Top beaches and things to do in Lefkada

Top beaches and things to do in Lefkada

Lefkada is a picturesque and very green Ionian island reachable by car as it is connected to the continental Greece.
Its most beautiful beaches are located on the west part of the island but most of them are rather hard to reach, as the roads are quite narrow and often climbing steep steps or hills is required to reach them. But it is worth the effort - you enjoy the 100 shades of blue of the seawater as well as the stunning views of the green mountain hills and cliffs. The east side beaches are much easier to get to and the water is very still, but the water color is not as turquoise blue as on the west side. Because of the still waters, thousands of yachts choose that part of the Island to stay overnight or during the winter. 
It is a beautiful view to watch the sunset over the Geni lagoon bay. Geni has a lot of nice taverns which locals visit by boat. You can easily park your boat in one of these restaurants and enjoy the magnificent view of the sun setting behind the hills and watch the last sun rays glowing over slow pendeling of the yacht's masts. 

Below is a list of the top attractions according to our experience, along with some tips for great stay in Lefkada. 

1. Kathisma Beach

Easy to reach large beach with a lot of paid umbrellas and also free areas. The public/ free parking is exactly next to the beach, but you need to get here early to use the free spaces. There are also paid parkings offering shower and toilets (5-6 EUR per day). There are a couple of cafes and taverns next to the beach so you do not need to worry about refreshments. The beach is covered with small white pebbles. Water is calm and bright blue. There are also a lot of activities on he beach -  such as paragliding. 
The beach is very family friendly. Overall large, great, easy-to-access beach. Thus, number one in our list. 

2. Kavalikefta Beach (and Megali Petra)

Located close to the Kathisma Beach, Kavalikefta or Kalamitsi Beach is very, very beautiful. Last part of the road is unpaved but even lower cars can (slowly) reach it.
The waves at Kalamitsi beach are stronger and the beach is significantly smaller than at Kathisma. Though it has some very beautiful rocks which are great for taking pictures! There are relatively few paid umbrellas, so you'd better take your own. The parking is paid (5 EUR in 2018 season). After parking the car, there are a few steps to go don in order to reach the beach.  There is one small coffee shop on the beach offering and drinks.Overall, the beach is very, very beautiful, but due to the many big rocks near the shore and the stronger waves, some might find it not so family- friendly.

Just a few minutes walk from there, however, you can find a real hidden gem - Megali Petra Beach. There are two ways to reach out to this beautiful sandy beach - either 5-7 minutes walk through the beach (and some easy to climb rocks) from Kavalikefta Beach, or via 15-20 min downhill walk after unpaved path. We strongly recommend the first option. Plus the parking of the Kavalikefta beach is much easier to reach. Waters are crystal clear, beach is sandy and not crowded. Only few (and expensive) paid umbrellas, so you must bring your own! There are no cafes here, so you need to take care of food and refreshments. In the high season there is a food delivery by a local man, but it takes a while and is not always available. 

3. Porto Katsiki

Nice beach, but always crowded and too hot in summer. To me it is overestimated in its glory. Indeed, the water is amazingly bright blue, but the narrow road, followed by the hundreds of steps to reach out to it, the pack of tourists and the lack of any shadow (except for few very expensive umbrellas - 20 EUR per day) make it less preferable. If you go there - make sure to bring your own umbrella and refreshments and be there either before 10 am or after 16 pm. 
The big benefit here is the nice view you have on top of the beach over the colorful waters. There is also a beach service that serves food and drinks from the small tavern located on the hills above the beach - unfortunately the waiting time for this service can be quite long.

Really crowded - even in September. 

4. Dessimi Beach

Not so famous calm nice family beach. Good taverns and shady cafes. Small pebbles. Calm crystal clear waters. Great for windsurfing. While there - take a peddle boat and visit the nearby caves. There are two ways to reach out to the beach. If you take the first exit, you will get to a paid parking. Use the second for free one.

5. Mikros Gialos 

This is a real hidden gem and a great place to stay. Your hotel may lay directly on the beach. Great food options as well. The beach consists of large white stones (seem artificially put there), but is really nice and relaxing!

Tip: The umbrellas in front of Marilion restaurant are paid (5 EUR), but they make you a discount for the same amount if you have a lunch at the restaurant. Just show them the receipt. And this is one of the best places to eat in Lefkada!
You can get a kayak and explore the bay.

Tip: for best food experience try Marilion (rather modern greek food - try the Moussaka and the squid) and Tavern O Molos (here take the fish options! They are very fresh and taste just amazing!)

Tip for a great stay: Ilianthos offers very nice and clean rooms and apartments and is just a few meters from the beach. Take a room on the ground floor and you will have a small garden with chairs and tables just for you!

6. Vasiliki 

Vasiliki is one of the larger towns in Lefkada with a lot of taverns and cafes. A lot of tourists. Beach is large and nice but not spectacular. It is popular place for windsurfing. It is worth visiting the town even if you do not go to the local beach. It has nice pedestrian streets and nice shopping options. It may get a bit too crowded during the high season.

If you want a nicer beach - take a boat from Vasiliki and visit Agiofili Beach. Boats leave every hour.

7. Sivota Bay

This small town has one of the longest promenades which make it a preferable place for a long walk near the still blue water. It is full of nice restaurants and bars. It has a very small beach which is a nice option for cooling off from the summer sun. Bring your own umbrella. 

8. Geni 

We stayed at an AirBnb house in Geni with a stunning view over the lagoon. I must say that it was one of the best views we have seen from our terrace. The water is mirror clear and still. There are hundreds of nice yachts in the bay. There are amazing water facing taverns with delicious fish specialties. Here is also the best (as per TripAdvisor) restaurant in entire Lefkada - Sea Side. The prices are rather high ($$$) for Lefkada, but the taste is really amazing (gourmet style eating) so it is definitely worth it! While there make sure to try the orzo pasta and the seafood linguine! 

9. Faneromeni Monastery

This is a small and peaceful monastery in the North part of the island. It is worth visiting because of the beautiful view over the sea. It also has a small zoo that kids just love. The great variety of colorful parrots was a nice surprise! 

10. Lefkada Town 

This is the biggest and busiest town of the island. Still, it has a nice pedestrian centre. We recommend walking down the peaceful small streets of the old town. A lunch or dinner at Dalton's Grill House is a nice finish of the day trip to Lefkada town. Try the pita gyros and the souvlaki there. The best ones in Lefkada island.

Tip: Avoid the beach in Agios Nikitas - it is nice, but way too crowded. Parking in Agios Nikitas is a nightmare and there are hundreds (if not thousands) of tourists there even in the low seasons. There are much nicer and not so crowded beaches in Lefkada, so it is not worth visiting.

If you got enough of Lefkada, why don't you explore the nearby Parga? See our advices for a nice stay in Parga region.


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