How To Get From Athens to Kefalonia

Updated On:

Written By: Pavlos Inglesis

athens to kefalonia
Kefalonia is not very well connected to Athens and the best way to get there is to fly directly

You basically have two ways to get from Athens to Kefalonia: drive to Kyllini (or take the KTEL Intercity bus from Athens) and then take the ferry or just fly directly. It’s usually best to fly, but I am explaining everything below.

Honestly, I believe that the Best Way to get from Athens to Kefalonia is by taking the 1-hour direct flight and avoiding buses and ferries overall.

Alternatively, if you are just flying from anywhere within Europe to Greece, chances are there might be a direct flight from a European city to Kefalonia as there are a lot of direct international flights to Kefalonia from all over Europe every year. This applies basically to every Ionian island, like Corfu and Zakynthos.

A direct flight from a European city (other than Athens) is usually a much better option than flying to Athens first and then trying to get the bus/ferry to Kefalonia, so I highly recommend you check that first (unless you really want to spend a few days in Athens obviously).

So, if you really have to go through Athens then here are the 2 options you have:

How Long It TakesCost*
Bus to Kyllini & Ferry
(bus/drive to Kyllini port and then ferry)
7.5 hours
(it’s only 3 hours drive to Kyllini port but the KTEL bus makes it in 6 hours & the ferry from Kyllini is 1.5 hours)
27 euros bus to Kefalonia (ferry price is NOT included, and it costs 13 euros additionally)
Flight
(from Athens Intl. Airport)
1 hour100 to 250 euros
*Obviously the cost fluctuates a lot and may differ; always check Ferryhopper for ferry costs and Expedia for flights

kefalonia poros port
Poros port in Kefalonia is pretty small but it’s where the ferries from Kyllini town will drop you

There are no direct ferries from Athens to Kefalonia so you have to reach the town of Kyllini and then take the 1.5-hour ferry to get to Kefalonia. But I think that this is too much hassle if you only have a few days on the island of Kefalonia so I highly suggest you just take the direct flight from Athens International Airport to Kefalonia. However, if you do decide to get the bus to Kyllini and then the quick ferry, you will see some beautiful areas on the northern part of Peloponnese.

  • Ferryhopper is the largest and most safe website in Greece to book your ferry tickets from Athens to Kefalonia, but you can also use it just for checking timetables and prices between Athens and all greek islands.
  • Expedia has all the available options for flights from Athens to Kefalonia or Cephallonia (PAS is Paros’s airport code) with all possible airlines (Aegean, Olympic, Sky Express)

Get my secrets for Greece and Santorini in your email!

It goes without saying that whatever I am detailing in this post also applies to the return trip from Kefalonia to Athens.

levante ferries kefalonia poros port
Levante Ferries are the ones that will take you from Kyllini to Poros New Port in Kefalonia

Keep reading…

ATHENS TO KEFALONIA TIPS:

  • Best way To get From Athens to Kefalonia: by direct flight (1 hour) because it’s just a lot faster; the ferry might be worth checking though if money is an issue or if you cannot find a flight ticket
  • Best Website for Ferry Prices & Timetables: Ferryhopper
  • There is no direct ferry from Athens to Kefalonia but you have to get to Kyllini port first (3.5 hours drive from Athens)
  • Bus from Athens to Kyllini: you have to take it from the Central KTEL Bus Station (on Google Maps) which is unfortunately one of the worst in the country and really old-fashioned and chaotic (see below how to get there)
  • Between April-October there are usually 4 ferries from Kyllini to Poros New Port in Kefalonia
  • How long is the ferry ride from Athens to Kefalonia: there is no direct ferry, but you have to drive to Kyllini first (3.5 hours) and then take the 1.5 hours ferry to Kefalonia
  • How much does it cost to take a ferry from Athens to Kefalonia: there is no direct ferry from Athens but the ferry from Kyllini costs around 13 euros but the best is to just take the KTEL Bus with 27 euros that DOES NOT include the ferry ticket though
  • Best Way to Get From Athens Airport to KTEL Kifissou Bus Station is by taking the Express Bus X93 (see its route here)
  • Where to Book the Bus from Athens to Kefalonia: from KTEL Kefalonias website
  • You must book your ferry online and you can then enter the ferry with the barcode that will be on the email that will be sent to you. This will be clearly written on the email you will receive from Ferryhopper and it is now the system that most ferry companies use BUT some smaller companies may ask you to get a printout from a kiosk that is outside of the ferry and it is this print out that will allow you to enter the ferry. As a rule of thumb, if your ticket you got through email from Ferryhopper has a barcode then you can enter the ferry directly.
  • How long is the flight from Athens to Kefalonia: the flight is 1 hour long, and checking in is usually quick but you have to be 2 hours in advance at the airport, as with any flight in the world.
  • Direct International Flights to Kefalonia: there are many international flights to Kefalonia from all over Europe and if you have no interest on visiting Athens, I highly recommend you fly directly to Kefalonia from a European city. Actually, if you are flying from the US or Canada, I recommend you fly to a European city first (London, Amsterdam or Paris) and then take a direct flight to Kefalonia. Taking the bus from Athens might be too much of a hassle.
  • Strikes in Greece: strikes can happen anytime in Greece and for any means of public transportation within short notice; usually, they may happen on Tuesdays, Wednesdays or Thursdays; yes, they may mess up your trip but they are necessary for the hard-working people of Greece so that they can have decent salaries and benefits for their lives. So, get over it and try to find some alternatives for your trip (a taxi is usually the best option).
  • Strong Winds – Ferries Cancellations: in case there are strong winds (which can be pretty common in August in Greece), then the Greek Port Authorities may stop all ferries from departing, so bear in mind this is also a possibility that can mess up your trip; as an average there might be 4-5 days during the summer months that this can happen so get prepared
  • Punctuality of ferries in Greece: in general, all ferries in Greece depart on time with no delays, and they won’t wait for you if you are late; however, they don’t always arrive on time as there are weather or other conditions that may affect their route to the islands along the way
  • The Ferry Schedule for all greek islands is announced only 2-3 months before the actual trips, so if you cannot find any scheduled ferries for your trip 3 years from now, please check again 2 months before your actual trip.

Ok, so let’s see all the available options from Athens to Kefalonia (that also apply to the return trip Kefalonia to Athens):

Athens to Kefalonia Ferry Schedule

kefalonia ferries
Levante Ferries are the best to take you to Kefalonia Poros port (from Kyllini) and they are pretty big and modern

Let me be clear first: there is no direct ferry from Athens to Kefalonia nor from Kefalonia to Athens. You have to get to Kyllini port first.

The Ferry Schedule from Athens to Kefalonia is only announced a few months before the actual dates of the trips, which means that the times for the busy summer months of May, June, July, August and September are only announced around February or March of the same year.

These ferries only connect Kyllini to Kefalonia (Poros Port), so you have to get to Kyllini first!

Here is an example of a Ferry Schedule from Athens to Kefalonia in September from Ferryhopper:

kefalonia ferry schedule timetables
This is a typical Ferry Schedule from Kyllini to Kefalonia in the summer months (May, June, July, August, and September); the trip is 1.5 hour long

This is just an example of a ferry schedule though!

For the latest Ferry schedule, always check on Ferryhopper.

The winter ferry schedule is less frequent, probably 1-2 ferries daily.

ferry ticket greek islands blue star ferry highspeed
If you book your ticket through Ferryhopper you are going to get a link through email where you can download the tickets with the barcode that looks like this (it will open up in your browser, and you can just screenshot it); this ticket will have your seat number as well, and it is individual for every passenger, so kids and vehicles will have their own barcodes and separate tickets
ferries kefalonia greece
Levante ferries take 1.5 hours to get you from Kyllini to Kefalonia (Poros Port)
levante ferries kefalonia inside
Levante ferries are comfortable and modern from the inside
levante ferries kefalonia food inside restaurant
There is a small cafe with snacks in the Levante Ferries

BUS FROM ATHENS TO KEFALONIA

ktel bus kefalonia
There is a KTEL bus from Athens to Kefalonia that can actually take you straight to Kefalonia but it’s just a ride from Athens to Kyllini port and then ferry and the 30 minute ride to Argostoli town in Kefalonia; you can take them from the KTEL Central Bus Station in the Kifissos area in Athens

The Kefalonia Local Bus company operates a route from Athens to Kefalonia, which is basically a bus that will take you from Athens Central Bus station in Kifissos to Kyllini to take the ferry and then drive you to Argostoli town in Kefalonia. The whole journey has plenty of stops and it can be tiring in my opinion as it may take up to 7.5 hours.

Here is the Athens to Kefalonia bus Route:

athens to kefalonia bus route
This is the route of the bus from Athens to Kefalonia with all of its stop in the 7.5 hour trip that will take you to Argostoli town (including the ferry from Kyllini)
athens to kefalonia buses tickets
There are usually three buses a day from Athens to Kefalonia – Argostoli (it’s through Kyllini port), and the ticket does NOT include the 13 euros ferry ticket

You can book the ticket for the Athens to Kefalonia Bus here

The whole bus ride takes about 7.5 hours of which the 1.5 hours is on the ferry from Kyllini. Once you reach the port of Poros, there is a 1 hour ride to the central bus station of Argostoli town through many villages and small towns on the island.

ATHENS BUS STATION (KIFISSOS)

ktel bus kifissos bus station athens
Athens Bus Station in Kifissos is a very old building that’s pretty much the same since the 50’s but…it does the job, I guess; there are several bus bays for each prefecture in Greece

Athens Bus Station is located in Kifissos area and it’s probably the worst in the country with very old facilities and amenities, that is also pretty difficult to reach as it’s not close to anything.

Here is Kifissos Bus Station on Google Maps.

ktel bus kifissos bus station athens
There are lots of KTEL Buses that depart from Kifissos central bus station in Athens but there is also another smaller KTEL Bus Station in Athens called Liossion Bus Station, where some other buses depart (mainly for Volos, Larisa, Karditsa, and Trikala towns in northern Greece).
ktel bus kifissos bus station athens
The ticket area of Kifissos Bus Station has kiosks for every destination (there is no central office you can go to; you have to find the one that operates your destination)
ktel bus kifissos bus station athens
The ticket area of Kifissos Bus Station can become very busy a few minutes before departure, so make sure you arrive well in advance as you need the printout ticket to enter the bus (not in every bus, though, as some of them accept the electronic ticket)
ktel bus kifissos bus station athens
Don’t expect any luxuries in Kifissos Bus Station, and apart from a coffee shop that sells Greek pasties, you won’t find much food
ktel bus kifissos bus station athens
The coffee shop area in Kifissos has a few tables where you can sit and have something to eat or drink
ktel bus kifissos bus station athens
Every bus bay has a sign on top for the destination/prefecture that it actually serves; you have to find yours and wait there to enter the bus as there are no announcements or electronic tables to show departures.
ktel bus kifissos bus station athens
There are lots of buses that go to almost everywhere in Greece in the Kifissos Bus Station
ktel bus kifissos bus station athens
There are Athens Local Buses that will drop you literally in the Kifissos bus station
ktel bus kifissos bus station athens
The interior of the KTEL Buses is pretty standard and most of the buses are quite new actually.

HOW TO GET TO KIFISSOS BUS STATION

There are only Athens buses that serve Kifissos Bus Terminal in Athens and there is no metro connection.

So here are the possible ways you can reach the station:

x93 bus athens kifissos airport
This is the route of the express bus X93 from Athens Airport to Kifissos Bus Station (it’s a 45 minutes ride and the ticket costs 6 euros)

You can also see the details of X93 Route and timetables on the official website of Athens Buses.

  • From Piraeus Port to Kifissos Bus Station: you have to take the 420 Bus
420 athens bus kifissos piraeus
This is the route of the 420 Bus from Piraeus port to Kifissos Bus Station (it’s a 30 minutes ride and the ticket costs 1.60 euros)

FLIGHTS TO KEFALONIA

The best and cheapest website to book or search for flights to Kefalonia is Expedia, as it has all the available options (including any available low-cost airlines like Ryanair).

kefalonia airport greece
Kefalonia’s airport has recently been renovated and it’s located just a few minutes drive from Argostoli town

A few useful info to have in mind when booking your flight to Kefalonia:

  • Kefalonia Airport on Google Maps
  • Athens Airport Code is : ATH (Athens)
  • Kefalonia Airport Code is: EFL (Cephalonia)
  • Every plane that lands on Kefalonia, takes off after 1 hour to fly back to Athens.
  • The exact times of the flights change and they are not the same throughout the year, so make sure you get the right times from Expedia as it will give you all the available flights immediately.
  • There are more flights from Athens to Kefalonia between April – October (high season)
  • If you book your tickets well in advance (6 months) you could probably find some very good deals with return tickets.
  • The cost of the flight from Athens to Kefalonia may come up to 250 euros during the high season (April-October) 

The airlines that fly from Athens to Kefalonia (April-October) are:

kefalonia airport EFL flights
Kefalonia Airport (EFL) has plenty of space and the check-in process is relatively easy and quick.

I highly recommend you fly to Kefalonia instead of taking the bus and ferry from Athens.

There are flights to and from Kefalonia from pretty much anywhere in Europe. This is extremely helpful, in my opinion, as it’s much better to fly directly to the island from somewhere in Europe instead of wasting time with the bus and the ferry.

kefalonia airport
Kefalonia airport has plenty of restaurants and Duty Free Shops

I honestly believe that, it’s definitely worth flying to Kefalonia and you should do it instead of taking the bus and the ferry from Kyllini. You will be on the island within 2.5 hours in total (1 hour flight and 1.5 hours for the check-in process at the airport) and you will avoid dealing with the bus and the ferry after all.

Check the latest available flights to Kefalonia on Expedia.

Kefalonia Airport is International, which means there are direct flights from London, Milan, Rome, Amsterdam, Paris, Munich, Brussels, Tel Aviv, Berlin, Warsaw, Glasgow, Birmingham, Newcastle, Manchester, Bristol, Leeds, Nottigham and many more European destinations.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

How long is the ferry ride from Athens to Kefalonia?

There is no direct ferry to Kefalonia from Athens, so you have to take a bus that will take you to Kyllini port first, which takes 4 hours and then the ferry takes 1.5 hours to get to Kefalonia. The journey might take more than 7 hours overall and is not worth it, in my opinion. A direct flight to Kefalonia is much more convenient and faster (but more expensive).

What is the best way to travel from Athens to Kefalonia?

The best way to travel from Athens to Kefalonia is by direct flight because it is quicker and easier than getting on the 7-hour bus and ferry. The flight is only 1 hour on the air and Kefalonia Airport is modern and easy to get to.

Is it better to fly or ferry to Kefalonia?

It is better to fly to Kefalonia because in order to take the ferry, you need to get to Kyllini port first, with a 7-hour bus ride from Athens. The bus and the ferry to Kefalonia might be a better option if money is an issue and you are looking for the absolute cheapest way to get to the island.

CONCLUSION

You basically have 2 options to get from Athens to Kefalonia: by plane or by a bus and ferry. I recommend taking the flight instead of the bus and ferry because the bus and ferry takes ages. Flying is the best option if you also have a family with young kids (no way they are going through a 7.5 hour road and ferry trip…good luck with that!)

Photo of author
AUTHOR
Pavlos Inglesis
Greek, born and raised in Athens. I have been to almost every greek island and pretty much in every region of mainland Greece. I have also been eating souvlaki and gyros since the 80s. I love being a dad to my 2 beautiful daughters and also taking great photos of the places I visit. This is my blog to help you out explore the places I have visited with my inside tips as a Greek, knowing the ins and outs of my country and culture. Feel free to ask any questions in the comments section under the post you are interested in and I wIll try my best to respond asap.

SUBSCRIBE to my Youtube Channel for Updated Guides and Videos for the Greek Islands!

Get my secrets for Greece & the greek islands in your email !

Leave a Comment

MORE TIPS FOR GREECE