Places of interest and things to do
There are tourist attractions galore in Kefalonia, either at your doorstep or at the furthest northern tip of the island. We have listed the main sites below, however please feel free to have a chat should you wish to go off the beaten track. All of these sites are accessible by car, or should you not wish to drive you will be able to book a guided coach trip from Skala.
Nearer to home
The Roman Villa
In 1956, the remains of a roman mansion were discovered during excavations. The Roman Villa is situated on the very outskirts of Skala near the waterfront and is well worth exploring if you are in the area. It was built during the 2nd century AD and is considered to be a type of rural villa. Six rooms have been preserved, four of which have mosaic flours whilst the sixth one is an open courtyard. The Roman Villa is well known for its mosaic flooring. Amongst the six chambers that remain, four of them have fragmented floor surfaces and one is an outdoor yard.The main entrance of the building faced south and it is assumed that the walkway was through a wooden bridge, since a stream was running alongside. The decoration of the fragmented floor surfaces is interesting for the composite geometric and herbal motif designs and the pictorial representations. The central part of the fragmented floor surface in the hallway, represents Fthonos (envy) in the form of a young man being attacked by four wild animals.
Mycenean tomb of Tzanata
In 1956, near the village of Poros which is about 10km from Skala, archaeologists unearthed the largest beehive shaped tomb in the Ionian islands. This uniquely shaped tomb, due to the size and shape was considered to be a royal grave and golden jewellery, royal seals and precious stones accompanied the tomb. Today, these artifacts can be seen in the Archaeological Museum of Argostoli. Speculation says this could even be the tomb of Odysseus.
Other parts of Kefalonia
The northernmost port of Kefalonia, Fiskardo a short distance from Ithaca. As the only village to survive the destruction of the 1953 earthquake, it has retained its historic Venetian architecture and in recent years has been a major player in luxury tourism. Countless Hollywood celebrities and the worlds wealthiest stop over in their yachts in what is undoubtedly the glamour capital of Kefalonia. Fiskardo is a stunning place for a wonderful lunch and to drink coffee while people watching.
Charming Assos is the northernmost tip of Kefalonia. The village is dominated by the remains of a spectacular Venetian fortress - one of the two that can be found on the island. The fortress dates to 1584 when the rocky promontory of Assos, a naturally impregnable location, was selected and 2000 metres of walls were built to follow the contours or the terrain. The remains within the fortress walls, in this place of scenic beauty, are more than worthy of exploration and provide a challenging one-hour trek to the top. Also a great place to stopover for lunch in the harbour while enjoying the stunning landscape.
One of the most recognisable beach photographs in the world, Myrtos is a constant feature in the lists of best beaches to visit. The stunning backdrop and crystal clear waters draw many for that picturesque shot and a chance to dip their toes in the calm waters. Myrtos beach lies between the feet of two mountains, Agia Dynati and Kalon Oros and has been described as "one of the most dramatic beaches in Greece", with its "mile-and-a-half long arc of dazzling white pebbles. The explosion of the mine in Captain Corelli's Mandolin, starring Nicholas Cage and Penelope Cruz was filmed at Myrtos.
Sami, Drogarati Cave and Melissani Lake
A sleepy fishing village forty five minutes from Skala, Sami's dramatic mountainous landscape looms in front of you while you enjoy your meal at the seafront. Stop for a swim at the Antisamos beach which was featured in Captain Corelli's Mandolin as the Italian 33rd Acqui Infantry Division's base camp. You can also drive up the hills to the Ancient Sami Acropolis ruins and church ruins. Visit the Drogarati Cave and take a boat trip around the Mellisani Lake to complete the day.
Last but not least, Argostoli, the island's bustling capital is the place to go should you wish to go to town for shopping and sightseeing. With its cafes, bars, restaurants and shops, this is the ideal place to watch locals go about their day.
For nature lovers
On the island of Kefalonia there are quite a few beaches where someone could spot both Loggerheads and nesting points. The island is one of the northernmost nesting sites of sea turtles in the world. The principal nesting site is below Ratzakli at Mounda Bay, between Skala and Katelios, whereas many others are spread throughout the beaches of the island, like Megali Ammos and Ammes beach at Minies, Makris Gialos at Lassi or Mega Lakos at Lixouri.
But if you actually want to see a live breathing adult Loggerhead turtle in Kefalonia you can go at the Koutavos Lagoon in Argostoli. You can locate them near the De Bosset Bridge and alongside the waterfront, where they sometimes follow the fish boats and swim around in search for food. This usually happens every morning once the fishermen have returned from their daily fishing trips.