Cave of Drogarati
Drogarati cave lies in the same area as the famous Melissani lake, just 3 km outside Sami. It was discovered only 300 years ago when an earthquake destroyed part of the cave and thus created an entrance. Like Melissani cave, also Drogarati was explored by the speleologists Anna and Yiannis Petrochilos. They entered the cave with ropes and ladders.
Since 1963 Drogarati cave is open to the public. The descending steps lead to a depth of 60 metres where you will be surprised by the cave’s dimensions. It has a size of 65 x 45 metres and a height of 20 metres. In the hot summer months it is a relief to enter the cool 18*C in the cave.
Timeless beauty of the formations
Nature created countless stalactites and stalagmites. Their different colours are the result of the minerals in the bedrock. When rain water filters through the bedrock and drops down to the ground, the lime deposits in the water create stalactites growing downwards from the roof and stalagmites growing upwards from the bottom.
When you visit, please do not touch the stalactites as their growth can be disturbed by it. By touching it, skin oils stay on the stalactite and prevent future calcification and can also change their colours.
According to speleologists, Drogarati cave is over 100 million years old. Keeping that in mind and looking at the impressive formations, you can try and figure out how old they are: they grow approximately 1 cm in 100 years.
Speleologists found an extension of the cave which is not approachable. But it is believed that there is a connection to several other caves in the area.
The amazing acoustics
Entering the cave you see a natural platform below, overlooking the main chamber from above. It is called the Royal Balcony. In the past the large main chamber, called Chamber of Exaltion, was used for concerts from time to time as the cave’s acoustics are fantastic. So, don’t be shy and just try it; sing anything and feel like an opera singer.
The last event took place in 2014 when the cruise ship MS Deutschland with the Bavarian Philharmonic Orchestra on board docked at Argostoli port and held a concert in the Drogarati cave.
How to get to Drogarati cave
Coming from Argostoli, just before you reach Sami, you will see a post sign on the left hand side. Here you turn left and follow the road for a few hundred metres until the road makes a right turn and leads you to the parking space of Drogarati.
Entrance fees: 5 Euro for adults, 3 Euro for children
Open from April/May to October.