Elafonissos: a small paradise

Article published on May 31, 2011
Article published on May 31, 2011
by Rania Kalapoda   Elafonissos! In the southeastern tip of the Laconian Gulf, across from Neapoli, you will find Elafonissos. A  beautiful island that offers the opportunity for relaxing holidays in a wonderful natural environment with beautiful beaches and crystal clear waters, away from mass tourism and crowds.
While the residents of  the island are only a few hundreds, on summer the island is attracting thousands of tourists.

  Previously, the area was called «onu gnathos», because the shape of the area was like the mouth of  a donkey. Elafonissos was not always an island. It was connected to the mainland  until a powerful earthquake caused the separation. The current name derives from ancient times due to the large number of deer that lived in the area.

   To reach Elafonissos you will first drive by car to the port of Punta, where there is the ferry boat service that takes you across. In case that you do not have a car there are many routes of buses from various parts of Greece that will help you reach your destination quickly and easily. The ferry boat runs every half an hour so there is no need to worry if you lose a connection. It is worth mentioning that the price for the boat is really..friendly!

  The majority of the people who arrive on the island arrange to stay at the famous camping  of Simos. Indeed, at the port you will find a mini bus that will take you to the camping for free. It is only 4km from the port of Elafonisos and there you will find yourself in the one of the most beautiful beach of the Mediterranean.

The camping Simos offers all the comforts of a modern facility as it is one of the most popular and organized camping sites we know. This is a beautiful and welcoming space which the same time respects the beautiful natural surroundings. The area is specially shaped with respect to nature and man. In all positions have been developed for the placement of tents provided electricity and water. The distances between the tents are quite large and there are partitions, which maximises privacy. Also, there is provision for parking your car next to your tent.

  For your convenience, the camping managers have colour coded the buildings dedicated to services. The Yellow building includes mini market, a café called Simos and the restaurant «Lefki», where you can dine after endless hours on the beach. In the Peach coloured building,     you will find shared kitchens and sinks for washing your dishes. Finally, the blue buildings are hosting the bathrooms, where there is always hot water for your shower, and can be found in several locations within the camping area.

The facilities of Simos have 4 bed bungalows, which are located in the northern part of the site and all together create their own small neighborhood. They are equipped with their own spacious bathroom, air condition, TV and fridge and can accomodate 2 adults and 2 children. Of course, if you wish to stay in one of them will need to think several months earlier to book, since rooms are very few  compared to the number of people who wish to book them.

  The prices are very affordable, so you will have the opportunity not to spend a lot of money. As expected this year, many people may prefer to camp in order to avoid a room’s let with high price. Young crowds but also families choose to stay in Simos Camping. This is a destination that can satisfy all tastes.

If again, you do not like camping much and prefer to stay in the village, there are several hotels and rooms near the port that will offer you their hospitality. Usually, however, the village is almost empty and not very vivid, due to the high traffic in the camping. Nevertheless, in the village you can find an internet café, and a super market. You must know that the island has not a pharmacy or ATM so you should bring some emergency items and money in cash otherwise you would have to travel  to Neapoli. The island has only a clinic  while nearest hospital is at the village of Molai in the mainland.

  Elafonisos is famous for her beautiful sandy beaches with crystal clear waters and white sand. The most famous and most popular beach  is Simos, one of the highlights of the country. The view from the dunes leading to this world-famous beach will amaze you. A beach with emerald waters, but there is no naturalshade, so it is advisable to be well equipped to protect yourself from the sun. One part of the beach, is organized with umbrellas, but the prices are quite high,so the majority of the visitors bring their own equipment.

  Moreover, well-known beach is the duo Frank-Sarakiniko located in the southern part of the island,there you will have the opportunity to seeincredible shades of blues and fine white sand. Another peculiarity of the beaches are the rare cedars that grow on sand, a phenomenon unique to Greece. Other beautiful beaches are Kontogoni, which has tourist infrastructure, Kalogeras who is full of sand dunes and cedars, Megalo Tigani in the southeast of the island. Lefki is located in the west of the homonymous bay, Agloftis is the only pebble beach on the island and is the westernmost point of Elafonisos behind the island of Aglyfti. The Pavlopetri and Chamokelo beaches are ideal for lovers of wind surfing. Finally, Punta and the Virgin Islands beaches are worth visiting as you will be enchanted by theirblue waters.

  Approaching Elafonissos, the visitor encounters the church of  Agios Spiridon, shortly after a small port with fishing boats. At the beach you will find tavernas and ouzo bars serving fresh fish and the speciality of the island, the lafonisiotiko octopus, known for its tastiness. You will also find many quaint cafes in the village to enjoy your coffee looking at the sea.

  Important findings confirm the rich history of the island. On the way to the island by ferry boat, at the bottom of the sea, you can see ruins and ancientstreets bodied, with different directions. Even  when you reachthe island Pavlopetri especially if the sea is calm, you will have the opportunity to see a cart road. The boat tour around the island will be aunique experience for you.

  If you happen to find yourself on the island on July 9 do not miss the feast of Panagia Katonisiotissa and the celebration of the fish day the last ten days of August. Residents will willingly give you any information you need.

  Elafonisos is not famous for her nightlife. Parties are organized at beach of Simos. The beach at night is full of people who stay awake until the morning looking at the stars, playing guitar, singing and dancing. It is an original way of entertainment that the young crowds! love! But if you do not wish to participate this does not need to conquer your panic, as the beach is quite far from the tents soyou will be ableto enjoy your sleep.

  So if you require a quiet and peaceful holiday and especially economic, you have to visit Elafonisos,   which is undoubtedly an earthly paradise.