Kefalonia itself is the largest of the Ionian Islands although the name encompasses three smaller islands; Ithaca, Kastos and Kalamos. With 254 km of pebble coastline and clear waters it is a very popular resort destination, tourism being one of the main sources of employment. Outside the capital of Argostoli lie vast expanses of agricultural land and mountains; dotted around are plenty of quaint stony villages and areas of natural interest. The earthquake of 1953 destroyed much of the neoclassical architecture, the last of which remains in the Venetian village Fiscardo. The rest of the buildings are left in a state ready to be expanded as soon as the need arises. The minority who choose to venture beyond the beaches will be greatly rewarded by this impressive and fertile island, although nobody could blame those who do not.


This capital and working port of Argostoli is the busiest area of the island. Tavernas, bars, shops and markets line the recently rebuilt streets allowing those entering the port to refuel on almost anything. A few minutes away is the purpose built resort of Lassi where everything from beach bars to sun-loungers are divided according to tour operator. A short trip along the coastal road in either direction should lead you to smaller coves and beaches on which to escape the crowds and constant hum of jet-skis.

Kefalonia’s northernmost village Fiskardo sees thousands of visitors each year and has adjusted its prices accordingly. Having survived the catastrophic earthquake, the village buildings are protected by a government preservation order and are celebrated in the excellent museum. The nearby lagoons and caves which are accessible only by boat offer a quieter alternative.

Just South of Fiskardo is Assos, a calm fishing village squashed into a peaceful cove. The only available accommodation to rent is owned by small independent tour operators making the village an ideal retreat for those who enjoy a balcony that is not in full view of several hundred others. A trip here driven by culinary desire alone would be justified; the fish served in restaurants is invariably caught that day and the local wine is superb.

Beneath the towering mount Enos are expanses of green area to explore including the Omala Valley where the monastic history and vineyards can be taken in on horseback. The mountain itself is covered in fir forests unique to the island, home to several species of snake, turtle and lizard.


With guaranteed trade from the port, Argostoli caters for every taste. A magnitude of bazaars and markets sell everything from useless trinkets bearing snow-scenes of the earthquake-struck buildings, to genuinely attractive art and jewellery. More cosmopolitan and air-conditioned outlets offer high fashion and jewellery items. Honey, embroidery, olive oil and wine are Kefalonia’s most notable wears. Generic versions can purchased in supermarkets or you can go direct to the producers without too much trouble.

Nightlife and Eating Out

The most popular resorts seem to go for quantity rather than quality when it comes to dining. Every few steps you are given the opportunity to choose between authentic moussaka, mixed grill or full English breakfast. The Greek food in the tavernas can be quite good and the house wine is usually palatable. There tend to be upmarket alternatives which serve well-prepared fresh fish accompanied by a decent wine list.

Away from the resort areas Kefalonia’s own style of cooking comes into play. The island specialises in pies, rabbit stews and some excellent bean and potato soups. The island is also famous for cheese and confectionary.

Having been serenaded by a costumed and moustachioed man with a guitar, things get tackier still in Argostoli’s nightclubs. Based around the main square or on the larger resorts, uninspiring loud music is pumped out into the small hours to a fairly undiscerning clientele.

Tourist Information

Argostoli Information Office Provlita Teloniou - 28100 Argostoli KefaloniaTel: +30 26710 22248 Fax: +30 26710 22248


This basic airport is 9km from Argostoli, a few minutes away by taxi (there is no public transport serving the airport).

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