When speaking of cinematographic sceneries Greek islands have their word to say. Their importance is even more legitimized since directors of different kind of movies had their scenes shot on the Aegean Sea. One of the inspirational islands is Kefalonia – the largest of the Ionian Islands.
It is in here that a big Hollywood movie Captain Corelli’s Mandolin was filmed. The 2001 production attracted new kind of tourists to Kefalonia and exposed the pure beauty of its nature and the charm of its towns. When you wander around the island, you understand it perfectly and you imagine all possible personal stories that could have happened here. The spirit of the island touches equally the Greeks and the foreigners – Kefalonia speaks in a language anyone can understand, the language of nature.
While getting on Kefalonia it surprises you by its greenery, the emptiness of the coast beaches. Once you get on the shore, you end up struck in the heart by the lively and colorful villages, medieval castles and stately monasteries. Another factor, contributing to Kefalonia extreme force of attraction that you cannot help is the human experience. Locals of the island are of these who know what life is all about. They are always there to share a smile, a glass of local wine or to tell a story. Their social life starts in the evening on the streets of villages and you can hardly say who is having more fun – them or the tourists. Europeans, Americans and anyone coming from the Western Culture should take good example of how to be carefree and happy.
A total must-see on Kefalonia is the underground Lake of Melissani. This place is like no other that you may have ever seen. Some compare it to a cathedral where the light barely goes through but these few sunbeams make the light blue waters shine, making the whole place mesmerizing and magical. Even the surrounding clear waters of the Ionian Sea don’t give you the glimpse of the number of shades of blue one can see at the same time. A boat trip at this cave lake may be compared to a heavenly journey to the center of paradise, especially when accompanied by a lilting Italianate cantada.
Katavothres of Fanari
The island of mysterious geological phenomena it should be called. At about 2,5 km from Argostoli, seawater was reported to disappear in unexplained ways. It was said to sink into rock schisms creating a pressure capable of powering mills, called the Sea Mills ever since. The missing water was later on found on the other side of Kefalonia – in the Lake Melissani.
Mount Enos – the ‘Black Mountain’
The mountain towering upon Kefalonia reaches 1628 meters and is covered with typical citrus, olive and pine trees. The particular plant, native and endemic to Kefalonia, is the black pine (Abies Cephalonica). It is precisely due to its black leaves that the Mountain got its name – Enos meaning ‘black’.
Mount Enos is part of the one and only national park on the Greek islands. Since 1962 the law protects its wealthy flora, hopefully for a great number of wild flowers. In the cliffs you may also meet small wild horses, typical of the area, Equus cabalus.
For trekking lovers and for any other person willing to climb up to see the breathtaking views on the island, the paths of various levels of difficulty are set to facilitate your way up.
The local tastes
The island of Kefalonia produces yellow and feta cheeses, olive oil, honey and meat. The recipes of Kefalonian cuisine travel from one generation to the next: the meat pie, the lagoto and sofigado dish are essential to your stay here. Although, the one thing you can’t miss before living the island is Robola – local dry wine.