Cruise Port Atlas | Argostoli (Kefalonia), Greece Day Trips | Attractions

Argostoli (Kefalonia), Greece Day Trips | Attractions

With limited time in port, planning is the best way to make the most of your time. Should you strike out on your own? Should you hire a local guide? Or should you book a shore excursion offered by the cruise line or an international tour company? Below we have listed the attractions and activities that many other cruisers have enjoyed. This information should help you plan.

The advantage to cruise line tours is that they are timed for your visit and give you flexibility to change your mind after your trip begins. The advantage of using a large international firm is that tours are often less expensive than cruise sponsored tours. The advantage to using a local tour company or guide is that prices can be significantly lower or you may be able to get a customized trip just to see the attractions that interest you most.

Cruise lines visiting Argostoli: Voyages of Discovery, Regent Seven Seas, Seabourn, Silversea, Holland America, Costa, Royal Caribbean

Key Attractions: Vallionos Square, Lithostroto Mall, Archaeological Museum, Korgialeneious Museum, Bosset (Drapano) Bridge, Myrtos Beach, Makris Gialos, Lourdas Beach, Xi Beach, Swallow Holes, Melissani Lake, Drogarati Cave, Sea Kayaking, Boat Tours, St. Georges Castle, St. Gerasimus Monastery, Fiskardo, Assos, Sami

Argostoli Attractions

Port to Vallianos Square - 0.25 KM, 3 minute walk
Port to Lithostroto Mall - 0.5 KM, 5 minute walk
Port to Archaeological Museum - 1 KM, 4 minutes, 13 minute walk
Link to Full-Page Google Map

Argostoli's attractions are mostly within walking distance of the port. Though some are reconstructions of older buildings, for the most part, the capital has been reconstructed over the last 60 years. The meeting point in the city is Vallianos Square surrounded by shops, tavernas and other businesses. A couple blocks south of the square is the main shopping street, Lithostroto, which is a pedestrian-only cobble shopping mall. There are two nice small museums in the city. The Archaeological Museum has artifacts from Mycenean to Roman times. The Korgialeneio History and Folk Art Museum includes many displays showing the island prior to the earthquake. The picturesque De Bosset Bridge was built of wood in the early 19th century, but replaced a few years later with stone. It is one of the city's most popular photo spots along with the Doric-style lighthouse rebuilt after the earthquake.

              

   

Photo of Vallianos Square

Cephalonia Beaches

Port to Makris Gialos - 3.7 KM, 9 minutes
Port to Xi Beach - 12.5 KM, 19 minutes (includes ferry)
Port to Lourdas Beach - 21 KM, 32 minutes
Port to Myrtos - 29 KM, 40 minutes
Link to Full-Page Google Map

The beaches of Argostoli are renowned for their dramatic beauty and pristine waters. The most famous is Myrtos, within a large bay on the northern coast of the island. This beach sits at the bottom of dramatic cliffs in a gently curved bay with white pebbles on the strand. Very close to Argostoli is the island's most popular beach, Markis Gialos, with many tavernas and lots of water sports available. On the southwestern coast of the island is the red sand beach at Lourdas surrounded by white hills. One of the best beaches for families is Xi to the south of Lixouri, with shallow and calm waters. It is a wide expanse of sand accessible by a ferry to Cephalonia's second largest town and then a short taxi ride.

        

   

Photo of Myrtos Beach by Christos Vittoratos

Melissani Lake and Drogarati Cave

Port to Melissani Lake (Cave) - 29 KM, 38 minutes
Port to Drogarati Cave - 24 KM, 31 minutes
Link to Full-Page Google Map

Some of the unique features of Cephalonia are its large and developed caves, resulting from the flow of sea water under the island. At the Lassi resort area just west of Argostoli are the swallow holes, where the sea water seems to be swallowed by the land. This water travels the expanse of the island and emerges on the other side near the fishing village of Sami. These waters pass through the Melissani Lake; tours offer the opportunity to take a short boat trip into the cavern where the roof has collapsed, letting a dramatic shaft of sunlight in. The fee is steep, visit brief, but the experience is unique. Not far away is the Drogarati Cavern, a huge system of chambers with the requisite stalactites and stalagmites including one where concerts are held.

     

   

Photo of Lake Melissani (Cave) by Christos Vittoratos

Sami, Assos and Fiskardo

Port to Sami - 27 KM, 35 minutes
Port to Assos - 37 KM, 46 minutes
Port to Fiskardo - 50 KM, 60 minutes
Link to Full-Page Google Map

With the exception of Fiskardo in the far north, the fishing villages of Cephalonia are modern by Greek standards, constructed in the last 60 years after the devastation of the 1953 earthquake. Fiskardo is a lovely village at the northernmost tip of the island surrounded by a rocky coast and dense green forests that are designated protected. Assos is on the road to Fiskardo and sits on a hilly coastal area where the main part of the island connects by narrow isthmus to a rocky peninsula creating great views. On the eastern coast of the island is the village of Sami very near the Melissani and Drogarati caves. The harbor offers views of nearby Ithaca.

           

   

Photo of Fiskardo by Paul Brink

Sea Kayaking and Boat Tours

With its dramatic coastline, the most popular day trips offered on Cephalonia are boat rides and sea kayaking. This offers the best way to see inaccessible areas of the island dramatic coast. Glass bottom boat tours offer views of what is under the water as well.

     

   

St. Georges Castle and St. Gerasimus Monastery

Port to St. Gerasimus Monastery - 15 KM, 20 minutes
Link to Full-Page Google Map

Because of the 1953 earthquake historic sights are limited, but the most popular is St. Georges Castle on a hill south of Argostoli. Located in a village called Kastro, the castle was built by the Venetians on an older Byzantine structure in the first half of the 16th century and served as the island's capital for over 200 years. The island was one of the most important of all centers of Mycenean culture and the archaeological museum offers a rich collection of artifacts of that era. St. Gerasimus Monastery, which houses the saint's remains under glass, was built to honor the 16th century saint who is reputed to have healed the sick of the island.

        

   

Photo of St. George Castle by Christos Vittoratos

Interests Key:

Art Architecture Beach Children Wild Animals Local Cuisine Flora Gardens-Parks Geology

Diving UNESCO Views Wine Dance Music Shopping History Hiking

Walking & Wheelchair Accessibility:

No Walking Easy Walking Normal Walking Difficult Walking Accessible Limited Not Accessible