While we were on holiday in Kefalonia, we did not just laze around.
We found that we needed to have some activity away from the beach as after a couple of days we got restless.
We did the proper tourist thing and went on coach tours, a boat trip and hired a car to have a good look around.
We have always found that an organised coach tour is a good way to get to know a new place. On this occasion our tour guide was a local Kefalonian man who obviously knew the sites well. But he also told us stories about Kefalonia, his life and family in addition to the information about the sites we were visiting. This really added to the trip.
The tour took us across the island via the Sea Mills at Katavothres - καταβοθρες, the Drongarati caves and the underground lake at Melissani near Sami.
One site that caught our eye, but the coach did not stop at, was the Cyclopean wall. This intrigued us and we decided to revisit when we hired a car.
Another trip was on a boat called Pub Old House II (Yes, that was how it was written) which took us around the coast passing a few fish farms on the way. (Easier than catching them wild!). The first stop was a beautiful white cove where captain Makis threw a bottle of Champagne into the water and made us dive off the boat to go and fetch it. I made a valiant attempt but had a big disadvantage as I had to take my glasses off to dive and swim and so I couldn't see where the bottle was. At least I tried but I couldn't impress the girls by winning the champagne.
The boat then went to the island of Vardiani (aka Rabbit - the only type of inhabitant) where we had some refreshments which had a taste not dissimilar from the diesel fuel used to get us there.
On the island there was an ancient monastery where supposedly lay caches of Nazi treasure.
Were they still there? ...
We never found out.
Then off to Xi beach where the captain and his first mate put on diving displays by finding octopi and old amphora on the sea bed and then provided us with a beach barbecue.
After lunch we played around in the red muddy sand, grateful for a rinse off in the sea.
Another trip out was to a Greek night at a taverna in Argostoli. There was the ubiquitous Bouzouki music and Greek dancing, a bit touristy but daughter loved it and joined in the dancing with the holiday reps. The meal included as much free wine as you could drink.
A noisy trip back to the villa ...
Sore heads the next day too, I shouldn't wonder.
As usual we hired a little car. The first stop was the afore-mentioned Cyclopean Wall, built of enormous stones
Then on to the harbour at Sami which reminded us a bit of our stay in Halki. We revisited again on our sailing adventures but forgot that we had been there before. It seems different approaching from the sea.
The following day we drove to Asos. It was quite a long way and we got lost several times, but we did see numerous lovely Venetian houses which alas were damaged during the 1953 earthquake.
One of the delights for me when having a hire car is to explore some of the lesser used dirt track roads. (Must get a 4 wheel drive sometime). So I insisted that we drove up the hair raising, hair pinned road to the Venetian fort. There were no side barriers and it was unpaved so Mrs and Miss were a bit apprehensive.
Then on to stunning Myrtos beach. It is the most famous beach of Kefalonia, it looks beautiful but is not ideal for swimming as it is very pebbly and there are serious under currents.
The next car touring day took us south of Kefalonia. First stop was at another Venetian castle, Kastro Agiou Georgiou. Here the local self-appointed guide insisted on showing us everything, he was obviously very keen on his castle. He particularly wanted us to know about some tunnels right through to Argostoli. A quick escape if the defences were failing, or maybe just a trip out to fill the larder?
We were beginning to think that it might be our only way of escape!
Another spectacular drive with 3-point turns on cliff edges just to keep the passengers on their toes. Then on to Poros for drinks and ice creams and then south to Skala which did not look good so we didn't stop. We are very fussy!
The final stop of the day was the fishing village of Ketelios which suited us much better. Daughter had soup in Oscar's bar.
On the last car tour day we took the ferry across to Lixouri to have breakfast and then over the hills to Petani beach. Like Myrtos, lovely to look at but pebbly.
Then we had to take our trusty little car back to the rental office and take ourselves back to the beach.
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