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The tiny island of Kastos is a secluded escape from the crowds, with a tiny population and quaint village. It has a pretty harbour and several cobalt bays that provide overnight mooring for yachts cruising Lefkada.
Located near the chapel of Agios Emilianos and the homonymous beach, Kalikerimi is one of the best places to stay in Kastos for relaxation. It is also home to the Fokotripa cave, which can be entered only from the sea and is a great place for diving in the clear waters of the Ionian Sea. The best time to visit Kalikerimi is between May and August, as this is when the weather is warm and sunny. The beach is also good for swimming, but it is better to wear protective footwear as the rocks can be quite slippery. Another popular activity is walking along the trails that run through the olive groves on the island. Guests can also visit the old windmill and enjoy breakfast, coffee or cocktails here.
Like the neighboring island of Kalamos, Kastos is surrounded by some of the most beautiful and clean water in the Ionian Sea. Most of the anchorages are sandy and offer excellent protection from the prevailing winds. There are also a number of underwater caves that you can explore and there is some amazing snorkeling to be done here, especially around the rocky cliff edges.
Kastos is one of the least populated islands in the Ionian Sea and has only fifty permanent residents. It is a peaceful island where the pace of life is slow and relaxing. Guests can enjoy the local rhythms of this small Greek Ionian island, and spend their time exploring the many beaches, caves and tavernas.
It is important to note that there are no cars on the island, and all activities must be undertaken on foot. There are a few holiday homes and taverns that can be rented for short stays on the island, but accommodation is very limited. Those who plan on visiting Kastos should book well in advance to secure their accommodation.
One of the best ways to get to Kastos is to travel by boat. You can take a daily ferry from the port of Mitikas in mainland Greece or even a cruise that departs from Lefkada. The island is also easily accessible by private boat/yacht.
Located a few kilometres southeast of Meganissi, Kastos is the ultimate Ionian Island hideaway, offering wonderful peaceful beaches and a deliciously simple way of life. It is the perfect choice for those seeking a respite from the summertime crowds, reminiscing of the quieter, more carefree Greek holidays of decades ago.
The sea that laps Kastos’ shores is wonderfully limpid and clean, an irresistible lure for swimmers, snorkellers, scuba divers and sailors. The western coast is rocky and element-sculpted while the eastern side offers a series of small sandy-pebble beaches and paradisiacal bays with transparent, electric blue waters. The most famous is the long and secluded beach in the village of Kastos, while the beaches in Limni, Babakia, Vrisidia, Fiki, and Aitiki are also utterly charming.
Most of the islands’ inhabitants live in the main town of Kastos, situated around the port and mainly consisting of private houses and a few holiday homes. There is a selection of tavernas and bars, including one housed in an old windmill, as well as a mini-market that stocks essentials. The accommodation options are very limited, with only a handful of villas and a complex of studios available for rent.
For those seeking to explore the wilder corners of the island, there are a number of hiking trails that run through the forests of cypress trees and mauretania pines. One of the most popular routes leads to Fokotripa, a cave with a deep swimming pool and a magnificent view.
Those with a car can easily access the mainland from Kastos, and the main town is within an easy drive of Lefkada and Nidri. Those without a car can hire a boat from the marina in the main town, which is also where buses leave for the island. Alternatively, you can visit the island by taking one of the daily ferries that depart from Mytikas on Lefkada during high season. Visitors can also pitch tents at most of the island’s beaches, but this must be done with great respect for nature and the local environment. In the winter, you can also take a cruise to the remote islands of Aitoloakarnania and Mikronidri.
The smallest Ionian island of Kastos lies just south-east of Lefkada and is a true gem for those seeking peace and tranquility. This tiny island is home to less than 100 people and it is possible to get off the beaten path and enjoy one of the best kept secrets in Greece. The island is surrounded by some of the most beautiful, clean and limpid sea you’ll ever see. The beaches are dotted with paradisiacal bays and sandy-pebbly beaches, and the transparent, electric blue waters are irresistible to swimmers, snorkellers and sailors alike.
The only settlement on the island is around the port and consists of private houses, a few restaurants and tavernas, two coffee bars and a small shop for basic supplies. A holiday on the island is truly a unique experience as there are no hotels or big tourist resorts and it almost feels like you’re staying at your own private beach or village.
There are a few places to stay on the island that offer accommodation but it’s advisable to rent your own vehicle so you can explore more of the secluded beaches and tucked away coves. The roads are rocky and rough but the locals are very friendly and are happy to help with directions. There are also a couple of pickup trucks on the island that offer taxi services and can take you to more distant beaches.
One of the best things to do in Kastos is to go for a walk along the coastline and enjoy a swim at one of the many hidden coves or just relax on the sandy beach. You can also visit the ruins of an ancient palace and the church of Saint Nicholas. The museum in the centre of town is well worth a visit and it contains some wonderful paintings, frescos and mosaics.
The best time to visit Kastos is during the summer when the weather is warmer and there are more tavernas and cafes open. The harbour is a great place to grab a sunset cocktail and watch the boats come and go. A popular bar to head for is the El.a café, it’s opposite the harbour and the owner is a keen music fan so if you catch him on a quiet night be sure to ask him about his favourite tunes.
The most inhabited center of Kastos is Kalikerimi, a small village on the east coast where you can find many taverns and apartments that are rented out by local people. Throughout the island, there aren’t big structures like hotels but rather smaller taverns and apartments that offer a more intimate holiday experience.
There are plenty of things to do on Kastos Island, such as swimming in the clear waters and visiting the picturesque villages and beaches. You can also enjoy a delicious meal at one of the restaurants in town, or go for a drink at one of the bars. Another great thing about Kastos is that there aren’t any large crowds of tourists, and it’s the perfect place to relax!
One of the most famous beaches on Kastos is Fiki beach. The beach is a natural paradise with crystal-green water and light pebbles, which makes it ideal for all kinds of vacationers such as families, couples, solo travelers, etc.
In the summer, Kastos is a popular stop-off point for sailors navigating the Ionian Sea. This brings a bit of life to the tavernas in the village and adds to the atmosphere. A mini-market behind the main harbour stocks essentials but otherwise, you will need to provision before arriving. No shops accept credit or debit cards, so it’s best to come armed with cash.
Those looking for a more secluded getaway should consider renting a villa near the beach. This will give you easy access to the beach while still allowing you to escape from the noise and chaos of the city. There are a variety of villas to choose from, including luxury properties that feature private pools and hot tubs. Other features that you may want to look for include air conditioning and Wi-Fi, which can make your stay more comfortable. The villas in the area are highly rated, and many have received excellent reviews from previous guests. They also have plenty of amenities, so you can feel right at home. The most coveted locations are located close to the beach, and some have private parking.