Driving in rural Greece is like stepping back in time: the roads uncrowded, the scenery unspoiled. Driving is a joy, not a chore. Here's a short guide on how to enjoy exploring Kef by car:
Most obviously: drive on the right… most Greeks do!
signs are usually in Greek and English - but are likely to
behind a bush or a sign for someone's taverna. Road maps
and, sometimes, bear some resemblance to reality. Getting
lost is all
part of the fun and a great way to find some lovely places
know existed. The locals are friendly so, if you do get
lost, just ask
is currently a little more expensive than in the UK,
tend to be pretty plentiful. Usually they are open seven
days a week
from 08:00 to 21:00 in low season, later in high season.
are rarely self-service, you'll probably find an old guy
sat there and,
when you pull in, he'll send his wife out to serve you.
attendants usually speak enough English to get by. They
automatically go for the unleaded pump and petrol is
bought by the
euro, not by the litre or gallon, so just ask for, e.g.
ten euros of
venzini rather than ten litres - it saves messing about
change. Some petrol stations accept credit cards, but not
all, so have
enough cash available.
police are pretty laid back but, nevertheless, road rules
are, sometimes, enforced. Particularly in the event of an
where someone is injured. Parking restrictions do apply,
even if most
Greeks seem to ignore them. In some places yellow lines
exist and it's
best not to park on them - about once a summer the police
round and ticket the cars and you never know when that
will be! Apart from that, the general rules are not to
park on private
property and not to obstruct the coaches. Some
situated up narrow little lanes that look like farm tracks
need a wide turning circle to get round the tight corners.
If a ’plane
can't take off because a coach couldn’t get to the airport
tend to be more upright.
Driving laws are similar to the UK – wearing seat belts is compulsory in cars, crash helmets are compulsory on scooters and motorbikes, drink driving is illegal (the legal limit is slightly lower than in the UK). On-the-spot fines apply for those contravening the law. When driving, always carry your driving licence and your copy of the hire agreement (contract). In the event of an accident (of any kind): don’t move the vehicles, call a doctor if required, also call the hire company and the police - they will come to the scene and assess the situation (get a copy of the police report). Render any assistance you are qualified to give to any injured parties. Take photos of the scene of the accident, particularly the positions of the vehicles involved.
|*The (general) rule in Greece is to give way to
traffic from the right.* Apart
from driving on the right, the main difference in Greece
roundabouts. In the UK, when approaching a roundabout you
stop and give
way to traffic on
the roundabout. In Greece, traffic on a roundabout has to
stop and give
way to traffic entering
the roundabout (from the right). On
Kefalonia there are few roundabouts you're likely to come
they do exist: on the main south coast road in to
Argostoli there are
three roundabouts and the main square in Argostoli is
roundabout, although as it's square and not round some
people (even the
locals) don't recognise it as a roundabout... So, it's safest not to assume right-of-way is
as it would be in the UK. For example: donkeys have right of way on
(or so I've heard said).
road junctions aren't marked with white lines and, even
where there are
white lines, at any junction it's safest to slow down and
to let the other guy go first.
One-way streets exist in Argostoli, Skala, Poros, etc and, during the evenings, some streets are pedestrianised, e.g. the square in Poros. Skala main street is now pedestrianised, top to bottom. Of course, cars still sneak along there...
so do the police.
You may notice that the locals tend to drive towards the centre of the road, probably because in many places there are no pavements. In some ways, Kefalonia is like a National Park: goats, cows, pigs, chickens - and humans - are liable to wander out from behind a bush and across the road at will - often just around a blind bend. Of course, they don't have lights on at night.
you're out exploring you might notice road signs
warning you to beware
of deer. There aren't any wild deer on Kefalonia
but… as I was told: when they made
the road signs, they didn't have any pictures of
Welcome to Greece!
For more detailed information see: Driving to / in Greece