Having surpassed the milestone of transporting over 28 million passengers, Manchester airport is now officially the third largest in Britain. Its planned £1-billion transformation programme – including an extension to Terminal 2 and a new multi-storey car park – has begun. These changes will help improve the travelling experience for passengers.
There are direct flights from Manchester to most European destinations, including the island of Kefalonia. Less well-known than other Greek island destinations such as Crete and Rhodes, tourism didn’t take off on Kefalonia until the 1980s while it gained greater popularity after ‘Captain Corelli’s Mandolin’ was filmed on location there.
The appeal of Kefalonia
This relatively recent popularity means that its inhabitants are less jaded and more hospitable than other resorts which have enjoyed the benefits of tourism for longer. Although it has a hectic nightlife with numerous bars and clubs, Kefalonia appeals to its visitors for many other reasons.
Many are attracted to the tranquillity of this island. Long stretches of its coastline are only accessible on foot or after driving along narrow winding roads. This means that anyone who can access these unspoilt beaches by sea is at an immediate advantage.
Another benefit of hiring a boat on Kefalonia is that it is an ideal base for people wishing to go island-hopping and explore other places in its island group such as Corfu, Ithaca and Lefkada. Boat hire Kefalonia can be pre-arranged online – no matter the number of berths you want and whether you need a skipper or not.
The main attractions on Kefalonia
Built on a hillside overlooking a deep harbour, Argostoli reflects the island’s chequered past. From its medieval-looking flag-stoned streets to the imposing monuments of the 19th-century British Protectorate and the bustling Levantine outdoor markets, the island’s capital has something for everyone. The town’s archaeological and historical museums should also be included on a travel itinerary.
Kefalonia has its share of natural wonders too. Named after Melissani, the nymph who drowned herself after being rejected by the god Pan, Melissani Cave and Lake can be reached through an underground path. The light coming through the ceiling during the day makes it resemble a natural cathedral.
Another geological formation worth visiting is Drogarati Cave. Located 5km south of the picturesque village of Sami, this cave of stalagmites is estimated to be around 150 million years old. Its large chamber, which is situated 150 feet underground, has perfect acoustics and has been the venue for concerts, able to accommodate 500 people.
Wildlife on the island
Although better-known as one of the last remaining European breeding grounds for the loggerhead turtle, Kefalonia also has a small colony of the endangered Mediterranean monk seal. The island’s highest mountain, Mount Enos, is home to the native black pine and a semi-wild breed of pony (Equus cabalus). A national park since 1962, there are a range of hiking trails to the peak of the 1,628-metre mountain where there are breath-taking views eastwards to mainland Greece.
Whatever your interests and age, Kefalonia truly has something to appeal to everyone.