A stunning view, complete relaxation and very comfortable accommodation.
We stayed at Daphnae Ithaca Cottage in July as part of our two week holiday to Greece. We booked a standard package holiday from Thomas Cook for two weeks at The Pericles Hotel in Sami (Σάμη0), Kefalonia (Κεφαλληνία). This was the easiest way to get to Greece and allowed us a single night in Sami to arrange our ferry crossing to Ithaca the following morning.
Daphnae Ithaca Cottage is located on a hillside near to the village of Exoghi (ΕΞΩΓΉ) at the Northern top of Ithaca (Ιθάκη).
We found Daphnae Ithaca Cottage via some internet searching and contacted it’s owner Masos Deftereos (and his lovely wife Maria) with our enquiry for price and availability. We booked to stay 5 nights at Daphnae Ithaca Cottage and happily sent our payment to Masos via an international bank transfer. I was initially worried about sending money but I had no reason to, it arrived with Masos and as it turns out Massos is a very well known and highly respected member of the Ithaca community.
If you’ve been to Kefalonia or Ithaca you soon learn that the people who live there are so relaxed and trustworthy its a world away from how you can feel here in the UK.
Ferry crossing from Kefalonia to Ithaca
We boarded the large Ionian Pelagos ferry in Sami for the short crossing (about 30 minutes) headed for Piso Aetosm (Πισαητος), Ithaca and texted Masos to let him know we were on our way. There’s not much at Piso Aetosm so if you’re arriving as a foot passenger you’ll need to pick up one of the waiting taxi’s for your onward journey.
The drive to Exoghi from Piso Aetosm (30mins/20km) takes in some amazing scenery and passes though a couple of villages. You can see Exoghi, Ithaca as viewed from Kefalonia here. Highlights are the views while crossing the isthmus (the narrow bit of land between the North and South of Ithaca). Stunning views back across to Kefalonia and passing through the small village of Stavros (ΣΤΑΥΡΌΣ), which happens to be the home (Restaurant Grill Shop Ithaki) of the best moussaka we’ve ever had!
Shortly after leaving Stavros the road begins to climb and winds up into the hills, we followed this road and just after passing the first houses of Exoghi we found Masos waiting for us at the roadside (I think he was enjoying fruit from the surrounding trees whilst he waited for us). Masos could’t have greeted us with a warmer welcome, he even help carry our luggage which was completely unnecessary.
This is where you leave your car and continue on foot down the ancient pathway that leads to the cottage and the rest of Ithaca beyond. It’s not suited for wheeled cases or those unsteady on their feet but it’s by no means a mountain trek either.
By now we’d already noticed the breathtaking view… it still didn’t register that this was our view for the duration of our stay. Masos led us to the property gate (which needs to be kept shut, no not for security but to keep the goats out from eating the plants in the garden) and down the steps into our garden. I think this is the first time the view sunk in and what a view, I’m not going to describe it, just look at the photos. I struggled to get a turn in the hammock as Vicky liked it so much.
The cottage it’s self has two bedrooms a living room space with TV, a dining/kitchen area and a large toilet/shower room which also houses the washing machine. It’s equipped with everything you could need for your stay, which is lucky as the nearest shop is back down the road in Stavros.
The paths that pass the cottage are quiet, we didn’t see anyone pass by in the five days we were there. We walked the paths down to the sea and the fountain of Kalamos where it’s believed if you drink the waters you shall return to Ithaca again, we drank the waters. During our stay we also walked the road up through Exoghi village to the top of the mountain, which delivered spectacular views over Ithaca and Kefalonia. We watched the sunset from the summit before walking back down to our cosy cottage. Here’s my post about amateur radio from the summit of Exoghi (SV/IO-101).
If it’s a relaxing break you need then Daphnae Ithaca Cottage will definitely deliver. I look at the photos from our trip regularly and know that we will return to Ithaca in the future.
You can find further information about Daphnae Ithaca Cottage and contact details for Masos and Maria at: www.ithacagreece.com
You say Ithaki I say Ithaca, as with most translations there’s more than one way to spell it, I’m happy to take correction from any resident of Ithaki/Ithaca 🙂