Holidays in Corfu: the best things to do, when to go, greek cuisine
Corfu is an island in the Ionian Sea that lies just off the West coast of Greece. Shaped like a half-moon, Corfu was placed on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2007 as a place as laden with history as it is beauty. Many battles by Italians, Turks, French and British were fought here, and Corfu was declared “Castle City” by the Greek government for the fortified buildings set in strategic areas around the island.
Things to see in Corfu
Two mountain ranges on the island provide hiking and magnificent views of the harbor and neighbouring islands. Mt. Pantokrator is over 1000 meters high and sometimes even gets snow in the winter.
When you are tired from hiking, Corfu offers a variety of beaches, from sandy and sun drenched areas to rocky coves that are quiet and out of the way. Corfu even has a championship golf course for those who want to swing some clubs in a magnificent setting.
There are many local festivals during the summer and are open to all visitors. There are also Greek Churches and Monasteries on Corfu that are well worth visiting. Corfu’s history can be seen as well in its Italianate architecture. This is especially true in places like the Liston colonnade and the vast main plaza and park. The old citadel is an old Venetian fortress that has been partially restored and is used for concerts and other cultural events.
The Palaia Anaktora are a complex of buildings of Roman architectural style that were once palaces to the King of Greece and later to the British Governors of the island. They are open to the public and house art exhibits, beautiful gardens and a café where visitors can observe ships on their way to Corfu harbor.
Corfu residents are very hospitable to foreign visitors. Large holiday villas and resorts have been built along the North and East coasts. Many villas offer private pools, apartments, Greek houses, and hotels. There are even some all-inclusive hotels. The streets of old town Corfu are narrow and paved with cobblestones that call out to be explored on foot.
The food in Corfu features veal, pork and lamb. And the Italian influences in the cuisine are easily seen. Olives, pomegranates, figs and grapes grow and thrive on the island. Olive groves and vineyards have been producing in Corfu since ancient times and once again it is continuing a large trade in olive oil.
Corfu cuisine is a wealth of flavors and spices. The hot specialties of the best restaurants and cafes in Corfu are:
- The lamb marinated in olive oil and lemon juice
- Grilled fish with herbs
- Shrimps, octopus and squids.
The most popular snacks are white feta cheese made of goat milk and mullet, another type of goat cheese.
When is the best time to visit Corfu?
The best time to visit is from May to October, though July and August can sometimes be very hot. Corfu is a close knit community and crime is very rare. It is one of the safest places to vacation in Europe and the Mediterranean. It is a friendly island with a warm welcome for visitors of all ages.