The water is very shallow along the small quay and only small yachts like ours, with a draught less than 1 meter can moor. Larger yachts, like the one shown on this series of photos have to remain in the middle of the bay. It stayed anchored only in the afternoon: their passengers obviously needed a restaurant in the evening and none was available in Porto Leone when we visited! I have read that there is now a small restaurant that opened in 2007.
A little further in the basement, left to the small boat, there was a heavily rusted press. As it was close to the oil mill, it must have been used to press out of the crushed olives any oil that would have been left by the mill. However, the device to put together the crushed olives and collect the oil was missing.
The basement of one of the houses was not closed and we could have a look at an olive mill with three millstones that was still ready to work. There was also a modern amphora to collect the oil (first photo).
It was not only ready to work but could actually work and the millstones could roll (photo 2). There was also a small boat (left) waiting to go back to sea.
Outside the house, several worn out millstones showed that that the have been working on oil for long (photo 3).
The “main street” of Porto Leone is coated with concrete. Most houses are in good condition and securely locked. They have not been abandoned in a hurry and I can guess that their owners, though leaving on the other side of the earth, plan to come back some time. Though, we have never seen any local wandering in the village.
Early morning, just after sunrise, there is no wind and the surface of the water is perfectly still. Sailboats need wind. Wind will not blow before the end of the morning, so there is no hurry to wake up and most of the crew will not get up soon.
Alone at last at sunset! Luckily, each time we visited, no other boat remained to spend the night. This allowed us to have ouzo together on the quay and to light a camp fire. The campfire was not to cook our dinner: we had not fished anything edible and dinner was a freshly made Greek salad together with a bottle of retsina wine. That was a great dinner!
The first photo shows that besides Porto Leone/Kefali, there was another part of the village on the heights. Obviously, it had been abandoned longer ago that then the sea side part.
On the second photo, we were surprised to find a small flock of a dozen sheeps roaming on their own. There must be somewhere water freely available for them.
The third photo shows some olive trees and the great landscape on the bay.
Climbing by a steep path allows to get a birds eye view on the village. On one of our visits, we decided to hike to Kalamos village, only 5 km as the crow flies. There is an excellent pass that follows the shore, sometimes at sea level and sometimes a little higher above and the walking distance was not much more than 6 or 7 km. On arrival at Kalamos village, we were happy to have a huge beer! (no photo!).
The first photo gives a general view of the village and the bay. The path to Kalamaos village is clearly seen. In the background, the southern coast of the island with the village of Kalamos.
The second photo focuses on the village. There are two large houses and several smaller ones, a large church with an outside bell tower. The basement of a new house has been left unfinished (left of the photo).
The third photo shows the seaside and the small quay.
The village has been completely abandoned by its inhabitants after the 1954 earthquake destroyed most of it. Most of the inhabitants have left for Australia. It seems that the situation has not changed since our visits in the 80s and that it is still uninhabited. However, I have read that a taverna has been opened in 2004 but the information is not confirmed.
This is a paradise for sailors, especially when no other boats are around. We were lucky on two occasions to have the place all for ourselves (photo 1 and 2)
On another occasion, we found several other visitors (photos 3 and 4) but luckily, they left in the evening and at night, we had the place for ourselves again.
Porto Leone, on the southeast coast of the island, is a unique place where I have been several times. It is the best shelter on the island but a small one. Amazingly, it is better known under its Venetian name, Porto Leone, than under its Greek name, Kefali.