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What is Agia Efimia like?

London, United...
Level Contributor
70 posts
2 reviews
What is Agia Efimia like?

Have found a holiday to kefalonia bay palace hotel which looks lovely but i would like to know more about the area. How quiet is it? Is it full of tourism or are there remnants of actual Greece other than the weather? Is it chock full of Brits? Many things to do nearby, i.e. Culture and sights, nice sandy beaches, boat trips?

Any advice much appreciated.

25 replies to this topic
Suffolk, United...
Destination Expert
for Cephalonia
Level Contributor
12,215 posts
89 reviews
1. Re: What is Agia Efimia like?

Hi,

Looking at your hotel choice first. It is great but is about a ten minute walk down a gentle hill to the village and a 15 minute walk back. In my opinion from across the bay it is a blot on the landscape.

How quiet depends on when you go. In August it is busy but not crowded. The holidaymakers are a mixture of Brits, Italians, Dutch, Russian and Greekstones.

You need to remember that in 1953 Cephalonia was struck by an enormous earthquake that destroyed nearly all the towns on the island so it is very difficult to find old fashioned houses and streets anywhere on the island. There are a few remnants of pre 1953 streets and buildings.so the remnants of actual Greece as most folks imagine is now mainly the people. The village has a resident population and is not just a resort. It is a small port used by yachts and so some nights there are flotilla in but it is easy to avoid them in the dozen or so tavernas as a flotilla tend to congregate in one. The beaches in the North of the island which includes Agia Efimia are all pebbly or you sunbathe on rocks before stepping into the clear blue sea. The beaches around the village are small and unserviced but you are not far from a cafe or taverna. The tavernas are typical of a village resort. There are some more traditional than others. The Pergola is a great one that is open nearly all year. It is at the far end of the village from where you are staying. The cafe/bars slso vary. Some open all year and you have a drink and just sit, chat and people watch, others are now catering for the slightly younger set but no nightclubs.

For sights you really need a car but not far away is Melissani Cave and in Karavomilos is a small house that survived the earthquake and is now a .Ivinghoe museum of how folks used to live. A bit further and I land is Old Vlachata which is the remains of a village ruined and deserted in 1953. Very thought provoking. The first weekend there is a free music and arts festival in amongst the ruins. There are some walks in the hills behind the village and I can give you some leaflets. If they interest you then send me a personal message with your email address and I will email some scanned leaflets that are no longer available in the village.

The two most famous beaches in the area are Myrtos and Antisamos. Myrtos looks fantastic from above but it is not sand but white pebbles and swimming can be VERY dangerous if the wind is in the wrong direction. Also the canteen is overpriced in my opinion. Antisamos is similar but with better tavernas and safer swimming. Recently there has been a new taverna added and folks are saying the beach is now spoilt with too many sunbeds and loud music. A smaller quieter beach is nearer Agia Efimia at Agia Paraskevi. You sunbathe on beds on grass under trees and walk down a few steps, across 5 metres of pebbles and then swim or snorkel in the fantastic sea.

For culture/history above Antisamos are a couple of monasteries, one of which is ruined and also the Acropolis of Ancient Sami.

Now the road has been repaired you are only a 20 minutes drive from Assos and its fortress. Get there about 10am if you intend to walk up to the fortress as the track has negligible shade and take water with you.

There is one company running boat excursions from the village both around Ithaca and slso up the coast to three other islands. There are also two boat hire companies so you can drive yourself and explore the coast and beaches north of the village.

We love the place and have been visiting, sometimes twice a year, since 1993.

You would be centrally placed to explore the whole island.

Hope this helps.

Bob

London, United...
Level Contributor
70 posts
2 reviews
2. Re: What is Agia Efimia like?

Thanks Bob, most helpful.

The 10 and 15 minute walk won't put us off. We are used to that from previous hotels (skiathos, Mykonos, paros and amalfi coast being a few of them) and are happy to trade a fantastic view for a bit of an incline - well, I don't mind it but my partner would beg to differ but then I'm the sort of lunatic who goes for runs in Greece in the middle of the day in August!!

I like the look of the hotel and it is coming in at £915 each including flights from Gatwick for an 8 night stay, which sounds expensive but it is at the start of the school holidays so it is to be expected. I think my main concern is any hotel which offers all inclusive makes me think that there is not much going on in the immediate area and we usually go for smaller hotels which are less glitzy but have great views and close to town. Also, we love relaxing so do not require something to do 24/7 but we don't want to be isolated in a resort hotel only, like one would be in Sharm el Sheikh for example. We like to be able to go out in the evening for dinner and wine without having to drive, a) because it's nice to have a couple of drinks and b) because we get so sick of driving in the UK it is nice to just not have to! If I can get through 7-14 days without getting behind the wheel this would be absolute bliss. However, I would get one for a day or two if it is really worth it to see bits of the island. That said, I've no desire to drive on awful coast roads - driving the Amalfi Coast put me off for life.

Suffolk, United...
Destination Expert
for Cephalonia
Level Contributor
12,215 posts
89 reviews
3. Re: What is Agia Efimia like?

Hi again,

Just to add that the mountain roads are wide enough for two coaches to pass each other except sometimes in the villages where a bit of give and take are needed.

Have a look at this website.

http://www.kefaloniabyanna.com/web/

Bob

Watford, United...
Level Contributor
1 post
18 reviews
4. Re: What is Agia Efimia like?

Stay here if you like turtles, seen them everyday since last week in the bay, see them while sitting on Beach, seen them while at the pool.

They are nesting on the south side of the island at the moment but these turtles have stayed for now.

Also reply to everything in one this area is beautiful and the harbour is lovely too not a tourist trap at all.

If anything all you will see is couple coaches come in the harbour in the morning so people can get a boat

Level Contributor
1 post
5 reviews
5. Re: What is Agia Efimia like?

Hi I'm off to Karavomylos in June. Between Sami and agia efimia. Where is the best place for seeing the Turtles? Where were you exactly? My 4 year old would love it (as would I!)

Thanks in advance :)

Suffolk, United...
Destination Expert
for Cephalonia
Level Contributor
12,215 posts
89 reviews
6. Re: What is Agia Efimia like?

Hi Natz and welcome,

The only place you can be sure of seeing the turtles is Argostoli which is the other side of the island about a 60 minute drive.

Aim to get there between abut 10:00 and midday. They are in the harbour mainly just after a Shell petrol station. You might have to drive further to where the local ferry docks if you want to get a parking place.

A good day out would be, after seeing the turtles, to get the ferry across to the town of Lixouri and visit the main square where there is an ice cream shop called I Scream for Ice Cream. A vast number of flavours that will delight any 4 year old (and adult!)

Let me know if you want more precise directions to Argostoli.

Bob

bristol
Level Contributor
913 posts
22 reviews
7. Re: What is Agia Efimia like?

Agia Efimia has some excellent tavernas and we love to go out in the evenings rather than eat in the same hotel every night. We prefer not to go all inclusive for that reason

Level Contributor
5,269 posts
33 reviews
8. Re: What is Agia Efimia like?

The OP went to Skala last July!!

bristol
Level Contributor
913 posts
22 reviews
9. Re: What is Agia Efimia like?

But they are asking about Agia Efimia

Lancashire
Destination Expert
for Fiscardo
Level Contributor
2,081 posts
30 reviews
10. Re: What is Agia Efimia like?

Yes they were asking about Agia Efimia 9 months ago but as thisis..... states they then went on to stay in Skala instead!

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