Lefkada. The “ landlubber“ island. Being an easily accessible, hostile and vivid island, Lefkada is the key to the best vacation. The Ionian Sea is looking forward to embracing your experiences formed by you diving in its marvelous, azure waters.
Kathisma, Egremni, Porto, Katsiki; these are the most beautiful beaches of the Mediterranean Sea, which get awarded with Blue Flag and international honors. They will captivate your hearts.
However, the island that allures with its beaches has some further key strengths to present. Because Lefkada is also its own Land. It is a fertile and verdant island, with impressive sceneries in its hinterland, traditional villages, a charming capital, archaeological sites, and museums! It is also gifted with a fascinating local cuisine and winey delights made from its unique traditional grape varieties.
Your wandering among the flavors and aromas of the Land of Lefkada makes its first stop at the cultivation of Lentil! Yes indeed, Leukada is popular for its lentils! Let’s be honest, who hasn’t heard of the "Lentils of Eglouvis", whose production finds its roots in the mists of time and which keeps being cultivated through the simple, traditional way and whose sowing and collecting are conducted according to the tradition, by hand.
The "Lentils of Eglouvi" have been awarded for their exceptional flavor and their qualities and you can not only learn more about them, but also taste them at Eglouvi in August, where the Festive of Lentil is taking place, and where the producers and the residents of the plateau offer at no cost, their valuable treasure, accompanied with fish and music.
The Wines of Lefkada, add up to our aromatic wandering. Dating back to antiquity, the viticulture has been one of the most beloved and profitable agricultural activity, mainly at the mountainous part of the island. Many ancient writers, such as Pliny the Elder (23-79 AC), and Athenaeus (160-250 AC) at his work “Deipnosophist”, refer to the wine of Lefkada.
The local varieties "Vardeas" and "Verjami" are being cultivated only in Lefkada. The white "Vardea" is being cultivated at the southern part of Lefkada, at the villages of Saint Petros, Syrvos, Vasiliki & Kondarena. The Verjami variety, also called barzamino, ( which is said that the Venetians brought along with them in 1684), is being cultivated at the Municipality of Sfakioton, Karias, Apollonion and Ellomenou at an altitude of 200 m. to 700 m. and it is considered to be one of the best varieties that Greece produces. Another variety of the wine of Lefkada is the "lagero", which is a soft and light wine.
The open-to-the-public wineries of the island, where you can learn every single thing about the wine of Lefkada and its varieties are:
- The factory of the local, organic wine of Lefkada “Siflogo” at the village of Platistomo. You can visit it after conducting a telephone consultation.
- The winery “Lefkaditiki Gi”, which is located a couple of meters before the intersection of Sivota. It offers a guided tour through which the visitor comes face to face with every part of the production process of winemaking and it also provides a small museum dedicated to the olive tree and a small garden filled with herbs.
- The winery “Playes Lefkadas” at the village of Saint Ilias
- The winery “Vertzamo” at the village of Ligia
- Το οινοποιείο “Καρσάνικο” at Pano Gitonia, at the village of Karia. It is open to the public and accommodates old exhibits of winemaking and tsipouro production, as well as a small hall which represents the main room of a traditional house in Lefkada. The tour can take place upon request.
And of course, good wine must be accompanied by a nice side-dish or "meze"! And what better food thatn the Salami of Lefkada, which is produced since the age of the Venetian dominion! A traditional globally known and acknowledged product. It's a true delicacy produced by the finest of materials in its numerous production steps and is accompanied perfectly with cheese and tomato.
Besides all that of course olive oil could not be not-mentioned as the most emblematic product in the whole Greek region and of course Lefkada, too.
A lot of findings at the village( such as oil-presses, beetles of oil and olive pips) reveal that olive has been cultivated in Lefkada since the ancient years. Nowadays, olive-growing and viticulture have been the main economic force of the island.
Lefkada accommodates the Museum of Olive “Fabrica” at Sivro. . It’s housed in an old oil mill, which was built in 1800 and has functioned ceaselessly until 1978. That space, which has been declared as a historical preserved monument and has been remodeled, offers to the visitors the ability to approach culturally, the valuable product of olive and get familiar with the old, traditional techniques.
Talking about flavors and aromas, our mind instantly wanders to the Honey of Lefkada from Athani, which in combination with Dragano, compile the main bee places of Lefkada. The honey that has been produced on the island contains thyme. In order for you to taste its flavor and aroma, you can visit the Honey Festive at Dragano. A wide range of bee products is offered to the visitors by local producers, such as honeycomb, and delights of Lefkada, made from honey such as oil-pies, brittles, etc. It truly is a fascinating experience, that brings you close to the land of Lefkada and it is always followed by a traditional revelry.
If you believe that there isn’t more to Lefkada’s tasteful delights, then you probably haven’t tried Ladopita (oil-pie). Ladopita is an exceptional traditional product of Lefkada. It is a dessert favorable not only to the locals but also to the visitors who are lucky enough to give it a try. It is easily prepared with oil, flor, sugar, honey, sesame, and of course, peeled almonds. The locals sprinkle it with cinnamon, carnation, and syrup. It is offered at wedding ceremonies, engagement ceremonies, and christenings, but it is also suitable for fasting periods.
And if you want to accompany all these delights with a traditional sweet drink, then inevitably, you will get to try the "Lefkaditiki Soumada". A must taste product "soumada" or "somada" as the locals call it, is a refreshing syrup, made from bitter almonds which give away their unique aroma. Once the bitter almonds get diluted through water, they turn into a total white and aromatic drink.
It is said to be the drink of joy. In the past, "soumada" used to be essential for both wedding and engagement ceremonies, and for any kind of joyful occasions, so it has always been followed by the “in your soumades, too” wish, meaning “wishing joy to you, too”.
So, I’m wishing you joy!