The glorious Aenos mountain of Kefalonia

Kefalonia can be distinguished from a great distance as it is dominated by Aenos, the massive, ‘Black Mountain’, lost in history.

The highest mountain in the Ionian, Enos takes its name from the black pine (Abies Cephalonica) that once covered it completely and grows nowhere else. It has been a national park since 1962, known for its wealth of wild flowers. It’s also home to a special breed of pony, Equus cabalus.

Ainos Mountain

Aenos is often embraced by the clouds in a dance of fantasy and mystery and is suddenly lost from the eyes of the mortals, carried to the kingdoms in the sky.

Somewhere to the east and a little lower than the summit that touched the heavens, a sanctuary was built where sacrifices to Zeus were offered. It was the perfect place for it as the word “aenos” (αίνος) itself means “praise”, “glorification”, that is praise to the great father of Gods and heroes.

Ainos Mountain

“Because there is Aenos, mountain of Kefalonia where the temple of Aenesios Zeus stands…” Aenios or Aenesios Zeus is the same as the Olympian Zeus, expect that ours lives on the cloud covered top of the mountain of Kefalonia and protects the island. The sanctuary dedicated to him was so important that even in the 4th century A.D. it came to be the only point of reference for Kefalonia. So the island was noted by the simple trace of a temple on the Peutingeriana map.

Ainos Mountain

A plethora of beautiful caves are scattered around the feet of Aenos, places known to all living creatures havens that have always provided protection.

Ainos Mountain

One of them is Drogarati cave near Sami. Nature has created here a masretpiece of sculpute, in the form of the stalactites and stalagmites which have grown here over thousand of years.. It’s got many stalactites and stalagmites created from the rain, which comes through the rocky level of the cave, it corroses it and deposits its elements on the edge of the stalactites. A stalactite grows one cm every 100 years.

Ainos Mountain

The big hall of the cave, is called “Sala of Apotheosis” because of its perfect acoustics. It’s therefore also used for concerts and other shows. Drogarati cave is the only one with such a large chamber 65mX45m and about 20m in height. It has servred as the venue for clasic music concerts and concerts of the soprano Irene Karayianni.

Speleologists have confirmed that the cave has an extension, which, however is not approachable. That means that the cave is probably connected with other caves in the area.

 

Ainos Mountain

Best known and impressive is another cave lake near Sami and Agia Efimia, the cave lake of Melissani. Combining safety with surprising subterranean beauty, it offered itself as a place of worship for ceremonies honouring Pan and the Nymphs, as Pan was worshiped with night mysteries and orgiastic dances.

“Myths were made so that imagination gives them soul” Albert Camu

Visiting the Melissani cave is a must! Take a tour in a rowing boat down the lake whose saphire blue shades change every minute. Feel the overwhelming awe for the dolphins which carried the messages sent by the nymph Melissani to her beloved god Pan and see their bodies turned into stalactites after her demise. Truly magnificent!

Ainos Mountain

 

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