green hills and pebbly beaches

Aerial view of Gidaki beach


Ithaca (also Ithaka and Ithaki) is a small island between Kefalonia and mainland Greece. It is known from mythology as the home place of Odysseus and the place where his wife Penelope waited for his return.

Ithaca is a place for people who can estimate the tranquility of the small villages, the beauty of nature and the crystal clear waters of the pebbled beaches.

Hotels in Ithaca

General information about Ithaca

Houses of Vathi

Ithaca`s north and south part are connected by a narrow strip of land (less than 500 meters wide) which almost divides the island into two. The landscape is rather hilly, with greenery which slopes down to the sea shore. The north half has more settlements but the island`s capital, Vathy, is in the south, located in a deep and very indented gulf.

The population of Ithaca is less than 3000 inhabitants and there are just a few villages but on the island you can find almost everything for a peaceful holiday - hotels and villas, restaurants, bakeries, pharmacy and a health center.

Where to stay in Ithaca?

Kioni village and harbor

Vathy is the largest village of the island, followed by Kioni. Both are located by the sea, with seafronts, restaurants and yacht marinas, and many of the hotels and guesthouses are located in or around these two places. If you stay in Vathy, you will be close to most of the best known beaches of Ithaca.

Accommodation is also available in the inner part of the island, mostly around the villages of Stavros, Perachori and Exogi. In Ithaca everything is close to the sea but despite this having a car is recommended.

Which are the best beaches of Ithaca?

Panorama of Filiatro beach

The lack of sandy beaches is one of the reasons this island to be a bit neglected by mass tourists but makes it a perfect place for people seeking a calmer destination in July and August. Many of the beaches in Ithaca have no amenities, although in the last five years sunbeds and parasols appeared at the most popular ones.

The beaches in Ithaca are generally small, located in coves with vivid blue or green water. Among the best are Filiatro, Sarakiniko, Kaminia, Karvoulia and Polis. The beaches of Gidaki, Afales and Platia Ammos are known as the most exotic beaches of Ithaca but they are accessible via boat (Gidaki on foot as well).

As we said, the island has only pebbly beaches but the beach of Loutsa in the gulf of Vathy is an exclusion and there you can find a strip of soft sand. Platia Ammos has a mixture of coarse sand and pebbles and it is sometimes considered sandy as well.

What to do in Ithaca?

Bay of Sarakiniko

The list of sights and interesting things to in Ithaca includes:

- Walk in Vathy and Kioni
- Moni Katharon, a well maintained monastery with magnificent view toward Vathy
- Boat trip to the beaches of Afales, Platia Ammos and/or Gidaki
- The church of Agios Andreas at Polis beach
- The archeological collection of Stavros
- The monolith of Araklis near Anogi
- The palace of Odysseus, Mycenaean ruins near Exogi

How to get to Ithaca?

The village of Frikes

Ithaca has no airport. It is connected via ferries to the port of Astakos and Patra on mainland Greece, as well as to the islands of Kefalonia and Lefkada.

Тhere are two ports - the main port Piso Aetos (or Pisaetos) in the south, and the smaller Frikes in the north:

- The port of Frikes connects Ithaca with the ports of Fiskardo (Kefalonia) and Vassiliki (Lefkada).
- The port of Pisaetos connects Ithaca with Sami (Kefalonia) and Poros (Kefalonia)

There is a also a ferry from Ithaca to Patra (Peloponnese) via Kefalonia.

Destinations in Ithaca

Ithaca photo galleryx