultimate Asos, Kefalonia guide!

6. explore the venetian castle in assos.

Kefalonia travel guide Assos Venetian castle

Assos is also the starting point to explore Assos Castle, a well-preserved historic Venetian castle perched on a small peninsula connected to Assos village.

It was built under Venetian rule from 1593-1595 to protect against invading attacks from Turks or pirates, and is one of the largest castles in Greece!

You can take a tour, climb to the top, and have a panoramic view of the village and surrounding sea.

Read more: 7 safest places for women to travel alone in Europe

7. relax on antisamos beach.

Kefalonia travel guide Antisamos Beach

Almost as famous as Myrtos Beach, Antisamos Beach is located on the eastern coast of Kefalonia and offers crystalline waters and stunning views.

It’s located just a short distance from the town of Sami and is easily accessible by car, bus, or on foot.

Antisamos Beach is equipped with sun loungers, umbrellas, and a variety of beach bars and restaurants so you have all you need for the day, right there.

There are also showers, changing rooms, and other amenities, making it a comfortable and convenient place to spend the day.

If you’re feeling adventurous, you can even take a short hike around the surrounding hilltops to enjoy stunning views of the area!

8. Visit Fiskardo Village

Kefalonia travel guide Fiskardo

Fiskardo is a charming village with a lively atmosphere located on the northernmost tip of Kefalonia.

It’s known for its picturesque harbor, traditional houses, and stunning sea views.

If you want to enjoy some fine dining in Kefalonia, I recommend you visit Fiskardo. The scenic waterfront is lined with tavernas, cafes, and boutiques that are sure to satisfy your tastebuds with authentic Greek cuisine.

Fiskardo also serves as a jumping-off point for boat rentals in Kefalonia as well as sailing tours to explore the surrounding bays and coves.

Did you know? Fiskardo is one of the few places on Kefalonia that wasn’t destroyed by the 1953 earthquake. So, the town is filled with traditional Venetian architecture, stone-paved streets, and pastel-colored houses.

9. Take a Day Trip to Ithaca

Kefalonia travel guide Ithaca

If you’re looking for a day trip from Kefalonia, Ithaca is a great option.

This small island is located just off the northeast coast of Kefalonia and offers an unspoiled, laid-back atmosphere.

To get to Ithaca, you can take a ferry from the town of Sami, which is located on the east coast of Kefalonia. The ferry ride takes about an hour and offers stunning views of the Ionian Sea along the way.

Once you arrive in Ithaca, you can explore the island’s charming villages, scenic beaches, and historic landmarks.

If you’d like to DIY your day trip, Steph from The Mediterranean Traveler has a great guide to taking a day trip from Kefalonia to Ithaca!

Alternatively, you can save time and headache by doing a guided tour to Ithaca so all of the logistics are taken care of for you.

One of the top things to do in Ithaca is to visit the village of Frikes, a quiet and peaceful village surrounded by hills topped with old windmills.

You can also visit the Archaeological Museum of Ithaca to learn more about the island’s rich history and culture, or soak up the sun and relax on some of the top beaches, like Gidaki Beach or Filiatro Beach.

So, if you’re looking for the perfect day trip on this Kefalonia travel guide, make sure to add Ithaca to your itinerary!

If you’d like the logistics taken care of for you, below are the top tours I recommend for a day trip to Ithaca from Kefalonia.

10. stroll around the koutavos lagoon in argostoli.

Kefalonia travel guide Koutavos Lagoon Argostoli

The Koutavos Lagoon is a beautiful natural lagoon located in the heart of Argostoli, the capital of Kefalonia.

Visitors can take a leisurely stroll along the lagoon and enjoy the natural beauty of the area.

It’s also a great jumping-off point for a day boat rental , topped off with some fine dining in the city for dinner!

While Kefalonia isn’t particularly known for its nightlife scene, you’ll also find a little bit of nightlife in Argostoli. Lithostroto, the town’s main square, is a popular spot for locals and tourists alike, with a variety of bars and cafes to choose from.

11. Enjoy a drink at a beach bar in Lassi

Kefalonia travel guide beach bar Lassi

Lassi is a popular tourist resort town on the western coast of Kefalonia.

It’s known for its beautiful beaches and also its unique selection of beach bars.

These beach bars are scattered along the coastline and offer a great spot for you to relax, sunbathe, and enjoy a refreshing drink.

One of the most popular beach bars in Lassi is the Gradakia Beach Bar, which is located on Gradakia Beach and offers amazing views of the coastline.

The bar serves a range of drinks, including local wines and cocktails, and has a selection of light bites and snacks on the menu, too.

If you’re looking for some nightlife in Kefalonia, Lassi will be a good bet too with its variety of bars as well as restaurants and nightclubs.

12. Go wine tasting at a local vineyard

Kefalonia travel guide vineyard

Of course, this Kefalonia travel guide wouldn’t be complete without an opportunity to taste some of the delicious wines made right here on the island!

While Kefalonian wines aren’t as well-known as those from other Greek islands, they are definitely worth tasting.

One of the best wineries to visit in Kefalonia is Orealios Gaea , located in the village of Omala.

The winery is one of the most famous in Kefalonia and produces a unique wine called Robola. Robola is a white wine that is considered one of the best in Greece!

While there you can take a tour of the winery and learn about the production process of Robola.

After the tour, you can then taste other wines produced at the vineyard and purchase your favorite bottles to take home – a perfect gift for your friends or family!

(Or to keep for yourself. 😉 )

Alternatively, you could opt for a more intimate wine tour that includes hotel pickup and dropoff, tasting fees, and complimentary snacks! ( This one has 231 5-star reviews! )

If you want to experience wine tasting in a more relaxed and casual setting, there are also several wine bars and restaurants in Kefalonia that offer a great selection of Kefalonian wines.

One of the most popular places to visit for this is Oenops Wine Bar in Argostoli.

This cozy bar offers a wide range of local wines, as well as cheeses, cured meats, and other local delicacies that perfectly complement the wines.

You might also like: The ultimate Europe solo female travel guide (perfected from 8+ years of living and traveling around Europe)

Kefalonia travel guide: the best beaches in kefalonia.

kefalonia travel guide 8 best beaches in kefalonia

The first thing I will always say about Kefalonia is – OH MY GOD THE BEACHES.

As I’ve said already, if you’re looking for a beach paradise, then Kefalonia should definitely be on your list.

But with so many options to choose from, it can be hard to decide which beaches to visit!

That’s why I’ve put together this convenient list to help you plan your perfect Kefalonia holiday.

1. myrtos beach

Kefalonia travel guide Myrtos Beach

As mentioned above, Myrtos Beach is arguably one of the most famous beaches on the island.

It’s truly a breathtaking sight with its translucent ocean water and white pebble beach.

You can easily spend an entire day at Myrtos sunbathing, snorkeling, and playing in the waves.

There are also a few basic facilities available like some snack bars and beachside tavernas along the shore. Some offer lounge chairs and umbrellas for rent.

There are some outdoor showers to rinse off sand, but no designated changing rooms at Myrtos Beach. You should plan to change in your car or behind a towel for privacy.

I personally loved that Myrtos Beach only has the basics to offer – I think it makes it a little less crowded and commercial!

I also found it a little less crowded than the other beaches because it’s pretty far north from where most people stay, and you need a car to access it.

2. antisamos beach

Kefalonia travel guide Antisamos beach drone view

Also mentioned above, Antisamos beach is one of the best-known beaches in Kefalonia besides Myrtos. Antisamos beach is close to the town of Sami on the east coast of Kefalonia.

This long strip of fine pebbles and clear, calm waters is surrounded by lush green hills and offers a relaxing backdrop for a day of fun in the sun.

No car? Short on time? No problem! I recommend taking one of the tours below so that you can still experience the best of all the glorious beaches in Kefalonia.

3. petani beach.

Kefalonia travel guide Petani beach

Situated on the northwest coast of the island, Petani Beach is a secluded and picturesque spot with those fine turquoise waters and a stunning sunset view.

It’s located about 9 miles (14 km) from Lixouri, the second-largest town on the island, and is accessible by car or motorbike via a scenic road that winds through the hills.

The beach itself is a long, pebbly stretch of shoreline, with sun loungers and umbrellas available for rent. The calm and shallow waters make it a perfect place for swimming and snorkeling, and the surrounding cliffs offer excellent opportunities for rock climbing and hiking, too!

If you’re looking for a beach with excellent tavernas serving traditional Greek food as well as a famous sunset view, then Petani Beach is your spot.

It was easily one of the top beaches in Kefalonia that I visited!

4. Lourdas Beach

Kefalonia travel guide Lourdas beach

Lourdas Beach is one of the most popular beaches in Kefalonia, and it’s not hard to see why!

Located in the southern part of the island, Lourdas Beach changes it up from the typical pebble beaches with a stunning stretch of white sand! This is backed by a dramatic mountain range.

It’s a great spot for swimming and sunbathing, and the clear waters are perfect for snorkeling and other water activities.

Lourdas Beach has plenty of amenities, including sun loungers and umbrellas, as well as beachside cafes and tavernas serving traditional Greek cuisine.

There’s also a watersports center where you can rent equipment for activities like jet skiing, parasailing, and paddleboarding.

There’s a large parking lot nearby as well as regular buses running from the nearby town of Lourdata, so it’s easily accessible.

5. Xi Beach

kefalonia travel advice

Xi beach is another must-visit beach on the island of Kefalonia and on this Kefalonia Greece travel guide.

Located on the southern coast near Lixouri, Xi beach stands out from other Kefalonian beaches because of its striking red sand and clay cliffs, which provide an impressive backdrop for a day spent lounging on the beach.

Though Xi beach is accessible from land, I accessed it from the water when I rented a boat for the day from Argostoli.

If you don’t have time or the transportation to head all the way over and down the Paliki peninsula, then a boat rental is definitely the best way to access Xi beach.

It was nothing short of unforgettable approaching the red sand and cliffs from the sea – they are truly red; pictures you’ll find on the internet aren’t exaggerating about that!

Xi beach is a bit more commercial than some others, with some trendy beach bars looking out over the sea. Restaurants, bars, changing rooms, and showers are all available here, so you’ve got all of the amenities you could need for a day in the sun.

6. Makris Gialos Beach

Kefalonia travel guide Makris Gialos beach

Another sandy beach in this Kefalonia travel guide is Makris Gialos beach.

Makris Gialos beach is a long, wide stretch of golden sand located in Lassi, Kefalonia.

It’s a Blue Flag beach that’s one of the most popular in the area, offering crystalline waters and plenty of amenities for visitors to enjoy.

Families frequent Makris Gialos beach often, as the shallow and calm water is ideal for kids.

It’s also a great place to visit for water sports, with plenty of opportunities for jet skiing, paragliding, and windsurfing!

Makris Gialos beach is particularly notable for its accessibility – it’s conveniently located near many of the area’s other top spots, including Argostoli.

If you’re interested in seeing more of the best beaches in the area, these top-rated tours from GetYourGuide will allow you to see it all in the least amount of time!

7. skala beach.

Kefalonia travel guide Skala beach

Skala beach is one of the longest beaches on the island of Kefalonia, stretching for over 1.5 miles (3 km) along the southern coast.

It’s best known for its soft golden sand and for being one of the most beautiful beaches on the island.

Delicious meals, beach bars, watersports, and sunbathing are all on offer at Skala beach too, making it a great all-rounder to visit for the day.

Read more: 13 travel essentials that will change your life

8. white rocks beach.

Kefalonia travel guide White Rocks Beach

Last but not least of the best beaches in Kefalonia on this Kefalonia travel guide is White Rocks beach.

White Rocks beach is only accessible from the water. And it just might be your first stop in the morning if you depart from Argostoli with your boat rental .

I can only sum up this beach in one word:


In my opinion, it is one of the absolute best beaches in Kefalonia.

The sheer limestone cliffs are almost engulfed in water that’s too blue to believe, and you can even try landing on shore for a private beach with major Robinson Crusoe vibes!

Just to give you an idea of the beauty of this beach, some people were setting up for an intimate wedding ceremony on one part of it. Talk about a destination wedding to remember!

I do suggest arriving earlier in the day at White Rocks beach if you want some tranquility and super peaceful vibes. Within half an hour of arriving as one of the first boats in the morning, we were joined by some larger (and noisier) tour boats!

Kefalonia Travel Guide: Getting Around Kefalonia

kefalonia travel guide

To make the most of your visit to Kefalonia, it’s important to have a reliable and efficient mode of transportation. There are several options for getting around Kefalonia, including car rental, public transportation, and taxis.

Kefalonia travel guide car rental

Renting a car is one of the most popular ways to explore Kefalonia. It’s easy to arrange a car rental at Kefalonia airport or in one of the island’s main towns.

The important thing with a rental car is that you can explore the island at your own pace and access more remote areas that may not be easily accessible by public transportation.

Since Kefalonia is all about nature and remoteness, I feel this makes a rental car essential.

Driving in Kefalonia is generally easy and safe, with well-maintained roads and stunning views.

(Just don’t go trying to drive off-road on paths riddled with boulders – we tried this and had to use my drone to survey the area and get us unstuck! Peep the image above for what that looked like 🙂 )

I rented with JoyRide Kefalonia through and the experience was seamless, cheaper than larger providers, and they were super friendly! However, I do recommend searching first in case there’s a cheaper or better option more suitable for you. Because has a price match guarantee. 🙂

Pro tip: Especially when you book your car rental with a smaller local company like I did, use a travel rewards credit card with rental car insurance like the CapitalOne Venture Rewards card (one of my favorite travel rewards credit cards and biggest travel hacks for saving lots of money traveling!). This will give you ultimate rental car insurance coverage so you don’t have to add it on from the rental company!

public transportation

For those who prefer not to drive or are looking to save even more money, public transportation is available in Kefalonia.

Kefalonia has a public bus system that connects many of the island’s villages and towns, as well as the airport and the main port of Sami.

The buses are operated by KTEL Kefalonias and generally run regularly – theoretically. Do keep in mind it is the Mediterranean, so things might be a bit slower or behind schedule.

Especially in more remote areas, it is important to note that public transportation on Kefalonia can be limited. This is why I really suggest renting a car as the best way to explore Kefalonia.

If you do take public transportation, planning ahead is key to make the most of your time on the island.

As such, if you plan to rely on public transportation to get around, it’s a good idea to check the KTEL Kefalonias website for the latest schedules and routes. But tickets can be purchased on board or at ticket offices in larger towns.

Another option for getting around without a car in Kefalonia is to use taxis.

Taxis are widely available on the island and are a convenient way to get around, especially if money isn’t as much of a concern for you. They can be hailed on the street or called from your hotel or accommodation.

You should be aware that taxis in Kefalonia operate on a meter system with fares that are regulated by the government. As such, make sure your taxi driver is running his meter before he takes off!

The base fare for a taxi ride on Kefalonia is 3 euros, and there is an additional charge of 0.74 euros per kilometer. Overall, it’s best to stick to the metered fare to ensure a fair price.

Some taxis may also offer fixed prices for certain routes or destinations, but these are typically negotiated in advance. While this isn’t always possible or advisable, if you do want to do this, it’s always a good idea to make sure the fare is agreed upon before you start the journey.

Some examples of fixed prices include a trip from Kefalonia airport to Argostoli, which typically costs around 20-25 euros. A ride from Argostoli to Lassi, a popular resort area, costs about 10-15 euros.

If you don’t want to have to worry about arranging transportation to your hotel when you land, I suggest booking your transfer beforehand (like this one to Assos ).

Of course, prices may vary depending on the time of day, season, and distance of the ride.

Taxis can be found at designated taxi stands or can be called to pick up passengers. You can also ask your hotel or accommodation to arrange for a taxi for you.

Kefalonia Travel Guide: Where to Eat and Drink in Kefalonia

kefalonia travel guide 8 best restaurants to eat and drink in kefalonia greece where to eat kefalonia

For most of the restaurants below, I recommend booking well in advance, especially in the summer. I kind of tried to wing it for dinner on a night-by-night basis in July, and it didn’t really turn out very well.

Not fun to try to find another restaurant when you’re starving after a day in the sun!

1. Votsalo ( Emelisse nature resort )

Votsalo was by far the best restaurant I dined at while in Kefalonia.

If you like open-air fine dining with attention to detail and a stunning sunset view overlooking the sea, I can’t recommend Votsalo enough.

It’s not standard for visitors who aren’t staying at the resort to dine at this restaurant, but you can call the hotel and they will most often arrange for you to be let in the main gate by staff.

This is what I did and it worked like a charm!

2. Alati all day bar & restaurant

This is the top-rated restaurant on Kefalonia on TripAdvisor and for good reason!

They offer an extensive menu of Mediterranean and Greek cuisine, including fresh seafood and grilled meats. And all over a beautiful view of the ocean to boot!

3. kastro cafe

Kastro Café is another top restaurant in Kefalonia and one of the most highly rated!

They’re known for their local Greek cuisine with a healthy assortment of Mediterranean and general European options, too.

Kastro Café is also vegetarian friendly, in case you’re veggie!

Highlights of recent visitors to Kastro Café have included the homemade pita and dips, as well as their lime cheesecake and pecan ice cream cake.

Kastro Café is also situated right next to St. George’s Castle in Peratata, so it’s easy to pair with a historical/cultural visit, too!

4. milos taverna

Kefalonia travel guide taverna

You’re lucky if you stumble upon this little gem of a restaurant while you’re in Kefalonia, but now you already know with this Kefalonia travel guide!

Milos Taverna is a traditional taverna with the husband part of the team cooking and the wife part of the team waiting tables.

People rant and rave about how amazing the food is here, and you can even get an amazing sunset view from the outside seating, too!

Read more: The ultimate packing list for summer in Europe

5. captain nikolas family tavern.

Captain Nikolas Family Tavern is located in the Paliki peninsula of Kefalonia and is a must-visit for those seeking traditional Greek cuisine in Kefalonia.

The restaurant boasts a cozy, family-friendly atmosphere and a menu that features a variety of seafood and meat dishes, as well as delicious vegetarian options.

You can also enjoy a variety of refreshing beverages and traditional Greek desserts while taking in the beautiful views of the wild surrounding area from the hillside terrace.

6. Il Borgo Restaurant

I ate at Il Borgo on the day I left Kefalonia, and let me tell you – it has one of the most amazing views you can find from the lovely outdoor terrace on a cliffside.

Il Borgo is another restaurant besides Votsalo that ventures a little closer into fine dining, and away from a more rustic traditional taverna experience.

You’ll enjoy your food and wine on a stone terrace blanketed with grapevines and a sunset view over the sea.

Since it can get really busy in the evenings during the summer, I would recommend calling ahead and reserving a table here.

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7. Lorraine’s magic hill

kefalonia travel advice

Lorraine’s Magic Hill in Lourdas is owned by Lorraine and Peter, who have made their home in Kefalonia with this restaurant since 1999. It’s downright charming, to say the least!

Lorraine offers some mainstay traditional Greek favorites as well as some interesting combinations on the menu, like beetroot tzatziki. You can’t find her specials on her website, as they change daily and are sure to intrigue and delight!

Lorraine’s Magic Hill was picked for a Traveler’s Choice award in 2022 from TripAdvisor and we saw multiple diners who have clearly been coming back year after year, greeted by Lorraine with a warm smile and hug.

Make sure to call ahead for a reservation and enjoy a stunning sunset view over some local wine, cocktails, and Lorraine and Peter’s delicious bites for dinner.

8. Akri Seaside Bar

Akri Seaside Bar is the #1 bar on Kefalonia on TripAdvisor, with 328 5-star reviews. Take one look at the stunning atmosphere and outdoor deck, and you’ll quickly see why!

They arguably have the best cocktails in Skala and are also a great place to visit for some dinner.

It can get busy so make sure to get a table early!

Kefalonia Travel Guide: Where to Stay in Kefalonia

kefalonia travel guide best hotels and resorts

Remember, hotels can jump up in price and sometimes sell out quickly during the high season! As such, make sure to book in advance to get the best hotels and the best deals possible.

best Kefalonia hotels

Suites minetos – 9.9/10.

I stayed at Suites Minetos while visiting Kefalonia and it was situated perfectly on the south coast to explore the rest of the island.

It’s a one-bedroom apartment with a fully-equipped kitchen, living room with TV, and maybe most importantly – a stunning outdoor deck looking out over the sea, with Zakynthos in the distance!

The design is clean and modern and had everything I needed (including air conditioning!).

They’re also building a restaurant downstairs that I’m sure will be a delicious and convenient place to grab drinks and dinner once it’s finished!

Check availability now on and Agoda .

Canale Hotel & Suites – 9.9/10

Canale Hotel & Suites is a luxurious, adults-only 4-star hotel located in the heart of Argostoli, Kefalonia.

It features modern and stylish rooms with a private balcony, some with sea views. Provided amenities include an infinity pool, a bar, a fitness center, a spa, and a restaurant serving Mediterranean cuisine.

Canale Hotel & Suites is ideally located near popular attractions like the Archaeological Museum of Argostoli, the Korgialenio Historic and Folklore Museum, and the Koutavos Lagoon. This makes it a convenient and comfortable base for exploring the area!

A few top beaches like Kalamia Beach and Limanaki Beach are also located nearby, overall making this one of the best places to stay in Kefalonia without a car.

Speaking from experience, prices can go up and rooms can sell out quickly in Kefalonia, especially during the summer months. Book now so that you don’t miss out!

Casa montzo boutique hotel – 9.7/10.

Casa Montzo Boutique Hotel is a charming, family-run hotel located in the peaceful village of Ketlios, Kefalonia. It’s also one of the highest rated hotels you can book on Kefalonia!

The hotel boasts a fantastic location, just a short walk from the beach, where you can enjoy the crystal-clear waters of the Ionian Sea.

There are eight spacious and comfortable rooms at Casa Montzo, all uniquely decorated with traditional Kefalonian elements and modern amenities and each with a private balcony or terrace.

Guests can relax in the hotel’s outdoor swimming pool, soak up the sun on the terrace, or indulge in a refreshing drink at the bar.

Besides its excellent location and comfortable rooms, Casa Montzo Boutique Hotel is known for its warm and welcoming hospitality. The owners, Montzo and Tony, will go out of their way to make sure you have a memorable stay, offering personalized service and insider tips on the best local restaurants, beaches, and activities.

Check availability on or Agoda .

Minies Beach Villas – 9.7/10

Minies Beach Villas is a complex of modern villas located in the village of Minies in Kefalonia.

The villas are surrounded by a beautiful garden, and each one has a private pool and a fully equipped kitchen.

These villas are literally right on the beach and the capital city of Argostoli is only a 10-minute drive away.

Guests praise the friendly staff and the peaceful location, making it an excellent choice for those looking for a quiet retreat in Kefalonia.

It’s also surprisingly affordable!

best Kefalonia resorts

F zeen retreat – 9.3/10.

F Zeen Retreat is well-known on Kefalonia island for being one of the most luxurious resorts available.

The 5-star adults-only resort is located in Lourdata and features stylish rooms and suites with private balconies or terraces, infinity pools, a spa, and a restaurant serving Mediterranean cuisine.

Emelisse Nature Resort – 9/10

You could have this sunset view if you stay at Emelisse Nature Resort!

Already mentioned above for its restaurant, Emelisse is perfectly summed up in one word:

Emelisse Nature Resort is a 4-star boutique hotel and resort located in the north near Fiskardo and offers elegant accommodations with sea or garden views. It also had two outdoor pools (one is an i nfinity pool looking out over the sea with stunning sunset views), a spa, and two restaurants serving Greek and Mediterranean cuisine.

Ionian Emerald Resort – 8.6/10

This 5-star resort is located in Karavomylos and offers modern rooms and suites with sea or garden views and multiple pools with easy access to a private beach.

They also have a spa and a restaurant that serves both Mediterranean and international cuisine.

Not only does Ionian Emerald Resort offer beautiful sea views, but they also boast views of Mount Ainos. The extensive gardens are a highlight of the property, full of trees and colorful flowers that provide a peaceful and relaxing atmosphere.

Apostolata Island Resort & Spa – 7.6/10

Apostolata Island Resort & Spa is a luxurious accommodation option on the beautiful island of Kefalonia.

With stunning views of the Ionian Sea, the resort offers an indulgent spa and wellness center.

You can enjoy a range of dining options as a guest, including a bar and a traditional Greek taverna.

Spacious rooms and suites feature modern amenities and private balconies with breathtaking sea views.

best Kefalonia Hostels

Unfortunately, Kefalonia isn’t the best place for hostels yet. They currently don’t have any!

(Sorry, my backpacker friends.)

If you’re on a budget and/or backpacking island hopping in Greece , I recommend checking out the vast array of budget accommodations instead.

Other Kefalonia Travel Tips

Kefalonia travel guide Myrtos beach drone top down looking down view bird's eye girl on beach in a bikini

1. Plan out your days (roughly) beforehand

Maybe this is just travel 1-0-1, but I didn’t use to be much of a planner when it came to travel because I had more time and enjoyed just wandering about.

However, now that I’m not just an undergrad student anymore, my vacation time is precious and I’m sure yours is, too!

So based off of this Kefalonia travel guide, sketch out a rough itinerary for yourself that you might like to follow.

Of course, be flexible and open to changes if and when things come up on your vacation. But a rough plan will help you make sure you maximize your Kefalonia holiday and don’t miss any of its many gems!

Read more: The step-by-step guide to traveling alone for the first time

2. start your days early(ish).

Ok, confession – I am not naturally an early riser, and getting up early is pretty much the last thing I want to do when I’m on vacation.

However, the Greek summers are H-O-T. That midday sun will sizzle you if you’re not careful!

To make sure you start your days refreshed and not melting in the heat, I recommend you hit the road by 10 am each day for your sightseeing, hiking, swimming, and sunbathing.

This can be especially true for the best beaches in Kefalonia. I recommend getting there in the morning so you can have a bit more of a peaceful experience away from so many crowds!

3. Remember – you’re on island time

What does this mean? Everything’s a bit slower-paced in southern Europe on the Mediterranean.

This can be owed a lot to the fact that it’s just so hot!

So remember when waiting for food at a restaurant or a bus or taxi that things just run on “island time” in Greece, including Kefalonia.

I recommend you just lean into it and enjoy the slower pace – you’re on vacation, after all!

Kefalonia Travel Guide: Plan Your Kefalonia Trip

Now that you’ve read through this Kefalonia travel guide, it’s time for you to start planning your trip!

First, don’t forget to book your accommodation with enough time to spare before rooms sell out or prices go up. This is especially true in June through August, during peak season!

Also make sure you check out all the great activities and attractions the island has to offer that I’ve mentioned above! Then pick your favorites and book them in advance, also to secure the best price and ensure availability.

Ready to start packing? Check out my ultimate Europe backpacking packing list for summer to make sure you’ve got everything you need to make your trip to Kefalonia a great one!

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February 26, 2023 at 2:32 am

Great recs – good to know there are still some not so touristy options!

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October 2, 2023 at 8:52 am

The article is fantastic! Kefalonia looks like an amazing place. I’d love to visit this island, even just from the pictures. If your writing is encouraging me to learn more about this magnificent place, then it’s definitely a successful article. Thank you! 🌴🌞😊

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kefalonia travel advice

The cosmopolitan village of Fiscardo

The gorgeous beach of Myrtos

Kefalonia Greece: Fiscardo, the cosmopolitan village

The spectacular open-air cave of Melissani

Kefalonia island: Myrtos, the spectacular beach


How to get there?

Hotels & Accommodations

Car Rentals

Tours & Activities

kefalonia travel advice


Beaches with exotic turquoise waters, picturesque villages, mysterious caves, and lush nature make up the magical landscape of Kefaloni a ! Chances are you’ve already seen it in pictures and postcards, but, trust us, the reality is far better!

In our travel guide, you will find all the information needed to organize an unforgettable trip to Kefalonia! Keep reading to discover the island's top things to do , beaches , hotels , restaurants , and things to do, and also browse through our photo gallery !

You can travel to Kefalonia by plane from Athens and abroad. There is also a ferry from Killini or Patra, as well as a few nearby islands of the Ionian Sea.

How to get there?

Best Hotels

Best Hotels

What to Do? (16+)

What to Do?

Where to Swim? (50+)

Where to Swim?

Top Tours & Activities (10+)

Top Tours & Activities

Where to Eat & Drink? (30+)

Where to Eat & Drink?


Book your trip to Kefalonia with Greeka, the Greek islands specialists! We help thousands of people every year to plan beautiful and trouble-free holidays. From tours to hotels and from car rentals to ferry tickets, we provide all the essential services to make your travel to Santorini the most epic and smooth one. Our travel services are rated . Our guide and services won the Silver Award (2020) at the annual Tourism Awards in Greece . Read reviews about our services.

Hotels & Accommodations


Ideally located in the heart of the Ionian Sea, Kefalonia has inspired many with its beauty and has been the filming location of the famous movie "Captain Corelli’s Mandolin" . Indeed, wherever you set your eyes on, you’ll see nature at its best! Kefalonia is not only the biggest Greek island in the Ionian Sea but also one of the most beautiful! Boasting a breathtaking natural landscape with exotic beaches, picturesque fishing villages and magical underground caves, it is one of the best destinations in Greece for nature lovers !

Worldwide famous for its scenic beaches (such as Myrtos , Antisamos, Lourdas, and Skala), dramatic landscapes and delicious food , the island attracts and bewitches thousands of visitors every summer. Indigo bays, enchanting villages (like Fiscardo , and Assos ), white dazzling sand, exciting activities, mysterious caves , and a lively atmosphere create an exotic holiday paradise in the middle of the Ionian Sea.

The main reason why people keep on coming to Kefalonia is, without any doubt, its wonderful beaches . Sure, some beaches always look good in pictures, but the most photographed ones look even better in real life! From Myrtos , an idyllic sandy beach backed with towering cliffs, to Petani, Xi, Skala and Makris Gialos , every beach will take your breath away! As for the villages , they ooze charm in abundance! Apart from the capital of the island, Argostoli , don’t skip visiting the tiny villages of Fiscardo and Assos , during your holidays in Kefalonia. Gaze at the magical scenery, stroll around their little harbors, take in the sights and, of course, sit at a tavern to taste the yummy local delicacies. You’ll forget -even just for a while- the sounds of the city!

The exploration continues in the mysterious lake cave of Melissani . Hop on one of the little boats that make tours around the cave and immerse yourself in the magical atmosphere of this natural wonder. Just imagine turquoise waters, stalactites and trees washed out by the light that sneaks into the cave from a hole above it… An otherworldly experience!


Explore Kefalonia island through the lens of the talented members of the Greeka community . Share your experience with us or tag us #greekacom on your favorite social media.


Kefalonia offers a wide variety of well-developed tourist facilities, including amazing places to stay for all tastes. Among them, you will find both modern and traditional rooms, villas, apartments, suites and more, as well as big resorts that combine different kinds of accommodation facilities. Skala, Fiscardo, Lassi and Argostoli are some of the best places to stay.

Some of the most popular hotels are: • Emelisse Nature Resort   • F Zeen • Museum Hotel • Braunis Horio Villas


Kefalonia island has an international airport with flights from many European cities. The island can also be reached by ferry from the Greek mainland (Killini, Patra, and Astakos), Ithaca, Lefkada, and Zakynthos. Book your ferry tickets with us !

Discover the different ways to get to Kefalonia:


Discover the highlights of Kefalonia! From sightseeing to activities and from tours to restaurants, we present you the best recommendations for the ultimate holiday experience! You can also view the best things to do .

Myrtos Beach


Continue your trip to the best destinations in Greece! Take advantage of the convenient location Kefalonia has in the Ionian Sea and visit more charming islands.


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12 Best Things to do in Kefalonia, Greece

12 Best Things to do in Kefalonia, Greece

Nestled in the Ionian Sea, just off the coast of Greece, lies one of the best summertime treats – the island of Kefalonia. This small paradise offers many incredible things to do, from discovering breathtaking turquoise waters and serene beaches to exploring mysterious sea caves. Away from the coast, discover the isle’s tapestry of lush forests, rugged mountains, and crystalline springs. Combine all this with delicious cuisine and captivating historic villages, and you have an extraordinary destination to visit. Here are all the best things to do in Kefalonia, Greece .

Things to do in Kefalonia, Greece

Kefalonia is one of the hidden gems of Greece, with a diverse landscape, vibrant villages, and a tranquil atmosphere unlike any other in the country. In contrast to the iconic white houses you find in places like Santorini or Milos , Kefalonia is adorned with beautiful Mediterranean-style houses, adding to its distinct charm. 

best things to do kefalonia greece

From navigating the jaw-dropping cliff roads with panoramic views to lounging on one of the countless beaches (some of which can only be accessed by boat), there’s so much to discover. The locals are incredibly welcoming, and although it’s slowly growing in popularity, Kefalonia remains somewhat of a secret paradise still. 

google maps phone

1. Asos Village

Asos (or Assos) is a picturesque village that lies nestled in the lush, towering hills on the northern peninsula of Kefalonia, Greece. As you approach the village, colorful streets unfold before you, perched along the waters full of fishing boats and lush palms.

things to do kefalonia greece assos village

Explore the lively town and walk along the charming quay lined with cute tavernas and cafes, only pausing to indulge in a delicious frappe. Continue on, and you’ll eventually meet the village’s tranquil pebbled beach.

Hotels in Asos 😴

Romanza Studios

Above the bay across from town stands a Venetian castle (the town began under Venetian rule in 1593 when it was the administrative capital of northern Cephalonia). Because of this, you’ll find various ruins from this time perched between the town’s colorful houses. Though it’s a bit of a climb, you’ll be rewarded with stunning vistas over the beautiful village of Asos below.

kefalonia travel advice

Assos is one of the best things to do in Kefalonia, as it’s one of the most colorful villages in Greece. However, due to its size, parking is minimal. If you’re traveling by car, try to arrive as early as possible and park along the road (which is often shared with free-roaming goats!). Here’s the location .

We recommend to rent a car in Greece through Sunny Cars with free cancellation and insurance included. Book your rental car here .

kefalonia travel advice

2. Myrtos Beach – Top Thing to do in Kefalonia

About 15 minutes from Assos lies the most beautiful viewpoint of the island. Perched 320 meters high, it offers breathtaking views over the entire island of Kefalonia. It’s similar to the renowned Zakynthos shipwreck beach viewpoint on the neighboring island, where you’re treated to a great vantage point.

best things to do kefalonia greece myrthos beach sunset

From here, explore the nearby sea cave, watch the azure blue waters and white pebbles of Myrtos Beach, or soak up the warm Mediterranean sun. Myrtos Beach is one of the best things to do in Kefalonia, Greece (You’ll also find our sticker here!).

Did you know? To get to the beach itself, you’ll have to drive down a winding asphalt road. During the high season, there’s also a beach club that offers daybeds, drinks, and snacks.

12 Best Things to do in Kefalonia, Greece

3. Melissani Cave  

Known for its crystal-clear water and beautiful scenery, the Melissani Lake Cave is one of the most popular things to do in Kefalonia. Embark on a boat trip with a knowledgeable guide to navigate through the cave’s waters, admiring the many stalactites.

best things to do kefalonia greece melissani cave

A short walk through a tunnel leads you to the main highlight: a lake with an open ceiling, where natural light beams through onto the crystal-clear water. Here, hop on a boat for a 10-15 minute adventure and witness how the light rays shimmer onto the cave walls.

melissani cave kefalonia greece

Entrance to the blue underground lake costs 10 EUR (10.70 USD) and includes the boat ride and admission to the captivating Drogarati Cave. If you’re just visiting the Melissani Cave, a single ticket costs 8 EUR (8.55 USD).

kefalonia travel advice

The best time to visit the cave is between 11 AM and 2 PM when the sunshine pierces the water from above. However, keep in mind that this is also the busiest time to visit, and you might have to wait in line. 

Book an organized tour of the Melissani and Drogarati Cave online

kefalonia travel advice

4. Ghost Town 

After an earthquake in 1953 shook the island, many people fled the beautiful towns of Kefalonia. Though some people did return, a few villages remain abandoned. These ghost towns now stand frozen in time as a testament to the island’s history and resilience. Perhaps one of the most interesting experiences is to roam through one of these villages and take in the quiet atmosphere.

ghost town kefalonia

Old Vlachata

Old Vlachata is one of the ghost towns in Kefalonia, previously inhabited by over 800 people. From the facades of buildings, streets, wells, old stone ovens, and many tools and objects left behind by settlers, there’s a lot to see on a quick visit. Witness the silent passage of time within the remains of the village as it’s slowly being reclaimed by nature, with trees and greenery interwoven amidst the crumbling structures.

kefalonia travel advice

How to get to Old Vlachata

To get to the town of Vlachata, you can hike, bike, or drive the 5-kilometer journey from Sami-Karavomylos. The village also lies close to other island highlights, like the Melissani Cave, making Vlachata an interesting thing to do in Kefalonia. 

Here are all your hotel options in Kefalonia.

kefalonia travel advice

5. Mt. Ainos National Park 

Mount Ainos reigns as the tallest mountain in Kefalonia, reaching an impressive height of 1.628 meters. This grand mountain is part of the National Park, with a picturesque landscape full of pines and fir trees. However, what really makes Mount Ainos unique is that it’s the only national park on the island — spanning over 3000 hectares.

kefalonia travel advice

Between the lusciousness, many hiking trails take you through the park and past breathtaking viewpoints where you can admire the landscape from above. If you have the time, hike the popular Megas Soros trail, which takes you all the way to the summit of Mt. Ainos (4.5 hours). Up here, you’ll be rewarded with panoramic views over the hills, limestone outcrops, and shimmering Ionian Sea.

Also read: The best things to do in Athens, Greece

kefalonia travel advice

6. Drogarati Cave

Drogarati Cave is an impressive natural wonder and one of the best things to do in Kefalonia, Greece. It’s often combined with the other cave on the island, Melissani Lake, known as one of the most captivating underground treasures. 

cave kefalonia greece things to do

Rich in geological history, the Drogarati Cave has an interesting backstory. It was discovered in the 18th century after an earthquake opened up the entrance. These days, to enter the cave, you’ll descend a short flight of stairs, which will lead you to a beautiful chamber full of stalactites and stalagmites. The cave is nicely illuminated, allowing you to fully take in the colorful sights.

Did you know? The cave’s largest room spans an extraordinary 900 square meters and has even housed concerts and other events because of its incredible acoustics.

kefalonia travel advice

Visiting the Drogarati Cave

A visit to the Drogarati cave typically takes no more than 10 minutes but is really worth a visit! It’s also a welcome escape from the hot summer sun with a cool temperature of 18 degrees. 

Entrance to the cave costs 5 EUR (5.35 USD) or 10 EUR (10.70 USD) for a combined ticket with Melissani Cave.

Tip: Keep in mind that the cave can be slippery due to water drops, so be careful as you walk. 

things to do kefalonia greece argostoli

7. Argostoli City

Welcome to Argostoli, the bustling capital and largest town of Kefalonia. Located on one of the western peninsulas of the island and connected by a pedestrian bridge that spans the water, it offers a vibrant atmosphere that perfectly blends the charm of a town with the conveniences of a city. 

Hotels in Argostoli 😴

Tourist Boutique Hotel

Stroll along the lovely boulevard and square, stop at the different restaurants, bars, and shops, and visit the Archeological Museum. The picturesque harbor makes a beautiful setting, and if you’re lucky, you might even spot turtles lazily swimming in the bay.

Argostoli serves as the island’s beating heart, making it a great base for day trips to nearby highlights and beaches. 

kefalonia travel advice

8. Go Beach-Hopping 

Stunning turquoise waters, soft yellow sand, and sky-high rocky cliffs are what you can expect from the beaches in Kefalonia, Greece. Nothing tops soaking up the warm summer sun while you laze on your beach towel and listen to the gentle waves of the Ionian Sea. Some of our favorites are:

  • Kako Lagadi Beach (Asprogerakas) – a tiny bay with crystal clear waters and light pebbles, best visited early in the morning to avoid the crowds.
  • Fteri Beach – turquoise waters, dramatic coastline, and unique scenery make Fteri Beach one of the best things to do in Kefalonia. To get there, you’ll either have to arrange a boat, join a cruise, or hike one of the two trails that start in Atheras village and Zola.

beautiful beach kefalonia greece

  • Antisamos Beach – best for swimming and sunbathing. This east coast beach is famous as the location of the Hollywood movie ‘Captain Corelli’s Mandolin’.
  • Makris Gialos Beach – a beautiful golden bay surrounded by rock formations and pine trees, located close to the island’s capital city Argostoli. There are sunbeds, umbrellas, and a beach bar here.
  • Emplisi Beach – partially covered by trees, Emplisi Beach lies in the north of Kefalonia. It’s an excellent spot for snorkeling or SUP surfing.

kefalonia travel advice

  • Pessada Beach – home to shallow and clear water, perfect for swimming and snorkeling. It’s a wild and rugged area with no amenities, which adds to its private charm. There’s a tiny parking area (just for a few cars), so get here early. 
  • Skala Beach – a long sandy beach situated in the small fishing village of Skala on the southern point of Kefalonia. Just above the beach, you’ll find plenty of restaurants, cafes, and mini-markets.

Also read: The complete Greek island hopping guide

antisamos beach kefalonia greece

9. Fiskardo

Fiskardo is undoubtedly one of the most charming and picturesque villages in Kefalonia, Greece. Surrounded by beautiful bays of crystal-clear water on the island’s northern tip, this maritime town offers many things to do.

best things to do kefalonia greece fiskardo town

Soak up the quaint atmosphere as you wander through the town, admiring the vibrant colors of the flowers and shutters on the houses. Or, rent a bike and tour along the unpaved roads, watching as the locals tend to their boats in the port. 

restaurants fiskardo kefalonia greece

Nearby you’ll find the Venetian Lighthouse and Emplisi and Foki Beach, where you get to bask in the beautiful waters. From here, embark on one of the many hiking trails, or head out onto the Ionian Sea with a SUP or boat to discover hidden gems in the area.

kefalonia travel advice

Alternatively, history lovers will enjoy the Roman Cemetery, revealing an interesting glimpse into the past with numerous sites dating back to the first Christian Era (2nd century A.D.!).

Hotels in Fiskardo 😴

Agnantia Bed & Breakfast

The village is also home to many charming tavernas, cafes, bakeries, and boutiques, making it the perfect place to delve into delicious Greek cuisine (a must-try cafe for breakfast is Melina). A trip to Fiskardo is one of the best things to do in Kefalonia. 

kefalonia travel advice

10. Visit a Winery

Besides olive oil and honey, Greece is famously known for its delicious wine production. Kefalonia, in particular, boasts a unique grape variety called Robola, which is exclusively grown in this area, thriving on Kefalonia’s steep and rocky slopes.

kefalonia travel advice

Beautiful wineries across the island showcase the quality and character of this delicious product, like the renowned Orealios Gaea Winery and Haritatos Estate. The winemaking here is done with minimal interaction, letting nature run its course.

Explore the distinctive flavor of Kefalonia’s Robola wines by joining a tour – perfect for wine enthusiasts!

kefalonia travel advice

11. Monastery of Agios Gerasimos

Nestled next to the Orealios Gaea Winery, under the majestic Mount Ainos, lies the monastery of Agios Gerasimos in Kefalonia. This sacred pilgrimage site is dedicated to the island’s patron saint, St. Gerasimos, who lived during the 16th century. With its radiant frescoes, a courtyard full of plane trees, and gleaming silver reliquary, the pinkish building makes a must-visit on the island.  

Monastery of Agios Gerasimos kefalonia greece

Inside, you’ll find a trap door that leads to a cave. This is believed to be the hermitage where Gerasimos lived before the monastery’s construction. The saint’s body remains on the location, preserved inside the neighboring church. Both buildings are free to visit.  

kefalonia travel advice

12. Castle of Agios Georgios

Perched high atop a hill stands the Castle of Agios Georgios in all its grandeur and history. The impressive remains of this great fortress lie only 15 minutes outside the capital Argostoli, making it the perfect location to visit on a day trip out of town. As you explore the romantic Byzantine ruins surrounded by the beautiful Mount Ainos and the Ionian Sea, immerse yourself in the fascinating legacies of this ancient stronghold.

Nowadays, the captivating old walls lay intertwined with overgrown greenery, offering a little glimpse into the island’s rich history.

Tip: After your visit, we recommend heading to Il Borgo Restaurant for a delicious lunch. 

Entrance Fee & Opening Times: The entrance fee to the castle ruins of St. George is 3 EUR (3.20 USD) per person. The grounds are open daily from 8.30 AM – 3.30 PM except on Tuesdays.

kefalonia travel advice

The Best Restaurants and Cafes in Kefalonia

Kefalonia boasts a wide variety of traditional dishes that, just like the Robola wine, are unique to the Greek island. Whether it’s the famous appetizer Riganada, Strapatsada (scrambled eggs) for breakfast, or Ladokouloura cookies (made with olive oil) – there’s a lot to try. Some of our favorite food spots on the island are:

  • Alexandros Restaurant Grill
  • Il Borgo Restaurant
  • 3 Wise Monkeys
  • Makis Restaurant
  • Kefall-oinia
  • Melina (Breakfast & Lunch)
  • Sea-Rock-ws

Tip: In Greece, you always get dessert, whether it’s a drink or a proper Greek yogurt treat! 

kefalonia travel advice

Where to Stay

With so many beautiful locations on the island, there’s no wrong area you can stay in. Especially if you’re traveling through Kefalonia by car, it’s easy to get to all the island’s highlights. However, we recommend basing yourself in Argostoli or North in Assos or Fiskardo. From here, you can make easy day trips, and you’re also close to the airport. We stayed a few days at this hotel in Argostoli .

kefalonia travel advice

If you’re traveling the island with multiple people, it’s a lot of fun to rent a villa together. We stayed with a friend in late April at this villa , and it was the best place ever! 

villa kefalonia greece

If a resort holiday is more your thing, then it’s best to stay in the south/southeast near Skala. Here you’ll find more beach clubs and restaurants, but you’re further away from all the things to do in Kefalonia.

kefalonia travel advice

How Many Days in Kefalonia?

To see most of the beautiful Kefalonia, Greece, we recommend staying at least 4 days on the island. Start in Argostoli and visit the surrounding sites like the wineries, monastery, and castle.

best things to do kefalonia greece beach

From there, make your way to the stunning Myrtos beach and the bustling town of Assos. After soaking up the tranquil atmosphere, head over to the quaint fisherman’s town of Fiskardo. Here, explore the caves, Antisamos Beach, and Old Vlachata (if you’ve got the time). 

Island hopping is very popular in Greece, as there are so many to visit. Read our complete Greece Island Hopping travel guide.

kefalonia travel advice

How to Visit Kefalonia, Greece

As the island is slowly becoming a more popular travel destination in Greece, there’s now an international airport with connections to other destinations in Europe and daily flights from Athens.

kefalonia travel advice

Getting Around

The best way to get around the stunning island is either by rental car or motorbike, as buses aren’t common. With your own transportation, it only takes 1.5 hours to get from one side of the island to the other. There are a few motorbike rentals on the island. 

car rental kefalonia greece

Though far less crowded than the neighboring island Zakynthos, it can get very busy on the road during the peak months (July – August). You’ll find some narrow roads, especially around the mountains, but there are also some great highways. We highly recommend renting a car or driver to get around Kefalonia, Greece.

scenic roads kefalonia greece

How Much Does Kefalonia Cost?

Compared to popular Greek destinations like Santorini or Mykonos, Kefalonia offers a much more affordable experience. While prices depend on the season, accommodation, food, and activities remain quite reasonable. 

Costs of Traveling in Kefalonia

Travel on a budget in Kefalonia, from $290 − $390 USD weekly per person, mid-range $710 − $1320 USD, and high-end from $1270 − $1810 USD. However, costs depend on factors like accommodation, transportation, and activities. We did not include flights. Check flight prices here

  • Hotels: $50 − $150 USD Check available hotels
  • Hostels: $20 − $30 USD Check available hostels
  • Transport: $3 − $30 USD Book public transport
  • Car Rental: $30 − $50 USD Book a rental car
  • Food: $10 − $30 USD
  • Activities: $5 − $20 USD See tickets & tours
  • Sim: $1 − $3 USD Get an eSIM or SIM here
  • Travel Insurance: $2 − $6 USD Get Travel Insurance

beautiful restaurant kefalonia greece

Best Time to Travel

The best time to travel to Kefalonia, Greece, is outside the main travel season (July – August). During these summer months, there is a high volume of traffic. Because of this, visiting in May- June or September is much better. The weather is warm, the island is green, and there are fewer vehicles and people on the island.

kefalonia travel advice

Outside the peak months, the island gets really quiet as not many people live here (most only visit in the summer). If you’re visiting during the low season, April – May or October, it’s best to call a restaurant beforehand to see if it’s open. 

kefalonia travel advice

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9 Best Things to do in Paros, Greece 

Santorini travel guide: things to do in santorini, greece, greek island hopping: ultimate greece travel guide.

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Kefalonia Travel Guide: Everything You Need To Know

Panoramic view of the lighthouse at sunset.

Last updated on May 13th, 2024 at 09:09 am

The allure of the Ionian Sea is indisputable and our comprehensive Kefalonia Travel Guide is all you need to plan the perfect vacation to the largest of the Ionian Islands, a treasure trove of stunning beaches, natural wonders, lush forests and picturesque towns and villages steeped in history.

Complete with all the practical information you need to plan your trip to Kefalonia, recommendations for the best places to stay in Kefalonia, historical facts about the island, and the best beaches and top things to do in Kefalonia, this guide has everything you need to know about Kefalonia in one place.

Not to mention that our knowledge of Kefalonia is an almost-local one. Blessed with dear friends and their open invitation to visit them in their summer home in Kefalonia, we know the island pretty well. Welcome to our ultimate Kefalonia travel guide!

Some of the links in this article are affiliate ones. This means that if you click through them to make a purchase, we may earn a small commission at no additional cost to you. For more information, visit our  Disclosure page .

Panoramic view of Myrtos beach at sunset. At the end of the winding road that leads to the beach there are a lot of cars parked.

The Ultimate Kefalonia Travel Guide: Travel Resources

  • Book a direct flight to Kefalonia or book your flight to Athens .
  • Planning a road trip to Kefalonia?  Rent a car here!
  • Find the best deals on  Booking . com  for your  accommodation in Kefalonia .
  • Book  the best tours  with   GetYourGuide  or  Viator  in Kefalonia.
  • Travel without a worry in the world.  Click here  to buy your  travel insurance .
  • Make your transactions in foreign currency  simple without visiting a bureau de change.  Order your Wise Card here!

Where Is Kefalonia Greece

Kefalonia or Cephalonia is one of the largest Greek islands and the biggest Ionian Island. It’s in the heart of the Ionian Sea, off the coast of the Peloponnese and Western Greece. Similar to the rest of the Ionian Islands, Kefalonia is well-known for its gorgeous beaches with crystal clear water, lush vegetation and marvellous mountainous scenery.

Argostoli is Kefalonia’s capital and largest town. West of Argostoli, on the other side of the bay, is Lixouri, the main town on the Paliki Peninsula. Poros and Sami on the eastern side of the island are Kefalonia’s two main ports connecting Kefalonia to mainland Greece.

Panoramic view of Poros village. The buildings are rooftiled and there is a long square in front of the beach.

Best Time To Visit Kefalonia

Like most places in Greece , Kefalonia enjoys good weather with warm temperatures throughout the year. However, despite its mild temperatures, the island of Kefalonia sees a lot of rainfall for the better part of the year.

The best time to visit Kefalonia to enjoy more sunshine and avoid rain is during the summer months when the maximum temperature is around 30°C. Although June to September is the high season in Greece, Kefalonia doesn’t feel crowded, thanks to its big size.

View of Skala beach from eye level. There are several colourful umbrellas near the sea on Skala beach.

How Many Days in Kefalonia

Unlike the Cyclades Islands , which are all compact and fairly easy to explore in a handful of days, there are also several big islands in Greece. One of them is Kefalonia. So, if you have experience with the smaller Greek Islands you visited before, expect the exact opposite in Kefalonia.

Long distances leave you less time relaxing on the beach as the main Kefalonia attractions are scattered all over the island. Therefore, we recommend staying at least one week in Kefalonia to check out some of the best things to do in Kefalonia and have some free time, too. If you plan to stay for fewer days, it’s better to focus on one part of this beautiful island instead of trying to see everything.

Panoramic view of a coastal road in Eastern Kefalonia. Taken from a drone.

How To Get To Kefalonia

The best way to get to Kefalonia is by plane. There are plenty of direct flights from major European cities in the summer. Kefalonia’s airport is a 15-minute drive from Argostoli, the island’s capital.

If you can’t find a direct flight to Kefalonia International Airport, the next best option is to book a flight to Athens and then continue to Kefalonia either by car or bus.

By Car & Ferry From Athens

If you fly to Athens, rent a car at the airport and drive directly to Kyllini Port in the Peloponnese, where the ferries to Kefalonia depart from. The drive from Athens Airport to Kyllini Port takes about three and a half hours via the E94 and A8 Motorways, while the ferry ride from Kyllini to Poros Port on Kefalonia Island lasts about one hour and a half.

By Bus & Ferry From Athens

Alternatively, from Athens Airport, take Bus X93 to the Athens KTEL Bus Station , where the long-distance bus to Kefalonia departs. The KTEL bus ticket includes the Kyllini to Poros ferry ride. Check out the Kefalonia KTEL Bus schedule here .

Like all the Ionian Islands, Kefalonia is no longer connected to Piraeus, the largest port in Greece. By ferry, you can reach Kefalonia from the Greek mainland ports of Kyllini and Patras in Western Peloponnese or other Ionian Islands, like Zante (or Zakynthos) .

Ferries from Kyllini Port go to Poros Port in Kefalonia all year round while ferries from Patras Port go to Sami Port in Kefalonia in the summer months. From Patras, you can continue your trip to Italy , with daily ferries to Bari or Ancona.

Sami Port in Kefalonia is well-connected to Ithaca Island in the summer, too. In the peak season, you can also reach Kefalonia from Lefkada Island after a short ferry ride to the village of Fiskardo in the northern part of Kefalonia.

PRO TIP: Ferry schedules are subject to change, so make sure you double-check before booking your ferry tickets to Kefalonia.

The ferry coming from Kyllini arrives at Poros port. The yellow-white ferry has Levante Ferries written on it in black letters.

How To Get Around Kefalonia

Public transport.

Public transport in Kefalonia is run by the KTEL bus company. Buses are frequent and connect the island’s main towns and villages. During the peak season, expect to find more itineraries on the timetable. Although not the best way to get around the island, if renting a car is not an option for you, public buses will take you to most of the island’s highlights.

Check out the KTEL Bus timetable for local routes here .

Local Ferry

A local ferry connects Kefalonia’s two main towns, Argostoli and Lixouri, throughout the year. This is the best way to commute between the two towns, especially if you’re not driving. Check out the local ferry itineraries here .

A local ferry on its way to Argostoli. Our Kefalonia travel guide has all the details for the local ferry that connects Argostoli to Lixouri.

From fantastic exotic beaches with crystal clear waters to hidden lakes in the forest and abandoned villages in the mountains, Kefalonia boasts unique scenery. The most hassle-free way to appreciate the island’s beauty is by car.

Kefalonia’s main road network is in very good condition. There aren’t any highways, only local roads that make distances look longer when driving from one side of the island to the other. Be careful of the steep narrow roads that lead to the beaches. Also, you may come across the occasional dirt road but nothing too strenuous.

If you don’t drive to Kefalonia in your car, make sure to book a rental car in advance as they quickly disappear in the high season.

Where To Stay in Kefalonia

Argostoli for first-timers.

With plenty of fantastic things to do in and around Argostoli, the island’s capital city is the best place to stay for your first time in Kefalonia.

Featuring an excellent location on Argostoli’s seafront, the 4-star Kefalonia Grand Hotel offers sparklingly clean modern rooms with sea views. Situated right on Argostoli’s central square, Aenos Hotel features gorgeous comfortable rooms in a prime location in the heart of Kefalonia’s capital.

Panoramic view of the De Bosset Bridge and Argostoli in the background.

Fiskardo For Couples

Located in the north of Kefalonia, this renowned quaint village is home to some of the best hotels for a romantic getaway. Nestled in the heart of Fiskardo, both Faros Suites and Balhambra Suites are ideal for a romantic laid-back stay in one of the most beautiful villages in Kefalonia.

A restaurant with blue tables and chairs at Fiskardo's harbour.

Sami For Exploration

For those who want to explore Kefalonia by car, there is no better place to use as a base than Sami. Thanks to its central location, Sami is easily accessible from the rest of the island.

Some of the best places to visit in Kefalonia, such as the beaches of Myrtos and Antisamos, the villages of Assos and Fiskardo and Melissani Cave, are within easy driving distance from Sami, while Argostoli is a mere 35-minute drive from there. On top of that, ferries to Ithaca (or Ithaki) run daily from Sami Port in the summer, making it easy to plan a day trip to the neighbouring island.

Situated in a convenient location with easy parking, Mary’s Studios and Apartment offers fully equipped studios with spacious terraces, ideal for a perfect stay in Kefalonia.

Skala For Families

Away from the hustle and bustle of the island’s more popular locations, Skala remains a small touristic seaside town ideal for families and relaxing holidays. Skala is home to many hotels, restaurants, cafés and beach bars, usually frequented by a lot of people. However, you can always find a great spot on the beach to enjoy the sun and the sea away from the crowds, even in August.

Situated in the heart of the town, Skala Hotel is a family-run hotel with modern refurbished rooms with sea views. The comfortable suites are ideal for families while the sandy beach – a true paradise for the little ones – is only a few steps from the hotel.

Panoramic view of Skala beach and village from a drone. There are several sets of umbrellas and sunbeds on the beach. The main coastal road is between the beach and the village.

5 Things To Know Before Visiting Kefalonia

1. the 1953 great kefalonia earthquake.

This Kefalonia travel guide wouldn’t be the same if we didn’t mention an event that marked the island’s rich history. On the 12th of August, 1953, Kefalonia was hit by one of the most devastating earthquakes in the history of modern Greece. It was the third big earthquake in four consecutive days that flattened Zakynthos, Ithaki and Kefalonia, claiming between 445 and 800 lives.

Fiskardo was the only village in Kefalonia that wasn’t razed to the ground. The catastrophic quake of 7.2 magnitude on the Richter scale resulted in a big migration flow to Athens and abroad. An inevitable economic decline ensued. It took a long time for Kefalonia to stand back on its feet. It wasn’t before the late 1980s that Kefalonia started emerging as one of the main touristic destinations in Greece.

Nowadays, Kefalonia is still hit by earthquakes. Yet, there is nothing to be afraid of anymore as structural engineering has evolved since and because of the 1953 earthquake. Most of the buildings are now protected according to modern anti-seismic regulations.

A severely damaged building in Assos. It has a collapsed roof and several cracks on the facade.

2. The Island’s Mysterious Underground Waters

A short drive from Argostoli, a 19th-century water mill rolls the waters that vanish in the depths of the earth through one of the island’s sinkholes.

In 1963, scientists managed to prove that underground waters traverse Kefalonia from west to east. They did so by pouring red paint into the Argostoli Sinkholes. After two weeks, the water in Melissani Cave and Sami turned red, explaining a unique geological phenomenon that used to be a mystery in the past.

View of the sinkhole and watermill in Argostoli.

3. The Magic of Ainos Mountain

Considering that Kefalonia is popular for its fantastic beaches, the island’s splendid mountainous landscape comes as a pleasant surprise. With its highest peak at 1628 metres, Mount Ainos is the tallest mountain in Kefalonia and the Ionian Islands. The most exciting part is that Ainos Mountain is home to a black-pine forest, the natural habitat of wild horses.

In the summer, Mount Ainos National Park is ideal for outdoor activities, especially hiking. You can drive through Mount Ainos and leave your car at the parking next to the Transmitter Station. From there, follow the trails to explore the island’s national park. If you are lucky, you might catch glimpses of the forest’s beautiful inhabitants.

4. Captain Corelli’s Mandolin Was Filmed in Kefalonia

Starring Nicholas Cage and Penelope Cruz, Captain Corelli’s Mandolin is one of the most popular films set in Greece. The film, based on a novel by Louis de Bernières , is the love story of a music-lover Italian army captain and a local Greek woman who fell in love in Kefalonia when the island was under Italian and German occupation.

For more inspiration before visiting Greece, you can check out our list of 20 novels set in Greece.

Panoramic view of Antisamos bay. The beach is surrounded by lush green vegetation. A big luxury boat is moored away from the beach.

5. Kefalonia Has Its Local Dialect

Similar to the other Ionian Islands, Kefalonia’s dialect is influenced by the Italian language. Occupied by the Venetians for several centuries, the locals use alternated Italian words until today. It’s hard to notice the difference if you don’t speak Greek. That said, you may pick up some words if you speak Italian.

3 Best Places To Visit in Kefalonia

Situated in the northern part of Kefalonia, about an hour’s drive from Argostoli, Assos (or Asos) is the indisputable gem of the island. This small seaside village is considered one of the most beautiful villages in Greece and for good reason

Three people are strolling along Assos' harbour.

For a perfect day in Assos, leave your car at the small public parking space in the narrowest part of the peninsula. Spend a relaxing day by the turquoise waters of the village’s beach, have lunch at one of the seafront restaurants and take a stroll along the quaint harbour.

Before leaving Assos, walk along the scenic path that leads to the 16th-century Venetian Castle for incredible views of the picturesque village.

Panoramic view of Assos village from a drone.

2. Fiskardo

A 35-minute drive north of Assos, Fiskardo (or Fiscardo) is one of the most beautiful places to visit in Kefalonia. As Fiskardo was the only village that survived the 1953 Great Kefalonia earthquake, this is the perfect place to have a look at the island’s pre-earthquake traditional architecture, as most buildings in Fiskardo still retain original elements.

A balcony of a neoclassical mansion. The small balcony has blue railings matched with the blue shutters. The walls are pink.

Start your walk marvelling at the ancient ruins of a Roman cemetery at the edge of the once sleepy fishing village.

The seaside path next to the Roman cemetery in Fiskardo.

Walk along the promenade that passes through the charming harbour and leads to the trail for the Old Venetian Lighthouse of Fiskardo and the enchanting ruins of an early Christian Basilica.

Panoramic view of the Venetian lighthouse in Fiskardo from a drone. The lighthouse stands on the edge of the peninsula and behind there is Fiskardo village and several boats in the harbour.

Although the village has kept its traditional features, Fiskardo is renowned for its fine dining and cosmopolitan vibes. The former hidden gem is now a top destination for the rich and famous. Therefore, don’t be surprised if there are more luxury yachts than fishing boats at the harbour. Also, taxi boats never stop bringing VIP guests to Fiskardo for a luxury dinner.

Panoramic view of two yachts moored in Fiskardo bay with the village in the background.

3. Argostoli

With its beautiful architecture, elegant air and authentic vibes, Argostoli is one of the best places to visit in Kefalonia. The vibrant capital of the island boasts several squares and pedestrianised streets, ideal for people-watching. A great way to be immersed in the unique atmosphere of Argostoli is to grab an ice cream and mingle with the locals as you walk along the lively main street.

The indisputable highlight of Argostoli is the seemingly endless De Bosset Bridge while a special mention should be made to the adorable loggerhead turtles that inhabit the port.

Kampana Square in Argostoli. The square is home to several cafés and a clock tower.

5 Best Beaches in Kefalonia

1. myrtos beach.

Kefalonia is mostly known for its beaches. This is why we’re starting this section of our Kefalonia travel guide with one of the most beautiful beaches in Greece and certainly the most famous beach in Kefalonia. Myrtos will dazzle you with its beauty. It’s one of those places that never fail to astonish, even if you’ve seen a zillion photos of the beach before you actually get there.

First, enjoy panoramic views of Myrtos from this viewpoint . Then drive the downhill road to the beach to swim in mind-blowingly turquoise waters and lie on otherworldily white pebbles.

Thanks to its western orientation, Myrtos is ideal for epic sunsets. Therefore, it’s worth sticking around until the golden hour. However, if you plan to spend the whole day there, bring a beach umbrella as those offered by beach bars are hard to come by.

Keep in mind that when the weather is windy, it’s best to refrain from getting into the water as the waves can get pretty high. Myrtos is also infamous for its strong currents. Therefore, it might be a good idea to check the weather forecast before going to Myrtos Beach to make sure you pick a windless day.

View of Myrtos beach from a drone. There are several sets of sunbeds and umbrellas in front of the beach. The water is deep blue. You can learn everything you need about Myrtos in our Kefalonia travel guide.

2. Petani Beach

Located on the other side of the island, on the Paliki Peninsula, the smaller Petani Beach has something of Myrtos’ splendour. The surrounding exotic landscape and the beach’s turquoise waters will take you aback before you even start descending the hill to the beach. Petani Beach is organised with beach bars and restaurants and it’s perfect for idyllic sunsets.

Like with Myrtos Beach, pick a windless day for your trip to Petani Beach for an unforgettable – and safe – experience.

Panoramic view of Petani beach from the top of the hill. The surrounding landscape is lush green and the water is turquoise.

3. Antisamos Beach

A 10-minute drive from Sami, Antisamos Beach is one of the best beaches in Kefalonia. Alongside Sami, Antisamos was one of Captain Corelli Mandolin’s filming locations that made the island known to the world. Antisamos stands out for its lush green scenery and somewhat eerily emerald waters.

The beach is fully organised with beach bars, restaurants, showers, sunbeds and umbrellas you can rent for the day. Parking is quite easy even in the peak season. For the more adventurous, there are also water sports to try. Antisamos isn’t the best for families as the beach has large pebbles and the waters are deep.

View of Antisamos Beach from eye level. The beach has white pebbles and deep green waters.

4. Xi Beach

Kefalonia has no shortage of unique landscapes and Xi Beach is one of them. With a red-sanded shoreline and crystal clear waters surrounded by clay rock formations, Xi Beach is out of this world.

A 13-minute drive from Lixouri, Xi Beach can be overly crowded, especially in the high season. The swallow waters and the amenities make Xi one of the most family-friendly beaches in Kefalonia.

View of Xi beach from eye level. The beach has red sand and swallow crystal clear waters. The surrounding cliffs are made of clay.

5. Skala Beach

If there’s a happy place for us in Kefalonia, it’s the long sandy Skala Beach. Maybe it’s because we have so many fond memories of having a great time with our dear friends there, but Skala Beach has won a very special place in our hearts.

Situated in eastern Kefalonia, just a 20-minute drive from Poros Port, laid-back Skala is ideal for everyone. Families with small kids who can make the most of the facilities offered by beach bars and restaurants, groups of friends eager to do water sports and sip cocktails, couples in love and loners who want to enjoy reading a book at one of many quiet spots on the sand.

A top-down view of Skala beach from a drone. Four rows of umbrellas and sunbeds on the beach.

7 Best Things To Do in Kefalonia

No Kefalonia travel guide is complete without a mention of the top things to do in Kefalonia. However, in this article, we tried to keep this list short. For the full list of the best things to do in Kefalonia, watch our Kefalonia YouTube video:

1. Get Into The Depths of Melissani & Drogarati Caves

Situated near Sami and a 10-minute drive from Agia Efimia , Melissani Cave with its underground lake is the ultimate highlight of Kefalonia. The water of Melissani Lake comes from the Sinkholes in Argostoli as we mentioned above. As opposed to Diros Cave in Mani, the roof of Melissani Cave has collapsed, creating an impressive shaft over the lake.

The cave is accessible via an underground tunnel. At the end of the tunnel, you embark on small rowing boats to enjoy a memorable boat ride among stalagmites and stalactites. Try to visit the Cave of Melissani at noon on a bright sunny day when the sunlight hits the lake and the boats look as if they’re hovering over the deep blue waters.

View of Melissani lake from the rowing boat. There are several small blue boats in the lake. The daylight hits the water through the shaft.

Often overlooked, the nearby Drogarati Cave is another cave worth visiting in Kefalonia. The 95-metre-deep Drogarati Cave is famous for its excellent acoustics. In the past, it even hosted live performances. The over 100-million-year cave boasts numerous impressive formations of stalagmites and stalactites. If you plan to visit both caves, you can buy a combined ticket, available at either site.

View of Drogarati Cave's interior. A few people are walking under the stalactites.

2. Step Inside Agios Gerasimos Monastery

Canonised in 1622, Saint Gerasimos is Kefalonia’s patron saint. Saint Gerasimos was renowned for the miracles he performed for people with mental issues. Situated in a gorgeous landscape, a 20-minute drive from Argostoli, the sacred Monastery of Saint Gerasimos is home to his relics, which have remained intact throughout the centuries. You can check them out yourselves if you want.

If you happen to be in Kefalonia on the 16th of August, don’t miss the big feast of the Saint in the monastery. Saint Gerasimos is the locals’ beloved Saint. That explains why almost every male on the island is called Gerasimos or Makis (short for Gerasimos).

The big church in Saint Gerasimos Monastery, one of the best places to visit in Kefalonia.

3. Visit a Scenic Winery

If you’re wondering what to buy from Greece , wine is always a great idea. Kefalonia boasts a favourable morphology that endorses the production of high-quality local wine. The island’s most famous grape variety is Robola, which produces exquisite dry white wine. Situated near Saint Gerasimos Monastery, the Robola Wine Cooperative is a great place to indulge in a wine tasting of local wines, paired with delicious food.

Bottles of Robola wine on a shelf.

4. Wander Around a Ghost Village

In 1953, the Great Kefalonia Earthquake levelled a big part of the island. Most villages were rebuilt but others were abandoned forever. Old Vlachata Village near the south coast of Kefalonia is one of the latter. Nowadays, you can still wander among the ruins of this ghost village, step inside roofless homes and try to imagine how the devastating earthquake changed the locals’ lives forever.

Yet, Old Vlachata is brought back to life for three days every August, thanks to the Saristra Festival , a Music and Art Festival that contributes to the village’s reconnection with the past through live performances and installations.

A cobblestone street lined with ruins and olive trees in Old Vlachata village.

5. Take The Trip To Lixouri

One of our favourite things to do in Kefalonia is to take the local ferry from Argostoli to Lixouri, the second-largest city in Kefalonia.

View of Argostoli from the local ferry's deck. There are two men on the deck leaning on the railing and enjoying the view.

A popular tourist destination since the 19th century, Lixouri was one of the Greek Royal Family’s favourite summer resorts in the 1950s. However, the city decayed after the 1953 earthquake and never regained its former glory as a vacation spot. Nowadays, only a few original buildings are still standing. Yet, with its authentic vibes and laid-back ambience, the rebuilt Lixouri is worth a visit.

A small black dog is wandering around Lixouri's main square. There is a table with four chairs in the foreground.

If you’re driving, instead of getting back to Argostoli by ferry, drive along the seaside road that leads from Lixouri to Argostoli for outstanding panoramic views along the way. This drive is one of the most memorable things to do in Kefalonia in its own right.

Panoramic view of Argostoli bay from the seaside road coming from Lixouri. A winding road leads to a small beach.

6. Walk Along The De Bosset Bridge in Argostoli

Constructed in 1813 by the Swiss engineer and Kefalonia’s Governor Charles de Bosset, the De Bosset Bridge is the world’s longest stone bridge built over the sea. The bridge was partially damaged after the 1953 earthquake and closed to vehicles in 2009.

Since 2013, the renovated De Bosset Bridge has been pedestrian-only. It’s ideal for a relaxing long walk with superb views over Koutavos Lagoon and Argostoli Town.

View of the De Bosset Bridge at sunset. The bridge is lined with street lamps and leads to Argostoli.

7. Head To an Iconic Lighthouse at Sunset

Built in 1828 on an artificial peninsula, the iconic Lighthouse of Agioi Theodoroi is one of the most famous landmarks in Kefalonia. The Doric-style lighthouse was completely destroyed after the 1953 earthquake and rebuilt according to its original plans. A short drive from Argostoli, it’s the ultimate romantic place in Kefalonia to enjoy a breathtaking sunset.

Close-up view of the lighthouse's upper part.

Now that you reached the end of our ultimate travel guide for Kefalonia, we do hope it helps you plan your holidays to one of the most remarkable islands in Greece. We know we’ll never stop going back to Kefalonia and we get the feeling that you’ll want to visit Kefalonia more than once, too. So, make sure you keep this thorough Kefalonia travel guide handy!


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Journey of Exploration


Kefalonia Travel Guide

Kefalonia (also spelt Cephalonia) is a greek island in the Ionian Sea with magnificent scenery, fantastic beaches, high mountains, lush vegetation, picturesque seaside villages and hospitable people.

Kefalonia is a popular summer tourist destination for greeks and foreign nationals, and one of the best greek islands to spend your summer holidays.

This travel guide will help you plan the perfect trip to Kefalonia by showing you the top attractions and things to do , best beaches & places to visit including maps , photos and itinerary .


Why visit Kefalonia

Kefalonia is the largest of the Ionian Islands with stunning beaches and beautiful mountainous and coastal scenery.

An ideal destination for a relaxed holiday in the sun , but also for people looking for something more adventurous or cultural, as it combines beach activities with hiking opportunities, scenic drives, and visits to unique caves and picturesque seaside villages .

It has been made famous as the setting of Captain Corelli’s Mandolin film. It is very popular with Greeks, Italians, and the last few years with other foreign nationals as a package holiday destination with direct flights to the island.

Most of Kefalonia has been destroyed by the 1953 earthquake and most towns and villages were completely rebuilt.

Kefalonia has some famous sights and attractions worth visiting, like the famous Myrtos and Petani beaches, Mount Ainos (Enos), Melissani and Drogarati Caves, and the cosmopolitan Fiskardo and picturesque Asos seaside villages.

The main town and capital of the island is Argostoli, but the main ferry ports are Poros and Sami . Lixouri is the second largest town.

Melissani Lake Cave, Kefalonia


The best time for a beach holiday on the island of Kefalonia is from June to mid-September. The weather is dry, sunny and warm, although there is a possibility of rain in September. Also, most tourist facilities are only open during these months. However, due to the mountainous terrain, it can be cloudy at higher altitudes even in the summer months. The sea is warmer from mid-July to mid-September. I would probably avoid peak tourist season: mid-July to late August, especially the first 3 weeks of August, as the island tends to be crowded with mostly Greeks and Europeans on vacation, and prices are higher. The weather can also be very hot, with temperatures over 30°C.

For me, the best time to visit is the middle of June or the beginning of September when the temperatures are more favourable, there are fewer people and the prices are cheaper, but you can still swim in the sea and enjoy the buzz of the island.

In May, it can be a little cold to swim and sunbathe in the sea, but mostly the weather is dry and sunny. October is still warm, but there are significantly more clouds and the chance of rainy days is higher.

During the low season, there are fewer ferries and flights and some shops, hotels and restaurants, especially in tourist areas, close in October and don’t open until April-May, usually around Easter.

Myrtos Beach, Kefalonia


Kefalonia is a big island (about 904sqkm), so I would recommend a minimum stay of 5 days , as exploring the island can be quite hectic with long drives. Travelling from one side to another can be tiring.

Ideally, you should stay on the island for a full week if you would like to explore it at a more relaxed pace and combine it with a day trip to neighbouring Ithaki (Ithaca) .


The most popular places to stay in Kefalonia are Argostoli, Lassi (near Makris Gialos) & Skala , but you could also stay in Poros, Lixouri, Agia Efimia, Asos, Sami and Fiskardo , as they also provide hotels and tourist amenities.

There are also other less popular places to stay in various parts of the island like Kato Katelios , Lourdata as well as plenty of hotels around the airport .

For me, Argostoli, Lassi or Sami are the best places to stay with a lot of tourist amenities and also well located to explore the rest of the island.

Lixouri is a bit out of the way but provides more affordable options .

Asos and Fiskardo are the most picturesque seaside villages , but accommodation can be expensive .

Skala is a good place if you want to be close to a nice beach and is popular with package holidaymakers, but it is further away from the rest of the sights.

Lassi is a good option if you want to combine both, close to a big town (Argostoli), but also to the beach of Maktris Gialos .

Best hotels in Kefalonia

  • Kefalonia Grand Hotel : Situated on Argostoli waterfront with most rooms with a balcony and sea views and great staff.
  • Canale Hotel & Suites : Great hotel in Argostoli Harbour with superb breakfast and amazing staff.
  • Mouikis Hotel Kefalonia : This hotel centrally located in Argostoli offers rooms with a balcony, a nice rooftop terrace, a good breakfast and private parking.
  • White Rocks Hotel Kefalonia : Located by Platis Gialos Beach with panoramic views of the sea and its own outdoor pool.
  • Regina Dell’ Acqua : Situated in Skala this is a 5-star luxury hotel close to the beach.
  • Melidron Hotel : A small family-run hotel well situated in Skala close to the town and beach.
  • Fiskardo Bay Hotel : Located a short walk from the scenic Fiscardo waterfront offers rooms with a balcony and great views and a swimming pool
  • Emelisse : Peaceful location close to Emplisi Beach and 15min walk from Fiskardo with spacious rooms, great restaurant and staff.
  • F Zeen Retreat : Situated close to Lourdata Beach this hotel offers spacious rooms and great facilities.
  • Odyssey Boutique Hotel : Luxury 4-star hotel in Agia Efimia with views of the Ionian Sea
  • Sami Beach Hotel : Decent hotel by the beach between Sami and Karavomilos.
  • Assos View Villas : Beautiful villas with a pool and amazing views of Asos.
  • Hotel Summery : This hotel is located next to the beach and very close to the central square of Lixouri. Good value for money.

Click here to check and compare prices on accommodation for the whole island. You can find the hotels on this map .


Entry requirements/visa.

No visas are required for visits up to 90 days for most nationalities.

Kefalonia is a safe place and you shouldn’t come across any issues during your stay. However, it’s worth keeping an eye on your belongings and use common-sense precautions in crowded tourist areas.

Travel Insurance

It’s always advisable to get travel insurance . You never know what might happen; better to be fully covered in case of an accident, medical emergency or flight delays.

SafetyWing is an excellent choice for long-term travellers. Alternatively, you can use one of the price comparison websites for cheaper quotes.

Kefalonia has a Mediterranean climate, with mild, rainy winters and hot, sunny summers.

Summer (June to mid-September) : The weather is dry, sunny and hot. Average temperatures are between 21 to 30 degrees.

Autumn (mid-September to November) : The weather starts to get cloudier, colder and also rainier. Average temperatures are between 16 to 22 degrees. November and December are the rainiest months in Kefalonia.

Winter (December to mid-March) : It can get quite cold and windy and also rainy and sometimes it even snows on Mount Ainos. Average temperatures are between 9 to 15 degrees. The coldest month is  February .

Spring (mid-March to May) : The weather starts getting warmer and sunnier with average temperatures between 12 to 20 degrees.

You can check historical weather data here .

For greek weather websites, you can visit: Meteo or Freemeteo

Greek , but most people in tourist areas speak some english or italian.

The currency is the euro. It’s worth having some cash with you as some small shops, cafes or restaurants as well as boat tour operators might not accept cards. The best place to exchange some money is through an ATM that can be found in the main towns and resorts of the island.

Kefalonia isn’t a very expensive island, but prices are much higher (almost double) during July and August, especially for accommodation. Eating out is very affordable.

The power plugs and sockets are of type C and F (with two round pins). The voltage is 230 V and the frequency is 50 Hz.

2 round pin plug

Packing List

If you visit in the summertime like most tourists, you will only need to pack summer clothes, walking shoes, a hat, sunglasses, flip flops, sunscreen and swimwear. However, I will recommend having a light summer jacket , as it can get cooler up in the mountains and at night, especially in September and May.

For more information on travel gear and what to pack click below .

Internet/Mobile Phone

To avoid roaming charges, you can buy a local SIM card in one of the shops of either Wind , Vodafone or Cosmote (the main mobile providers) in Argostoli.

Airalo is also a good alternative as it provides access to eSIMs (digital SIM cards) for over 200 countries. Travellers can download and install a digital data pack and get free internet without roaming charges.

However, Airalo is compatible with only the latest mobile phones

Assos Village, Kefalonia


Kefalonia International Airport Anna Pollatou is connected to Athens (2-3 daily, 1hr) all year round and also to some other domestic destinations, like Zakynthos, Preveza and Corfu during summer. During summer, the airport also receives low-cost flights from many European countries.

If you are travelling from Athens, taking a flight can be a bit more expensive than taking the ferry from Patra or Killini, especially in the high season. However, it is much more convenient and definitely recommended if you have limited time in Greece.

For the best website to book your flights, check the link below. Always check prices in advance for the best deals.

Getting from/to the airport

The airport is located about 7km south of Argostoli. Upon your arrival, you can rent a car (highly recommended) in one of the rental offices at the airport. The airport is the best place to book if you haven’t done it before you arrive.

There is a taxi service outside the terminal building. The journey to Argostoli is about 15min and costs around €15 euros, while the trip to Lassi is only 10min and costs €10 . A taxi ride to Skala costs around €50 and takes about 45min, while a ride to Sami costs around €40 .

There is also a limited bus service between the airport and the capital Argostoli. The bus stop is located on the left side of the main entrance of the departures building.

It is also worth checking with your hotel as most of them offer airport transfers at an extra charge.

Kefalonia has two main ferry ports ( Sami & Poros ) that provide connections to the mainland. There are ferries from the port of Patra to Sami via Ithaki (1 daily, 3 hours, €15.5 ) and Killini to Poros (4 daily, 1.5h, €13.50 ) or Astakos to Sami (1 daily, 2.5h).

Kefalonia is also connected by ferry to other islands a few times per week: Zakynthos (Agios Nikolaos to Pesada, 1 hour or Zakynthos to Sami, 3 hours), Lefkada (Vassiliki to Fiskardo, 1 hour or Lefkada to Sami, 3.5h) and Ithaki (Pisaetos to Sami, 30 minutes).

If you don’t have your own vehicle, Kefalonia is connected to Athens by bus (KTEL) every day of the year. The buses depart from Athens and arrive in Patras and Killini to connect with the departure of the ferries for the island. The trip Athens-Kefalonia via Patras lasts 6 hours and arrives at Sami while via Killini lasts about 5 hours and arrives at Poros.

For the cheapest site to book your ferry ticket in Greece, check the link below.


I would recommend hiring a car if you would like to explore the island , as it gives you the freedom to go to more remote areas and stop wherever you like to appreciate the views.

Car rental for a day is usually 50 euros in the peak summer season. Better to book in advance before your travel for the best deals. Also in high season (July/August), there might be low availability and the prices can be much higher if you leave it until you arrive.

Most of the car rental offices are located at the airport or around Argostoli and Lassi. There are some at the ferry ports of the island (Sami). Renting at the airport is usually the cheapest option.

Check the link below to book and compare car rental prices.

There are taxi stands in Argostoli but taxis can be a bit expensive if you plan to go further distances.

Indicative fares of taxi routes :

  • Argostoli to Lassi €7 (5min)
  • Argostoli to Sami: €40 (45min)
  • Argostoli to Skala: €35 (50min)
  • Argostoli to Poros: €60 (57min)
  • Argostoli to Fiskardo: €75 (70min)
  • Argostoli to Asos: €60 (55min)

There is a decent but limited bus service that connects Argostoli with the main villages and resorts of the island. Although public transport is cheap , bus services are not that frequent and you need to plan in advance if you are relying on public transport. For more information visit the KTEL Kefalonia site .

Petani Beach, Kefalonia


The best places to go for a meal are Argostoli, Fiskardo harbour, Lixouri and Sami for the best choices in a beautiful setting. For good restaurants by the sea, you can also visit Kato Katelios and Agia Efimia. There are also good restaurants in the resorts of Lassi and Skala. Below you can find a list of some of the best restaurants in Kefalonia.

Best restaurants in Kefalonia

  • Tassia Restaurant : One of the most famous restaurants in Kefalonia to sample astakomakaronada overlooking the Fiskardo harbour.
  • Melograno Restaurant
  • Vasso’s Restaurant
  • Spiros Restaurant
  • Ampelaki Greek Restaurant
  • Agrapidos Taverna
  • Pomantza Traditional Fish Tavern
  • Ta Pitharia Tavern
  • Zefki Greek Traditional Tavern
  • Blue Sea Restaurant
  • Maria’s Restaurant

You can check the location of these restaurants on this map .

Local Cuisine

  • Meat Pie (kreatopita) : Pastry with minced meat
  • Bakaliaros with agliada : Salted cod with potatoes and garlic sauce
  • Strapatsada : Scrambled eggs fried with tomatoes and feta cheese
  • Tsigaridia : Greens cooked with tomato sauce
  • Mandolato: Sweet made of almonds and sugar (soft nougat)
  • Local Robola Wine is quite famous and worth trying
  • More information about the best greek dishes you can find here .


Best sights and attractions

1. Enjoy one of the scenic drives

It is worth renting a car and exploring the island as it offers some stunning drives with great views of the mountains and coastline.

2. Swim at one of the amazing beaches – Myrtos, Petani, Antisamos & Xi

Myrtos is one of the most famous and picturesque beaches in Greece. The combination of white pebbles, turquoise waters, and steep cliffs creates a breathtaking scene.

Petani is also a beautiful beach in great surroundings as well as Antisamos with its lush greenery and Xi beach with its unique red sand and white cliffs.

Antisamos Beach, Kefalonia

3. Visit the seaside village of Fiskardo

Fiskardo is a picturesque village with preserved Venetian architecture. You can explore its narrow streets, enjoy the colorful buildings, and have a meal in one of the waterfront tavernas.

4. Visit Asos village and its fort

Assos is a charming village with colourful houses situated on a peninsula. You can explore the Venetian castle ruins and enjoy the views of the Ionian Sea.

5. Melissani Cave

You can take a boat tour of Melissani Cave, an underground lake with crystal-clear turquoise waters. The cave is surrounded by lush vegetation, and sunlight creates stunning reflections on the water.

Melissani Cave, Kefalonia

6. Cave of Drogarati

You can explore Drogarati Cave, known for its impressive stalactites and stalagmites. The cave’s acoustics are utilized for concerts and events.

7. Visit busy Argostoli and spot sea turtles

Argostoli is a great place to spot the Careta Careta sea turtles that come every morning to the harbour to eat any leftovers from the fishermen’s morning catch.

8. Hike Mount Ainos

Mount Ainos is the highest peak in Kefalonia, offering hiking trails with beautiful views. The national park is home to the rare Kefalonian fir tree.

9. Take a day trip to Ithaki

Kefalonia is close to the island of Ithaca, known for its connection to Homer’s Odyssey. You can take a boat trip to explore Ithaca’s charming villages and landscapes.

10. Agios Gerasimos Monastery and Robola winery

It is worth visiting the monastery of Agios Gerasimos, the e patron saint of Kefalonia. The monastery is a place of pilgrimage and houses the saint’s relics.

You can learn about the island’s winemaking tradition by visiting the Robola Wine Cooperative, where you can taste and purchase local wines

11. Agios Georgios Castle

You can visit the Agios Georgios Castle near Perata which provides great views of the southwest coast of Kefalonia


1. argostoli.

Argostol i is Kefalonia’s capital town , built amphitheatrically within a bay. The town was mostly destroyed in the 1953 earthquake and most houses were rebuilt. It is a great place for an evening stroll along the pedestrian street and Vallianou Square and also at the waterfront , which is full of yachts and boats .

It is the best place to stay on the island with lots of hotels , restaurants , bars and all the tourist amenities . However, there is no beach within walking distance, the closest beach is in the Lassi Area .

Argostoli is well connected with Lixouri with frequent ferries (every 30min, 20min).

Some of the best attractions and best things to do in Argostoli are summarised below:

  • Watch the sea turtles : Caretta-caretta sea turtles can be spotted in the Argostoli harbour every morning. Turtles can be seen around the fishing boats, coming to eat the fish thrown from the fishermen’s morning catch.
  • Walk along the Lithostroto: Stroll along Lithostroto, the main pedestrian street in Argostoli, lined with shops, cafes, and restaurants. It’s a great place for a leisurely walk and some shopping.
  • Observe the De Bosset Bridge: Check out the De Bosset Bridge, a historic stone bridge that connects Argostoli with the opposite side of the lagoon. It’s a picturesque spot for a walk and offers great views of the Argostoli and the bay.
  • Try Local Cuisine at the Waterfront Tavernas: Argostoli’s waterfront is lined with tavernas offering delicious Greek cuisine. Try local specialties like moussaka, souvlaki, and seafood dishes.
  • Visit the Archaeological Museum of Argostoli: Explore the Archaeological Museum to see artifacts from different periods of Kefalonia’s history, including Mycenaean and Roman artifacts.
  • Take a Boat Trip to Lixouri: Hop on a ferry or boat for a short trip across the bay to Lixouri, the second-largest town on the island. Explore Lixouri’s charming streets, squares, and beaches.
  • Relax at Vallianos Square: Spend some time at Vallianos Square, a central square surrounded by cafes and shops. It’s a great place to relax and people-watch.
  • See the Katavothres Geological Phenomenon: Witness the Katavothres geological phenomenon, where seawater mysteriously disappears into sinkholes and re-emerges in the Melissani Cave, several kilometers away.
  • Explore the St. Theodore Lighthouse: Drive or hike to the St. Theodore Lighthouse for nice views of the coastline. It’s a scenic spot to capture photos.
  • Visit the Koutavos Lagoon: Explore the Koutavos Lagoon, located near Argostoli. You can walk or cycle along the lagoon, enjoying the natural beauty and observing the birdlife.
  • Visit the Korgialenio Historic and Folklore Museum: Explore the Korgialenio Museum to learn about the history, culture, and folklore of Kefalonia. The museum displays artifacts and exhibits related to the island’s past.

2. Fiskardo

Fiskardo is a cosmopolitan seaside village with colourful traditional houses , chic restaurants , boutiques, bars and cafes. It is a lovely place for a stroll but it does get very crowded during the summer months. It is also a great place to taste seafood in one of the fish tavernas on the waterfront. Fiskardo is a mooring area for luxury yachts and it’s very popular with the international jet set .

It is worth visiting the Roman cemetery and the Venetian Lighthouse .

There are two good pebble beaches close to Fiskardo, Emplisi and Foki Beach .

3. Asos (Assos)

Asos is one of the most picturesque seaside villages in Kefalonia, built in a small isthmus between the mainland and the small Asos peninsula . The peninsula has a Venetian fort at the top of the hill, which is worth climbing, as it offers spectacular views of Asos village and the Kefalonia coastline. Its waterfront is popular with yachts and fishing boats and it has a small pebble beach and a few tavernas. There is a paved path from the village to the top of the hill and the 16th-century Venetian castle with marvellous views of the surrounding area along the way. The hike up takes about 30min . It’s free to enter the fort and the castle but there is not a lot to see apart from ruins but the views are worth the hike. All that is left is the remains of the castle walls with the arched gate, Agios Markos church and parts of the barracks.

Sami is the main ferry port of Kefalonia with ferry connections to Pisaetos in Ithaki, but also to Astakos and Patra. There is an ok white sand beach between Sami and Karavomilos. Karavomilos has a nice small lake.

Sami is a nice seaside town and a great base to explore the island. There is a choice of some decent accommodation options and nice restaurants and cafes by the seafront.

The best nearby beach is located further away from the town. Antisamos Beach , one of the best on the island, is located to the north of the town, a 10min scenic drive.

You can also visit the Akropolis of Ancient Sami up on the hill, easily accessible by car, which offers some great views towards the town and the greater area. There you can see the remains of the Cyclopean walls as well as remnants of an ancient theatre.

Sami, Kefalonia

5. Agia Effimia

It is a nice seaside village with a small fishing harbour. It has become quite popular in the last few years with some good accommodation options and restaurants by the seafront.

Agia Effimia, Kefalonia

Lixouri is the second biggest town of Kefalonia, located in Paliki peninsula on the other side of Argostoli. It is a nice and quiet seaside town with two-storey buildings and a decent seafront. Good for an evening stroll and dinner by the sea. It offers some affordable accommodation options and decent seafood tavernas.

It is well connected with Argostoli by frequent ferries (every 30min until midnight, 20min). it is worth taking the ferry even if you have a car as it saves about 1h travelling by road. Ferry prices are cheap.

There is a small beach at the south side of the harbour but the closest decent beach is Lepeda . Lepeda is a beautiful, red sandy beach, about 2.5km on foot to the south of Lixouri.

It is the island’s second main port with ferries to Killini on the mainland. It is a busy town with a decent white pebbly beach at the north side. It has some good accommodation options and a few restaurants.

Lassi is the most popular tourist resort in Kefalonia, close to Argostoli, with two cosmopolitan sandy beaches: Makris Gialos and Platis Gialos in the vicinity.

There are a lot of hotels scattered around Lassi Area. Restaurants and bars as well as shops and souvenir stores can be found along the village’s main street.

9. Kourkoumelata

This is a small village but has some very neoclassical buildings and a beautiful square and it’s worth having a stroll. It is worth also visiting for the sea views.

10. Peratata

It is a nice village close to the Castle of Agios Georgios.

11. Kato Katelios

This is a small resort on the south of the island with a nice little harbour, a decent beach and some good fish tavernas.

12. Old Vlachata

This is a village in ruins but it is an interesting place to visit to discover Kefalonia’s past. You can see the old stone houses as they used to be before the earthquake.

Old Vlachata, Kefalonia

13. Valsamata

The village is located between hills on Omala plateau and is surrounded by vineyards

Skala is the biggest resort on the south coast with a nice sandy beach. It is popular with package holidaymakers. It offers some great hotel options by the sea and the town has some good restaurants, bars and most of the tourist amenities.


Kefalonia has some amazing beaches with crystal-clear water . On the north coast, most of them are with white pebbles and sand, while on the south coast are with golden sand. Some of the most popular beaches in Kefalonia are Myrtos Beach, Petani Beach, Skala, Antisamos Beach and Makris Gialos as well as Xi Beach with its red-coloured sand.

View of Myrtos Beach, Kefalonia

Below is a list of the 35 best beaches on the island.

  • Myrtos Beach: Myrtos is often considered one of the most beautiful beaches in Greece. It features white pebbles, turquoise waters, and a backdrop of steep cliffs. The contrast between the sea and the surrounding landscape is breathtaking.
  • Petani Beach: One of the most spectacular beaches in Kefalonia with white sand and pebbles. Nestled between cliffs, Petani Beach is known for its stunning sunset views. The beach has white pebbles and clear waters.
  • Antisamos Beach: Antisamos gained fame as one of the filming locations for the movie “Captain Corelli’s Mandolin.” It is a beautiful beach with turquoise waters and lush green surroundings.
  • Xi Beach: Xi Beach is distinctive for its reddish-brown sand and clay cliffs. The beach is organized with sunbeds and umbrellas, and the shallow waters make it suitable for families.
  • Makris Gialos Beach: Located near the capital, Argostoli, Makris Gialos is a well-organized beach with golden sands and clear waters. It’s popular among both locals and tourists.
  • Platys Gialos Beach: This beach offers soft golden sands and shallow waters, making it family-friendly. There are various water sports and facilities available, and it’s close to Lassi, a popular resort area.
  • Platia Ammos Beach : One of the most stunning beaches on the island with white sand and clear waters. However the road getting there is not the best, and the steps down to the beach have been damaged. It is still possible to visit but needs caution. The viewpoint at the top is a must.
  • Kaminia Beach: It is a long sandy and remote beach surrounded by nature. It’s a great place to unwind and enjoy the natural beauty.
  • Skala Beach: Skala is a popular resort area, and its beach is a mixture of sand and pebbles. The long shoreline provides plenty of space, and there are various amenities nearby.
  • Fteri Beach : An amazing remote beach with white sand and surrounded by cliffs. It is only accessible by sea taxi (from Agia Kiriaki – 20€) or a hike of 1.5 hours.
  • Agia Kiriaki Beach : A picturesque white pebble beach with clear blue waters.
  • Foki Beach: Foki is a smaller, more secluded beach near Fiskardo. It has pebbles and crystal-clear waters and is surrounded by lush vegetation.
  • Lourdata Beach: Lourdata is a long sandy beach with clear blue waters near Lourdata village.
  • Atheras Beach : A fine strip of sand in Paliki Peninsula with shallow waters. The road getting there offers some great views of the bay.
  • Kounopetra Beach : A reddish sandy beach surrounded by white cliffs, more peaceful than Xi with shallow waters.
  • Megas Lakkos Beach: A quiet and unspoiled beach with golden sands and clear waters. It’s less crowded than some of the more popular beaches on the island.
  • Lepeda Beach: Located near Lixouri, Lepeda has unique reddish-orange sands and is known for its stunning sunset views. The water is usually calm, making it suitable for swimming.
  • Amidi Beach : Beautiful, but secluded beach. Accessible only by boat.
  • Ammes Beach: Ammes is a sandy beach with shallow waters, making it suitable for families with children. It’s conveniently located near the airport.
  • Paliostafida Beach : Nice and quiet beach with transparent and shallow sea, perfect for families.
  • Megali Ammos Beach: Translating to “Big Sand,” Megali Ammos is a sandy beach located near Argostoli. It’s a family-friendly beach with shallow waters.
  • Vatsa Beach: Vatsa is a less crowded beach with pebbles and crystal-clear waters. It’s a peaceful spot for those looking to escape the more touristy areas.
  • Jerusalem Beach: A secluded beach with a combination of sand and pebbles. The waters are calm and inviting, making it a peaceful place to relax.
  • Emplisi Beach: Near Fiskardo, Emplisi is a pebbly beach with crystal-clear waters. The surrounding cliffs and greenery add to the scenic beauty.
  • Minies Beach
  • Giagana Beach
  • Gradakia Beach
  • Eglina Beach
  • Avithos Beach
  • Ai Helis Beach
  • Trapezaki Beach: Trapezaki is a sandy beach with clear waters, located on the southern part of the island. It’s organized with sunbeds and umbrellas and has nearby tavernas.
  • Alaties Beach: Known for its crystal-clear turquoise waters, Alaties is a small beach surrounded by rocks. It’s a picturesque spot for swimming and snorkelling.
  • Koroni Beach
  • Poros Beach


You can click on the map below for the location of the best attractions, restaurants & hotels, as well as the best villages and beaches to visit in Kefalonia.

Kefalonia Tourist Map


It is worth staying in Kefalonia for a week if you want to explore it. The following itinerary includes things to do for 7 days on the island. I have taken Argostoli as a base & overnight stay for the duration of the holiday; this itinerary might work slightly differently if you stay in other parts of the island.

  • Visit Drogarati Cave
  • Visit the Acropolis of Ancient Sami for a great view of Sami town & coast
  • Quick photo stop of Monastery of Theotokou Agrilion for a view of Antisamos Beach.
  • Swim at beautiful Antisamos Beach.
  • A stop for a coffee or snack at Sami Harbour.
  • Visit Melissani Cave.
  • Optional visit to Old Vlachata
  • Drive to Agia Effimia by the coastal road.
  • Stroll at Agia Effimia harbour
  • Optional Visit to Monastery Thetokou Thematon
  • Photo stop at Panagia Lamia Church
  • Back to Argostoli.
  • Total drive time: 2.5h
  • Enjoy the view of Myrtos Beach
  • Swim at Myrtos Beach
  • Visit Asos village and walk to the fort for amazing views
  • Detour to a sightseeing point of Asos.
  • Optional swim at Foki Beach
  • Visit cosmopolitan Fiskardo for an evening stroll
  • Take the route through Erisou villages and Neochori for great views towards Ithaki
  • Back to Argostoli
  • Total drive time: 3.15h (130km)
  • Visit Mycenaean Tholos Tomb of Poros
  • Optional visit to Moni Iperagias Theotokou Atrou (only by 4×4) for a great view of the coast and Poros.
  • Visit Poros harbour.
  • Swim at Skala Beach.
  • Optional swim at Kaminia Beach.
  • Visit Kato Katelios for a snack at the tavernas.
  • Visit Castle of Agios Georgios
  • Sacred Monastery of Agios Gerasimos
  • Wine tasting at Robola Winery
  • Drive to Ainos National Park for a hike or just to enjoy the views
  • Take the alternative route through Agia Eirini
  • Visit the Church of Our Lady Fidousa
  • Swim at Lourdata Beach
  • Total drive time: 3h (100km)
  • Photo stop at Atheras Beach
  • Swim at Petani Beach
  • Photo stop of Platia Ammos Beach
  • Take the route through Moni Kipoureon
  • Photo stop at Kounopetra Harbour to enjoy the views of the coastline
  • Swim at the magnificent red sand beach of Xi.
  • Photo stop at Lepeda Beach
  • Visit Lixouri town for a meal
  • Take the ferry back to Argostoli
  • Total drive time: 2.5h (95km)
  • Turtle watching at Argostoli Harbour
  • Stroll at De Bosset Bridge
  • Photo stop at Agia Kyriaki Beach
  • Water taxi to Fteri (20 euros)
  • Stop at Sinkholes of Argostoli
  • Photo stop at Saint Theodore Lighthouse
  • Swim at Makris Gialos or Platis Gialos
  • Photo stop at Avithos Beach
  • Have a stroll at Kourkoumelata village
  • Take the scenic route through Lakithra back to Argostoli
  • Total drive time: 2h
  • Take a day trip to Ithaki

You can find the routes for the above itinerary on the flowing clickable map.

Kefalonia Road Trip Itinerary


You can check the best photographs from the island of Kefalonia here .

Here is a list of the best viewpoint locations on the island where you enjoy great views .

  • Viewpoint of Myrtos Beach
  • Myrtos Beach Viewpoint
  • Venetian Castle of Asos
  • Asos Harbour Viewpoint
  • Mount Ainos Viewpoint
  • Petani Beach Viewpoint
  • Akropolis of Ancient Sami
  • Antisamos Beach Viewpoint
  • Panoramic Point to Asos
  • Platia Ammos Viewpoint
  • Agia Efimia Viewpoint
  • Atheras Beach Viewpoint
  • Argostoli Viewpoint
  • Asos Viewpoint
  • De Bosset Bridge
  • Castle of Agios Georgios
  • Valsamata Viewpoint
  • Argostoli Bay Viewpoint
  • Filoscultura di Spiros Chourmouzis
  • Panagia Lamia
  • Moni Theotokou Agrilion
  • Poros Coast Viewpoint
  • Observation Deck Fiskardo
  • Good View Park
  • Poros Beach Viewpoint
  • View of the south coast
  • Road with views of Argostoli

You can check these viewpoints locations and the best photo spots on the island in the following map .

View of Assos from the fort, Kefalonia


There are a few centres for watersports and other activities on the island of Kefalonia for the more adventurous.

There is a water sports centre at Makris Gialos beach where you can try jet-ski, water-ski or wake-board. You can also rent a boat, kayak or pedal boat.

There is another water sports centre at Antisamos Beach that offers various water sports activities.

There are 4 dive centres on the island that offer diving and snorkelling trips:

  • Pirate Divers Club in Lassi
  • Blue Manta Diving & Aquanautic Club in Skala
  • Aquatic Dive Club in Agia Effimia
  • Fiskardo Divers in Fiskardo


Day trip to ithaki island.

Ithaki is a small island to the east of Kefalonia with stunning scenery, a picture-postcard town of Vathy and some great beaches. There are full-day daily excursions from Sami or Agia Effimia in high season.

Some of the available tours are summarised below:

  • Discover Ithaka (Ithaca) Cruise & Tour : This tour starts from Sami with visits to Vathy, Gidaki Beach, Kioni, Frikes and Stavros. (10hr, €76)
  • Ithaca Cruise to Gidaki Beach, Vathy & Kioni Village : Tour starts from Agia Efimia with visits to Gidaki, Vathy, Kioni and Ammoudi Beach (6h, €67)
  • Day Trip to Ithaki Island with a Swim Stop: This tour starts from Poros with stops at Vathy, Gidaki and Kioni (€55)

You can also visit the island independently if you have a car. You can take the ferry from Sami and spend a whole day there or longer exploring this beautiful island. The ferry ride takes about 30min.

Kefalonia Sightseeing Tour

If you don’t have your own transport the following tours are a good option to see more of the island:

  • Kefalonia Island Bus Tour : This tour starts from Argostoli and includes wine tasting at Robola winery, a visit to Drogorati and Melissani Caves, lunch at Fiscado Harbour and a photo stop at Myrtos Beach (7hr, €45 euros)
  • Full-Day Private Tour in Kefalonia : This is a private tour and can be tailored to suit your needs starting in Argostoli and includes a visit to the Lighthouse and sinkholes, Drogorati and Melissani Caves, Antisamos, Myrtos beach, Asos, Agia Efimia & Fiscardo harbour (7,5h, €98 euros)
  • Kefalonia North Road Trip : Be picked up in Argostoli, Agia Effimia, or Sami and drive along the scenic roads to go swimming at Myrtos Beach. Have traditional lunch in the village of Fiskardo by the sea and finish your trip in Asos (9h, €50)
  • Highlights of Kefalonia : This tour starts from Argostoli and includes a photo stop at Myrtos beach, Agia Efimia, Melissani and Drogarati Caves, Robola Winery and Agios Gerasimos Monastery (5.5h, €60 euros)

Trip to Zakynthos or Lefkada

Difficult to do as a day trip, but it’s worth visiting the other two islands for a longer stay . This will need to be planned carefully according to the ferry connections as there are no daily ferries.

More information about excursions & tours in Kefalonia can be found here .


Check the following video slideshow to get further inspiration to visit Kefalonia 🙂


The best destination for souvenir shopping is Argostoli with shops selling the usual greek souvenirs , as well as jewellery and typical local crafts and traditional products from the island. Most of the shops are located on the pedestrian street (Lithostroto) parallel to the promenade.

A unique souvenir to buy is the local Robola Wine .


You can check the following posts :

  • Kefalonia Beaches
  • Best things to do in Kefalonia

Other useful  websites  for more information about Kefalonia :

  • : A good website for Kefalonia with a lot of information about the island.
  • Mysterious Greece : A good website with detailed information about Greece, including Kefalonia

Some good  travel guides  to buy before your visit to Kefalonia:

  • Lonely Planet Greek Islands (Travel Guide) : This comprehensive guide also includes information about Kefalonia. Only worth it if you are planning to visit other islands in Greece.


  • Flights : I always use Skyscanner as my first choice as it’s so easy to use and you can search best deals by month. Google Flights is another very good search engine.
  • Accommodation : I always use as my first choice, as it offers a great choice of accommodation at affordable prices and it’s so easy to use. Airbnb is a great alternative for homes and apartments to rent by real homeowners. HotelsCombined is one of the best search engines to check deals from different websites.
  • Ferries : Ferryhopper is one of the best websites to check ferry schedules and buy the cheapest ferry tickets while in Greece.
  • Car Rental : I always check Skyscanner for the cheapest car rental options. Discover Cars is also a good and easy-to-use website with great prices.
  • Public Transport : You can use this website to check bus timetables on the island.
  • Day Trips & Tours : Viator provides the most comprehensive list of day trips and you can book directly with them. GetYourGuide is also a great place to search for tours & activities to do.
  • Travel Insurance : SafetyWing is a great choice for long-term travellers and digital nomads. Alternatively, you can use one of the price comparison websites for cheaper quotes.
  • Disclosure : This post may contain affiliate links, and at no extra cost to you, I may receive a small commission if you make a purchase. I recommend only products and companies I use and the income goes to keeping this site running and ad-free.

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Home > Your Guide To Visiting Kefalonia Island, Greece

Your Guide To Visiting Kefalonia Island, Greece

Post author Guru

Written by our local expert Guru

Written by a local specialist we know and trust to bring you the most up-to-date travel information.

Welcome to the enchanting island of Kefalonia, Greece, where turquoise waters of the Ionian Sea glisten under the sun, and the beauty of Captain Corelli’s Mandolin comes to life. If you’re seeking travel advice and wondering about the top things to do on Kefalonia Island, you’re in the right place.

In this guide, we’ll take you on a journey through the must-visit sites of Kefalonia, sharing practical tips and recommendations along the way. Whether you’re interested in exploring ancient ruins, indulging in local cuisine, or simply basking in the island’s natural wonders, we’ve got you covered.

Discover where to stay on Kefalonia Island for a comfortable and memorable getaway. From hidden gems to well-known attractions, Kefalonia promises an unforgettable experience. So, let’s dive into this captivating Greek paradise and make your Kefalonia adventure truly remarkable.

Greece Travel Blog_Guide To Kefalonia Greece

Kefalonia is one of Europe’s most undervalued islands. If you’re curious about what else to enjoy in Kefalonia besides touring its stunning beaches, keep reading and prepare to be impressed.

Kefalonia, also called Cephalonia, is the biggest Ionian island, located around 1 hour from Zante, another of the stunning travel destinations in Greece . Kefalonia’s geography is distinctive; it has several of Greece’s most pristine beaches and verdant mountainous terrain.

If you want to explore one of Greece’s scenic and lesser-known parts, Kefalonia is the best gateway and is well worth a stop, particularly if you’re on the hunt for the best travel destinations in Europe . This is your complete guide to Kefalonia Island, Greece.

Skip Ahead To My Advice Here!

Best Months To Visit Kefalonia

Kefalonia Island Guide - Famous Melissani lake on Kefalonia island, Karavomylos, Greece. On top of Melissani Cave (Melissani Lake) in Karavomylos village in Kefalonia island , Greece. Melissani Cave

The best period to visit Kefalonia Island, Greece, is during the summer, in June, July, and August. The weather gets hot in July and August, and you will also see more crowds on the island.

Alternatively, you can plan a visit to Kefalonia in May or September when hotels are slightly cheaper and the weather is still pleasant.

If you’ve been to other Southern European destinations like Spain , the best period to go for a vacation to Greece.

Best Place To Stay On Kefalonia Island, Greece

The island’s coast is 237 kilometers long, so going from one end to another requires some time. But if you choose the right location to stay, your vacation to Kefalonia will be more convenient.

The best areas to stay in Kefalonia are Argostoli, Lassi, and Sami – let’s go through them and see which is the best for you.

Argostoli – Capital Of The Island

The capital of Alonissos is Argostoli, a bustling village that comes alive at night with locals and visitors. The plaza is packed with bars, restaurants, and cafés where people enjoy life on the laid-back island.

Staying in Argostoli offers all the conveniences you’ll need, including banks, pharmacies, and lovely boutique stores.

Lassi is a beautiful location to visit if you want a conventional beach vacation with a personal touch. Hotels are all within walking distance, and the main things happening here like lovely bars and authentic restaurants.

While Lassi is the perfect area in Kefalonia to stay with kids, you’ll find many resorts with pools and babysitting services to cater to families .

Sami is a prosperous port town with two functioning and commercial harbors. Locals are out fishing for the day, and tourists are relaxing in cafés to enjoy the moment.

Note that you won’t find a beach in Sami; however, Antisamos Beach is close for those willing to go on an adventure for the day.

That being said, the seafood restaurants here are among the best on the island, making it ideal for foodies to stay.

Find a full accommodation guide to Kefalonia here.

Brands we use and trust, best things to do on kefalonia island, greece.

You’ll find a plethora of things to do in Kefalonia, including beaches with Caribbean-like waves, highlands with breathtaking views, and delectable typical Greek cuisine. You can’t miss out! Let’s cover the absolute best activities in Kefalonia.

Get Amazed At Melissani Cave

Melissani Cave - Kefalonia island, Greece

When visiting Kefalonia Island, Greece, a visit to Melissani Cave near Sami is mandatory. The lake is located within a cavern with an aperture at the summit. The sunlight enters the cave during various day periods, turning the water a brilliant teal!

A free parking lot is located at the entry to Karavomylos. When you arrive at the cavern with your passes, you will be met by a squadron of beautiful ancient rowboats drifting on the sea.

Expect to wait to ride a sailboat with others during peak tourist season. It is a real treat that lasts approximately an hour.

Visit Assos Village

Assos village - Kefalonia island Guide, Greece

Assos is a charming tiny town on the island’s west side. There aren’t many activities, but wander around the lanes and enjoy the gorgeous harbor and hillside houses.

Although Assos does not have many eateries, it is a pleasant area to enjoy a drink by the sea. You can find inner peace while strolling around Assos.

Discover Petani Beach

As you approach the beach from the top, prepare to come to a halt. The beach is beautiful, with plenty of sunbeds, not enough people to fill them all, and a lovely restaurant serving excellent food. You enter the parking lot and pay 5 EUR when you descend down.

There are some quite stunning cliffs on the island’s northernmost tip. With its azure ocean and beachfront restaurants, Petani Beach is particularly notable. It’s a lovely pebbly coastline with crystal-clear seas and rough settings. It’s also a fantastic place to try some of the fresh seafood.

Work On Your Tan At Myrtos Beach

Near Mount Agia Dynati & Mount Kalon Oros is Myrtos Beach, another scenic location. These two hills create the most stunning scenery. It makes a spectacular combination of foliage with the brilliant turquoise lake, with a landscape of green, pines, cedar, and orchards.

The coastline at Myrtos is famous for its breathtakingly gorgeous blue sea. The tides on this shoreline collect tiny marble fragments, lighting the water and producing a magnificent effect. This effect turns the water into a lovely hue of aquamarine that will inspire you to take the plunge.

There is a fantastic sea cavern and abundant boulders to jump out of once you arrive at Myrtos beach. You could spend an entire day literally on the sand, lapping in the sun.

Explore The St. Gerasimos Monastery

Saint Gerasimos is Kefalonia’s saint, and he is said to guard the island and treat illnesses. The church is elegant and gorgeous, and the monastery is where Saint Gerasimos’ remains are kept . Remember to dress a certain way; for women, we suggest having a long dress or skirt that wraps your legs.

Climb Mount Ainos

Hiking Greece - Mountain Ainos of Kefalonia Greece

Mount Ainos (1,628 m) is the highest point in Kefalonia and the Greek Islands . And the majority of it is contained within a National Park.

You can see Zakynthos , Ithaka, and Lefkada, all from the mountaintop. Moreover, you can travel a long way up the mountains to find a car park.

I propose climbing to Mount Ainos’ top from that. It’s a 30-minute climb with beautiful vistas that take about half an hour.

Spot The Turtles At De Bosset Bridge Argostoli

This is a magnificent bridge and the world’s biggest stone bridge across the sea. It’s an excellent spot for a stroll and a fascinating piece of construction.

Turtles are well-known in this area of the islands and appear commonly. The coast of Kefalonia is inhabited by two distinctive types of tortoises: Green sea turtles and loggerhead turtles.

When fishermen return from nighttime fishing, turtles frequently accompany them to the dock. To upsurge your chances of spotting them, come in early.

See Where Captain Corelli’s Mandolin Was Filmed

Captain Corelli’s Mandolin, a novel by Louis de Bernières, brought fame to the picturesque Kefalonia island, where the story is set. While the book’s fictional narrative unfolds against the backdrop of World War II, Kefalonia’s real charm lies in its serene beauty and warm hospitality.

The novel has led many travelers to Kefalonia in search of the island’s enchanting landscapes and its connection to the story. You can visit the idyllic town of Sami, where parts of the film adaptation were shot, or explore the vibrant streets of Argostoli, the island’s capital, which inspired the book’s setting. Kefalonia offers a unique blend of history and natural wonders, with stunning beaches, crystal-clear waters, and a rich cultural heritage waiting to be discovered.

While Captain Corelli’s Mandolin may have put Kefalonia on the cinematic map, it’s the island’s own beauty and character that will leave a lasting impression on any traveler who ventures here.

How Long To Stay In Kefalonia

Kefalonia is significantly bigger than other Greek islands and has much to offer. For this reason, I recommend spending four full days to a week on the island. You’ll find several day trips from neighboring islands to Kefalonia but staying for a few days will allow you to explore it fully.

Is Kefalonia Safe

Kefalonia, just like most other Greek travel destinations, is very safe. There’s just no crime happening here, and you can roam around during the day and night, even as a solo female traveler .

The locals you’ll meet here are the friendliest and most welcoming you’ve ever seen. Honestly, all the Greek islands you visit will give you a similar feel, but Kefalonia has something unique.

How To Get to Kefalonia

There are several ways to get there, but not all of them are equally convenient or affordable. Let’s elaborate on the different ways to get to Kefalonia Island, Greece.

Some Greek cities have direct flights to Kefalonia Airport. But if you stay in Athens, you will always have a direct flight available. It’s a direct flight, and it will only take an hour to reach Kefalonia Island.

Apart from that, you’ll also be able to reach Kefalonia from Corfu and Zakynthos , which is very convenient.

A few ferries go from the mainland to Kefalonia and other surrounding islands, such as Zakynthos, Corfu, and Lefkada . Ferry boats are available from Peloponnese Poros, Fiscardo, Sami, and Lixouri.

There are several ports in Kefalonia Island, Greece, so it’s good to check before you leave and book your hotel:

  • Poros – With ferries from from Ithaca , Lefkada, Killini, and Zakynthos
  • Fiscardo – With ferries from Ithaca and Lefkada
  • Sami – With ferries from Patra , Ithaca, Paxi, and Brindisi
  • Lixouri – With ferries from Killini

The average cost per person for the ferry to Kefalonia is about $15. While prices vary slightly depending on the port of departure, they’re all within the same price range.

Driving A Rental Car

If you’re willing to explore the Greek countryside on your way to Kefalonia Island, then renting a car in Athens and driving there is possible. From Athens , make your way to Killini, and once you get there, you can take a car ferry to Kefalonia.

This is arguably the best option to reach Kefalonia as you’ll be able to fully explore the island by car, which is a lifetime opportunity.

Join A Day Trip

If you want to stress-free walk through Kefalonia, then pre-arrange your tour with an agency – you’ll find many on the neighboring islands, especially Zante.

A day tour will take you to all the best places on the island and give you an excellent overview of what Kefalonia has to offer. Plus, you’ll have the opportunity to meet other travelers and make new friends from around the world.

There are a variety of day tours to choose from , so you’re sure to find one that fits your interests and budget. Some popular day tours include visits to the capital city of Argostoli, the stunning Myrtos Beach, and being astonished at the Melissani Cave.

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Is Kefalonia Expensive

Being such a big island, Kefalonia has luxury hotels , cheaper properties, fine dining options, and local restaurants. But as a whole, Kefalonia is affordable, especially when compared to big European cities, and you can expect to spend about $100 per day as a solo traveler .

According to a report by Numbeo , you can eat a full meal at a local restaurant for about $15 per person or $50 for more exclusive options.

In addition, a hotel room in a 3-star hotel will set you back between $60 and $100 per night. While staying on Kefalonia Island isn’t very pricey, it’s worth considering the transportation, which is a big part of the budget – and this takes us to our following point.

Final Thoughts On Kefalonia, Greece

We’re confident you will quickly fall in love with isand of Kefalonia’s beautiful scenery, fantastic coastlines, and raw beauty.

While there are many Kefalonia activities, you won’t be judged if you spend your days lounging on the beaches, admiring the scenery, and dining across the island!

We sincerely hope you love this Kefalonia travel guide to discover more of what this beautiful paradise has to give.

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kefalonia travel advice

Visiting Kefalonia: Everything You Need to Know

posted by Sofia Mavromatis on June 13, 2023 // last updated on June 15, 2023

Kefalonia, the largest of the Ionian Islands, is a captivating destination with its turquoise waters, picturesque villages, mysterious caves, and emerald-green mountains.

This enchanting Greek island has long been a popular holiday spot, and it’s easy to see why.

With a perfect combination of natural beauty and rich cultural heritage, Kefalonia promises an unforgettable experience for every visitor.

One of the island’s highlights is its stunning beaches, such as the iconic Myrtos, known for its electric blue waters.

In addition to the breathtaking coastline, Kefalonia is home to a delightful blend of traditional architecture and modern amenities. Visitors can explore charming villages, indulge in delicious local cuisine, or embark on an adventure through lush nature trails and dramatic landscapes.

Whether it’s hiking up to the highest point of the mountains for panoramic views, discovering hidden gem beaches, or simply soaking in the warm hospitality of the locals, Kefalonia has something for everyone.

As you journey through this remarkable island, you’ll understand why it has earned a reputation as one of the most beautiful destinations in Greece.

Exploring Kefalonia

Kefalonia, the largest of the Ionian islands, is a magical destination featuring beautiful landscapes, stunning beaches, and picturesque villages. This guide will cover some of the top attractions, beaches and coastal areas, as well as natural wonders that you should explore during your visit to Kefalonia.

Top Attractions

  • Argostoli : The capital and main town of Kefalonia, Argostoli is a bustling harbour filled with shops, restaurants and cafes. Stroll along the waterfront promenade and enjoy the view of the lighthouse of Saint Theodore.
  • Fiskardo : Known for its colourful Venetian-style houses, Fiskardo is a picturesque fishing village located in the north of Kefalonia. It’s an ideal spot to enjoy a leisurely lunch by the harbour.
  • Melissani Cave : A unique geological phenomenon, Melissani Cave offers a stunning boat trip through its crystal-clear waters, surrounded by impressive rock formations.
  • Castle of Saint George : Perched on a hill near the village of Peratata, this Venetian castle provides breathtaking panoramic views of the island.

Beaches and Coastal Areas

Kefalonia is home to some of the most gorgeous beaches in Greece. Here are some of the must-visit locations:

  • Myrtos Beach : This iconic beach, with its white pebbles, turquoise waters and dramatic cliffs, is often ranked as one of the most beautiful in the world.
  • Antisamos Beach : Enclosed by lush green hills, Antisamos Beach offers excellent water sports opportunities, beach bars and sunbeds for relaxation.
  • Assos : A quaint seaside village with a charming harbour, Assos is the perfect spot to unwind and enjoy the mesmerising blue waters.
  • Lourdas Beach : This sandy beach, lined with palm trees and backed by a lush green mountain, is ideal for families and watersports enthusiasts.

Natural Wonders

Kefalonia’s diverse landscape offers various natural wonders worth exploring:

  • Mount Ainos National Park : The only national park situated on a Greek island, Mount Ainos offers a great opportunity for hiking through its beautiful black pine trees and Greek Fir.
  • Drogarati Cave : A true natural masterpiece, Drogarati Cave is famous for its impressive stalactite and stalagmite formations. The cave’s fantastic acoustics make it a popular venue for musical performances.
  • Koutavos Lagoon : A tranquil natural habitat for various bird species, Koutavos Lagoon is an excellent spot for birdwatching and taking in the serene atmosphere.

By visiting these amazing attractions, beaches and natural wonders, you’ll truly experience the magic of Kefalonia.

Getting Around the Island

Visiting Kefalonia presents various options for getting around the island. In this section, we’ll discuss car rental, public transportation, and bike and scooter rental options.

Renting a car is one of the most popular ways to explore Kefalonia due to its large size and the freedom it provides. It allows you to visit all the beautiful sites and secluded beaches. Some of the features to expect when renting a car include:

  • A range of car types, from compact to luxury models
  • Prices may vary based on car size and rental duration
  • Insurance options available
  • Pre-booking is recommended to ensure availability

Tip: Compare prices from multiple rental agencies to find the best deal.

Public Transportation

Kefalonia offers public transportation through buses, which can be an affordable option for those on a budget. Although not as flexible as car rentals, it still allows you to visit major sights and towns on the island. Here are some key points about public transportation in Kefalonia:

  • Buses connect major towns and tourist destinations
  • Timetables vary depending on the season
  • Frequency is limited, usually running once or twice a day
  • Tickets can be purchased on the bus or at local bus stations
  • Trip duration may be longer than driving due to stops

Reminder: Check the bus timetable in advance to ensure smooth travel.

Bike and Scooter Rental

For a more adventurous and eco-friendly way to explore Kefalonia, consider renting a bike or scooter. They are perfect for short trips and can easily navigate the island’s narrow streets. Some useful information about bike and scooter rentals:

  • Numerous rental agencies are available on the island
  • Helmets are provided for safety
  • Prices vary depending on vehicle type and rental period
  • A valid driving license is required
  • Be prepared for hilly terrain, especially when biking

Important: Make sure to follow all road safety rules and always wear a helmet when riding a bike or scooter.

Accommodation Options

Kefalonia is a beautiful Greek island with a wide variety of accommodation options to suit every traveller’s needs. In this section, we will explore the various types of accommodations available, including hotels and resorts, villas and apartments, and budget options.

Hotels and Resorts

Kefalonia offers various hotels and resorts for visitors looking for a luxurious experience. Some popular all-inclusive resorts in the island are:

  • Hotel Cephalonia Palace near Lixouri, best for family facilities
  • Hotel San Giorgio and Apostolata Island Resort & Spa in Skala

For those seeking a hotel with a stunning infinity pool, consider Petani Bay Hotel .

Villas and Apartments

For travellers who prefer more private and spacious accommodation, Kefalonia has a range of villas and apartments to rent. These options often come with fully equipped kitchens and private outdoor spaces, allowing you to enjoy a more personalised experience during your stay. To find the perfect villa or apartment, consider searching online platforms like Airbnb or booking through reputable travel agencies that offer local accommodation options.

Budget Options

Argostoli, the capital city of Kefalonia, offers budget-friendly accommodation for travellers looking to save money without sacrificing comfort. Some of the best value hotels in Argostoli include:

  • Aenos Hotel (££)
  • Kefalonia Grand (£)
  • Mouikis Hotel

In addition to hotels, you can also find affordable hostels and guest houses on the island, making it possible for travellers with even the tightest budgets to enjoy a memorable stay in Kefalonia.

Remember to book your accommodations in advance, especially during the peak season, to secure the best deals and to avoid disappointment.

Local Cuisine and Dining

Traditional greek dishes.

Kefalonia is famous for its rich and distinct local cuisine. Many of the island’s dishes feature fresh and high-quality ingredients, including locally-produced olive oil. Rooster in tomato sauce is a classic dish that embraces both meat and flavourful tomato preparation. To enjoy a sweet treat in Kefalonia, look for local syrupy sweets like baklava , galaktoboureko (filo-covered milk pie), or karydopita (walnut pie). You might also come across quince-based sweets such as pastokydono or comfeto that pairs well with a Greek coffee.

Seafood Specialities

Being an island in the Ionian Sea, Kefalonia boasts a wealth of seafood delicacies. Fresh fish are caught daily, making their way onto the plates of locals and visitors alike. You can expect to find a variety of seafood dishes, including grilled octopus, shrimp-saganaki, and marinated anchovies. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to savour the island’s local Alati All Day Bar & Restaurant , where you can sample a range of Mediterranean and Greek seafood dishes.

Local Wineries

Kefalonia is also known for its local wineries and the production of quality wines. The island’s unique terrain and microclimate contribute to the distinct taste profiles of Kefalonian wines. Robola is a popular indigenous white grape variety that yields crisp and refreshing wines, perfect to complement the local cuisine. Make sure to visit local wineries during your stay to learn more about the island’s wine production and enjoy wine tastings.

Travel Tips and Etiquette

Seasonal considerations.

Kefalonia has a Mediterranean climate with hot and dry summers and mild, rainy winters. The best time to visit is between May and October when the weather is warm and sunny. June to August are the busiest months with the highest temperatures, so if you prefer fewer crowds and cooler weather, consider visiting in May, September, or October.

Health and Safety

While Kefalonia is generally a safe destination, it’s essential to follow some basic health and safety precautions:

  • Stay hydrated and wear sunscreen, especially during the hot summer months.
  • Always wear appropriate footwear for activities such as hiking or exploring archaeological sites.
  • Watch out for uneven or slippery surfaces, particularly at beaches and coastal areas.
  • Beware of strong currents and swim close to the shore at beaches.
  • Carry a basic first-aid kit, including insect repellent and medication for stomach upsets.
  • Be aware of any local customs or etiquette to respect the local culture.

Money and Currency

The currency in Kefalonia is the Euro (€). Here are some useful tips for managing money while visiting the island:

  • Credit and debit cards are widely accepted, but it’s always good to carry some cash, especially in smaller towns and villages.
  • ATMs can be found in larger towns, but note that in remote areas, they might be unavailable.
  • Currency exchange services are available at banks, hotels, and travel agencies, but it’s recommended to exchange money before arriving as rates can be less favourable.
  • Tipping is common in Kefalonia: leave a 5-10% tip at restaurants and round up the fare for taxi drivers. However, it’s not expected at bars or cafes.
  • Keep an eye on your budget, as prices for accommodation, activities, and dining can vary greatly depending on the season and location.

Frequently Asked Questions

What’s the best way to get to kefalonia.

Kefalonia is well-connected by air and sea, with its airport, Kefalonia International Airport (EFL), offering connections to various European cities during the summer months. Regular ferries also operate between Kefalonia and mainland Greece, as well as neighbouring Ionian islands like Ithaca and Zakynthos.

What are the best places to visit in Kefalonia?

Kefalonia offers a variety of attractions to suit all tastes. Some top sights include the picturesque Melissani Cave, the famous Myrtos Beach with its dazzling turquoise waters, the ancient village of Fiskardo, and the majestic Mount Ainos, which offers stunning panoramic views on clear days.

What’s the suggested length of stay on Kefalonia?

The suggested length of stay in Kefalonia depends on your travel preferences and itinerary. For a comprehensive experience of the island’s sights and attractions, we recommend spending at least 7-10 days.

What are some of the most popular things to do in Kefalonia?

Kefalonia boasts a range of activities to suit all interests. Explore the emerald-green mountains and azure waters by hiking, diving or snorkelling, or simply relax on one of the island’s many beautiful beaches. Discover the island’s fascinating history by visiting its archaeological sites, museums and ancient villages. And don’t forget to immerse yourself in Kefalonia’s rich culinary scene by sampling local dishes, wines and delicacies.

What’s the best way to get around Kefalonia?

Travel around Kefalonia is best achieved through a combination of car rental, taxi and public transportation. Car rentals are widely available and perfect for exploring the island at your own pace while taking in stunning coastal views. Taxis are also plentiful, but can be more expensive than renting a car. Public transport is available in the form of buses, connecting major towns on the island. We recommend checking bus schedules for the most up-to-date information.

When is the best time to visit Kefalonia?

The best time to visit Kefalonia is between May and October, when the weather is warm and sunny, with temperatures ranging from 20°C to 30°C. Peak tourist season is during July and August, but if you prefer fewer crowds and more affordable accommodation, consider visiting in May, June, September or October.

Sofia Mavromatis

Born and raised on the sun-drenched island of Crete, Sofia Mavromatis is a seasoned traveler and writer with a deep-rooted love for Greece’s vibrant culture, stunning landscapes, and rich history.

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KEFALONIÁ (also known in English as Cephalonia) is the largest of the Ionian islands, a place that has real towns as well as resorts. Like its neighbours, Kefaloniá was overrun by Italians and Germans in World War II; the “handover” after Italy’s capitulation in 1943 led to the massacre of over five thousand Italian troops on the island by invading German forces, as chronicled by Louis de Bernières in his novel, Captain Corelli’s Mandolin. Virtually all of its towns and villages were levelled in the 1953 earthquake and these masterpieces of Venetian architecture had been the one touch of elegance in a severe, mountainous landscape.

Mount Énos and around

Sámi and around.

Until the late 1980s, the island paid scant regard to tourism; perhaps this was partly due to a feeling that Kefaloniá could not be easily marketed. A more likely explanation, however, for the island’s late emergence on the Greek tourist scene is the Kefalonians’ legendary reputation for insular pride and stubbornness, plus a good measure of eccentricity. There are, however, definite attractions here, with some beaches as good as any in Greece and the fine local wines of Robola. Moreover, the island seems able to soak up a lot of people without feeling at all crowded and the magnificent scenery speaks for itself.

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At 15km from a point halfway along the Argostóli–Sámi road, Mount Énos isn’t really a walking option but roads nearly reach the official 1632m summit. The mountain has been declared a national park, to protect the Abies cephalonica firs named after the island, which clothe the slopes. There are absolutely no facilities on or up to the mountain but the views from the highest point in the Ionian islands out over Kefaloniá’s neighbours and the mainland are wonderful. Out of summer, watch the weather, which can deteriorate with terrifying speed.

Most boats to the island dock at the large and functional port town of SÁMI, near the south end of the Itháki straits, more or less on the site of ancient Sami. This was the capital of the island in Homeric times, when Kefaloniá was part of Ithaca’s maritime kingdom. Ironically, today the administrative hierarchy is reversed, with Itháki being considered the backwater. In more recent times, Sámi was used as the set for much of the filming of Captain Corelli’s Mandolin. The long sandy beach that stretches round the bay to the village of Karavómylos is perfectly adequate, but 2km further east, beyond ancient Sami, lies a more dramatic pebble beach, Andísamis, set in a stunning curved bay.

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Local Secrets: Kefalonia (10 Insider Tips from Anna Votsi)

Aerial shot of Kefalonia beach with boat anchored

Want to know the best tips for exploring the beautiful Greek island of Kefalonia? There’s no better way to find out than to ask the locals.

Anna is the local blogger and mastermind behind the travel site  Kefalonia By Anna . She moved to Kefalonia with her 7-year-old son when he was just 45 days old! Before that, she studied Electronic Media and Film Studies and for more than 15 years worked in the production of big cultural events and festivals in London and Athens.

Fed up with living in a big city, she moved with her son to Agia Efimia, a beautiful little port at the heart of Kefalonia and for the last 6 years has been involved in tourism. She spends her free time enjoying nature and recording with her camera the beauty of Kefalonia.

Read on to discover a unique island of underwater caves, wild horses, moonlight and traditional folksong .


Where do you live? I live in a small traditional coastal village on Kefalonia called Agia Efimia , located in the Pylaros Valley. It’s a charming place with amazing sun and moon rises, with a little lively harbour, small pebble beaches and a wonderful close-knit community.

What inspired you to start a blog about it? My site grew up out of my love of Kefalonia and photography. I decided to make my site to share my excitement, personal choices, photos and videos with others!

What’s the focus of your blog and/or business?

I want to promote this amazing island, through my perspective, to as many people as possible and show them things that they may not find elsewhere

Why should readers visit your site and what will they find there? Visitors can find a huge amount of information on my site ranging from practical advice (such as how to get here and travel around, the best beaches to visit, activities and things to do for families, groups and solo travelers. Best places to eat and a lot of accommodation options to be booked in the best prices direct with the owners. In my blog one can find articles of personal experiences with the locals and their traditions. I update the site every week with stories, insider information and things that I love about this island!

What do you love about Kefalonia? What makes it unique? Kefalonia has a very varied landscape and its combination of sea and mountain result in breathtaking beaches and wild unspoiled expanses. We are also lucky enough to have some unique geological phenomena resulting in an amazing system of caves to explore – both underwater and on foot.

What’s the best way to get under the skin of Kefalonia? Participate in local festivals and events. Some are religious, others cultural, some modern and some traditional, others celebrate food and wine. You are welcome and encouraged to participate in all of them. Mingle with the locals, feel, dance, experience, eat and smell Kefalonia Island like a local.

Where’s your favourite place for a trip to the countryside? Kefalonia has a fabulous network of hiking trails (from easy to advanced) providing an alternative way to discover the island and its nature. You can use them to explore historical sites, such as our castles, water mills and monasteries, traditional villages, rugged coastal areas, and of course Mount Ainos National Park.

Boy on top of hill with Zakynthos in the background

The best view of Kefalonia is from . . . The very top of Mount Ainos the birds-eye views of the island – and of Zakynthos – are spectacular! You can even see wild horses if you are lucky.

Kefalonia sounds like . . .  The soothing calm or crashing of waves, or tunes from a mandolin accompanying the traditional songs called kantades . You can hear singing almost everywhere on Kefalonia from the inside of churches, to the early morning fishing boats, from the homes of the locals to the tavernas in the evening.

The best things to eat in Kefalonia are . . . Traditional Kefalonian cod pie, made with home-made filo pastry, rice and fresh herbs with a side order of locally collected greens called horta , or even better served with aliada (a garlic dip that accompanies fish dishes).

The best thing to drink in Kefalonia is . . . Our famous Robola wine, found on almost every table on the island! Other varieties of locally produced wine are also delicious.

The best thing to have for breakfast in Kefalonia is . . . Fresh bread, baked in a traditional wood-fired oven, with local feta cheese, Kefalonian olives and local eggs. Or, if you have a sweet tooth, try the locally produced thyme honey with fresh local butter.

The perfect place to watch the sunset in Kefalonia is . . . From the dramatic cliff-top monastery of Kipoyria, or the rugged beauty of Petani or Myrtos beach with their turquoise waters reflecting the sun.

The best time of year to visit Kefalonia is . . . June and September are great times to visit. Both months are less busy, but everything is open, and we have great weather for swimming, hiking and relaxing. In June many wild and cultivated flowers are in bloom, and they re-emerge again in September after the heat of summer dies down.

Is there a local charity or cause that you’d love visitors to know about? I would like to make everybody aware of the exploration of oil that has started in the area of the Ionian Sea, and of the impact it could have on our region. We should fight against it to protect our environment, ourselves and our unique nature.

Small boat at sea with sun setting in the background

Thanks to Anna for sharing her side of Kefalonia. I highly recommend checking out Kefalonia by Anna for more tips, itineraries and beautiful photos. She has some excellent free downloadable PDF guides up there, and if you’re interested in delving deeper into the island and its people she can arrange tailor-made experiences too.

Don’t forget to check her out on  Facebook , Twitter and Youtube .

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Kefalonia Travel Guide: A Greek Oasis

Although Kefalonia is the largest of the Ionian Islands, it’s also the least trodden. Once overlooked for Corfu and Zante, this jigsaw piece-shaped island is stepping out of the shadows of its siblings. And with jewel-toned waters, deserted beaches and pastel-painted villages, it’s not hard to see why. Kefalonia’s beauty is immortalised in Louis de Bernières’ novel-turned-film Captain Corelli’s Mandolin – yet it remains blissfully unspoiled by mass tourism. If you’re looking to go on holiday to this authentic Greek hotspot, then check out our destination guide for the best places to visit and  things to do in Kefalonia .

Holidays in Kefalonia over the peak summer months (July – August) can often get crowded, so if you prefer a more tranquil escape then opt for spring or autumn, when Kefalonia is at its most calm but still balmy.

How to get to Kefalonia


Several airlines run direct flights to Kefalonia from the UK, including EasyJet, Monarch and Ryanair. You can also take a direct ferry from Brindisi to the port of Sami (indirect services run from Bari and Venice).



Stunning beaches and mountains

Kefalonia is a place where mountains plunge to meet the sea. If you’re a sun-seeker, you’ll be rewarded with some of the finest beaches in Greece. While the southern sandy stretches may be well-trodden, the further north you go, the fewer people you’ll come across. For those who can’t sit still for long, hiking the mountainous landscape is one of the more adventurous things to do in Kefalonia. Mount Ainos, nudging 5255ft, is the highest peak in the Ionian Islands – expect views for days.

Plump lemons, hand-pressed olive oil, tender lamb – Kefalonia’s cuisine draws upon the natural larder of the island. That’s not to say it’s all farm-to-fork fare: seared halloumi tops the list for cheese-lovers, while sweet treats don’t come much sweeter than loukoumades – deep-fried doughnuts soaked in honey and sesame. For the best restaurants in Kefalonia, pick a traditional tavern like Waterway, poised on the cliff edge beneath Spartià, or the harbourfront Tassia in Fiskardo. Local wines Robola and Muscat are the tipples of choice; we recommend Gentilini and Haritatos Estate for vineyard tours and wine tastings.

Kefalonia has a complex – and at times bloody – history. Islanders were dealt a double blow in the mid-20th-century, their lives upended first by the Second World War and then by an earthquake – as chronicled in Louis de Bernières’ novel. Kefalonia was overrun by Italians and Germans during the war, and the site of a shameful atrocity: Nazi forces massacred five thousand Italian soldiers during the “handover” of 1943 – a monument on a wooded peninsula behind Argostoli commemorates their memory. Only 10 years later, the 1953 earthquake destroyed towns and villages across the island; crumbling ruins are haunting reminders of this natural disaster.

Hidden gems

Turtles in Koroni

Loggerhed turtle in Koroni

The off-grid cove of Koroni is one of our top places to visit in Kefalonia. Loggerhead turtles nest on the golden sands and there’s a natural spring you can drink from (just as well, as there are no cafés). If even sleepy Fiskardo and Assos are too busy for you, head to the tiny rustic village of Markandonata. This rural hideaway is surrounded by a network of walking trails, which meander through whisper-quiet forests but for the occasional chink of goat bells. To the south of the Paliki peninsula, Xi is an ochre-coloured beach flanked by rocky hills. While this is not exactly a hidden gem, fewer people know you can mix clay from the cliffs with water to create a natural mud mask – rub it over your body for silky-smooth skin.

Things to do in Kefalonia

View of Argostoli at night

View of Argostoli at night

Explore the capital Argostoli

Although much of Argostoli was destroyed in the war and earthquake, the capital has been rebuilt into a charming pastel town. Foodies should trawl around the bakeries, market stalls and waterside taverns; don’t miss Kyani Akti , among the best restaurants in Kefalonia. Also, look out for fellow diners of a different variety: loggerhead turtles paddling along the harbourfront in search of scraps from fishing boats.

Village-hop across the island

While most people linger around Argostoli and Lassi, the northern peninsula is home to two of the few villages left untouched by the earthquake. In the shadow of a crumbling 16th-century Venetian castle, the flower-filled alleys and colourful houses of Assos are one of the prettiest places to visit in Kefalonia. Nudging the northwest tip, Fiskardo is another enchanting Italianate village painted in pastel tones. A huddle of Byzantine churches and fishermen’s houses looks out over the island of Ithaca – the mythical birthplace of Odysseus.

Hike Mount Ainos

Mount Ainos is the highest peak in the Ionian archipelago, reaching a lofty 5341ft. It’s been designated a national park to protect its mountainside forest of Abies cephalonica, after which the island is named. The dark fir trees shelter a rich array of wildlife, including deer and wild horses. From the summit, the views across Kefalonia and the island-dotted sea are staggering. Hiking these herb-scented trails is one of our favourite things to do in Kefalonia.

Go beach-hopping

The poster child for idyllic Greek beaches, Myrtos is all icing-sugar sand and crystalline waters. However, it’s also widely regarded as one of the best beaches in Kefalonia , so you can expect hordes of tourists. Instead, head north to find a few quieter stretches. Near Fiskardo, tiny Dafnoudi or Emblisi are tranquil hideaways, where you can snorkel in the electric-blue sea – the most enchanting of things to do in Kefalonia . The island is also dotted with cragged caverns; the most magnificent of which is Melissani Cave, home to a breathtaking underground lake, accessed via rowboat through a stalactite-framed rock tunnel.

Now you know the ins and outs, why not check out our luxury villas in Kefalonia ? Our concierge team are always on hand to help you with any booking queries!

Best beaches in Kefalonia

Top things to do in Kefalonia


One Response

kefalonia travel advice

What a great article! We’re currently dreaming of going to Kefalonia again – we’ve been there before and we love, love love it! Here’s to hoping for a better 2021 with loads of travel plans and new experiences!

– Cirkeline // RejsRejsRejs If you want even more tips for your trip to Buenos Aires, you’re welcome to read our journey to Kefalonia

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Tips to travel to Kefalonia, Greece (one of the best Greek islands)

You are currently viewing Tips to travel to Kefalonia, Greece (one of the best Greek islands)

  • Post author: Emily Derrick
  • Post published: March 10, 2023
  • Post category: Travel inspiration / Trip itineraries & destination discoveries
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I’ve visited many of the Greek islands, but Kefalonia is the only one I’ve been back to multiple times. In my opinion, it’s one of the best Greek islands to visit if you want an authentic experience.

I was lucky enough to spend time sailing around the Greek islands , and island hopping is something I definitely recommend. However, it’s also nice to relax a bit and explore each island individually. 

If you want to explore the islands but don’t know where to start, I’d suggest Kefalonia; it’s got a bit of everything. 

Here’s what you need to know about Kefalonia before you go. 

Introduction to Kefalonia

With all these Greek islands, it can be a bit confusing; there are 6,000 of them after all (227 are inhabited).

kefalonia travel advice

Kefalonia is also sometimes spelled Cephalonia, Kefaloniá, or Kefalloniá (Κεφαλονιά in Greek) and in the past it was also called Kefallinia or Kephallenia.

The island is one of those located West of the mainland; it’s part of the Ionian Islands, one of the main groups of Greek islands. 

Here’s Kefalonia highlighted in red.

kefalonia travel advice

Kefalonia has 36,000 inhabitants (about 3 times less than Prince Edward Island in Canada). It’s the largest Ionian Island, and the 6th-largest in Greece (about 1.5 times the size of Montreal Island).

The best beaches in Kefalonia

Not all Greek islands have great beaches, but Kefalonia certainly does.

Easily the most famous beach on the island is Myrtos Beach . There are pictures of it everywhere, and it has appeared in several films. And yes, it is absolutely stunning.

kefalonia travel advice

However, many people who visit the beach are ultimately disappointed. 

Firstly, the beach is very pebbly and can be painful on your feet unless you wear shoes. 

Secondly, there is basically no shade, and the sea breeze makes umbrellas challenging to use. 

Thirdly, the sea floor drops away very quickly, so there is no area to really walk around in the water or for children to play. 

kefalonia travel advice

Finally, the waves are VERY strong and crash onto the beach. So getting in and out of the sea can be hard, even for good swimmers. You need to time your entrance and exit to avoid the waves.

Add in the fact that it’s usually jam-packed and, all in all, it’s not that relaxing. 

kefalonia travel advice

If you want to actually relax on a beach, check out some of these 4 other Kefalonia beaches instead!

Makris Gialos Beach

  • Sandy with gently sloping shallows
  • Beach clubs, restaurants, and bars
  • Close to both Argostoli and Lassi

kefalonia travel advice

Fteri Beach

  • Remote, isolated, crystal water, and long stretch of white pebbles
  • Incredible views and some shade from trees
  • Close to Thinaia
View this post on Instagram A post shared by dionisis kefalonia greece (@diokaminaris)

Kaminia Beach

  • Popular with families, no watersports, and excellent shallows
  • Be careful of the turtle nests
  • Close to Skala
View this post on Instagram A post shared by Natalia Zakęś | Grecja 🇬🇷 (@natalia.zakes)
  • Unusual bronze sand, “healing” clay, and long shallows
  • Beautiful cliffs and great nearby facilities
  • Close to Lixouri
View this post on Instagram A post shared by Edelweiss On The Road (@edelweiss.on.the.road)

Things to do in Kefalonia

Kefalonia isn’t as modern or cosmopolitan as some of the other islands but it makes up for it with authenticity, natural beauty, and charm. Ionian Islands generally have more Venetian and Italian influences than the other Greek island groups (they’re all quite different).

Here are a few tips on things to do in Kefalonia.


The beaches are a major attraction since they are quieter in Kefalonia than on other islands. 

Those in the previous section are just a few of the beaches on the island.

If you want total privacy, you can get boat tours  where you can admire the island from the Ionian sea and spend your days in hidden coves and on beaches that aren’t accessible by land. 

kefalonia travel advice

One of the best things to do in Kefalonia is simply to get a rental car and drive around, visiting the smaller towns and villages, and trying all the amazing food. The villages all have their own unique histories with monuments, ancient buildings, and small museums. 

As you explore, you’ll find lots of market stalls on the roadside with farmers selling locally-grown foods. It’s worth taking the time to stop and try everything and talk to the locals.

Asos is one of those photogenic villages, for example.

kefalonia travel advice

Mount Ainos

If you’d rather admire the island from up high, climb up to Mount Ainos for a view of the surrounding countryside or a view of the sea.

It’s a fairly easy walk, and if you fancy exploring the little villages nearby, you can make it a full-day activity. 

View this post on Instagram A post shared by Kefalonia Island Blog 🇬🇷 (@kefalonia__island)

The Melissani Cave and the Drogarati Cave are total must-sees and are really unique. 

kefalonia travel advice

In the 1950s, a devastating earthquake destroyed much of the island and you can explore abandoned villages and crumbling ancient ruins at your leisure. 

View this post on Instagram A post shared by Vibrant_kefalonia (@vibrant_kefalonia)

Kefalonia is not the island to visit if you’re looking to go clubbing every night until the sun comes up. But that doesn’t mean you can dance until the early hours. 

Unlike other islands, which have a vast range of bars and clubs, Kefalonia only has a few actual nightclubs. Argostoli has 2 popular clubs, Bass and Katavothres , making it the best town for nightlife. Although they usually close at around 2 or 3 in the morning, so you can’t dance until the sun rises!

View this post on Instagram A post shared by Katavothres Club-Restaurant (@katavothres_kefalonia)

You’re more likely to find bars with small dance floors or people drinking and dancing in the streets outside. Fiskardo, Lassi, and Skala have a fun range of beach clubs and lounges that play music until around 1 or 2 AM. There are also a few clubs on the outskirts of town, but getting there and back can be a challenge. 

For a more eclectic music mix, including some disco, 90s music, hip hop, and traditional Greek music, Kastro Club in Fiskardo is very fun. And it’s popular with travelers and locals. 

Getting to Kefalonia

As is the case with most Greek islands, there are only 2 ways to get to Kefalonia: flights or ferries.

Flights to Kefalonia

Don’t ever buy flights from Canada to Kefalonia (or any Greek island) on 1 and only ticket!

There are  flights from Kefalonia’s airport (EFL)  to a few European cities. Keep in mind these are all seasonal flights only, except for domestic flights to Athens (ATH) and Zakynthos (ZTH).

kefalonia travel advice

Remember, flights here in Europe are often very cheap, like $54 one-way from Kefalonia to London!

That means the self-transfer tip can save you a lot of money to get to most destinations, including Kefalonia! 

kefalonia travel advice

Since prices are usually so cheap, it’s often best not to waste your more valuable rewards on these flights. Just pay in cash or use your stash of less-valuable simple fixed-value rewards, like the TD First Class Travel Visa Infinite Card ’s current free $825 welcome bonus. For more information, come join Flytrippers on Wednesday night for our monthly video of the best travel rewards deals of the month . 

But if your dates are expensive, you can use valuable rewards like Aeroplan points . There are 2 of the 45 Aeroplan partner airlines that fly to Kefalonia: Austrian Airlines (from Vienna) and Olympic Air (from Athens).

Ferries to Kefalonia

The island is one that’s located pretty close to mainland Greece, so it’s not a long ferry ride. And Greek ferries are a classic experience.

So if you’re starting in Athens (or even arriving from beautiful Albania , the rest of the Balkans, or nearby Türkiye ), Kefalonia is most often reached by ferry from Kyllini or by ferry from Patras . 

(Also, buses from Athens can take you directly to Kefalonia — the ferry is included in the bus ticket!)

Patras is where there’s a good hotel to maximize your Marriott points by the way, which is surprising since Greece is such a popular destination (maybe a stay there can be combined to a trip to Kefalonia). It’s the Moxy Patra Marina hotel, which costs as little as 10,500 points per night (42,000 points for 5 nights with the Marriott “Stay for 5, Pay for 4” benefit) outside of the summer season. 

(Unlocking the Marriott Bonvoy American Express Card ’s current welcome bonus will give you 53,000 points, which is enough for 8 free nights in Bali and a few other destinations by comparison!)

There are also ferries to Kefalonia from other nearby islands like Corfu , Zakynthos , Lefkada , and Ithaka .

Finally, there are also ferries to Kefalonia from Italy .

Getting around Kefalonia

As mentioned, Kefalonia is the biggest of the Greek islands in the Ionian sea. There is lots to see and do, and while public buses run regularly between all the major towns, many of the most beautiful natural sites are relatively remote. 

So you should get a rental car , or at the very least, a rental scooter to get around the island a bit. The roads are fairly good and are well-signposted, so driving is easy.

Having access to a car means you can also really explore the island off the beaten path, like for example Mount Ainos National Park . 

Argostoli is the island’s capital and has the most rental places, but you can find some in towns like Fiskardo and Lassi. You can rent cars directly from the airport and the price difference between the airport and the cities seems minimal. 

If you don’t plan on traveling around the island much and prefer to spend your time in one place, you should consider renting a boat . 

Grab a picnic and head around the shoreline to some private beaches that can only be accessed by sea.

Small motor boats are easy to rent and are very affordable. If you prefer luxury yachts, those are also available in Kefalonia on Sailo and SEARADAR . 

Where to stay in Kefalonia

Kefalonia has much to offer, but where you stay will make a big difference. I recommend staying in, or very close to, one of the bigger towns so you can access the facilities and amenities.

There are lots of more remote resorts and small villages in the center of the island, which are very peaceful but can be a pain for things like food, shopping, and visiting the rest of the island. 

Here’s a rundown of the most popular towns and what you should know before you book.

As the capital, Argostoli is, therefore, busier and has more to offer than other towns. You’ll find plenty of bars and restaurants to try. If you have dietary restrictions, you’ll have more restaurant choices here as they are used to catering to visitors. 

There is a good range of hotels , most on the waterfront. Airbnb and Vrbo  rentals are generally apartments until you get to the outskirts, where you can find villas. 

You’ll find a good range of prices, from cheaper, more traditional hotels to chic, modern 5-star hotels. 

Fiskardo is one of the most beautiful towns on the island, with incredible Venetian architecture and brightly colored buildings. The stunning harbor is the main appeal, so the small downtown area is based around the water, and plenty of fishing and sailing companies are based here.

It’s more relaxed than the capital, so the bars, restaurants, and hotels are more traditional and spill out onto the harbourside. It’s significantly smaller than Argostoli, and it’s the kind of place where everyone knows everyone. 

If you want to enjoy the benefits of staying in town but enjoy a quieter, more authentic experience, Fiskardo would be better than the capital. However, Fiskardo has a reputation for being slightly more expensive as it is very well-maintained and more sophisticated. 

If you want a good base that has everything you need, amazing beaches, good bars, and a selection of hotels and Airbnb / Vrbo  rentals, Skala is perfect. 

View this post on Instagram A post shared by Jake ₩itham (

It feels much more touristy, and many new buildings have popped up in recent years to cater to visitors. As such, it’s a convenient place to stay, but it lacks the charm of other places. 

However, regarding the choice of bars and restaurants, shops, and accommodations, Skala has the most variety and is perfect for traveling on a budget. 

It has a lot to offer and is also well-situated in the south for exploring other places and has access to some of the best beaches on the island. 

Agia Efimia

This adorable little fishing village has retained much of its traditional Greek charm, making it one of the most picturesque places to stay.

kefalonia travel advice

It’s small, so places book up fast, and there isn’t a massive number of places to choose from. If you want to stay in Agia Efimia, it’s best to pick an Airbnb, an apartment for rent, or a small B&B. Prices are really affordable, and there is still a reasonable number of bars and tavernas to eat at. 

Agia Efimia famously has some of the best food, so you’ll find lots of people staying elsewhere on the island visiting for lunch. It has a greener backdrop as well. The only downside is that it’s much quieter in the evenings, so not good if you fancy sipping cocktails until late. 

Other places

There are also plenty of private villas and small apartments to rent in many villages dotted across the island.

Many locals rely on visitors; plenty of properties are available. So you’ll always be able to find somewhere to stay for a reasonable price. 

How much to budget for a week in Kefalonia?

Kefalonia is more affordable than some of the other Greek islands, which are not budget-friendly. While the island does have its fair share of luxury resorts, 5-star hotels, and over-priced cocktails, it’s also very easy to have a budget stay. 

Food budget in Kefalonia

Food on the island is fairly affordable as so much produce is grown locally. 

You can enjoy delicious gyros, fresh salads, and traditional fish dishes for just a couple of euros. Simple, affordable dinners can cost as little as €10, with fresh fruit for breakfast costing under €‎5. You can still eat well for under €‎20 a day if you’re on a budget. 

Accommodation budget in Kefalonia

Accommodation on the island is very varied.

Private villas and luxury resorts can be very expensive but aren’t completely unreasonable at around €‎200 a night for a hotel or upwards of €‎500 per night for a villa. 

For cheaper hotels, B&Bs, and more traditional Greek inns, you can pay anywhere from €‎10 to €‎30 a night. Kefalonia unfortunately does not have any hostels .

Activities budget in Kefalonia

Many activities are outdoors and don’t even cost a thing, apart from the fact that as a large island with a low population, there is a cost to get to almost every activity.

Transport budget in Kefalonia

If you’re on a tight budget, public bus tickets between towns cost from €‎1-€‎3, depending on the trip.

Once in town, everything is walkable. 

However, to make the most out of your trip, you should consider getting a rental car , even if it’s just for a few days. 

They start from just €‎30 per day on (almost all credit cards cover damage insurance for free). And don’t forget that Hotwire can often provide good savings thanks to its opaque deals . 

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I’ve visited many Greek islands, and the only one I’ve gone back to multiple times is Kefalonia. It’s one of the most authentic and beautiful Greek islands, and I highly recommend it for your next trip to Greece!

What would you like to know   about tips to visit Kefalonia in Greece? Tell us in the comments below.

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Featured image: Asos, Kefalonia (photo credit: Mac McDade)

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Warnings and insurance

The Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office ( FCDO ) provides advice about risks of travel to help British nationals make informed decisions. Find out more about FCDO travel advice .

Before you travel

No travel can be guaranteed safe. Read all the advice in this guide as well as support for British nationals abroad which includes:

  • advice on preparing for travel abroad and reducing risks
  • information for women, LGBT+ and disabled travellers

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  • Travel advice

Kefalonia travel advice

Explore our complete guide to Kefalonia with the latest travel advice for travellers and holidaymakers including official updates and local travel tips for Kefalonia.

  • Essential travel guide
  • Weather & climate
  • Travel health
  • Covid live updates
  • Travel features
  • Top travel deals
  • Destinations

Kefalonia travel guide - essential info

Below is a beginner's guide to Kefalonia with essential travel facts such as dominant language spoken, typical flight time from the UK and the local currency. You can also check whether visas are required and what plug adapter you need to pack.

Why visit Kefalonia?

Considering a holiday to the Kefalonia? Here are some of the very good reasons it makes such a wonderful holiday destination be it for beaches or nature to ensure you get the most out of your 2024/2025 escape.

Kefalonia tourist information

✝ = Typical flight time from the UK.

Recommended for Kefalonia

Holidays to Kefalonia

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Kefalonia weather

The Kefalonia weather guide shows long term monthly averages for Argostoli .

Kefalonia destinations >>

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Check the latest travel advice on visiting Kefalonia from official government sources (in english) from around the world including entry requirements and travel restrictions.

  • UK traveller advice for Kefalonia - UK FCDO
  • Irish traveller advice for Kefalonia - Department of Foreign Affairs, Ireland
  • Safe travel advisories for Kefalonia - Ministry of Foreign Affairs, New Zealand
  • Smarter traveller advice for Kefalonia - Department of Foreign Affairs, Australia

Learn more about the current safety and security risks from terrorism, natural disasters and more. Read about the local laws and customs to consider when travelling around Kefalonia.

Note : UK FCDO - UK Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office

FCDO travel advice

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Kefalonia travel health

Find out more about staying safe when travelling to Kefalonia with the latest guidance on required vaccinations and recommended medication to take with you.

  • Vaccines & medicines for Kefalonia - CDC
  • Health & vaccinations for Kefalonia - TravelHealthPro, NaTHNac
  • How to stay safe & healthy in Kefalonia - Fit for Travel, Public Health Scotland

Check out the general travel tips for staying safe and healthy in Kefalonia, risks of preventable diseases and what to pack.

Note : CDC - Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Kefalonia covid live updates

Check the latest live updates on Covid-19 in Kefalonia with the vaccination requirements, current available statistics and up-to-date travel advice from government agencies.

  • Travellers' health for Kefalonia - Ministry of Health, Greece
  • Coronavirus timeline in Kefalonia - Our World in Data
  • Latest info on travel to Kefalonia - Hellenic Republic Travel Advice

Kefalonia travel features

Do you want to learn more about Kefalonia? Read our latest features covering travel tips and insider destination guides on where to go and what to do in Kefalonia.

9 of Kefalonia's finest beaches

Kefalonia FAQs

Read our frequently asked questions about travelling to Kefalonia including the current entry restrictions, covid rules, driving side, electrical plugs used and much more.

Do I need to quarantine in the UK if I travel from Greece?

You do not need to quarantine on arrival in the UK from Greece. The UK no longer requires a passenger locator form, Covid-19 test or proof of vaccination.

What is the flight time to Kefalonia from the UK?

The flight time to Kefalonia from the UK is typically 3.5 hours .

Flights to Kefalonia

Travel to Kefalonia

What is the time difference between Kefalonia and the UK?

The time difference between Kefalonia and the UK is UK time+2 hours .

What is the main language spoken in Kefalonia?

The main language spoken in Kefalonia is Greek . Learn a language for Kefalonia with Rosetta Stone * .

What is the currency in Kefalonia?

The currency in Kefalonia is the Euro ( EUR ). Send money to Kefalonia with TransferGo * and XE Money Transfers * .

Which plugs are used in Kefalonia?

Kefalonia uses electrical plug type C + F (230 Volts) .

Which side of the road do they drive on in Kefalonia?

They drive on the right side of the road in Kefalonia. Find out more about driving in Greece with RAC * , International Drivers Association * and Halfords * .

Transport options for Kefalonia

Airport transfers for Kefalonia

Travel advice by country

Country name All countries - summary Algarve Balearic Islands Barbados Canary Islands Croatia Cyprus Egypt Faroe Islands France Germany Greece Ireland Italy Jamaica Madeira Maldives Malta Portugal Spain Turkey UAE UK USA Algeria Angola Benin Botswana Burkina Faso Burundi Cameroon Cape Verde Central African Republic Chad Congo-Brazzaville Congo-Kinshasa Djibouti Egypt Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Ethiopia Gabon Gambia Ghana Guinea Guinea-Bissau Ivory Coast Kenya Lesotho Liberia Libya Malawi Mali Mauritania Morocco Mozambique Namibia Niger Nigeria Rwanda Sao Tome and Principe Senegal Sierra Leone Somalia South Africa South Sudan Sudan Swaziland Tanzania Togo Tunisia Uganda Western Sahara Zambia Zimbabwe Antarctica French Southern and Antarctic Lands South Georgia and South Sandwich Islands Afghanistan Armenia Azerbaijan Bahrain Bangladesh Bhutan Brunei Cambodia China East Timor Georgia Hong Kong India Indonesia Iran Iraq Israel Japan Jordan Kazakhstan Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Laos Lebanon Macau Malaysia Maldives Mongolia Myanmar Nepal North Korea Oman Pakistan Philippines Qatar Russia (Central Asia) Russia (Far East) Saudi Arabia Singapore South Korea Sri Lanka Syria Taiwan Tajikistan Thailand Turkmenistan UAE Uzbekistan Vietnam Yemen Anguilla Antigua Aruba Bahamas Barbados Bonaire British Virgin Islands Cayman Islands Cuba Curacao Dominica Dominican Republic Grenada Guadeloupe Haiti Jamaica Martinique Montserrat Puerto Rico Saba Sint Eustatius Sint Maarten St Barthelemy St Kitts and Nevis St Lucia St Martin St Vincent and the Grenadines Trinidad and Tobago Turks and Caicos Virgin Islands Belize Costa Rica El Salvador Guatemala Honduras Nicaragua Panama Albania Andorra Austria Belarus Belgium Bosnia and Herzegovina Bulgaria Croatia Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Estonia Faroe Islands Finland France Germany Gibraltar Greece Guernsey Hungary Iceland Ireland Isle of Man Italy Jan Mayen Jersey Kosovo Latvia Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Malta Moldova Monaco Montenegro Netherlands North Macedonia Norway Poland Portugal Romania Russia San Marino Serbia Slovakia Slovenia Spain Svalbard Sweden Switzerland Turkey UK Ukraine British Indian Ocean Territory Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Comoros Madagascar Mauritius Mayotte Reunion Seychelles Bermuda Canada Greenland Mexico St Pierre and Miquelon USA American Samoa Australia Cook Islands Federated States of Micronesia Fiji French Polynesia Guam Kiribati Marshall Islands Midway Island Nauru New Caledonia New Zealand Niue Norfolk Island Northern Mariana Islands Palau Papua New Guinea Pitcairn Island Samoa Solomon Islands Tokelau Tonga Tuvalu Vanuatu Wake Island Wallis and Futuna Algarve Azores Madeira Argentina Bolivia Brazil Chile Colombia Ecuador Falkland Islands French Guiana Guyana Paraguay Peru Suriname Uruguay Venezuela Balearic Islands Canary Islands England Northern Ireland Scotland Wales Alabama Alaska Arizona Arkansas California Colorado Connecticut D.C. Delaware Florida Georgia Hawaii Idaho Illinois Indiana Iowa Kansas Kentucky Louisiana Maine Maryland Massachusetts Michigan Minnesota Mississippi Missouri Montana Nebraska Nevada New Hampshire New Jersey New Mexico New York North Carolina North Dakota Ohio Oklahoma Oregon Pennsylvania Rhode Island South Carolina South Dakota Tennessee Texas Utah Vermont Virginia Washington West Virginia Wisconsin Wyoming

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