Kefalonia Island (aka Cephalonia) is the largest in Greece's Ionian Islands (region). By land area (approx 773 km2 / 298 ml) the island is ranked Greece's 6th largest (after Crete, Evoia, Lesbos, Rhodes, Chios). Kefalonia is also a municipality and a separate unit of Ionian Islands. Its main town (Argostoli) has population around 11,000 (island's total population is around 36,000).
Regularly scheduled ferries connect Kefalonia (via Port Sami) with Bari Italy (Ventouris Ferries / 1 weekly crossing, travel time 17 hours), Brindisi Italy (Red Star Ferries / 1 weekly crossing, time 14 hours), Zakynthos Island (Ionian Group / 4 weekly crossings, time 4,5 hours), Ithaca Island (Kefalonian Lines / 7 weekly crossings, time 0,5 hours) and Patras (Kefalonian Lines / 7 weekly crossings, time 3 hours)
During Middle Ages, the island was ruled by Byzantine Empire (330-1453 AD), after 1185 by Kingdom of Sicily (1130-1816) and after 1479 by Ottoman Empire (1299-1919). However, the Turkish rule ended in 1500, when during the Second Ottoman-Venetian War (1499-1503) Cephalonia was captured by a Spanish-Venetian army. In 1797, the Venetian Republic (697-1797) awarded all Ionian Islands to France after the French captured Venice.
Kefalonia Island cruise terminal
Most cruise ships to Cephalonia Island dock (anchor) at Argostoli - port town on the western coast. Smaller ships may alternatively stop at Fiskardo - port town located on the island's northern tip. Most ferries (from mainland Greece) to Cephalonia Island dock at Sami - port town on the eastern coast.
In the period 2007-2010, at Argostoli was built a new pier consisting of 3 islets. They are based on a total of 132 concrete piles, each with length 32,5 m and width 1,2 m. These piles are the foundation of a reinforced concrete-made superstructure. The islets are connected with the shore via a corridor (length 171,50 m, width 8 m) and provide access to the docked cruise ships.
All necessary cruise terminal facilities are built on these islets. Among those is the terminal building and an open-air theater - both located ashore - right before the access corridor's entrance. The cruise port development project also included landscaping and electrification of the surrounding area.
The new pier has only one berth. When the berth is occupied (usually by the larger vessel), the other ship is anchored in the bay and its passengers are transported to the old harbour via the ship's tender boats.
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