Kefalonia is the largest island of the Ionian region. It has rich vegetation, exotic beaches, turquoise blue waters, and underwater caves. With its deep turquoise blue waters, embraced by white sand and its mile and a half long arc of dazzling white pebbles, Myrtos Beach is one of the most dramatic beaches in Greece and one of the 30 best beaches in the world. A beach which once experienced, is never forgotten.
Surrounded by impressive white, rocky cliffs with lush vegetation and lying between the feet of two mountains, Agia Dynati and Kalon Oros, Myrtos Beach offers enchanting views from the very first sight. It can be approached by a steep, winding road, about 2 km in length and with hairpin turns.
It is located along the north-west coast of the island in the region of Pylaros, 29 km from Argostoli, past the small village Divarata. During the summer months, the Municipality of Pylaros runs a public bus service to and from Myrtos Beach, departing from the harbour area in Agia Efimia Village. The bus stops on the road leading down to the beach, with a brief walk down. Private-car parking is available at the base of the cliffs. Beach lounge and umbrellas are available for hire.
The small, secluded village of Assos, with less than 100 permanent inhabitants, is just north of the stunning Myrtos Beach, 36 km north of Argostoli, the capital of Kefalonia. It seems to be “lost in time” and gives off an almost mystical atmosphere. It is built amphitheatrically around the homonymous peninsula and is surrounded by luscious green scenery and verdant forests.
Entering the village, you will immediately reach the small square with its old, restyled homes, few romantic traditional Greek restaurants and the small pier built for private boats and local fishermen. The basic original traditional Ionian architecture of Assos is retained with pretty colorful houses nestling into the craggy hillside. The Ionian architecture was saved thanks to the French that came to aid the people rebuild their houses after the devastating 1953 earthquake.
The village square is known as Paris Square, and it has a commemorative plague dedicated to the French. It is situated near the waterfront where you will find the war memorial, an anchor, and an old cannon. Around it, there are a few tavernas and seaside cafes all offering amazing views.
Assos Beach is a small, beautiful, shady, pebbly beach with clear, shallow waters and great views across the bay.
Together with St. George’s Castle, the Castle of Assos is a fine example of military architecture of the island of Kefalonia. It was built in the late 15th century by the Venetian army and was of great strategic importance. It overlooks the Bay of Agia Kyriaki, north of Paliki, and could act as a base from which to defend the island, to protect against pirates, as well as a naval invasion. The castle stands on the top of a 170m high rocky hill, which encompasses the entire peninsula of Assos. It is protected by a wall of 2,000 meters length and covers an area of 44,000 sq. meters.
The castle became the capital of northern Kefalonia as a large fort with a small settlement inside. In 1757, the Venetians founded Argostoli, which became the main town of the island. In the late 1920’s, a prison was started there which after World War II hosted political prisoners, who kept vineyards and crops of cereal. After the earthquake of 1953, most people of the castle left, and the prison was closed. The 1961 census found only 6 people living in the fortress, the last of whom left in 1963. They had been known as the “Kastrinoi” (“people of the castle”). In 1982, the growers of the Robola Zone founded the Robola Cooperative of Kefalonia in order to ensure their income, to protect and at the same time highlight the dynamic of the Kefalonian vineyards. The Cooperative currently comprises of 300 members.
The first gathering of grapes was made in 1983, when bottling and marketing began. In 1987 the Cooperative acquired its own winery, located in the centre of the Robola Zone, just below the slopes of Mount Ainos and beside the Monastery of Saint Gerasimos, patron saint the island. The winery and vineyards are set amongst the rolling hills in the picturesque Omala Valley. The impressive winery building is situated in the valley and rests in absolute harmony with the surrounding, stunning landscape. It is a leisurely 20-minute drive from Argostoli.
The families of the Cooperative’s members individually own all the vineyards as the hardy, mountainous vineyards require patience and hands-on cultivation methods to provide a successful harvest.
High inclination, respective altitudes, and poor, gravelly limestone soils ensure the freshness, finesse and exquisite balance of the island’s wines. Indigenous varieties such as vostilidi, muscat, mavrodaphne, zakinthino and mainly robola, a dynamic white variety and one of the best and most prominent of the Greek varieties, are cultivated in an area of 2000 acres, within the “Robola Zone”.
Petani Beach (also spelled Petani) is in the beautiful peninsula of Paliki and is 13 km from Lixouri, Town the capital of the Municipality of Paliki. It is set at the base of a very steep road, surrounded by mountains, in a curved bay. The beach is covered mostly with sand and some pebbles scattered along the shore. Its waters are crystal clear, with interchanging blue- green turquoise colors. The beach is about 600m long, with the central part being used by swimmers.
Petani Beach is recognized for its great beauty, with many visitors comparing it to a smaller version of Myrtos Beach. The beach’s floor bed slopes quickly away, only going out a short distance from the shoreline before it is completely out of depth. This being the case, great care must be taken with children. Petani Beach is ideal for scuba diving and sea dips from the tall rocks.
The sunset there is mesmerizing, and it is worth waiting to see the sun disappear amongst the mountains, eventually falling into the sea. The staff of Selecta rent a car will be happy to provide you with useful information about the attractions along with the sights in the island, the magical beaches, and the routes you need to follow.