We love visiting the Lake District, and one of our favorite towns is Ambleside. It's a…
Off the coast of Greece are little islands, gnarled faces upturned to the elements. In a cluster of these islands lies the island of Kefalonia, ringed by craggy rocks shaped by the wind and bared to the sea. On the outskirts of the island, long white stretches of beaches find their places in coves and inlets all along the shore.
This island doesn’t restrict itself to white sand and clear turquoise water, though; ruins dot the island’s cliffs, and the Melissani cave harbors an underground lake.
We stayed in a beautiful, spacious Airbnb up on the cliffs in Agia Efimia, which was about a 20 minute drive from Sami. The winding roads up the cliffs overlooked villages stacked up the hillsides, red roofs contrasting with the turquoise water.
We drove down to Assos, past stucco houses piled high like toppings on a layer cake, down to a parking lot overlooking the harbor. We walked down to the beach, which was covered with smooth, white, round rocks that looked rather like eggs. The turquoise water was so clear you could see straight to the bottom. The coast sloped gently down, going out for several yards before growing deep enough that I was out of my depth.
Cliffs rose up on either side, encircling the bay. A trail led up one side, crisscrossing the rocky terrain. The sun beat down hot overhead, and we didn’t get far on the trail before realizing that it would to take about an hour to get to the top at the rate the toddler was taking. We weren’t really set on broiling in the sun, so we headed back down the cliff and into the water.
We had previously arranged to meet up with a family on the beach. They took us to lunch at a restaurant on the beach, since they visited Kefalonia frequently and knew all the best places.
We decided to visit the Melissani Cave, which was quite close to Sami. We arrived late in the morning. The wave of tourists caught us, and we roasted in the sun as we slowly inched towards the cave. Although the giant stalactites and crystal clear water made for a magical experience, the Melissani Cave was a bit of a disappointment. We were expecting more for such a long wait in the sun. The crowded boats and the short ride rather spoiled the majesty of the cave. If we went back, we would probably not visit it again. However, it was still an amazing experience overall, and I would still want to visit if it was my first time going to Kefalonia.
As our trip neared its end, we decided to drive up to the northern end of the island to explore. We drove past Mykonos, the chairs set up in rows on the white sand looking like far-off writing from our mountainside view. Fiskardo was our destination, where we had scheduled a boat tour of the coast.
The boat tour was one of our favorite parts of the trip. Our guides related a quick history of every place we stopped at. The snorkeling was one of the highlights of the tour. When we stopped in an inlet for lunch, we were able to feed meat to the many colorful fish under the boat! We even got to hold a baby octopus and watch it shoot out a jet of ink!
Our trip to Kefalonia was wonderful, from the ruins in Assos to the snorkeling in Fiskardo. The island really is a treasure trove of natural beauty.