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Ionian Islands Destinations

Holidays and Villas in the Ionian Islands

The Ionians are a cluster of 12 variously sized islands that include Corfu , Paxos , Lefkas , Kefalonia , Meganissi , and Ithaca. Long ago part of the Greek mainland, they were ripped from the western coast by seismic turbulence that accounts for their ragged coastlines, sinuous beaches and mountainous interiors. The crystal water here is at the greatest depth in the entire Mediterranean. Sheltered by the mountains of Central Greece to the east in winter and refreshed by the meltemia and soft sea breezes in summer, the islands possess a special freshness and lush fecundity. Orange and lemon groves, figs and wild pears, olive groves and pine forests cover the eastern side of the islands, and the exuberant display of springtime flora is a memorable sight. It is little wonder that Corfu is known as “the Emerald Isle”, and Zakynthos as “the flower of the Orient”.

Alone in the Greek-speaking world, the Ionian islands never experienced rule by the Ottomans. Instead, architectural and intellectual influences remain European – Roman, Byzantine, French, Italian, Venetian and (most recently) British.

The variety between the individual islands provides the visitor with an abundance of choice: on Corfu, an 18-hole golf course, endless beaches, cosmopolitan boulevards, and mountain villages that seem to exist outside time itself; on Kefalonia, white coral, stalactites, grottos and caverns, subterranean lakes and marine turtles; on Paxos, dramatic cliffs veering upwards from deserted golden-sanded coves and white-pebbled beaches; the soft mountains of Ithaca with its 100kms of indented coastline; the fabled River Styx, the entrance to the mythic Underworld, still running its course through Lefkas; the serene tranquility of Meganissi, just the sound of the sea lapping against the peeling hull of your hired boat as you round the next headland.

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LefkasIthacaPaxos & AntipaxosKefaloniaMeganissiCorfu