Dream Destination: Lefkada, Greece

I wouldn’t normally share what was essentially a quiet family beach holiday that we took recently, but given the recent controversy surrounding Greece I thought I would share and try to encourage more of you to travel there if you were reconsidering. Pete and I have travelled extensively round Greece as students and since, so it holds a special place in our hearts and we were really excited to go back with Bea.

We went to Lefkada, essentially one of the Ionian islands (just above the better known Kefalonia,) but actually only separated from mainland Greece by a small body of water. You fly into Preveza airport and drive to the island – over a causeway. It took about 45 minutes to get to Agios Nikitas from the airport.

We had actually been to Agios Nikitas several years earlier but I didn’t remember much of it as we went early in the season and the weather was shocking. What we did remember was a quiet small village with a single restaurant and shop lined street leading to the sheltered beach. It’s a perfect family resort, with very few English people (we only heard/saw one couple all week,) with a couple of bars and no clubs so mainly couples and young families.

The beach is gorgeous and was perfect for us because it started getting shaded at one end from about 2pm which meant we could sit with Bea, without worrying about keeping her from roaming out from under a brolly and she could swim in the sea in shade too. It’s a pebble beach, which we had varying degrees of success at preventing Bea from eating!

For true sun worshippers, over the headland is Milos beach which would start the day in shade but faced west so kept the sun until it set. We got the water taxi around the headland once but we also trekked up for the view one night after dinner too. It’s a serious hike in the heat but doesn’t actually take that long. Maybe 10 minutes up and the same down.

Our days were lazy, starting with breakfast on the balcony, then a swim with Bea in the pool before nap time. We often spread a towel out by the pool as a play mat and headed down to the beach for lunch or afterwards once the shade started to arrive.

We took toys to the beach, tried to get another nap out of Bea and took her swimming in the sea – she loves swimming! We took snacks too and around 6 would head up to one of the beachfront bars for a drink before dinner. Each night we ate on the way back to the villa then headed up for bedtime and a drink if we weren’t too exhausted ourselves!

As for the financial crisis, we were there just as the banks closed and everybody was tut-tutting when we announced we were going to Greece (we had pre-booked, but somehow blissfully unaware a couple of weeks prior.) We compensated by taking a LOT of cash – we brought home half of what we took and paid for the car and hotel for the last night online before we went. We didn’t really hear mention of it or see any difference at all. It’s not an expensive village and we weren’t doing much so it was cheap but the hotel we stayed at on the last night was cheap to eat in too – the evening buffet for example was 15 euros each.

We loved it so much as a family holiday we are thinking of making it a regular trip for (early or late) summer sun. I do hope you haven’t been put off Greece – they certainly need our tourism right now and I imagine much of the islands are unchanged by the situation – in terms of what a holiday maker would experience at least. We had the most amazing week! 🙂


Where we stayed: Villa Dioni & Ionan Blue
Travelling with a baby – gadgets and kit we took with us that made the trip easier

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15 thoughts on “Dream Destination: Lefkada, Greece

  1. This sounds wonderful! We, too, are very familiar with Greece and it’s the country I’ve been looking forward to taking my son to since before he was born. We’re off to Crete in two weeks. The financial crisis didn’t affect my decision to book at all, but it’s easy to ignore the media hype when you know a place. If I’d never been to Greece before I might have been unsure. That’s why your post is so important. The Greek islands are so welcoming to families! Perfect holidays await!

  2. This looks GREAT. I read a really interesting article in the Guardian about going on holiday to Greece and the benefits that tourism brings (http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/jul/07/help-greece-go-on-holiday-cheap-beautiful) so when we looked to book our late summer holiday, I looked in Greece. Unfortunately, I couldn’t really find anything suitable….I should have spoken to you!

    Definitely keeping this one in the saved folder and might look at it for next year. Its so much better to stay somewhere recommended than a random book via Thomas Cook!

    We eventually booked Portugal so I’ll let you know how it goes.

  3. What lovely holiday photos! This looks like a great place to visit with a child. I’m pregnant at the moment so I’ve enjoyed reading your various posts about holidays with a baby & toddler – it gives me hope for the future 😉

  4. Looks beautiful! I think we’re going to Greece late september. Haven’t booked yet but hopefully will in the next week. Cannot wait!

    Rachie xo

  5. These holiday photos are just lovely! I love the one of Bea in the sea waving and on the speedboat 😀

    I am however now lusting after some sunshine and a beach! I like the reasons behind why you wrote this post, holidaying in Greece helps support their economy so it great that people continue to choose it as a holiday destination x

  6. This looks idyllic. I want to be there now. We have stayed on Meganissi a couple of times, it’s the next island to the south east of Lefkada and you get to it via a ferry from Nydri of Lefkada’s east coast.

    It only consists of 3 villages, with many more beautiful beaches so that you end up having them to yourself! It’s so beautiful and relaxing, I have dreams of spending an entire summer there.

    We last went 3 years ago when Greece was also at risk of being outed from the Eurozone. Everyone was just so pleased to have tourists and were extra welcoming as a result.

    Maybe time to go back next year… 🙂 xx

    • I’ve spent many summer holidays on Meganisi, starting when I was 17! Now I go there with my husband and kids. Gorgeous place and has barely changed in all these years. Lefkada is beautiful too, looks like you had an idyllic family holiday, Rebecca.

      • Alice, It feels like a hidden treasure doesn’t it? I really want to take my daughter, I think it would be great for kids.

  7. We’ve holidayed in Greece lots of times and it has always been brilliant. .
    The current economic situation definitely wouldn’t put me off going again, the only thing the Greeks have going for them at the moment is tourism. It would be such a shame if people stopped going because of this, not just because Greece is beautiful but the Greek people are lovely too. Your holiday looks lovely Rebecca, it’s not a part we’ve been to, but it’s now firmly on the list! 🙂 x

  8. We had our first family holiday this summer and went to Greece for the first time. Like many Brits, we went to kefalonia and had a wonderful 10 days. It’s a perfect holiday destination for families and the people couldn’t have given us a warmer welcome. We’re in France visiting family now and it couldn’t be more different…! I can’t wait to explore more of Greece. And the financial situation certainly won’t put me off!

  9. I was so glad to read this. We’re off to Greece soon and although my husband has been before, this is the first time for me and the children. We’ve kept our eye on the news and don’t see any reason why we shouldn’t go. In fact, we’re looking forward to it. However, that’s not the case everywhere. When I was buying my sunglasses, the shop assistant asked me where we were going. After I told her, she went to great lengths to tell me how bad a holiday destination it was, ‘because of the Euro’. Unbelievable!!

    Oh well, maybe I’ll send her a postcard!

    Michelle x

  10. We’ve just come back from a blissful 10 nights at the Royal Marmin boutique hotel in Elounda Crete. Such a beautiful part of the world (just by Spinalonga Islet if you’ve read the book The Island) The place was stunning, the people were genuinely friendly, the water crystal clear and the food delicious. We are considering returning next year, I’m not normally a return to the safe place person as I think there’s a big wide world out there to explore, but it was so nice why not. I’d recommend it to anyone who asked.

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