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|The village of Kefalas in the Apokoronas in Crete|
The village of Kefalas is situated in the Apokoronas area, on the north side of Crete, west of Georgioupolis and east of Chania. The district is shaped like a "triangle" and set away from the highway. It's a green and quiet part compared to for instance The Akrotiri (which is the peninsula next to Chania), with less houses and a more traditional lifestyle. In the Apokoronas there are lots of olive groves, woodlands and farms, and a couple of great beaches like Almiryda, Kalives and the long stretched beach of Georgioupolis which is about 10 kilometer long.
Kefalas is an old village in the heart of the Apokoronas. It is over 800 years old and thought to have been founded around 1175 A.D. during the Greek Byzantine times under Emperor Michalis Komnenos. Inside it's boundaries there are a large amount of historic buildings from Venetian and other times, some beautifully restored, others in ruins. From 1669 until 1898 Kefalas was under Ottoman Turkish occupation. It's a large village, but it is quiet. There are squares, beautiful old trees, an old stone windmill, a couple of tavernas (one with Illy coffee!) and two supermarkets. The supermarkets are small, but with all the essentials - one of them sells bio-organic food and vegetables and the other is run by an English lady - we think - that gave us free lighters and a large bottle of local wine so we could "taste it" after we did our shopping.
The people in Kefalas are really friendly and say hello and wave as you walk through the streets. The whole village is pretty with old stone buildings and just a few tastefully done new ones. Supposedly there are some 30 churches in the village, most of which are from the time of the Turkish occupation, when land would not be confiscated by the Turkish rulers if there was a church on its grounds. I didn't count the ones that I have seen, and I haven't seen all of them, but it is definitely the village in Crete with the largest amount of churches that I have encountered.
|How to reach the village of Kefalas|
Kefalas can be reached easily. Best is to drive from the new national road into Georgioupolis, on the Rethimnon - Chania road, and turn left after about 25 meter just before the village square of Georgioupolis. After a few meters there is a turn on the right side where you can see the sign for the village of Vamos. If you follow this road and climb up the hill you will automatically run into the sign to Kefalas on the right after about 5-10 minutes. You can also enter the village from the other side - from Vamos for instance. There are several signs to the village and it is hard to miss them, because the village is clearly marked.
|Villa Sophia's House in Aspro near Almirida Beach (Apokoronas - Crete)|
This lovely intimate villa is situated on a hill near the seaside resort of Almirida. We stayed here in September 2008 and we absolutely loved it. It was cosy and comfortable and the views from the terraces and the pool were fantastic. The villa had everything you could wish for: amazing views from the terraces and the pool, a beautiful bathroom, a living space with comfortable couches, a dining table and chairs and three bedrooms with extra large extra comfortable beds with loads of pillows. The beds were over two meters long because I could fit in without any problems and without my feet sticking out (yes people, I am a tall, tall guy). I loved this place because it felt so homely and everybody was feeling so happy in it. It makes you want to buy your own villa on the island.
|Villa Giorgos in Gavalochori - A house with 3 bedrooms in a pine tree forest|
Villa Giorgos is set in a very secluded spot in the middle of a pine tree forest. The villa is situated on the outskirts of Gavalochori and close to the coastal resort of Almyrida. In both villages you can find good taverns, super markets and a bakery. Especially the pastries of the bakery in Almyrida are worth a detour! Villa Giorgos is situated on a hill at the end of short dirt track. The villa has several verandas with a splendid view of the forest that surrounds it and there are distant views of the sea in front of Almyrida (Souda Bay). It's very, very quiet. Behind the villa is the private pool with the sunbeds and the parasols, chairs and tables, a swing and a barbecue. The pool is surrounded by a low wall and pine trees and is not overlooked, so we skinny dipped.
|Villa Filitsa in the Apokoronas - Kefalas|
Villa Filitsa is a beautiful old historic stone house that is situated in Kefalas in the Apokoronas district, close to Georgioupolis and Vamos. The villa is open all year round! The oldest part of the house dates from the Venetian times and other parts have been added to the house through history. It has been carefully and beautifully restored by Canea Properties and the house is a historic monument. It was once used by the Turkish general commander of Crete. There is a private pool with the property. The villa sleeps 10 people in two bedrooms, two lofts and one separate apartment.
|Villa Renata in Megala Chorafia: deceptively large and luxurious. The perfect get away.|
Pictures do not do this villa justice: you have to see it and experience it. One of my favourites ever. It is an absolute gem and also the perfect get away from it all. The people that own it have turned it into something very special. We visited this beautiful villa in the Apokoronas in October 2008. It is deceptively large: I estimate it is about 175 m2. Downstairs there are three bedrooms (2 doubles and one twin). The double rooms each have their own balcony and the twin room has a door leading to the patio in front of the pool. The last room has a private bathroom with a shower and toilet and there is also a small study incorporated. All the bedrooms have a tv and there is air conditioning. On the ground floor is also one of the most tasteful bathrooms that you have ever seen, with a big bath, double wash basins, a toilet and a washing machine.
|Villa Amalia in Megala Chorafia - Luxureous large villa with a big swimming pool|
This beautiful large villa with private pool of 50 m2 is situated on a hill next to the village of Megala Chorafia (near Chania - which is 13 kilometers away - and Kalives, in the north of the island of Crete). It is one of the nicest places we ever stayed. The villa is easy to reach. If you come from the direction of Chania and drive towards the east you will pass the village Megala Chorafia. Just after the exit to the village you can clearly see the sign that says "Villa Amalia next exit 100 m" and here you drive over a narrow but good road into the hills. You can not miss it and you will automatically end up at the villa. Here is a separate parking area where you can put the car.