Nature has done its miracle once again, forming unique caves, lakes and lagoons combined with an impressive coastline and peninsulas. Although the island of Kefalonia was hit by the catastrophic earthquake of 1953, which destroyed many of the important sites as well as most cities, there are still ancient ruins, and most of the findings are on display at the Archaeological Museum of Argostoli.
Kefalonia is known for its mysteries, such as the seawater that disappears in Katavothres and the mystical cave of Melissani.
Katavothres is one of the most popular attractions on the island, as the water disappears from the cracks near the shore. For years scientists could not explain the phenomenon and did not know where the water was going. Finally, they did an experiment using a colored chemical which they put in the water from the Sinks. They discovered that the water crossed underground the entire southern part of the island, forming holes in the limestone rocks of the soil, and ended up in the cave of Melissani.
This cave is located in Sami, on the east coast of the island and inside there is a blue lake. Ever since the roof of the cave collapsed and the sun’s rays touched the surface of the lake, the reflection of water on the walls of the cave creates a mystical atmosphere, especially at noon. The ancient ruins that were discovered proved that the cave was a sacred place dedicated to the god Pan and only reinforced the mystery.
According to the legend, Melissanthi was a nymph who committed suicide in the lake because the god Panas rejected her love. Others say that Melissanthi was a girl from the area who drowned when she lost one of her sheep and accidentally fell into the lake trying to find it.
Another cave near Sami and the cave of Melissani is the cave of Drogarati. It was discovered 300 years ago when an earthquake revealed its main entrance. It has a depth of 60 meters, the temperature is 18 degrees, and the humidity is 90%! The age of the cave is estimated to be 100,000,000 years and only a part of it is accessible. It is probably connected with other caves in the area and due to its great acoustics, it has hosted many cultural events.
Saint George Castle
Another notable attaction in Kefalonia is the Saint George castle. The castle was built in the 13th century in order to protect the then capital which was located there. Because its purpose was to prevent possible attacks, the view from here is of course breathtaking! It is well maintained with loopholes, watchtowers, towers and parts of the walls still standing. Here was the burial place of the Kefallinian nobles and according to a theory it is connected to Argostoli by an underground tunnel.
Agios Theodoros Lighthouse
Agios Theodoros is a lighthouse that was originally built by the British, but the local authorities rebuilt it when it was destroyed, like most of the island, by the catastrophic earthquake of 1953 according, to its original architecture.