the southern end of Garitsa Bay is the Kanoni Peninsula.
There, the original city of the Phaeceans is said to have been built.
The Ancient Temple of Artemis is to the north. It was built between 590
and 580 BC.
The Palaiopolis estate
remains intact. Palaiopolis formed the centre of the ancient city of
Corfu. Today, still exist only a few remains of an ancient temple which
was dedicated to Hera, otherwise known as Akraia. It was built around
600 BC, destroyed during the civil war that took place in 428 BC between
the oligarchs and democrats, rebuilt in 400 BC, and destroyed in 30
BC by the Romans.
The Temple of Kardaki is located a little further on. It was found accidentally
by the British in 1822. It is a Doric style temple and is in a very
good state of preservation. It is probably dedicated to Apollo.
A causeway winds down to Kardaki from the village of Analypsis. It has
a famous spring for which tradition says that a stranger who drinks
from its water will forget his own home.
The Town of Koryfo
was constructed to the east of the present town. Stones and marble taken
from the ruins of Palaiopolis were used for its construction.
The ruins of the
Palaiopolis Basilica, or Agia Kerkira
are located close to the gate of the estate. They were built in the
5th century using materials from buildings on the site.
is a modern tourist resort with several hotels, and a view over the
Halikiopoulos Lagoon and the airport. A tiny island is linked to the
shore by a causeway. A number of boats moor on the causeway and will
take you to Mouse Island (Pontikonissi). There, you can visit the Byzantine
Church of Pantokrator. Kanoni is linked with Perama on the other shore
by another causeway, for walkers or cyclists.
(Old Town) was founded around 1267-1386 when the residents of Koryfo
were forced from overpopulation and pressure from the Catholic overlords,
to build outside the walls. Thus the Historic Centre of Corfu Town was
founded. The visitor can trip through its labyrinth of alleyways.
The Church of the
Blessed Virgin Antivouniotissa
in the 15th century, it was built in Kampielo. It contains icons by
Stefanos Tzagarolas of the Cretan School and Emmanuel Tzanes. The Byzantine
Museum was established here in 1984.
The Metropolitan Church of the
Blessed Virgin of Spiliotissa
located on the way out of Kampielo was built in 1577. The visitor can
see, amongst other icons, works by Michael Damaskinos (16th century),
Panayioti Paramythiotis (18th century) and Emmanuel Tzanes (17th century).
The Church of the Blessed Virgin
of Kremasti is located in a
little square with a sculpted Venetian wellhead of the 16th century
at its centre. There is a fine stone iconostasis and icons inside the
church, painted in the Italian mode by Spiridon Sperantzas.
The Church of Agios Nikolaos ton
Geronton was built in the 16th
century in Kampielo. The oldest priest (Gerontas) in Corfu would be in
charge in this church. It proudly displays its important icons by Tzanes.
The Church of Pantokrator,
in Taxiarchis Square, has an iconostasis painted in the 18th century
by Chrisoloras and works from an old iconostasis that was painted by
The Old Fortress
was built by the Venetians on top of the Byzantine walls and they completed
it on two stages.
Between 1572 and 1645, the Italian architect F. Vitelli built the New
Fortress constructed on the hill of Saint Mark. Later, the British built
the internal buttresses. It consists of two large twin bastions and
is regarded as a wonderful example of military design. The summit of
the Fortress also is good to visit for the view over the rooftops of
the Historic Gentre and over the sea. It has been restored recently
and now exhibitions, concerts and other cultural events take place there
(contact the Municipal Information Office for information about the
full programme of events). There is an exhibition centre in the left
wing of the first floor showing distinguished exhibitions of sculpture,
painting and photographs by artists of international renown.
The church of Tenedos
a baroque-style church stands next to the steps leading to the Fortress.
It is dedicated to the Blessed Virgin of the Carmelites. It is a Roman
Catholic church. Its construction begun in 1663, but it was not finished
until a century later.
The Town Walls
link the two fortresses, and provided safety to the people of the town.
Two other fortresses added to the defences of the town, one on Sotira
Hill and one on Avrami Hill.
are the most impressive of the works of the Venetians are, which permitted
underground communication between all parts of the town. These tunnels
linked the four fortresses, central locations in the town, and also
the islet of Vidos. Today some are closed off, either because of subsidence
or for reconstruction.
The Palace of Saint Michael and
Saint George stand at the northern
end of the Esplanade. The Palace, once a residence of the Greek royal
family, was completely restored four years ago.
is famed as the "most extensive square in the Balkans". You
can go to the Rotonda by walking around the square (built in Ionian
style), a popular meeting point for young people, and the Bandstand.
There you might see a band playing classical music or jazz. The bandstand
is the place where people gather for the Midnight Mass on Easter Saturday.
is a terrace which forms the western border of the Esplanade. It has
a series of arches, and is a characteristic example of its era. Today
many people meet in the Liston. The visitor can see the majorettes,
parades by the philharmonic orchestras and religious processions.
divides the Esplanade square into its upper and lower areas.
At the corner of the "Upper Esplanade" you will find the Municipal
Tourist Information Kiosk, where you can purchase maps and tourist guides,
obtain information about coming events, and change money.
The Town Hall Square, was the
most important meeting place to the town's community during Venetian
times. It became the first lyrical theatre in the East, in 1720. The
Theatre San Giacomo entertained the Corfiots with remarkable performances
of Italian opera for two centuries. In 1903 the theatre was moved elsewhere,
another floor was added to the building, and it was opened as Town Hall.
Its two main walls are decorated with various historical engravings,
symbols and with stone masks.
is one of the most beautiful neighbourhoods of the town, it is the first
sight you see as the ferry sails in around the Old Fortress. Its official
name is Arsenics Street, running from the Palace, on top of the old
sea defenses, down to the Old Port.
The Reading Society of Corfu
is located on Arsenics Street and it is one of the oldest cultural organisation
in modern Greece, it was founded in 1836. It had as members Kapodistrias,
the poet Kalvos and other Ionian islanders. Opposite,
below the level of the road, is one of the gates of the Old Town, Saint
Nicholas Gate, which leads through to Faliraki.
The Kapodistrias Mansion
also is on Arsenios Street. The Kapodistrias family built it during
the British Protectorate.
The Old Port
until a few years ago, was the departure point for ferries to the mainland,
and there was a lot of traffic. Now only ferries for Paxos and the Diapontian
Islands leave from here.
is the area around the Port and to the south, and it got its name from
the cave at the entry to the New Fortress.
area is the old neighbourhood between Spilia and the Porta Reale. Here
the Jews (Evraioi or Ovrioi) used to have their shops, and it retains
its old style.
The Church of Agios Antonis and
Agios Andreas was built in
the form of a basilica with cross vaults, at the end of the 14th century,
and is one of the oldest and most interesting of all the island's churches.
Nikiforou Theotoki Street
begins at Spilia and runs to the Liston. Previously it was the main
shopping street of the town. There are churches, monuments and offices
that accommodate philharmonic bands and share space with shops and emporiums.
The "Square of the Saint"
is the informal name of the Square of the Heroes of the Cypriot Struggle
and in the summer is the favourite place of street artists from all
over the world. Three of Corfu's
most important churches are located here, the Church of the Blessed
Virgin of Strangers, the Church of Agios Spiridon and the Church of
Agios loannis (John the Baptist).
The Church of the Blessed Virgin
of Strangers (Panayia ton Xenon)
is the name which was given to the Church of the Lady of Revelations
(Panayia Phaneromeni). It was founded in 1689 by a Corfiot monk. Icons
and frescoes by Nicholas Koutouris, Emmanuel Tzanes and George Samartzis
exist in it, among others.
The Church of Agios Spiridon
was built in 1590 by the Voulgaris family. It has a very tall Venetian
campanile. Inside hang several striking silver lamps, each with its
own history. It became world famous for accommodating the relics of
the miracle-working Saint Spiridon.
The Church of Agios loannis (John
the Baptist), one of the oldest
church in the town (16th century), stands just opposite the Square.
The Old Philharmonic Society
is another site that one can visit in Corfu Town's Historic Centre.
The Old Philharmonic was created in 1840 by the people of Corfu. Nikolaos
Mantzaros, the composer of the Greek National Anthem, was one of its
most important founders.
comprises the new town of Corfu which grew up outside the walls. It
is centred on San Rocco Square.
The Monastery of Platytera,
constructed in the 18th century has a large collection of works of the
17th century, by Klotzas, Tzanes, Poulakis, Kantounis and Koutouzis.
Also the grave of John Kapodistrias and of Foto Tzavelas exist in it.
is one of the most historic neighbourhoods in Corfu. It is the area
between Platytera and the port. It is a pretty neighbourhood, with an
attractive sight of old houses, shops and good tavernas.
The Archaeological Museum
on Garitsa Bay is full with many interesting exchibits, (Gorgon Pediment
is the most interesting, it is the oldest stone pediment ever to be
uncovered in Greece).
The Ionian Parliament,
a neoclassical style building at the top of Moustoxidi Street, and the
Ionian Academy, which in 1824 became the home of the first Greek university
are two buildings worth visiting.
The Tomb of Menecrates
is close to the museum. It was discovered in 1843 and it bears engravings
in the Corinthian alphabet.
In the Church of Agios lasonas and
Sosipatros the visitor can see
wall frescoes dating from the time of its construction, as well as significant
icons of the Cretan School by Emmanuel Tzanes and Michael Damaskinos.
The church was built around the year 1000.
Maybe the most attractive
church in town - the church of Saint Spyridon - is dedicated to the
island's patron saint, Agios Spyridon . It was built in 1589 and houses
his relics. It has the highest tower.
Mouse Island ("Pontikonissi"
in greek) is the small islet
which has an ancient monastery. According to legend, Mouse Island was
formed when Poseidon turned the ship that had taken Odysseus back to Ithaki,