Windsurf wonders of Vassiliki
Photo: Fredrik Jeppsson
There is nothing quite like skimming over the waves on a Greek island holidays with the wind in your hair.
For keen windsurfers there is nothing like the special microclimate to be found in the Lefkas south coast beach resort of Vassilikos, also called Vassiliki.
The impressive bay has achieved a world class reputation among windsurfers and is now considered to be one of Europe's best windsurfing destinations.
A combination of the shallow, sheltered water and strong afternoon breezes have created an ideal climate for windsurfers who flock here in their thousands.
Vassiliki, one of the big three tourist resorts outside the island capital of Lefkas Town and the biggest village in south Lefkas, although it has a permanent population of only about 400.
The resort at Vassiliki has a decent harbour and there are Greek island hopping ferries to Kefalonia and Ithaka as well as numerous day trip boats offering tours of the impressive white limestone cliffs of the west coast of Lefkas.
For much of the holiday season Vassiliki is a just a quiet family beach resort but in high summer, and especially in August, it turns into a paradise spot for windsurfers.
Shallow waters reach far out into the sheltered bay to create great conditions for surfers but it is the afternoon wind, dubbed by the windsurfers as 'Eric', which makes the real difference.
While a gentle morning gusts makes for ideal conditions for learning and training, the strong aftern0on breezes bring out the experts — sometimes more than a hundred windsurfers and kite boarders on the water and a spectacular sight.
Vassiliki beach is mainly pebble with some shingle and just a little sand. nevertheless the shore is packed with windsurfing, kitesurfing and sailing clubs.
Sailboats and catamarans are also available for hire and Vassiliki bay is also considered one of the best places in Greece to learn how to sail.
Although windsurfing and boat sailing are the main occupation in Vassiliki there are many other beach holiday attractions to be found here.
The village has several tavernas, bars, cafes and a few chops. Tavernas are clustered around the harbour which is a popular mooring for visiting yacht flotillas.
A campsite offers cheap accommodation for young windsurfers but many Vassiliki hotels also offer special facilities for those who want to store sails, surfboards and wetsuits.
The extensive flat plain behind the resort offers many trails for walking or for exploring by mountain bike with picturesque villages such as Marantohori located in the flat wetlands.