Greece Holidays around Lefkada. A jewel of an island, with dense forests, cosmopolitan charm and famous beaches.
You’re bound to have seen photographs of Lefkada’s world-renowned beaches. But when you arrive, you’ll quickly realise that the reality is even better than the fantasy. Lefkada – or Lefkas – is easily accessible, hospitable and lively – a recipe for the perfect summer holiday in the Ionian Sea. Kathisma, Egremni, Porto Katsiki – the most beautiful beaches in the Mediterranean – have won international acclaim and are awarded annually with Blue Flags (symbolising cleanliness and quality).
Windsurfing, kitesurfing, paragliding, scuba diving, flights in a prop plane, horseback riding, mountain biking, sailing the surrounding islets like Skorpios: there is no end to the activities and sports on offer here. You’ll explore the island, stay at luxurious or quaint and traditional hotels, eat at restaurants on the water. The welcoming Lefkada town will invite you to savour its culture: walks in the alleyways, folk songs, the famous bouranelous (anglers), plates of Englouvi lentils on Agios Donatos’ feast day. Immerse yourself in Lefkada’s magical world.
What to do in Lefkada
The most popular beaches in Lefkada
Are you ready to plunge into paradise? Here, turquoise meets azure, with white sand, white cliffs and smooth white pebbles. Vast exotic beaches, bays, cliffs that swoop into the sea, pine trees. Kathisma, Egremni, Milos, Pefkoulia, Myli, Ammoglossa. And the island’s number one star, Porto Katsiki. Every swim is soul-cleansing. Every beach is an unforgettable experience.
Set sail to the islets around Lefkada
At Nydri, row upon row of masts sway to the rhythm of the wind, ready to cast off. Untie those ropes and set sail in the Ionian’s azure waters for delightful hideaways like Pringiponisa, Meganisi, Kalamos and Kastos. For mariners, Lefkada’s surrounding islands are among the favourite destinations in Greece.
Skorpios: Onassis’ island sanctuary
Near Nydri you’ll find one of the most famous islets in the world and summer refuge of the tycoon Aristotle Onassis: Skorpios. He bought it in 1963 and decorated it with all types of trees and exotic plants. Liz Taylor, Richard Burton, Winston Churchill, kings, dukes, shipping magnates and, of course, Jackie O … all took part in famous parties and celebrations on Skorpios and on Onassis’ yacht, Christina, where they discovered the magic of the Ionian Sea. He was buried here in 1975.
Board, boom, sail… and we’re off to windsurf in Vasiliki and Ai Gianni, two of the world’s best beaches for the sport and home to the International Regatta. If you prefer kitesurfing, Myli, near Lefkada town, is ideal. If you’re even more courageous, you can paraglide – an unforgettable flight with an exciting landing at Kathisma, one of Lefkada’s most gorgeous beaches. Or soar through the sky with one of the Aeroclub’s prop planes or light aircrafts.
The legend of Cape Lefkada
When you get here, the legendary energy wraps around you. At the spot where a lighthouse now stands, 60m above sea level, sacrifices were made to the gods in ancient times. Which is why the temple of Lefkada Apollona was built here.
After the 6th century, sacrifices to the gods were replaced by sacrifices of desperate lovers. The poet Sappho was allegedly the first to jump and the dramatic white cliff is named Sappho’s Leap after her. It has also been called Kavos Tis Kyras (Lady’s Cape), after the love-struck girls who threw themselves to their death here. It is one of the most interesting sights in Lefkada, and well worth a visit.
From the castle of Agia Mavra to Gyra
When you enter the town, you’ll be welcomed by the castle. In 1300, the Venetian leader Giovanni Orsini received Lefkada as a dowry and began fortifying it with seven bastions on seven sides. Inside you’ll find the church of Agia Mavra, patron saint of Lefkada, celebrated on May the 3rd with a huge feast day. From the castle to the northwest side of town, there is a thin strip of land, 7 km long, that embraces the Gyras lagoon. The red villa Kalkani, windmills and fishermen’s homes inhabit this unique wetland, along with numerous species of protected birds.
Surprises in the alleyways of Lefkada
Like the wind, you will whirl around the town’s alleyways. Stroll along and you’ll discover a series of surprises. In the lively squares and sidewalks, stores and churches, in the 17th and 18th century architecture: impressive steeples, exquisite temples and Ionian icons. Here, you’ll be struck by the coloured sheet-metal facades of the houses’ upper floors. It’s a unique local custom devised to minimise earthquake damage.
Quaint Agios Nikitas
Cars are prohibited here, so you’ll explore this traditional settlement on foot. A charming little marina, green everywhere, fish tavernas, cafes and bars on the water, small hotels, stone cottages. From here you can take a caique to nearby, exotic and beautiful Myli.
Hidden gems of Lefkada
The Venetian Olive Grove
The shade of 100-year-old olive trees hides a story. The grove, which embraces the western side of town, was planted by order of the Venetians in the 17th century. Here, you’ll enjoy a walk or a bike ride through the immortal olive trees.
Follow the shady path under the planes, until you reach a unique vision: enormous rocks and water falling with great force into the blue lake. You won’t be able to resist a dip.
Small in size but large in flavor. Cooked in large cauldrons by the village women on Agios Donatos’ feast day (August 7) at the plateau above the village. A festival on your plate!
How to go Lefkada
Lefkada is one of the Greek Ionian Islands located off the west coast of mainland Greece. The island (also known as Lefkas and Leucade) is connected to the mainland by a 50 meter drawbridge that was built in the 1980s to replace the archaic chain-operated ferry originally introduced by the Emperor Augustus. In fact Lefkada was not an island at all until the 5th century BC when the inhabitants dug a channel to separate themselves from the mainland.
ACCESS BY PLANE
The closest airport to Lefkada Island is located in Préveza – Aktion National Airport (The international airport code is PVK).
The airport actually stands on and takes its name from the sandy peninsula of Aktios. This is where the Battle of Actium was fought in 31 BC, when the fleet of Octavian decisively defeated that of Antony and Cleopatra.
Anyone wishing to stay in Préveza is advised to take the Olympic minibus or a taxi from the airport terminal. Facilities at Préveza are limited and the airport can get congested on Sundays when most of the UK charter flights operate. There are a couple of taverns close by the terminal building which provide welcome relief if you are waiting to check in. How far is it from Preveza Airport to Lefkada Island?
Preveza Town – 10 minutes
Lefkas Town – 20 minutes
Nidri – 40 minutes
Vassiliki – 90 minutes
Parga – 90 minutes
Contact to the Aktion Airport :
48 100 Preveza
Tel : +30(0)26820-26113
Fax: +30 (0)26820-28824
Please note we are not responsible for changing timetables.
Access By Ferry & Boats
There is several company you can use to get to Lefkada on the sea :
MINOAN LINES – www.minoan.gr
Trieste – Igoumenitsa – from 1 day 2 hrs/up to 3 crossing pre week
Trieste – Patras – from 1 day 8 hrs 30 mins/up to 3 crossings per week
Bari – Igoumenitsa – from 9 hrs 30 mins/up to 7 crossing pre week
Ancona -Patras – from 1 day/up to 6 crossings per week
GRIMALDI LINES – www.grimaldi-lines.com
Brindisi – Igoumenitsa – from 7 hrs 27 mins/up to 2 crossings per week
Brindisi – Patras – 15 hrs 57 mins/up to 6 crossings per week
ANEK LINES – www.anek.gr
Venice – Igoumenitsa – from 1 day 2 hrs/ up to 4 crossings per week
Venice – Patras – from 1 day 8 hrs 50 mins/ up to 4 crossings per week
SEAJETS – www.seajets.gr
Ancona-Igoumenitsa – from 17 hrs/ up to 6 crossings per week
SUPERFAST FERRIES – www.superfast.com
Bari – Igoumenitsa – from 9 hrs 30 mins/ up to 7 crossings per week
Brindisi – Patras – from 15 hrs 57 mins/ up to 6 crossings per week
Those travelling to the island from Italy have a particularly easy journey via the ports of Patras and Igoumenitsa (140 km of Sivota).
Reservation can be done on ferriesingreece.com which gathers all companies.
The boats for Kefalonia and Ithaka are leaving from port of Vsiliki located in the south of Lefkada. You can buy the ticket at the port or directly on the boat.
To go to Meganisi Island you have to take a boat from Lefkada or Nidri.
You can check the timetable on following website.
Please note we are not responsible for changing timetables of the ferries.
Access By Bus
Contact to some Bus Stations :
Lefkada Bus Station
Address : A. Tzeveleki & Filosofon
Tel : 26450 – 22364
Fax : 26450-21827
Athens Bus Station
Tel : 210-5124910, 2105132601
Thessaloniki Bus Station
16 Lagada Str.
Tel : 2310-500111/595444
Fax : 2310 520679
Preveza Bus Station
205a Ioanninon Ave.
481 00 Preveza
Tel : 26820-27993/22400
Fax : 26820-21192
Access By Car
Lefkas is 385 km from Athens, 420 km from Thessaloniki, 180 km from Patras, and 100 km from Igoumenitsa. The bridge connecting Lefkas with mainland Greece (toll-free) provides the road access to the island.
The rotation time of P/C Saint Maura N.P. 26 bridge :
From 08:00 to 22:00 full rotation of the bridge every hour.
From 23:00 to 07:00 the bridge rotates fully whenever there is a ship.