The Cave of Grotto of Melissani, A Unique Geological Phenomenon

The Cave of Grotto of Melissani, A Unique Geological Phenomenon


The Cave of Grotto of Melissani, A Unique Geological Phenomenon

This underground grotto is located 20 meters below the earth's surface and offers a breathtaking experience to visitor. The ancient stalactites and the changing colors of the waters transport you into another word - the ancient world of goddesses and nymphs who were the protectors of nature.


The Melissani Grotto, also known as Lake Melissani, is located on the east coast of the largest of the Ionian Island in Greece - Kefalonia. It is located about a mile from the town of Sami, and about 6 miles from the town of Argostoli.

This natural wonder was forgotten for centuries and was discovered again in 1951 by speleologist Giannis Petrohilos. The disastrous earthquake of 1953 saw the ceiling of the cave collapse, allowing sunlight to illuminate the lake below and create the fantastic playful light which now leaves visitors enchanted.


The cave, which measures 160 meters in length, 40 in width and 36 meters in height, consists of two large rooms that form a large 'B', each has a large body of water and an island in the middle. The second cave is connected to the previous one by a narrow channel and its arched roof adorned with stalactites and stalagmites which date back to nearly 20,000 years ago.

The lake has a depth of 30 meters, and its waters reach a temperature of about50°F. About 20-meters underground, there is brackish water which is formed from a mixture of saltwater coming from the sea and natural freshwater from a natural source.


The history of this cave is worth noting. According to Greek mythology, the nymph Melissani who suffered from unrequited love for the god Pan, committed suicide by throwing herself in these waters. The remains of a temple were found on the small island that stands in the center of the lake. Excavations of 1963 brought about exhibits dedicated to the nymph as a small terracotta statue and a tray with the depiction of the god Pan, testifying their tragic story.


The grotto cave and Melissani Lake can be visited by row boat, where you can see both the caves and admire the beauty of the stalactites as well as the changing color of the waters. changing colors. You can also reach the grotto by foot, via a short pedestrian tunnel that descends to the shores of inland lake straight to the cave. The best time to visit is between 12:00 and 2:00pm, when the sun's rays are strongest, making it even more stunning to see the light and the water on the cave walls.

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