On the Other Side of the Island: 7 Things to Do in Kefalos
At the southwest side of the island of Kos, you will find Kefalos, one of the main settlements on the isle. It is located on the Kefalos peninsula, a lovely haven, with striking natural landmarks, like the Aspri Petra, the famous White Stone Cave, which stretches for 2 km until it disappears into the crystal waters of the bay of Kefalos.
1: Aspri Petra
The Aspri Petra is one of the main 10 things to see and do when you visit Kefalos. Take a day trip here to enjoy other landmarks, and hopefully, our guide will help you put together a memorable itinerary. Kefalos was once the capital of the island – in times when it was known as Astypalaia – and the site was inhabited since the Neolithic Age as archeological finds at Aspri Petra have shown.
2. Village of Kefalos
Today, the area known as Kefalos is divided in two: the village at the top of the hill and the waterfront named Kamari at the Bay of Kamari where you can find the beach resorts of Kamari, Kampos, and Onia. The village itself is worthy of attention for typical island architecture with narrow streets and stone houses crammed together. Spend some time strolling around to discover authentic architectural features, typical cafes, and to enjoy the warm hospitality of the locals.
3. Seaside Resort Kamari
The seaside resort Kamari is where you will find the most restaurants, traditional and modern cafes, nightclubs and numerous shops. This is the “active” side of Kefalos, and it’s certainly worth of a visit if you like a more touristy ambiance. Most of the buildings in this area are modern, erected in recent years.
4. Kastri Islet with the chapel of St. Nicholas
The Kastri Islet is one of the most photographed landmarks from Kos. It is a tiny stretch of rocky land but a fantastic setting for wedding photography. The small chapel of Agios Nikolaos on the islet is also favored as a venue of marriage for small parties who arrive here usually by boat from the harbor in Kefalos, which is another must-see attraction here. One of the best vantage points to take a snapshot of the Kastri is through the ruins of the ancient Agios Stefanos basilicas or from the Agios Stefanos Beach nearby.
5. Ruins of ancient Agios Stefanos
The ruins are the archeological site next to the Agios Stefanos Beach, in fact, two basilicas rebuilt between 469 and 554 AC and between the two big earthquakes that took place on the island. Besides the Basilicas of Agios Stefanos, on the north sides of Mount Zini, you will find the old Christian Basilica of Kamari.
6. Ancient site of Palatia
The ancient site of Palatia, or the ancient theater of Kefalos, is one of the region’s Hellenistic landmarks. It enjoys a secluded location in an area surrounded by greenery, just before the crossroad for Aghios Theologos. There’s a parking lot nearby where you can leave your car and then walk to the monument that dates from 366 B.C. when Kefalos used to be the capital of the island.
7. The Monastery of St. John Thymianos
The Monastery of St. John Thymianos is on the south side of the mount Láthra, opposite mount Thymianós. The area is great for hikes, as it offers stunning sea views. The monastery complex is dominated by whitewashed buildings with bright blue (almost turquoise) roofs and highlights. You will also admire beautiful cobblestone Greek folk art on the premise of the complex. The side is mostly famous for its abandoned ruins, and for its plane tree that is more than 400 years old. You can see some gorgeous pictures of the place here.