The Ionian Islands, an archipelago off the western coast of Greece, are renowned for their lush landscapes, crystalline waters, and vibrant culture.

Comprising a total of twelve main islands and numerous smaller islets, this enchanting region beckons travelers to explore its emerald gems, from the verdant hills of Corfu to the breathtaking beaches of Zakynthos.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll embark on a journey through the Ionian Islands, unveiling their beauty, history, and unique character, while providing invaluable tips for planning your perfect Ionian Islands holiday.

Corfu: Jewel of the Ionian Sea

Corfu, the northernmost of the Ionian Islands, captivates visitors with its Venetian architecture, verdant landscapes, and rich history.

  • Explore the UNESCO-listed Old Town of Corfu, where narrow cobblestone streets lead to charming squares, elegant mansions, and historic fortresses.
  • Discover the island’s natural beauty with a hike through the lush Corfu Trail, which unfolds through olive groves, cypress forests, and picturesque villages.
  • Relax on the island’s stunning beaches, including Paleokastritsa, Glyfada, and Canal d’Amour, where crystal-clear waters lap against golden sands.

ionian islands itinerary

Kefalonia: Nature’s Masterpiece

Kefalonia, the largest of the Ionian Islands, enchants visitors with its rugged coastline, azure bays, and dramatic landscapes.

  • Visit the underground marvel of Melissani Cave, where an underground lake shimmers in the sunlight, creating a magical atmosphere.
  • Explore the picturesque fishing villages of Assos and Fiscardo, where pastel-colored houses line the waterfront and traditional tavernas serve fresh seafood.
  • Relax on the idyllic beaches of Myrtos and Antisamos, framed by towering cliffs and lapped by crystalline waters.

ionian islands holidays

Zakynthos: Paradise Found

Zakynthos, also known as Zante, beckons travelers with its stunning beaches, rugged coastline, and vibrant nightlife.

  • Sail to the iconic Shipwreck Beach, where a rusting shipwreck lies stranded on a crescent-shaped bay framed by sheer limestone cliffs.
  • Discover the island’s rich marine life with a boat tour to the Blue Caves, where sunlight illuminates the underwater caverns, creating a mesmerizing azure glow.
  • Experience Zakynthos’ lively atmosphere with a visit to Laganas, the island’s party capital, where beachfront bars and clubs pulse with music and energy.

ionian islands itinerary and zakynthos shipwreck beach

Lefkada: The Caribbean of Greece

Lefkada, connected to the mainland by a causeway, charms visitors with its turquoise waters, white-sand beaches, and verdant hillsides.

  • Relax on the stunning beaches of Porto Katsiki, Egremni, and Kathisma, where crystalline waters meet golden sands against a backdrop of dramatic cliffs.
  • Explore the island’s interior with a drive through the picturesque villages of Vasiliki, Agios Nikitas, and Karya, where traditional architecture and warm hospitality await.
  • Experience the thrill of windsurfing and kiteboarding at Vassiliki Bay, renowned for its consistent winds and ideal conditions for water sports.

ionian islands itinerary and lefkada tour

Paxos and Antipaxos: Hidden Gems of the Ionian

Paxos and Antipaxos, two small islands south of Corfu, offer a tranquil escape from the hustle and bustle of the mainland.

  • Explore the pristine beaches and secluded coves of Paxos, accessible only by boat, where turquoise waters lap against rocky shores and lush olive groves.
  • Discover the breathtaking underwater world of Antipaxos, where colorful coral reefs and vibrant marine life await, with a snorkeling or scuba diving excursion.
  • Unwind in the charming villages of Gaios, Loggos, and Lakka on Paxos, where traditional tavernas serve delicious seafood and local delicacies.

ionian islands holidays -ithaca tour

Ithaca: Homeric Legends and Natural Beauty

Ithaca, the legendary home of Odysseus, captivates visitors with its rugged landscapes, hidden coves, and timeless allure.

  • Explore the ancient ruins of Odysseus’s Palace and the Cave of Nymphs, where according to legend, the nymphs once resided.
  • Hike through the island’s verdant hills and olive groves, following scenic trails that lead to breathtaking viewpoints and secluded beaches.
  • Discover the charming villages of Vathy, Kioni, and Frikes, where traditional stone houses, waterfront tavernas, and warm hospitality await.

ionian islands itinerary -ithaca tour

Planning Your Ionian Islands Holiday

When planning your Ionian Islands holiday, consider the following tips to make the most of your trip:

  • Take advantage of island-hopping ferry services to explore multiple islands during your visit, allowing you to experience the diverse beauty and unique character of each destination.
  • Rent a car or scooter to explore the islands at your own pace, giving you the freedom to discover hidden gems off the beaten path and immerse yourself in the local culture.
  • Sample the delicious cuisine of the Ionian Islands, which combines fresh seafood, locally grown produce, and traditional Greek flavors, with specialties such as moussaka, souvlaki, and tzatziki.
  • Don’t miss the opportunity to witness the stunning sunsets for which the Ionian Islands are famous, whether from a seaside taverna, cliffside viewpoint, or boat excursion.

At Be A Greek, we help you create your dream vacation in Greece without any hustle. There are countless ways to plan your vacation in Greece and we are here to provide you with some of the best Greece vacation packages, tailored to your own needs and keeping up with your own pace.