Corfu is one of the most beautiful tourist destinations of Greece. Its beautiful beaches enriched with dense vegetation, and the Venetian style architecture with its massive buildings attract many tourists every single year.
The connection between Corfu and Gerald Durrell
Corfu became famous thanks to the famous English author Gerald Durrell, who moved to Corfu with his family in 1935. His most famous autobiographical work is about his experience in Corfu called “My family and other animals”. He was astonished by the natural beauty of the island, which he stated in his book: “Gradually the magic of the island settled over us gently and clingingly as pollen”.(Durrell, 1978)
The architecture style of the island
Corfu belonged to Venice for many centuries which determined its character which can be seen through its Venetian style architecture. The massive buildings made of natural stone, balconies, narrow streets and roofed verandas are the reminders of that period in Corfu’s history.
The main attractions
Corfu town is the capital of the island and the biggest city with a population of 108.000 people. The main square is the Esplanade which is in the center of the city. On this square, there are cricket matches organized on Sundays. The most famous spot in Corfu town is the Liston café, which is an arcaded building built in a French style architecture, resembling the rue du Rivoli in Paris. Tourists can explore the narrow, Venetian style streets of Corfu town, where they can find several shops and boutiques with souvenirs, jewelry, designer clothes and leather jackets.
The Campiello is the medieval quarter of Corfu town and is part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site. The narrow, winding streets are like a labyrinth and remind tourist of Venice. These streets are full of shops and bazaars which are a great opportunity for visitors to buy some souvenirs or local handmade Greek products.
The Old Fortress
The Old Fortress can be found in Corfu town. This fortress was built by the Venetians in 1546. The most remarkable building inside the fortress is the Church of Saint George which looks like an ancient style Doric temple. The top of the fortress offers a wonderful view over the town and the mountainous coast of Albania.
The Kanoni Peninsula
The Kanoni Peninsula offers the iconic view over the famous Vlacherna Monastery and the Pontikonisi (Mouse) island. This wonderful view has become the symbol of Corfu island.
Sissi’s Achilleion Palace
The Achilleion Palace was built for Empress Elisabeth of Austria (Sissi) in 1890-91. Sissi hired an Italian architect to realize the project of the palace. She named the palace Achilleion because she wanted to express her admiration for Achilles, the hero of the Trojan War. Sissi used this palace to escape her life, which was full of problems.
The most beautiful resort on Corfu island is Paleokastritsa, which is often called the “Capri of Corfu”. It is unique because of its spectacular sights consisted of grottoes, cliffs, turquoise waters. At this resort, there is a monastery which was built in the 17th century. This monastery offers a spectacular view over the Ionian Sea.
The Canal D’amour is a magical place which attracts many tourists and especially couples, thanks to its beautiful and mysterious tiny caves and coves which were formed several years ago. This area of eroding sandstone cliffs has its own legend: every couple who swim through the caves of Canal D’amour will stay together until the end of their days. The name Canal D’amour means ‘The channel of love’ which also indicates the fact that this is the ideal place for couples.
Sidari is the most popular tourist destination in Corfu. It is the resort which famous for its nightlife. This resort also offers shopping opportunity and tourist can find nice restaurants where they can try different local dishes.
Food and drink
The Greek cuisine is famous all around the world for its exotic flavors and delicious meals. Greeks can make a delicious meal from the simplest ingredients. The secret lies in its ingredients which are always fresh and full of flavor. The key ingredients that they use are olive oil, salt, pepper, lemon, parsley, dill, garlic, and oregano. Besides the traditional Greek dishes like gyros, souvlaki, moussaka the island has a few local dishes too. One of the most famous and unique dishes of Corfu island is the Sofrito, which is made with beef cooked in red wine with lots of garlic and parsley usually served with mashed potatoes.
The local drink of Corfu is the famous kumquat liqueur, which is made of a small oval shaped fruit which looks like an orange and it belongs to the citrus family. The delicious kumquat liqueur became the trademark of Corfu.
Thematic tours and activities
Apart from the main tourist attractions, there are a lot of thematic tours that tourists can choose from. The wide range of thematic tours attract different types of visitors: from young people to elderly, everybody finds the perfect tour for its own preference.
Those who seek adventure and fun can choose the Aqualand, which is one of the largest water theme parks in Europe. The variety of slides offers a wonderful experience for the adventurous ones.
Tourists who would like to spend a great night in a restaurant by tasting local food, listening to Greek music and dancing, can go to a Greek night which is a very good opportunity to be indulged in the local traditions of Greece.
People who would like to admire the beauty of the Ionian Sea which surrounds the island can choose one from the boat tours. These boat tours are amazing opportunities to admire the beautiful landscapes of Corfu island and are excellent for those who would like to have a swim in the wonderful turquoise waters of the Ionian Sea.
In conclusion, Corfu is a wonderful island, a charm of the Ionian Sea, which worth to be visited and explored. It’s a wonderful amalgam of history, traditional architecture, beautiful scenery and delicious cuisine, which is blended in a unique way, thereby attracting many tourists who want to discover the beauty of this place.