Last month, on an evening weighed down by essays & revision, we decided to throw caution to the wind & book a trip to Greece in a few weeks time. That's what French conjugations and referencing will drive you to. I had fond memories of summers in Agia Efimia (on the island of Kefalonia) as a child, and was excited to explore the island further by car. On arrival and after a long (we got lost) but very scenic drive round windy island roads, it was pitch black. All we had to go on were the sound of cicadas and that irreplaceable Greek island air.
We awoke to this view from our balcony, which was everything I'd dreamed of during miserable essay writing evenings. Huge mountains rolled out as far as the eye could see, perfectly framing the azure blue sea. Without further ado we got to exploring our hotel!
This is the view of our hotel. It's called the Kefalonia Bay Palace, and we got a great deal at onthebeach.co.uk - I recommend checking them out. It's 5* and the pictures on the website looked incredible, but scrolling through reviews on Trip Advisor left me slightly doubtful. Well, I needn't have worried. The hotel was perfect; the staff were friendly and helpful, it was before school holidays so we had the run of the place, and the views were out of this world. I'll definitely be saving my pennies to go again next year!
The town of Agia Efimia is famous only for the fact that the cast of Captain Corelli's Mandolin (Nicholas Cage & Penelope Cruz) stayed here during filming. Other than that it is a perfectly tranquil and petite village. One day we packed a picnic (and plenty of suncream), rented a little motor boat and puttered between the bays near the village, which can only be reached by sea. Lying on the bow with a good book & only the sound of waves lapping at the boat to contend with, this was my idea of heaven!
Other highlights include Myrtos Beach, ten minutes drive from our hotel. At first, as you descend, you can't see the beach itself - only the bright blue waters. And then suddenly, it comes into spectacular view. I'm surprised there aren't more car crashes given the amount of cars stopping for that perfect photo opportunity!
I saw this 'house' on one of our many long drives, and decided it would suit me just perfectly. Better start saving up then!
One morning we found a little hidden bay called Dafnoudi beach. If you aren't concentrating you'll miss the turnoff, and then you have to walk for ten minutes or so through some woods until you arrive at the beach. But boy is it worth it!
We spent a whole day there swimming out as far as we could, splashing about in the clear, shallow waters, and doing handstands in the secret little cove.
Another recommended town is Fiskardo, which is right in the north of the island. It's a sailing town, and we wiled away long hours watching the magnificent boats drift in and out the bay. A great place for pottering around in.
Til next year, Kefalonia!