Corfu, Greece

The island of Corfu, in Greece, is one of the Greek islands of the Ionian Sea. It is the second largest Greek island in the Ionian Sea with a population of 113 000. The principal city of the island is also named Corfu with about 35000 inhabitants.

How to get there

The island of Corfu, in Greece, is one of the Greek islands of the Ionian Sea. It is the second largest Greek island in the Ionian Sea with a population of 113 000. The principal city of the island is also named Corfu.

Corfu is served by direct flights from Athens and several European Airports and by ferry from Italian ports and the Greek port of Igoumenitsa. Several cruises have Corfu as their preferred destination.

What we love the most

Museums

The town has many museums. Visitors should not miss:
The Archaeological Museum enriched by many findings from the ancient cities of the island, in particular from the Archaic period like bronze and marble statues, clay pottery, and parts of ancient temples.
The Byzantine Museum of Antivouniotissa featuring rare icons, frescoes and ecclesiastical items. The church itself was built in the 15th century.
The Asian Art Museum housed in the Palace of Saint Michael and George, is impressive and unique in its kind, one of the best in Europe. Visitors can view a fascinating Sino-Japanese collection of weapons, swords, masks and sculptures. Its collections cover Chinese art, Japanese Art, South East Asia and Central Asian Art. It includes about 3,500 items. Most items come from the collection of Gregoris Manos, while the Chinese porcelain is taken from the Christos Chiotakis collection. These exhibits include pieces of pottery, porcelain, brass works of art, sculpture, cloisonné, lacquer objects, ivory, miniatures, clothing, jewelry and coins.
Outside Corfu town the Sea Shell Museum, in the picturesque Benitses, has a large collection of shells, fossils and rare fish from the Pacific and Indian Ocean. Above Benitses is the magnificent Achilleion one of the most famous palaces of Europe and perhaps the most important architectural landmark on the island of Corfu. It lies near Gastouri, 10 kilometers southeast of Corfu town. This palace was built in 1890 by the Italian architect Raffaele Caritto. The whole project was totally financed by the Empress Elizabeth of Austria, better known as "Sissi". Elizabeth, because of her poor health, she wanted to have a second residence. The palace she had, was dedicated to the Greek hero Achilles, hence the name Achilleion. In the gardens of the palace are all kind of sculptures of persons from Greek mythology, such as that one of the 'Dying Achilles' and the statues of the 9 muses. After Sissi’s assassination on September 10th, 1898, William II of Germany (Kaiser) bought the villa. He installed a colossal statue of Achilles and placed it in the garden with the inscription "To the greatest Greek from the biggest German”. Achilleion's location provides a panoramic view of Corfu city to the north, and across the whole southern part of the island.

Music

Music is deeply embedded in the Corfiot culture, with several bands and concerts throughout the year, both in the concert hall as well as in the open area in the central square. The Italians have left a legacy of Corfiots loving opera.

Easter at Corfu

Easter in Corfu is a unique experience. It is the time when Corfu brings out to light all its natural and cultural beauty, you will be taken away by music, you will get unprecedented feelings by the religious and celebrating events.
On Good Friday the processions from different churches start in the afternoon at 2.30, As time goes by, more and more processions come out and even meet at various points of the town. Late in the evening starts the procession of the last but most imposing epitaph, the one of the Cathedral . It is born by marine soldiers and all the priests of the town participate, as well as three philharmonic bands. The Philharmonic band of Corfu plays the "Adagio" by Albinoni , the blue Mantzaros Philharmonic band plays the " Marcia Funebre " (a mourning march) by Verdi , and the red Kapodistrias band plays the mourning " Suentura " (loss, damage) by Mariani.
On Saturday at 11 o'clock just, the bells announce the "morning Resurrection" and Corfiots throw ceramic pots off windows and balconies. An explanation is that the custom is of pagan origins. By smashing things and making loud noises the Ancient Greeks wanted to wake up Persephone, the goddess of spring, and accelerate the coming of Spring.
All the Philharmonic bands come back into the streets and they play joyful music. At midnight everybody goes to the central square of Corfu town to celebrate Resurrection with glory and fireworks.

Beaches

Corfu is full of magnificent sandy beaches, more than 50 of them, west, east, north and south, with clean waters and surrounded by lush greenery. Many of them are organized and lined up with hotels, seaside restaurants, water sports centers and beach bars. The nature of Corfu is extraordinarily beautiful. Lakes, dunes, pine forests, mountains interspersed with beautiful green valleys and beautiful sandy beaches. The view from the top of the Pantocrator mountain is phenomenal. There are dozens of beaches that meet the Blue Flag requirements. The sea that surrounds Corfu gives the island a unique character and creates a temperate climate and a breeze on the hottest days. The sea offers many leisure facilities, one can swim safely near golden beaches with sand or white pebbles, diving in the clear sea, sailing in beautiful harbors and small bays and wind surfing on the waves. A selection of beaches includes:
At the west and south-west coast:

Paleokastritsa is the most famous and picturesque beach. Huge, green cliffs surround the coast and many sea caves can be visited by boat. It is one of the most popular tourist spots of Corfu. It is a paradise and although the tourist developments have been inevitable, it is still a striking place that certainly didn’t lose its charm. It is also an excellent place for snorkeling, you can see fish swimming in the clear sea. With a rented boat, you can explore the bays nearby and go even into the caves. You can sail around the bay with a glass bottom boat and look through the glass bottom to the fish.

Agios Gordios is a popular sandy beaches surrounded by impressive rock formations, much greenery and tourist facilities.

Glyfada is one of the most popular and beautiful sandy beaches of the island surrounded by tree-covered cliffs.

On the way to Glyfada there is a very large Aqualand waterpark equipped with all kinds of water attractions and facilities. Surrounded by green forests in a total area of 75.000 square meters. Free sun beds and umbrellas, changing rooms and showers, high quality food, shops and free parking space are available. Qualified lifeguards take care of safety and security. Children can play all day long in our pools as the water is filtered and cleaned daily.

Ermones is surrounded by steep, green hillsides. Agios Georgios Argyradon is a long sandy beach developed over the last years with hotels and taverns.

Do not miss Korission Lake the largest lagoon in Corfu Island, 29 km south from Corfu town, part of a nature reserve with sand dunes, unique wild beaches, diverse plant and bird species. It is an area where tourists can undertake wonderful walks in the dunes. 200 meters away is the Issos beach located, where you can swim away from the crowds. There are no hotels, apartments or restaurants on the lake. However, there are kiosks where you can buy a drink or a snack. The beach is called Halikounas, a long and isolated sandy beach is located near the village of Agios Matheos.

Marathias is a long sandy beach surrounded by hill forests


At the north-east

Beautiful small beaches different from the long sandy beaches of the west. This side of the island has been the preferred location of rich British and Italians to build their villas. Among others:
Nissaki among the most beautiful beaches with sand and rock formations and amazing blue green water.
Barbati with pebbles, clear waters and green surroundings.
Kalami beach has flat stones and fish taverns.
Agni is a small pebbled beach, isolated with excellent fish taverns, preferably accessed by boat.

At the South-east
Moraitika is a seaside resort, 20 kilometers south of Corfu town, close to Messoggi on a hill with beautiful views over the long sandy beach good for all types of water sports.
Boukari is a calm pebbled beach with excellent fish taverns.

At the north

The famous coves of Canal d'Amour near Sidari. These are enclaves that rise between the sandstone cliffs by the sea. It is said that every couple that swims in the channel will always stay together or that everyone that swims while the channel is in shadow, will always be happy in love or even that every bachelor who swims through the channel, will soon meet the partner of her/his dreams.
Acharavi is a long, sandy beach
Kassiopi has several sandy beaches with crystal waters
At the north west
Agios Georgios ton Pagon is a small bay with sandy beach

Villages
There are numerous villages with a traditional character that tourists can visit.
Pelekas is a traditional village, 28 kilometres south-west of Corfu town. It is located on a green hill at 220 meters altitude. From Pelekas you have a fantastic view of the Ionian Sea, especially at sunset. This was the place where the German Kaiser Wilhelm II (Kaiser) came to watch the sunset. That’s why this vantage point is named "The Imperial Throne". From this vantage point you can see the top of the Pantokrator-mountain and Corfu town. The nearest beach is the beach Kontogialos which is two kilometres away.
Lakones is located in the western part of Corfu, close to Paleokastritsa, 24 kilometres from Corfu Town. In the 18th century, refugees from the region of Lakonia in Peloponnese settled here. Lakones offers stunning views over Paleokastritsa. The village lies on the slopes of Mount Arakli and has a narrow main street. There are several taverns and cafes, and it seems like their balconies and terraces hang overlooking the sea. The view over the Ionian sea and Paleokastritsa is breath-taking.
Doukades is located 20 kilometres northwest of Corfu town, not far from the famous resort Paleokastritsa. It is a traditional Corfian village with its own Venetian style. The village square is very cozy, were visitors can enjoy a lunch at the local restaurant.
Afionas is a fantastic mountain village on the promontory of Arila, it is located 33 kilometres northwest of Corfu town, on top of a hill. The view is breathtaking. Afionas is very popular to Italian tourists. From the hill where Afionas is located, you have a beautiful view over the sandy beach of Agios Georgios Pagon, which lies south of Afionas.

The Golf Course

At the Ropa Valley near the Ermones beach is the 18 hole Golf Course of Corfu: a mature golf course in an undiscovered destination which has hosted many international tournaments. Facilities include an attractive looking clubhouse, a bar, a lounge area offering wi-fi and a restaurant, locker rooms and changing facilities, professional`s shop is well stocked with items of golf equipment. Golf bags and golf clubs can be hired. The practice ground is particularly large and buckets of balls can be supplied to those wishing to indulge in serious practice. In front of the clubhouse there is a putting green. The professional staff are on hand at all times to give lessons and to make all visitors feel very welcome.

Eating in Corfu

In Corfu you can eat well. Selected restaurants and taverns include:
In town for classical Corfiot dishes, such as sofrito (beef cooked in wine sauce, garlic and parsley go to “Tavernaki tis Marinas” (tel. 2661100792) close to the New Castle. Tavern “Porta Remounda” also known as Barbas (14 Moustoksidou str, tel 2661022658) one of the oldest in the island serves meat and fish dishes.
Besides the sea “Klimataria” (or Belos) at Benitses, has few tables and is renown for its fish and meat dishes (always reserve 26610 71201). Further south, ”Karidis” at Boukari (te.26620 51205) is one of the best fish taverns of the island. The “Fisherman’s cave” at Agios Georgios Pagon at the north west is very popular with Italians, offering the daily catch of the owner. “Kafesas” on the beach of Agios Georgios Aryradon (tel. 2662 051090), at the south-east, offers meat in the winter and fish in the summer.
In the mountains in the deserted village of Palaia Perithia at the foot of Mount Pantokrator, at the north, two taverns, “Palia Perithia” (tel. 6944 798567) and “Ognistra” (tel. 6945 276455) are both worth visiting. “Stamatis” at Viros (tel.26610 39249) is an old tavern, outside tourist paths, serving traditional dishes.

Nightlife

There several bars and discos all over the island, both in Corfu town, and the seaside tourist resorts, such as Dassia and Ipsos and the east coast.
Corfu holidays can be a great experience for families, couples or group of friends, as it has something special for everyone.

Geographical location

Ionian Islands, Greece
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