Kefalonian Roots      Genealogical Services for Kefalonia, Greece

 

An Introduction To Kefalonia

       

Satellite Picture of Kefalonia

                  Picture from the space shuttle Discovery in 1996 from an altitude of 269 kilometers.

 

 

An Introduction To The Island Of Kefalonia

 

Kefalonia is an Ionian Island, an island of the Ionian Sea in western Greece.  It is located east of the Italian island of Sicily, west of the Greek city of Patra, in the Peloponeese, south of Corfu (Kerkyra), and northwest of the island Zakinthos (Zante).  The Latitude and Longitude coordinates for Kefalonia, Greece are Lat:38 degrees 12 minutes North   Long. 20 degrees  26 minutes E.  It is the largest of the seven Ionian Islands, having a land area of 786 sq km (304 sq. miles) and a population of approximately 36,400. 

There are many natural landforms on the island.  In the center are the mountains, the highest, Mt. Ainos at 1,629 meters  (496.65ft.).   On the eastern side of the island there is a sunken lake - Melissani, a large cave - Drogarati and a beautiful ravine at Poros.   There are also many bays, the large Gulf of Argostoli and many small islands of rock scattered off shore around the island.  Along the coast there are 254 kilometers (158 miles) of beaches and five port towns.  The ports in the order of the volume of shipping traffic are:  Sami, Poros, Argostoli, Lixouri and Fiskardon.  Along with these passenger/shipping/yacht ports, the island maintains an airport southwest of Argostoli, which accommodates Olympic flights all year and many international charter flights during the tourist season of May through October.   The seaports and airport make traveling to Kefalonia very easy. Kefalonian Ports

The island is politically divided into eight (8) municipalities:  Argostoli, Paliki, Livatho, Eleioy-Pronoy, Sami, Pilaro, Erysos and the Community Omalon.  Scattered across these municipalities are 164 politically recognized towns and villages.  There are other very small hamlets - small groups of homes.  "They" say that including the hamlets, there are 365 villages and towns on Kefalonia.  Villages by Municipality.

Tourism has developed slowly over the past 20 years.  For this reason, the natural beauty of Kefalonia has remained basically unspoiled; it is the greenest island in western Greece.  Almost everyday, from June through August, the island is drenched in bright sunlight, radiating from dark blue, cloudless skies.  The light rays of the setting sun reflect off of the rocky mountainsides in hues of pink, magenta and purple.  At night, an eastern view from Paliki reveals the moon rising over Mt. Ainos and the moonlight shimmering in the water of the Gulf of Argostoli.  Late at night, the lights of scattered villages and the stars in the black sky, along with a refreshing evening breeze, evoke a romantic atmosphere which lingers forever in one's soul.

 

 

 

 

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