Enchantment of Greek islands comprises the fact that each island is so different and unique, that you may spend weeks choosing which ones you would like to see during your yacht charter vacation in the Mediterranean.
Each island whether it’s a part of the Dodecanese or Cyclades, is a whole new world to explore. And there’s one particular we would recommend to visit. It is called Cofru island, the second largest of the Ionian group of islands, located north of Greece. It faces the coastline of Albania and looks like a sickle from the bird’s eye view.
It is not a small piece of land, so it may take some time to unfold its charm. However, since you travel with the yacht, it means you can do it with ultra-comfort and calmness, while cruising around the island and deciding where to moor.
Unique in many ways, Corfu has it all to impress: beautiful nature, mix of architecture styles due to its vibrant history, culture and wonderful Mediterranean hospitality.
First and the most important place to see on the island is its capital city - Kerkyra. Once you are there surrounded with the old district full of parks, churches, castles, cobblestone streets, café and restaurants, you’ll say that this is a miniature Italy. Everything here reminds of it: vaulted colonnades, little shops, gelaterias, and souvenir shops. The history and Venetian rule left its marks here.
Though we must be fair, Kerkyra owns its beauty and charm to various nations and empires who were eager to seize it, owned the island or influenced its appearance and traditions in their own way. By the way, Kerkyra’s old town is a proud member of UNESCO World Heritage.
Today the capital of the island reminds a peaceful oasis placed right at the entrance to the Adriatic Sea. However, back in the times the island lived turbulent life. As a proof, just in Kerkyra itself you’ll notice three ancient forts built during Venetian times to fight off the Ottoman Empire and defend the trading interests of the island and the Republic of Venice, at the first place. You can only imagine how much this island lived through while being a strategic and important Mediterranean port for centuries.
Besides wondering inside the maze of narrow streets, you should visit Paleo Frourio, or the Old Fortress, which is, let’s say, a souvenir from Venetians. One of the largest squares in Europe called Spinada is a place to have a walk and see how locals spend their leisure time. It is a blissful area where Kerkyra orchestra sometimes gives performances and residents of the town play cricket, a habit inherited from the British times.
Kerkyra old quarter and its fortresses is not the only sites there are to impress visitors. Asian Art Museum open daily all year long is in the top list of the town’s marvels. There are artefacts and relics from Cambodia, Thailand, Tibet, Japan, China, Northern Pakistan. The amazing collection of the museum is amassed by several Greek diplomats.
For night life seekers, Kerkyra town has to offer authentic bars and cafes with live music performances and club music. Most bars located either in the center or west of the new port.
Being a large island means that there are plenty things to see except main towns. Head to Palea Perithia, a small ghost village abandoned by its inhabitants in the middle of the last century. The settlement reminds a time capsule of a medieval venetian town. It is located in the northern part of the island.
Sail by rock formations of Sidari with your yacht to see marvelous sandstone cliffs and swim in the most unusual decorations of Kanali tis Agapis, one of the most popular rock formations over there.
Then visit Paleokastritsa, one of the most beautiful spots on the whole island famous for its long sand beaches, which became post-card stars, places for diving and wind surfing, bright azure water, a 12-century monastery, and much more.
For quiet and calm sceneries head south of the island which reminds one big olive and citrus grove. It’s a bliss to find yourself in the middle of eco land with no fuss, and the coastline which is dotted with sleepy villages, pristine beaches with cobalt-blue waters and bird-rich lagoons.
Corfiots are famous for their debonair hospitality. They’ve been always welcoming guests since ancient times and are happy to share their passion for life, delicious food and tasty drinks, let you discover with them the joy of festivals and feasts. No wonder aristocrats from the “Old World” have always loved to repose here.
And yes, this island like any other in Greece is also very much a right place to feel all the rave of gastronomic emotions related to local cuisine. Typical Corfu diches would be Sofrito beef cooked in wine with garlic and parsley, Pastitsado pasta with chicken, accompanied by Greek top Moussaka, Kleftiko, piquant local dish called Bourdetto, and Prawn Saganaki. The list of meals to try is infinite as the one with all family owned tavernas which you would be visiting.
Besides food, shopping can be a pleasant supplement to your journey. Locally produced olive oil, jewelry and all kinds of hand-made souvenirs, leather and fur workpieces, clothes from organic fabrics, and ceramics. These are just the highlights of shopping experience in Corfu.
You’ll see for yourself that Corfu is good for families with small kids, as the sea here is calm and warm, especially north-east of the island. Those who like quite active way of spending their holiday, will also find this place very much suitable. There are numerous options to have a coastal walk, hiking and trekking, diving, windsurfing, cliff jumping, etc.
For the five-star sand beach sail to Gardenos and Megali Lakka beach located in south-western part of the island. It’s not packed with people and boats; therefore, the water here is claimed to be one of the clearest around the island.
To please a sunset fan inside of you, head to Cape Drastis, most norther piace of Corfu, which is decorated with sculpted reddish cliffs, for an ultimate sunset experience.
If you happen to visit Corfu in August, you may witness some important celebrations. On the 11th of August there is a festival during which the relics of island’s patron saint Spyridon are processed through the town. Locals believe that the saint helped them in lifting the Ottoman siege three centuries ago. Celebration of the miracle goes beyond the capital city. In the bay of Paleokastritsa a mock naval battle takes place, accompanied by performance of local musicians and dancers, and a firework show.
Nevertheless, if you choose Corfu as a part of your yacht charter itinerary in Greece, then a feast of colors and beautiful experiences is waiting for you! Enjoy to the fullest!