Corfu, an island in the Ionian Sea off the northwest coast of Greece, is characterized by rough mountains and a resort-studded shoreline. Its cultural heritage is a reflection of years spent under Venetian, French and British rule before uniting with Greece in 1864. Corfu Town, flanked by 2 Venetian fortifications, features winding medieval lanes, an arcade, and St. Michael and St. George ‘s Grand Palace.
Corfu today, this vast Ionian Sea resort catches the hearts of travellers from all over the globe. Here one can lounge on sandy beaches, swim in gin-clear seas, stroll through a charming Old Town, enjoy ancient sights, tour museums, stroll through wooded hills, walk through rural villages and indulge in nutritious local dishes. The Venetians, French and English all ruled over the island and the architecture, cultural attractions and gastronomy of the island clearly show their legacy.
Top things to do
No article about Corfu might miss the Easter section, starting with the obvious. During the Easter period, we are talking about the number one tourist destination in Greece, with thousands of tourists coming from around the world for an experience that moves even the most indifferent to religious matters. The whole thing isn’t strictly related to religion, it’s more about culture, music, and customs that reflect this place ‘s history and spiritual identity.
Planes at sunset
A magical sunset in Corfu can be enjoyed in many different ways. A common but fascinating idea is to visit the tourist region of Palaiokastritsa and see the sun fall from the Panagia Palaiokastritsa Monastery, with a spectacular view of the Ionian Sea. Another suggestion is to stay closer to the city of Corfu, in Kanoni, and sit down on the narrow path that crosses the sea across from the famous Pontikonisi and enjoy a stunning sunset.
The Corfiot cuisine provides a different culinary experience with influences from Greek and Italian cultures based on Mediterranean cuisine. Some of its most typical dishes are sofrito (beef meat with a lot of garlic, accompanied by wine sauce), pastitsada (tomato sauce rooster and a lot of spices served with thick spaghetti) and bourdeto.
Fall in love or stay in love forever
According to myth, if one swims across Canal d’Amour, a water tunnel in Sidari, on the other hand, they will find everlasting love. One of the best choices for a romantic walk is Anemomylos, a picturesque windmill in the Garitsa area that is reached by a beautiful twenty-minute walking route along the seaside.
Northwest of Corfu is compiled of three stunning, virgin islands named Diapontian Islands, Othonoi, Erreikousa and Mathraki. The shortest and easiest way to get to this magical island complex is to take the boat departing from Agios Stefanos’ small port. The best ways to explore these islands is by cruising around the islands on a boat.
Another choice for a regular excursion is Paxoi and Antipaxoi, which are tiny islands in the Ionian Sea, 10 miles south of Corfu. Such tiny islands, surrounded with lush foliage, can fascinate with their spectacular beaches, stunning scenery and welcoming little taverns. During the summer months, boats depart from the central port of Corfu daily for Paxoi and Antipaxoi.
A common complaint that was heard by locals and students in the narrow streets of Corfu was the lack of vivid nightlife in the city centre, with the tsipouradika and the bars counting on one hand ‘s fingers. With the establishment of many new small haunts, this has fortunately changed during the last three years. One of the better ways to become one with the locals and the students is to visit Prosalendou Street in the heart of the old city, which has been dubbed ‘Psirri’ because of its multiple packed tsipouradika every night, which is what happens in Athens’ homonymous lane. Getting drunk on some tsipouro and ouzo while listening to rempetika music is an unforgettable authentic Greek experience at Berdes, one of the tsipouradika on Prosalendou Street. This is one of the best experiences in Greece.
Corfu is surrounded by two fortifications which used to defend the town from aggressive medieval invasions. They have lost their functional application nowadays but not their appeal, leading as proud icons of a glorious time.
The Old Fortress is a Byzantine and Venetian architectural masterpiece situated on the east side of the old town of Corfu.
The New Fortress, also known as Fortezza Nuova, was built by the Venetians during the 16th century when the Old Fortress was insufficient to protect the town. It is an impressive structure that stands over Corfu’s Old Port that sustained serious damage during the successive wars. Today it hosts Greek Navy services, as well as numerous cultural activities.
There is a popular secret relevant to all tourism attractions and Corfu is no exception: the best beaches are those that preserve their modesty by not drawing thousands of visitors because of their remote position. The easy way to surmount the tourist cliches and visit some of the island’s hidden treasures is to rent a car from one of the various car rental agencies. One of the most beautiful beaches in Greece, near the village of Liapades, is the unknown beach of Rovinia, a real paradise on earth that could be such a destination. You’ll be fascinated by the crystal-clear lakes, various caves and idyllic scenery.
Feel the rain on your skin
Paragliding is the island’s number one accessory, as rain makes its presence known throughout the year. The summer period is no exception, even in July and August, with periodic rainfalls. Friendly advice: do not let it ruin your stay in Corfu and just enjoy it if that happens. Just remember there is nothing better than swimming under the raindrops in an empty beach. Corfu is one of the best places to visit in Greece.
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