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    When choosing where to stay on Lefkada Island, most people choose between the 2 large beach resorts of Nidri or Vassiliki, which have a full range of facilities and activities to cater to all the family. But the island also has some lesser-known villages that retain a more authentic Ionian vibe.

    Largely unspoilt and blessed with a collection of beautiful beaches, Lefkada stands out for its coastline – even when compared to other Greek islands. For a change of pace, head inland into the mountainous centre of Lefkada, where you’ll find sleepy villages that have changed little in generations.

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    Lefkada Town

    The island’s main town

    Lefkada Town sits on the northern tip of the island and is the first place you reach as you cross from the mainland. It’s very much a working town, and it’s where you’ll find the best dining and shopping on the island. There are a couple of museums too, which are handy on a rainy day.

    Head to the marina to watch the yachts coming and going, or head to the Town Square to soak up the vibes of this charming Greek town. A couple of beaches are within easy reach of Lefkada Town, although the area is not as relaxing as some other towns further south.

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    Nidri

    The largest beach resort on Lefkada

    Nidri (also known as Nydri) is a fully-fledged tourist resort located halfway down the east coast of Lefkada. The town isn’t the prettiest you’ll find on the island, but what it lacks in looks it more than makes up for with facilities and leisure activities.

    You can find the widest array of family restaurants here, as well as several beaches, waterfalls, and watersports. You can catch regular ferries from Nidri to the lesser-explored Meganisi Island around 10 km away.

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    Vassiliki

    A mecca for fans of watersports and plenty of nightlife too

    Vassiliki is one of the largest tourist centres on Lefkada and is the best place for watersports activities on the island. Located on the south of the island – around a 1-hour drive from Preveza Airport – there’s a complete range of aquatic adventures awaiting you here, with windsurfing, wakeboarding, paragliding and scuba diving just a few of the activities on offer.

    Vassiliki Bay is particularly beautiful as it looks out upon the islands of Keffalonia and Ithaka that loom in the distance. The beach is more shingle than sand, but the water is clean and clear.

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    Agios Nikitas

    Stunning beaches on Lefkada’s western coast

    For beach lovers, Agios Nikitas is a top pick on Lefkada. The western coast is home to many of the finest beaches and this small town is surrounded by 2 of them. Agios Nikitas Beach is best for families, while Milos Beach, on the southern side of the headland, is better for long, dramatic walks with your partner (you’ll need to hike 40 minutes to access the beach).

    In the town, you’ll find a collection of hotels, family-run tavernas and a couple of souvenir shops. There’s not much happening around here after dinner.

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    Vlicho

    Learn to sail from this large marina

    Vlicho town runs down a sheltered bay, which has become one of the biggest marinas around Lefkada. Just a few minutes’ drive south from Nidri, the main reason to stay in Vlicho is if you’re learning to sail or have moored your yacht in the natural harbour. Although it lacks a nice beach, you find some good deals on cheap guesthouses in Vlicho.

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    Athani

    Sleepy village close to stunning beaches

    Athani is pretty much the southernmost village with hotels in Lefkada. It’s built on a steep hillside and has a local feel. You can find a couple of places to eat, but don’t expect much in the way of nightlife entertainment. Sunsets from up here are quite special, though.

    The big draw factor for Athani is its proximity to the fantastic beaches found on the southwestern end of Lefkada, particularly Porto Katsiki – the famous beach backed by a hulking white cliff.

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    Kalamitsi

    Family-friendly town close to sandy beaches

    Kalamitsi village is up in the winding mountain roads that link the beaches of Lefkada’s west coast. With plenty of family-friendly accommodation and easy access to 3 beaches, this is a good spot to bring the kids. Make sure to opt for a hotel with a pool.

    This small mountain town is less touristy than the large resorts, with a slow pace of life and plenty of cheap dining options. Of the several nearby beaches, Kavalikefta beach stands out as the best.

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    Nikiana

    Off the beaten track

    Nikiana is a lovely fishing village that’s far removed from the large tourist centres of Lefkada. The village is basically 1 street lined with restaurants, shops, cafés, and hotels. It’s a slower pace of life here, with a more provincial charm.

    As it’s only 10 km from the much larger resort of Nidri, this small community is good for regular visitors who want peace and solitude, but who also want to be able to pop into town whenever they need. The coastline isn’t the best you can find on Lefkada, but there’s still space for you to lounge on the beach or grab dinner with your feet in the sand.

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    Paul Smith | Skúsený cestovateľ

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