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With quiet sandy beaches, calm turquoise seas and buckets of charm, a Kefalonia holiday is the quintessential Greek island getaway. The largest Ionian island, its peaceful ambience draws savvy holidaymakers seeking the romance of Greece without masses of tourists.
Louis de Bernières' bestselling novel, Captain Corelli's Mandolin, and its subsequent film adaptation gave Kefalonia a moment in the spotlight, but despite its 15 minutes, the island remains largely unspoiled.
In remote parts of the north, you're more likely to encounter wandering goats than other tourists. Small villages ranging from the traditional to the ultra-swanky dot the landscape. For the latter, try Fiskardo. A picture-perfect village on the north tip of the island, it has some of the only candy-coloured Venetian architecture to survive the shakes of the 1953 earthquake. It’s arguably one of Kefalonia's prettiest destinations but, unsurprisingly, its beauty attracts the luxury yachts of the rich and famous.
The south of the island, meanwhile, is home to the main resorts. Lassi is a purpose-built package holiday haven with a broad stretch of beach, plenty of sun-loungers and warm waters for swimming. Further south, Skala is a fishing village-turned-resort that's ideal for couples and families seeking a relaxing break – think sunshine and watersports by day and romantic waterfront tavernas serving fresh fish by night. If you're looking for a cheap holiday to Kefalonia, this is the place to find the best deals.
In between the two, at the heart of the island, Mt. Ainos National Park has pine-clad trails and sweeping mountain views that are ideal for walking holidays.
With its serene reputation, you may be wondering how much there is to do in Kefalonia. In short, plenty. If you tire of the beach, hire a car and visit the Monastery of Agios Gerasimos or explore the charming villages of the island's verdant interior.
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