Corfu

Corfu

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About Corfu

Glistening beaches and high-calibre international cuisine

Once hailed as the seat of European learning of modern Greece Corfu is still noticeably proud of its intellectual beginnings, making it rich in fine architecture, established museums and high-calibre international cuisine. As one of the greenest and most lush Greek islands Corfu offers sweeping, panoramic views, complemented by the usual high standard of beaches and lively harbour atmosphere often found among the many Greek islands.

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Hotels are scattered across the island, behind the popular beach resorts, and also in the elegant capital, Kérkyra. A top choice in town is Bella Venezia Hotel (N. Zambéli 4), just three floors of rooms installed in a neo-classical former girls’ school. A short way west of Kérkyra, the five-star Kontokali Bay Resort & Spa has its own gorgeous beach and appeals to families. Above Pélekas, affordable Levant is built in mock rustic style, with sweeping views east and west, marble and wood everywhere. In northwesterly Ágios Stéfanos, Delfino Blu overlooks an excellent beach and presents boutique standards in its pastel-hued units, with a gourmet restaurant downstairs.

Hit the streets of Kerkyra Town for the most plentiful shopping opportunities. For leather goods stick to the main pedestrianised street Nikifórou Theotókou, or for silver head to Evgeníou Voulgáreos which runs parallel. Notable jeweller Ilias Lalaounis resides nearby (Kapodistríou 35). Seek out the advice of Marios Tsangarakis for all things Greek when it comes to music at Ihos 65 (Agíon Pándon 4). Thanks to the abundance of olive groves in Corfu, olive-wood souvenirs are not in short supply.

Corfu is a real hit for foodies, thanks to the variety of local ingredients, unusual recipes, and what can be a wealthy, demanding local clientele. Rex (Kapodistríou 66) is one of the island’s premier eateries, with prices to match, while Khyrsomallis (aka Babis; Nikifórou Theotókou 6) offers classic Greek casseroles for a less eye-watering cost, particularly at lunch time. Try Klimataria tou Bellou (main square, Benítses) or Boukari Bay (Boúkari shore road) for excellent seafood, or the village of Paleá Períthia for hearty country fare at Foros in the shadow of Mt Pandokrátor.

Carnival

February/March

Enjoy three weekends of celebration that culminates with the the trial and cremation of the ‘King Carnival’ effigy on the final Sunday. Expect fancy dress, floats, and marching brass bands, or filarmonikés.

Easter

April/May

Filarmonikés feature once more at the Good Friday eve procession of Christ’s funeral bier, the Epitáfios. Watch out for pottery thrown from upper stories on Saturday morning in the search of good luck, prior to the spectacular fireworks displays that accompany Resurrection Mass at midnight.

Varkarola

August

Paleokastrítsa is the setting for the biggest spectacle of the summer. As the evening draws in musical performances fill the air, followed by a re-enactment of Odysseus’ battle with Poseidon and discovery by Nausikaa. Torchlit boats enchant the bay as they approach shore, before fireworks light up the sky and a beach party kicks into life.

Agiotfest

August

The village of Ágios Ioánnis plays host to this annual soul, rock and folk festival, a one-day extravaganza that continues to defy funding difficulties to put on a show.

St Spyridon Processions

March/April, August and November

The relics of Spyros (the patron saint of Corfu) traverse the streets of Kérkyra Town on Palm Sunday, Easter Saturday, 11 August and the first Sunday in November.

Useful Information

Key facts

Language:Greek
Currency:Euro
Time zone:GMT +2 hours
Flight time:3 hours 30 mins
Airport code:CFU
Holiday type:Beach / Summer Sun

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Corfu map

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