Corfu is the largest city and capital of the island of Corfu and the region of Ionian Islands. Corfu Town has a footprint of former civilizations that passed through here, a little of Venice’s and Naples’s specific architecture, but also resembles of both France and England’s architecture. Corfu is on the east side of the island, built on a peninsula that essentially bisects the city, dividing it into two different sections. Corfu Town is divided into the old and the new town. The new part has a clear urban character and is structured as a modern urban center with avenues and tall buildings. The old town of Corfu (town) is one of the most beautiful cities in Greece, very scenic and exciting. Corfu combines Venetian and medieval architecture performing a very special character.
Corfu town (Kerkyra)
Corfu town (Kerkyra) is the pretty, cosmopolitan capital of the island of Corfu, dominated by the striking images of the old fort, separated from the mainland by a narrow channel and flanked by yacht and fishing harbours, and the church of St Spyridon, a domed church that houses the remains of the island’s patron saint.
With a small beach and easy access to surrounding areas of historical and aesthetic interest, this is the place to visit to experience a mixture of cultural influences and to combine sightseeing with a good dose of relaxation. Mon Repos is the main town beach and is a small patch of sand with a cafe. Beyond the town, some of the best beaches of the whole archipelago, ranging from long sandy stretches to pretty shingle bays, wait to welcome you. The Liston is a good place to go for lunch with a view of the Esplanade, although prices can be high.
With numerous bars and restaurants, there is a lot to keep tourists happy in Kerkyra town. Most of the discos are situated in a small area a couple of kilometers north of the town and are frequented by locals and tourists alike. There are quieter options dotted about the town including the open-air cinema which shows mainly English-language films. There is a commercial center slightly inland and away from the old town, although this is a much more interesting place to shop. Try not to get lost shopping for the local olive wood items and jewelry that can be found here. An old morning market selling fish and farm produce can be found near the New Fort. For a spot of sightseeing, you don’t need to step outside of the resort. The Old Town is the most interesting place to visit and huddles around a great central esplanade with public gardens and a cricket ground providing a pleasant escape for locals and tourists alike. The British influence is evident in grand municipal buildings, while the French made their mark with the Liston, an arcaded block overlooking the esplanade that provides the perfect venue for a sip of ginger beer beneath the arches. 18th-century Venetian architecture is evident in the winding streets of the old town where colorful shops draw the attention below and the week’s washing hangs from balconies high above.
Attractions in Corfu Town
Numerous buildings and monuments from the period of the Venetian domination are preserved in the town. Certainly, the most important of them is the impressive Old Fortress, built at a natural stronghold site. It is a Venetian construction of the 15th century, built on the older Byzantine walls of the 13th and 14th centuries; the Venetians completed the fortification with a moat, which resulted to transform the place to a small, artificially made, islet. Several buildings are preserved within the castle, as the central gate (dated to 1550), the bastions of Martinengo, Savorgnian and Mandraki, some towers, the Anglican church of St. George (a basilica imitating an ancient Doric temple), built in 1840, the Catholic Chapel, known as “the Romanic Church”, the buildings of the prisons, the British military quarters and the military hospital, the lighthouse and the clock tower. Most of the buildings house actual activities and services of the town, as the Central Municipal Library, the Historic Archives, the Byzantine Collection, a Conference Center and the shop of official copies of the Archaeological Service.
The Venetian period is also represented by the New Fortress, upon the hill overlooking the old port, which actually houses the Museum of Pottery and an open theater, you will also see the Municipal Hall, a very nice building of the late 17th century, known as the “Arcade of the Nobles” or “Loggia”, the palace of the Latin Archbishop, actually housing the branch Agricultural Bank, the building of the Ionian Academy, built in early 17th century to house the Military Governor, up to 1824 when it was used to house the Ionian Academy. Also, don’t miss to visit the Catholic Church of St. James (Domos), built in the 16th century and serving as the Cathedral of the Catholics since 1632. Finally, you will certainly see the most characteristic complex of multi-story buildings with the series of arches at Spianada; it is the famous Liston, the meeting-place of the Corfiots, but also of the tourists, as it is a place often used as a natural scenery for films and TV serials and it is full of life with its numerous trendy cafes and bars.
Palace of St. Michael and St. George
Within the same central square you will also see the impressive Palace of St. Michael and St. George, built during the early years of the British domination and served as the seat of the British High Commissioner on the island, of the Ionian Senate and of the battalion of St. Michael and St. George. From 1864 up to the abolishment of the monarchy in Greece, the building served as the summer palace of the kings of Greece. Nowadays, it houses the Municipal Gallery and the Museum of Asian Art. In front of the building, you may see the statue of the British High Commissioner, Adam.
Several monuments of Classical and Roman period, as well as Byzantine buildings and churches, are also worth seeing in the town. The most important of them are the monument of Menecrates (dated to 600 b.C.) situated at the ancient cemetery at Garitsa, the sanctuary of Apollo Corcyraios, close to Mon Repos, the archaeological site of Palaeopolis, the ancient city of Kerkyra, a part of the ancient wall (the “Nerantziha tower”), close to the airport and the ruins of the temple of Artemis (Diana), also close to the airport. In what concerns the Byzantine period, the most important monuments are the church of Aghios Iason and Sossipatros (dated to 1000 A.D.) and the ruins of the Early Christian (5th century A.D.) basilica within the archaeological site of Palaeopolis.
Best hotels in Corfu
Flights to Greece
Early Christian basilica of Palaeopolis
The only Byzantine monument of the basilica was built in the 5th century A.D. by the bishop Jovian, on the ruins of a Roman odeum. It was destroyed several times: by the Vandals and Goths in the 6th century, by the Saracens and the Normans in the 11th century, by the Turks in 1537 and, finally, in the Second World War. It was rebuilt twice: after its destruction in the 11th century, with three aisles and a narthex, and again, in 1680, by the Cretan monk Arsenios Kaloudis.
Mon Repos is the palace that built in 1831 in the area of Palaiopolis, as a summer resort of the British Lord High Commissioner. In 1964 it was used as a summer residence to the Greek Royal family. After the end of monarchy in Greece, there were some conflicts about the legal owner of the estate, and finally, it fell under the jurisdiction of the Municipality of Corfu. Today the area of Mon Repos is open to the public. The Mon Repos Museum contains a large variety of exhibits including archaeological finds, Byzantine remains furniture and dresses from the period of British rule, paintings and other mementos of Corfu’s history.
Old Harbour, Mouragia & Faliraki
One of the finest walks follows the shore from the Old Harbour to Faliraki and the Spianada. Set off from Old Harbour Square and walk along parallel to the impressive Venetian tenements. Gradually the road (Arseniou St.) grows narrower and the buildings come closer to the sea. We are now in Mouragia, one of the most picturesque quarters of the town, stretching along the sea walls with a view of the little islands of Vido and Lazareto (a boat leaves the Old Harbour for Vido approximately every hour; there is a superb view of the town from the municipal cafe on the island).
It’s worth stopping at the Dionysios Solomos Museum (3rd turning off Arseniou St. – watch for the sign). The museum is in the house where the great poet lived from 1828 to 1857 and has a number of his personal belongings, photographs, library, etc.
A little farther down there are steps which lead you up to the Church of Panagia Antivouniotissa, which houses the Museum of Post-Byzantine Ecclesiastical Art with its remarkable collection of icons from the 15th to the 19th century. As you walk along Arseniou St. you will pass a number of ouzo restaurants (ouzeri). The end of the street is overshadowed by the Kapodistrias House (at the beginning of the street of the same name). It was built under the period of British rule, on the site of the house where the first Greek governor was born. It later became the building of the Ionian Senate, and now houses part of the Ionian University. Just opposite a road leads down through the Agios Nikolaos Gate (one of the gates in the town walls) into Faliraki, a little bay with the Agios Nikolaos Church and a tiny beach, known as ‘bania t’ Alekou’, where you can swim and enjoy an ouzo in the municipal cafe with its view of the Ancient Fortress.
Returning along Kapodistriou St. you will find on the right at No. 120, just before the Spianada, an imposing building with a bontzo – an external stairway leading to a covered veranda. This is the home of the Anagnostiki Etaireia, the oldest cultural institution in modern Greece (1836), famous for its vast library on the Ionian islands, and for the conferences, exhibitions and other events it organizes. Walk a little farther on through an imposing arch, part of the Palace of Saint Michael and Saint George, and you are back at the Spianada.
Spianada (Espianada or Esplanada) is the heart of the town. The raised terrace was created for defensive purposes under Venetian rule and the square assumed its final form in more modern times under the French and British rulers of the island. Essentially it consists of two squares, divided in the middle by Viktoros Dousmani St. (where you will find a taxi rank, carriages for hire and a municipal parking area).
Its conception dates back to the period of French occupation.
In 1576 started the demolition of houses around the Old Fortress for strategic reasons, in order, the fighters in the Fortress would be able to see and fight the potential conquerors. By 1588 almost 2500 houses were destroyed, creating an open space, which became Spianada. Part of the large open space was used by the British as a cricket pitch, and exhibition games are still sometimes played, on beautiful lazy afternoons.
The northern side of the Spianada is dominated by the Palace of Saint Michael and Saint George, home of the Museum of Asian Art and the Municipal Gallery. In the garden, known as the People’s Garden, you will find the municipal cafe, a classic meeting point in town with its fine view of Vido island.
Outside the Palace, right next to the People’s Garden, there is another small garden, the Bosketo, with swings, benches and a view of the Ancient Fortress, which stands to the east of the square – to visit it you will cross the Venetian moat. The north-western side of the square is dominated by the Liston, the huge building complex, which stands out for its arcaded terrace, today full of cafes. It was built under French rule, to designs by the engineer Lesseps, in imitation of the Parisian Rue de Rivoli and ever since has featured on most of the postcards of Corfu town.
There is a cricket green opposite the Liston, where you’re always sure to catch a game. In the evening you should look for a table on the edge of the seating area, where you can smell the violets and listen to the frogs in the pond in front of the Palace. On the other (southern) side of the Spianada, the Upper Square, the island bands often play on the open-air bandstand and musical evenings are organized.
Just beyond the bandstand, you can see the Maitland Peristyle, a circular building surrounded by Ionic columns, also known as the ‘cistern’, because it covers the opening of an old water reservoir. It was built under British rule, in honor of the High Commissioner Sir Thomas Maitland. Some of the fine old houses on Kapodistriou St., along the Spianada, have been converted into atmospheric hotels, such as the Covolieri and the new Arkadion.
Spianada Square constitutes the center of community life for the people of Corfu. It is here that all the big public functions, the processions, the traditional celebrations are held.
A fairy-tale labyrinth of Venetian tenements, squares with old wells and fountains decorated with marble reliefs, churches, narrow streets with laundry hanging out to dry. The Campielo, to the north-west of the Spianada, still retains a definite atmosphere of past times. It was to here that the center of Corfu town was removed when the Ancient Fortress was no longer large enough to accommodate it.
The Campielo was the most densely-built suburb of the Xopoli (the Venetian town outside the walls) and consisted of a number of different neighborhoods, such as Antivouniotissa, Kremasti, and Agios Nikolaos.
It was here that the first Venetian tenements were built, to house as many people as possible in a limited area. You won’t need a compass to explore the Campielo, just surrender to the charm of the town and the surprises each little corner holds in store. Don’t expect to find many tourist shops and monuments, just enjoy the unspoiled atmosphere of a unique town, from an architectural point of view.
The most characteristic of the squares, Kremasti, is on two different levels. In the middle, next to the famous 17th-century marble well-head, stand the tables of one of the town’s loveliest restaurants, the Venetsianiko Pigadi. To get to the square, take Filarmonikis St. from Nikiforou Theotoki St. and then turn left on to Themistokleous St. and right on to Agias Theodoras St. At the end of Filarmonikis St., turning right on to Sof. Dousmani St., you will find yourself in front of the flower-filled grounds of the church of Agios Nikolaos ton Geronton. Enter the church and admire the superb carved screen, one of the oldest in the town. A flight of steps leads from the church to the lovely little Agias Elenis or Kyropoulas Square, with the palm tree in the center and the lofty buildings all around.
Town Hall Square
One of the most splendid squares in Corfu town, surrounded by impressive Venetian buildings – first and finest of all the Dimarcheio or Town Hall. It was built at the end of the 17th century in carved stone from Sinia (a village to the north of Corfu island) and originally used as a club for the island’s nobility (Loggia Nobilei). It was then converted into a theatre (San Giacomo). On the south-western side of the Square, on a little hill opposite the Dimarcheio, the former residence of the Roman Catholic archbishop now houses the Bank of Greece. Just below it is the “Dimarcheio” restaurant, recommended for an atmospheric dinner. To the east of the square stands the Duomo, the Catholic Cathedral of St. Jacob, with the characteristic 17th-century baroque curve to the pediment and a Gothic tower. To get to Dimarchiou Square take Evgeniou Voulgareos St. from the Spianada and turn left at Guilford St.
This is a neighborhood to the south-west of the Spianada. It took its name from the Reymondou Gate, one of the four town gates in Venetian times, which has not survived. The center of the district is Moustoxidi Street or broad (plati) Kantouni, a fine street beginning at the Spianada and ending at the neo-classical building of the Ionian Parliament, work of the Corfiot architect Ioannis Chronis, who also designed the Kapodistrias House. On the plaques set into the facade is inscribed in Greek and English the 1863 decree announcing the unification of the Ionian islands with Greece.
At No. 19 Moustoxidi St. stands the Serviki Estia, or Serbian Society, a small museum with mementos from the period when the Serb government and parliament were established in Corfu (1916-18). On Guilford St., perpendicular to Moustoxidi street., which ends at Dimarcheiou Square, you will find restaurants and mini-markets. Stock up on delicious pies and sandwiches from the Starenio bakery and continue your walk along the narrow streets with the hyacinths, bougainvilleas and antique shops. Instead of crowds with cameras, you’ll find local people taking their children to school or popping round to the grocer’s (the laundry hanging out to dry is a permanent part of the decor here). People gather on the southern side of the square, on Aspioti Street all year round. Here you’ll find jazz Rock (the winter haunt of the most demanding local people), the Orfeas Cinema and the Foinikas, its open-air summer version.
Church of Agios Spyridon
The church of Agios Spyridon, the protector saint of Corfu town, the church is a one-aisle basilica with a wooden roof, established in 1589. The relics of the saint are kept here within a gold-plated reliquary, decorated with precious stones. It is also worth seeing the icon screen of the church made of marble, the icons and a lot of religious souvenirs and votive offerings. Once visiting the church, the locals will ask you if you have seen the bell tower, of which they are very proud. And they are right, as it is really impressive, the highest in town.
Church of Panaghia Spiliotissa
Apart from this historic church, it is also worth visiting the church of Panaghia Spiliotissa, a three-aisle basilica built-in 1577 to replace an even older one; the church is the cathedral of the town since 1841 and it has an important collection of Byzantine icons, some of them made by the eminent hagiographers Damaskinos and Tzannes.
There are also several more recent monuments worth seeing as the monument in honor of the Unification of Eptanissa with Greece, at Spianada, beside the polygonal Venetian well, the Lecturers’ Society of Corfu, established in 1836, the Library of Ioannis Kapodistrias, the Municipal Theater and the theater “Phoenix”, the Cultural Center, the very characteristic windmill upon the homonymous hill, the Monastery of Panaghia Vlaherna, accessed via a pedestrian bridge, the islet of Vido (or Ptyhia), with luxurious green and interesting fauna and flora, accessed via the excursion boats. Finally, you should not miss visiting the famous Pontikonissi, the “trade mark” of Corfu, with the small Byzantine church of Pantocrator. Excursion boats will get you to the island, either from Perama or from the Vlaherna Monastery.
Pelekas – Kaiser Observatory
On the top of the hill of Pelekas, on a platform built on the rock, is the “Kaiser’s Observatory“, one of the German emperor’s favorite spots, when he used to spend his vacations in Corfu, in his palace, the Achilleion. One reaches the spot by passing through the village of Pelekas. Magnificent view, so much to the island’s inland, as to the open sea, where one can watch the sun diving into the sea, painting the entire horizon with the colors of the sunset.
Corfu town is full of Museums. One of the most important among them is the Archaeological Museum, containing almost all finds of the excavations on the island. The Byzantine Collection, housed at the Church of Panagia Antivouniotissa is also very interesting: there are displayed several Byzantine and Post-Byzantine icons, along with other religious objects. The very interesting Museum of Asian Art, unique in Greece, is housed in the Palace of St. Michael and St. George. There is also the Solomos Museum, housed in the house where lived and died the National poet of Greece Dionysios Solomos (1798-1857) (the poet of the Greek Anthem). It is in Corfu that the poet has written the most important of his works; the Museum contains several souvenirs of the poet and many old editions of his works, mainly of the “Hymn to Freedom”, the Greek Anthem.
Corfu Archeological Museum (26610) 30680 Daily. 08:00 – 14:30
Corfu Vizantium Museum (26610) 38313 Daily. 08:30 – 17:00
Corfu Museum Asian Culture (26610) 30443 Daily. 08:30 – 15:00
How to get to Corfu Town
Corfu is an international transportation hub.
One can fly here direct from many cities in Europe, or take a ship or ferryboat from Italy or other cities Greece.
From Corfu it is possible to visit : Paxi, every day except Sunday, Erikoussa, Mathraki, Othoni, Sami (Cephalonia), Patras.
Corfu is also connected by sea to Italy, Patras and Igoumenitsa. Itineraries to the islands of Diapontia (Ereikousa, Mathraki, Othoni) and Paxous are carried out from the islands harbour, especially in the summer months. Corfu can take pride in that it allocates one of the biggest and very well organised marinas in Greece, which offers its hospitality to hundreds of boats every summer and is located only 5 minutes from the city.
Via Patras: The large ferry-boats which leave the Italian harbors of Brindisi, Bari and Ancona stop at Corfu on their way to and from Patras.
For information on the schedules, ticket prices of passengers and automobiles, contact the Port Authority Office at Patras, tel. (+30) 2610-341002, 341024 or travel agencies in Patras, Athens, and Corfu. You can get to Patras either on the buses of OSE from Athens (Greek National Railroad), tel. (+30) 210-5136185 or KTEL from Athens (Public Bus Company) tel: (+30) 210-5136185.
Via Igoumenitsa: The trip from Igoumenitsa to Corfu is one hour and forty-five minutes by car ferry. For information contact the Port Authority Office of Igoumenitsa, tel. (+30) 22650-23870. One can travel from Athens to Igoumenitsa on buses of KTEL (Public Bus Company), Athens, Tel. (+30) 210-5125954, 5130428. The distance is approximately 500 km. You can also go on the buses of OSE via Patras, as well as the train. Information: OSE, Athens, rail: tel. (+30) 210-5131601, buses: tel. (+30) 210-8233235. From northern Greece and Macedonia connections to Igoumenitsa are via Thessaloniki by bus. Information, KTEL, Thessaloniki, tel. (+30) 2310-595444, 595495.
Corfu Car Rental
Renting a car is the most flexible way of exploring. The roads are a little challenging, but well worth the effort. Greek roads are not like most North European roads – look out for pot-holes, hairpin bends at every 50 meters, laden donkeys and in August ‘the Italians!’ The overriding problem though is ‘olives’.
Flights to Corfu
Daily flights from and to Athens and Thessalonica are carried out at the international airport Ioannis Kapodistrias while the island is connected to a lot of European cities with direct charter flights.
The international airport of Corfu, situated 3 km south of the Town in the Kanoni area, accommodates international, domestic, as well as charter flights.
Tel. (+30) 26610-89622, 89823
Organized tours lasting half a day or all day can be arranged to different parts of the island as well as to Epirus, the islands of Paxos and Antipaxos and Parga. For information, contact the local travel agencies.
Corfu : Sightseeing
Archaeological Museum (tel: 36680): Houses finds from excavations at various parts of the island.
Byzantine Museum (tel 38313): In the Church of Our Lady Antivouniotissa.
Museum of Asiatic Art (tel 30443): In the Old Palace.
Contains a superb collection of Chinese, Japanese and Indian Art from the Neolithic era through the 19th century. The Palace also houses the Archives of the Ionian Academy.
Old Palace: The imposing 19th-century building of the governors of the British Protectorate with its two gates of St. Michael and St. George.
The European Unit summit meeting of June 1994 will be held here.
Town Hall: Built in 1663, a splendid example of Venetian architecture.
Church of Sts. Jason and Sosipater: At Anemomylos.
A typical example of 12th century Byzantine architecture, decorated with beautiful icons and a remarkable icon-screen.
Church of St. Spyridon: A silver sarcophagus adorned with spacious stones encloses the remains of Corfu’s patron saint.
In addition to this and its wonderful icons, the church has a fascinating collection of gold and silver votive offerings left by faithful supplicants.
The Cathedral: The majestic church contains the remains St. Theodora Augusta as well as a fine collection of Byzantine icons.
Monastery of the Virgin Platytera (near Mandouki): Apart from the tombs of Ioannis Kapodistrias (Greece’s first governor) and the Revolutionary hero, Fotos Tzavellas, it also possesses some rare post-Byzantine icons.
N. B. Corfu Town has a great many more landmarks worth visiting, which you’ll find shown on the map that follows.
Ionian University (tel 22993-4): Aspiring to emulate the prestige the 19th century’s Ionian Academy, the Ionian University has the following departments: History, Foreign Languages, and Interpreter’s School, Music, Archive and Library Science.
In summer it operates as a Greek language center.
Shopping in Corfu
Shopping in Corfu is an unavoidable vacation enterprise. If you want to spend time trying on shoes and clothes that are in fashion now or if you just want to go window shopping, head for the stylish streets of Corfu town. Here you will find elegant shops and boutiques that can easily turn your vacation budget upside down. The jewelry isn’t cheaper than at home but they attract you with their unique design.
In Corfu, one can find special icons in stores and in monasteries which vary from small portraits to elaborate paintings. The most beautiful and most expensive icons are created using only traditional techniques. There are a lot of souvenir shops in most of the resorts on the island with traditional food, ornamental ceramics, embroidery and laces, spices and other small things that you have to discover.
The island is famous for a special fruit bred here, similar to the tangerine tree, but a lot smaller, kumquat. The inhabitants produce liquors, marmalades, sweets, and very tasty cookies.
A jar of candied fruits or a bottle of liquor with an original design could be pleasant souvenirs.
Visitors who seek more westernized shops and galleries also can keep their shopping bags full. Fetich Fashion and Atropos are examples of stores that can fulfill one-stop shopping, complete with display cases and cash registers.
Corfu Food and Drinks
Greece has a culinary tradition for about 4000 years. The tourists appreciate the simplicity and the healthy character of the Hellenic gastronomy – olive oil, salads, vegetables, a little meat and fresh fish with some exotic wine. Each group of islands has a distinct culinary identity, which reflects its geographical location and its history.
Corfu has a unique character due to a long Venetian occupation. There are a few specific dishes that you can enjoy. With a lot of bays scattered around the island, the fresh fish and the fruits are abundant.
Try the appreciated red mullet or the swordfish on the grill, served with a green salad and sprinkled with lemon juice.
If the great wealth of the sea doesn’t attract you, indulge yourself with other specialties of the Corfiot kitchen, like Sofrito, boiled beef with olive oil and tomatoes, seasoned with fresh garlic or Pastitsio, macaroni pie, filling with meat and tomatoes, sauce and cheese. Sweeten yourself with a typical dessert: yogurt with honey next to retsina, and local aromatic wine.
Going out - Entertainment
Corfu is a city known for its nightlife and various types of entertainment offered to tourists and visitors of all ages. Corfu Town has a large number of bars and clubs and many restaurants where you can enjoy delicious recipes of the Ionian cuisine and local wine. When the sun sets over the island of Corfu, holidaymakers of every age and background begin looking for something to occupy the evening hours. While it’s probably fair to say that entertainment here is geared largely towards the 18 to 30 crowd, there are family-orientated options available as well as venues catering for those preferring a slightly more sedate scene.
Movie theatres are on hand for parents who want to keep their children busy in the evening, while scenic candlelit restaurants are perfect for those looking for a quiet evening meal and a few glasses of wine.
Corfu is something of a party island and it attracts large numbers of European. Travelers during its main tourist season. If you like staying up all night, drinking and dancing, then you’ll find plenty of opportunities in Kerkyra and also at many of the island’s other popular resorts.
As the island’s capital city, Kerkyra is probably the hottest spot when it comes to nightlife, offering the widest selection of after-dark entertainment venues. Here, you’ll find plenty of bars geared towards tourists, many with European themes such as Irish or German. If you prefer something a little more traditional, however, there are also Greek tavernas where you can raise a glass of ouzo and shout ‘yamas’, which means ‘cheers’, with the locals.
If you are seeking nightclubs that stay open until dawn then you’re best venturing out of the city to resorts such as Kavos, Roda, Ypsos, Gouvia, and Dassia, where you’ll find venues that rarely get going before midnight and that remain open until the last punters leave.
There are no traditional theatre venues in Corfu; however, visitors will find that some reputable hotels and apartment complexes are home to their own auditoriums that offer live entertainment in the evenings. Additionally, if you check the blackboards outside local bars, you’ll invariably find several with musical acts billed for the evening. Depending on the venue, these might be local Greek singers or expat performers.
There are a number of annual summer festivals that are unique to the island, with highlights including:
The Anniversary of the Union is an annual event in which the island’s residents gather in Kerkyra to celebrate the joining of Corfu to mainland Greece in 1864 (May).
The August Cultural Events festival runs the entire month of August in the village of Ano Korakiana and sees a varied program of cultural events and celebrations (August).
The Festival of Garouna and Ano Gerakiana is a three-day affair, held in the villages of Ano Gerakiana and Kato Garouna, and it sees cultural events and performances along with general festivities (August).
The Festival of Corfu takes place in Kerkyra and includes concerts from the philharmonic orchestra and other musical acts plus various theatrical performances. This is one of the island’s most important annual events (September).