Kefalonia beaches are among some of the most varied and idyllic in the world. There are massive sections of sandy shoreline that are perfect for reading a thriller while sipping on a beer, hidden coves where the intrepid can explore caves and other secret treasures, and paradisical bays where you can enjoy fresh seafood while staring out onto the sparkling sea. While a list of the best beaches in Kefalonia will vary depending on who you ask, there’s no doubt that some stand out even among the embarrassment of seaside riches that this island has to offer.
Luckily for you, we’ve checked out the surf, built sandcastles, and taken plenty of sunny naps all over the landmass, so we can bring you the ultimate guide to Kefalonia’s beaches and bays.
Located on the western reaches of Kefalonia, right on the edge of the Paliki Peninsula, lies the astoundingly beautiful Petani Beach. Petani is miles away from the nearest big town, so doesn’t see as many visitors as some of the more famous beaches on the island, but that’s not the only tranquil thing about it. The crescent-shape of the shoreline combined with the chalky white, greenery-topped cliffs that surround this bay mean the water right near the ocean is usually calm, making it ideal for a swim. However, it deepens quite quickly and opens up into a wavy area, so it’s also great for surfers and other water sports lovers.
Although Petani isn’t too close to civilisation, it isn’t a completely secluded spot. There are some nearby tavernas where you can grab some food, and basic shower and toilet facilities nearby, so you can easily spend a whole day here.
The beach has some parking, but you might have to walk a little from your car if you aren’t there early – but don’t fret, the walk is sure to be scenic.
With its peace and quiet, nearby amenities, and gorgeous scenery, Petani Beach is undoubtedly one of the best beaches in Kefalonia.
Agia Eleni Beach
Kefalonia beaches don’t get more magical than this spot. Another beach that’s situated on the Paliki Peninsula, Agia Eleni Beach is accessed via the village of Damoulianata. While nearby Petani Beach is all about the relaxing vibe, Agia Eleni is a more intrepid affair, with basically no amenities in the area surrounding the cove. However, this does mean it’s the perfect place to unwind without being disturbed.
If you’re more active you’ll love Agia Eleni Beach too. The water here sparkles dazzlingly under the sun, with the hues of blue and green shimmering beautifully as you look out to the sea. There are also several boulders giving the beach some character, some of which make perfect natural diving boards.
The marine life is also extensive and varied, so if you’re a snorkeller you’re sure to see some vibrant underwater scenery, and that’s not the only thing you can explore, there is a smaller, hidden cove that you can wade to, where the already secluded spot becomes even more exclusive. If you want a real escape, Agia Eleni is one of the best beaches in Kefalnoia for getting away from it all.
Although it gained international recognition for being the setting of a pivotal scene in Captain Corelli’s Mandolin, Myrtos Beach Kefalonia had long been a firm favourite of locals who love the more beautiful things in life. The water here is an otherworldly shade of blue thanks to the sediment from the nearby white rocks, which colour the sea in a vibrant turquoise. The beach is also sandwiched between plant-covered mountains, Agia Dayanti and Kalon Oros, adding to its dramatic composition.
Myrtos Beach Kefalonia can be a bit tricky to access as there’s only one steep path to get down, but during summer there is a bus from the nearby Agia Efimia harbour area that takes you some of the way.
The dazzling prize of the beach makes any walk worth it, and on the way back up you can reward yourself with a drink at one of the tavernas that overlooks the shore. A prize gem among an extensive sandy collection, there’s a reason this is considered one of the best beaches in Kefalonia.
Although Lassi is technically an idyllic seaside village and not a beach, it is home to several different sandy stretches that all boast something unique. The town has long been a tourist hotspot so has plenty of amenities to enjoy, from stores to restaurants and bars, and the beaches are all teeming with life. So, if you’re looking for a more social beach experience, or a destination that’s family friendly, there aren’t many Kefalonia beaches that beat out the ones surrounding this charming settlement.
Makris Gialos is often considered the best of the Lassi beaches thanks to its sweeping views, soft sand, and delightful café serving up drinks and snacks. It’s also surrounded by lush plant life, so when the sun gets too strong there’s plenty of shade to enjoy.
Kalamia Beach offers similar benefits, with everything you could want from your beach trip available to hire. If you’re looking for a Kefalonia beach experience that’s more rugged, then Gradakia Beach has plenty of cool spots to explore, but also benefits from being in close proximity to many restaurants and bars.
Nestled on the southern tip of Kefalonia, just a short hop from Mounda Bay, Skala Beach is the sort of place you imagine when you’re thinking of an idyllic beach experience. The shore is encircled by rocky outcrops and verdant hills, giving Skala a secret feel even though it is one of the most popular Kefalonia Beaches. With that said, it’s never too hard to find a more secluded spot around here, so wide is the beach. It’s also one of the cleanest beaches on Kefalonia, so you can enjoy unencumbered views of paradise while lounging under the sun.
Thanks to its popularity Skala is also a popular spot for water sports and diving, as well as boat trips to nearby islets and hidden coves.
There are dozens of reputable businesses nearby who can help you plan your seaside adventure, but equally you can simply fling down a towel on the sand and let the day pass you by, and the journey here will have been worth it. And, when you get hungry or thirsty, it’s only a short walk to mini markets, cafes, and bars. What more could you want from a beach in Kefalonia.
Although it might not have the paradisical aesthetics of some of the other beaches on this list, Xi beach remains unique among Kefalonia beaches thanks to its fiery red sand, the result of iron-rich materials in the earth. There are plenty of sunbeds, umbrellas, and other amenities nearby, as well as a beachside bar to keep you fed and watered during your day out.
The beach is perfect for families. It’s got plenty of parking, is blessed with shallow waters for kids to splash around in, and beyond the beachside bar has everything else you might need, from shops to restaurants to bars. Thrill-seekers can also enjoy a number of water sports in the surrounding waters, with nearby businesses offering everything from windsurfing to banana boating.