The Ionian Islands , lie off the shores of western Greece , many of the islands are very popular with many tourist visiting them. However, it is still possible to find an oasis where one can relax.
“Zakinthos and Kefalonia, Kerkyra and Lefkada – these four islands are the jewels of Greece” said an old song. These lines are not very far from the truth, as the Ionian islands are truly jewels.
In the Ionian Sea lie the Eptanisa (“Seven-islands”) which form a cluster of islands on the western side of the country. They are seven in number, something which we easily learn just from their name. The Eptanisa are made up of Zakinthos, Kefalonia, Kerkyra, Lefkada, Paxi, Kythera and Ithaki. In the Ionian Sea apart from these islands, there are also some smaller ones, like Othoni, Strofades, Antipaxoi, Antikythera, Kalamos, Meganisi, Kastos and Erikousa.Taken as a whole they are seen as green paradises, possessing some of the most beautiful beaches in the country. The precipitous rocks with their view of the unending blue and the magical sandy beaches which are concealed between cliffs are some of the beautiful things which you will find in the Eptanisa.
The colour and scent of the Eptanisa is unlike that of the Cyclades, and also of the other Greek islands. The Ionian Islands have shades and tone of Western origin, as they preserve distinct elements from the Venetian Domination and the passage of the conquerors from the West, which tarnished the culture of the islands during the passing of the centuries.
No one visits the Eptanisa just to have a wild time, as commonly happens in the Cyclades. A person goes to discover the places which inspired Dionysios Solomos and Grigorios Xenopoulos, to see the Ithaka of Odysseus and the Kerkyra of the Phaiacians; at the same time, walking among the arches and the alleys, to feel himself a part of the art and the culture of the Renaissance, but also to find himself close to the road to his own Ithaka.
There are many reasons why you should visit an Ionian island: the cosmopolitan atmosphere, some of the best beaches in Greece, the complete development of modern tourism are only some of the things which you will find there. You will realise what the best things are and you will enjoy them and certainly you will become one of the worshippers of the Eptanisa.