●Corfu Trail – around island; thecorfutrail.com; covers whole island from Cape Asprókavos (south) to Áyios Spyrídhon beach, next to Cape Ayías Ekaterínis (north); avoids roads as much as possible & takes walkers across varied terrain (from beaches to highest peaks – passing by Lefkími, Korissíon lagoon, Áyii Dhéka, Pélekas, Myrtiótissa, Paleokastrítsa, Áyios Yeóryios Pagón, Spartýlas & Mount Pandokrátor; paths along route waymarked with yellow aluminium signs.
●CV Villas – cvvillas.com/cvdestinations/greece/gated-pool; luxury villa rentals.
AFIONAS – charming, small community with winding streets and artist workshops.
●Anemos Taverna – kinda waterfront (just follow signs & take meandering walk through village); 011-30-26-6305-2168; realcorfu.com/anemos-cafe-restaurant-afionas; spectacular sunset view; good cocktails and wine; excellent appetizers; worth special trip.
●Villa Lefki Thea – 21 Melisonia (Sinies); 011-30-020-3027-8675; vipgreekvillas.com/villa_lefki_thea.htm; wonderful view over Ionian Sea, surrounded by cypress & olive trees; 6-bedroom villa; swimming pool & terraces with sofas & sun beds.
●Fagopotion – Ágios Stéfanos Sinión waterfront; 011-30-26-6308-2020; realcorfu.com/taverna-fagopotion-agios-stephanos-ne; accomplished waterside taverna with enviable reputation for traditional recipes; fresh, wild fish at fair prices (given location in posh “Kensington-on-Sea”; signature dishes include fluffy, non-greasy 3-cheese saganáki, succulent, pork-based bekrí mezé, baby squid (late spring), rabbit stew, chard-based tsigarélli & melt-in-mouth octopus (secret is to blanch prior to grilling); orange cake on house for dessert.
BENITSES – eastern coast; former fishing village & among most traditional Corfiot villages with unique natural beauty; popular tourist destination; surrounded by mountains on 1 side & Ionian Sea on other.
●Klimataria Tou Bellou – main old village square; 011-30-26-6107-1201; klimataria-restaurant.gr; inconspicuously signposted seafood taverna known for wild, fresh (not farmed or frozen) fare; attentive service from father-&-son team (Nikos & Kostas Bellos); unusual dishes include sardine bourdéto; bulk white wine from Neméa recommended; try for tables outside this tottering 4-story townhouse.
●Boukari Beach – 2.5 miles beyond Mesongí, 700m before jetty; 011-30-26-6205-1792; boukaribeach.gr; cult seafood taverna in tiny hamlet on southeast coast; fresh fish, tender kalamári, octopus bourdéto & steamed mussels.
CAPE DRASTIS – notable for great beach & rock formations; use care when driving in (dirt track).
●Archontiko – Main Road Lefkimmi; 011-30-26-6107-5851; archontiko.com.gr; views are stunning, restaurant has wonderful décor & design; food considered excellent & service outstanding; have drinks on terrace; great steaks.
KALAMI – where For Your Eyes Only filmed.
Sights & Sites
●Durrell Home – Gimari (on bay); 011-30-26-6309-; corfu-kalami.gr/durrell.html or white-house-corfu.gr; can be rented.
KASSIOPI – northeast coast; small traditional fishing village; founded during Epirus King Pyrrhus’ reign in 3rd Century BCE as supply post during war with Rome; Emperor Nero came to Temple to Zeus here; much of small headland to north occupied by Byzantine fortress.
●Tavernaki Sinies – waterfront; 011-30-26-6308-1529; tavernaki.com.gr; average with bad wine.
●TKD’s (Rodney’s) – Trabukos; facebook.com/tkds.rodneys.1; best for cocktails.
●Greco Eva Palace – Tzavros (on bay); 011-30-26-6109-0003; evapalace.com; 5 star luxury hotel, probably best on island.
●Grecotel Corfu Imperial – Komeno-Gouvia (on bay); 011-30-26-6108-8400; corfuimperial.com; another 5 star hotel and contends with Eva; more villa hotel; probably best place to stay.
●Roula – road end on Nisí Gerékou Peninsula; 011-30-26-6109-1832; taverna-roula.gr; place for fish near Corfu Town; outside terrace looking towards Gouviá marina; fish skillfully butterflied (petáli) on request; only letdown is bulk wine, so get beer or bottled wine instead.
Sights & Sites
●Villa Anemoyanni – Sotiriotissa; Durrell family residence at one time.
KORFU TOWN (includes Gastouri)
●Halikounas – agni.gr/Corfu/Corfu_Beach_Guide/Halikounas_Beach/index.asp; hidden treasure away from main tourist beaches; sandy, wide beach stretches along Lake Korission dividing lake & open sea.
●Bakalogatos – 23 Alpíou (Spiliá district, on corner Prosaléndou); 011-30-26-6130-1721; name means “grocery cat”; relies on local products; indoor/outdoor tables; menu mostly vegetarian/cheese starters & pork recipes; what seafood there is tends to be salt cured (pastá) fish; friendly service.
●Khrysomalis (Babis) – 6 Nikifórou Theotókou (just off Listón Arcades); 011-30-26-6103-0342; must visit; classic casserole restaurant; local clientele descends for such homestyle specialities as tzatzíki, angináres ala políta with fresh artichokes, not frozen hearts, stuffed cabbage leaves, hearty stews & lentil soup, washed down by heavy but palatable local red wine; Durrells ate here regularly during their sojourn, but it has existed longer than that.
●Tsipouradiko – Prosaléndou (corner P. Gída, behind appeals court); 011-30-26-6108-2240; always packed with young university crowd & their elders; small plates of mushroom croquettes, marinated Florina peppers & octopus vinaigrette; summer courtyard seating.
Sights & Sites
●Corfu Fortress (Paleo Frourio) – Esplanade; whc.unesco.org/en/list/978 or whc.unesco.org/en/list/978; Venetian fortress; worth visit; UNESCO World Heritage Site.
●Kynopiastes – 10 km from Corfu Town; must-visit traditional village; old mansions from 17th-19th Centuries, marble church, 17th Century monastery & museum devoted to olive tree; narrow, tiled paths.
●Liston – old area of town with interesting architecture & cafes.
●Museum of Asian Art – Palea Anaktora; 011-30-26-6103-0443; matk.gr; only museum in Greece exclusively dedicated to Far Eastern & Indian art and antiquity; housed in former Palace of Sts. Michael & George.
●Sissi’s Palace (Achilleon Palace) – Gastouri (10 kms south of Corfu Town); 011-30-26-6105-6245; achillion-corfu.gr/default_en.html; palace built in Corfu by Austrian Empress (Kaiserin) Elisabeth of Bavaria, also known as Sissi, after loss of her only son, Austrian Crown Prince Rudolf in Mayerling Incident (1889); built in 1890 as summer palace; palace, with classic Greek statues that surround it, monument to platonic romanticism as well as escapism and was, naturally, named after Achilles; panoramic fresco on main hall upper level; imperial gardens on hilltop provide view of surrounding hill crests & valleys with Ionian sea in background; casino scene in James Bond film For Your Eyes Only (1981) filmed here.
KRINI – small village notable for local goods and produce shops.
Sights & Sites
●Angelokastro – northwest coast (follow signs from Krini); if you do nothing else in Corfu, visit this Byzantine castle; located atop highest shoreline peak (steep cliff walk takes you above sea & surveys all way to mainland Greece mountains); exact building period not known, but attributed to Michael I Komnenos & son reigns; 1st documentary evidence dates to 1272, when Giordano di San Felice took possession of it for Charles of Anjou, who had seized Corfu from Sicily King Manfred in 1267.
LAKONES – on Bay of St. George; typical Corfiot village on hill-slope; walk to Bella Vista to admire view over Bay of Paleokastritsa & relax in picturesque coffee shop; there is path leading down to Paleokastritsa.
●Bella Vista Cafe – main road; 011-30-26-6304-9271; great pastries and perhaps best restaurant view on island.
●Bacchus (Vakhos) – main beach, south end; 011-30-26-6107-5301; bacchus.gr; unimprovably-set, beachfront taverna, going for 35 years now; prides self on sourcing local, fresh seafood like baby kalamári, large prawns, perfectly fried koutsomoúra & naturally colored (not pink) taramosaláta.
NISSAKI (includes Barbati)
●Barbati – Barbati; mile-long “shingle” beach with mountain backdrop.
●Barbati Beach House – Barbati; cvvillas.com/Destinations/Greece/Corfu/Barbat-Nissaki-S; sleeps up to 10 (5 Bedrooms); 2 Bathrooms/3 shower rooms; on beach; WiFi.
●Taverna Nikolas – Agni Bay; 011-30-26-6309-1142; agnibay.com; lunch; mezes.
●Toula’s Taverna – Agni Bay; 011-30-26-6309-1350; toulasagni.com/uk/restaurant-corfu.html; dinner; try spicy prawn risotto.
●Taverna Agni – Agni Bay; 011-30-26-6309-1142; taverna-agni.com; try pickled octopus.
NYMPHES – notable for walk to waterfalls & wells; can visit Agriculture Co-operative, which raises kumquat & produces liquor & sweets (you will be offered some for free and have chance to try different liquor qualities; just outside village is Askitario, historic, small monastery; according to tradition, here lived 5th Century CE monk Artemios Paissios from Epirus.
PALEA PERITHIA – agni.gr/guides/what_to_see_and_visit/old_perithia.asp; oldest village on island & Heritage Protected Site in Designated Natural Beauty Area; one-time hideaway from pirate attacks; 8 churches & 130 houses; excellent Venetian influence example; Agios Iakovos Persis church (at village entrance) contains some remarkable frescoes inside (may not be open to public until late 2014).
●Foros – old central square; 011-30-69-5595-0459; the-green-island.co.uk/to-do/item/347-foros-restaurant/347-foros-restaurant; among 1st tavernas established in formerly desolate Paleá Períthia; menu emphasizes grills, but can have very enjoyable mezédes-only meal (sausages, kremydópita (onion turnover), & stuffed peppers; save room for karydópita (walnut cake) with ice cream.
Sights & Sites
●Mount Pantokrator – north-east; highest mountain on island; at summit, can see all of Corfu, as well as Albania; at top there is café for tourists & monastery; can walk to top (if you choose to walk, among best places to start is in Old Perithia, Corfu’s oldest village, where it takes approximately 2 hours round trip).
PALEOKASTRITSA (includes Doukades)
●Agia Trianda – take boat from Agios Spyridon beach.
●Agios Spyridon – paleokastritsa-bliss.com; lovely, sandy beaches.
●Alipa – take boat from Agios Spyridon beach.
●Platakia – take boat from Agios Spyridon beach.
●Akrotiri Beach – Kastélli Cape; 011-30-26-6304-1237; akrotiri-beach.com; eyrie perching on steep-sided promontory; direct access to sea & pool terrace at cliff’s edge; not great.
●Elizabeth’s – Doukádes (village center, 5km inland from Paleokastrítsa); 011-30-26-6304-1728; since late 1940s, now increasingly in hands of grand-daughter Elizabeth (though founder Granny Elizabeth still very much involved); homestyle fare: cockerel pastitsáda with big round noodles, wholesome peas with potatoes; more fun to eat at inside than at limited outdoor tables.
Sights & Sites
●Caves – take boat from Agios Spyridon beach.
●Corfu Aquarium – off Agios Spyridon beach, just before Monastery; 011-30-26-6304-1339; corfuaquarium.com; unprepossessing.
●Monastery (Panagia Paleokastritsa) – above bay (can drive or walk); 011-30-26-6304-1210; panagiapaleokastritsa.com; spectacular setting in trees with lovely views; museum has ikons and some relics.
●Pelekas – west (central); pelekas.com; isolated, sandy beach with small restaurant.
●Durell Strawberry Villa – up hill, 3 minutes to beach; ownersdirect.co.uk/greece/GR2478.htm; sleeps up to 8 (3 bedrooms).
●Logas – narrow beach encircled by imposing hills.
●Bikolis Taverna – Sidari Road; 011-30-26-6309-5291; tavernabikolis.wordpress.com; small, family-owned taverna serving grilled food.
●7th Heaven Cafe – on beach, at top; 011-30-26-6109-5035; 7thheaven-cafe.blogspot.gr; open 12 years; unique view & lovely sunsets.
RODA – northern coast; traditional fishing village, area having retained character while developing into popular holiday destination; extensive restaurants & shopping.
●Sidari – fair-sized resort notable for “Canal de l’Amour” (sandstone cliffs with narrow inlets, natural archway & small paths to explore.