Corfu: A Journey into Nature, the City and the Exuberant Gastronomy

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GETTING THERE

You can get to Corfu by air (in a search we did for the end of April, we found Athens-Corfu tickets with return at 130 euros). Alternatively, you can drive to Igoumenitsa (430km/5 hours from Athens, with a cost of fuel-tolls of 85 euros, one way) and from there take the ferry to Corfu (1½hour/ticket 10 euros).

ACCOMMODATION

Acanthus Blue (13, 3rd lane of Mitropolitou Athanasiou, Tel. (+30) 26610.440.59, at 210 euros for a double room, breakfast included) is a boutique hotel housed in a restored mansion dating back to 1700. It has simple, luxurious rooms, overlooking the garden and the sea, in which the old stone relief of the walls stands out. Rodostamo Hotel & Spa (3 Kyknon, Tel. (+30) 26614.403.00, at 130 euros for a double room, breakfast included) is a luxurious resort, located in Kommenos bay, 10km from the city of Corfu, which has rooms, suites, bungalows and villas. The staff is polite and breakfast is top-notch. Please note that it is aimed at adults and children over 12 years old.

COFFEE – FOOD

In the city of Corfu, sit down for the first coffee of the day at Bristol Café (Tel. (+30) 693.666.0101), for brunch at Josephine (Tel. (+30) 26610.272.75), for an afternoon liqueur at Liston Gastrotheque (Tel. (+30) 26610.455.28) and to eat at the Pomo d’Oro (Tel. (+30) 26610.286.80). Here you will try dishes based on seasonality, with a lot of thought lying behind their composition. The day we visited it, the menu included, among other things, Boukari salad (grilled beets, shrimp, butter flavored with mandarin and Kozani saffron threads) and Granny’s pasta (spaghetti alla chitarra, pastitsado rooster ragout). If you love eating fish, you should visit Fyssalida (Tel. (+30) 26610.821.50), where you can taste classic and tweaked fish and seafood recipes, such as Bourdeto with hot and sweet paprika and mashed potatoes. Do have a Corfu Beer with your food; it is a local pilsner. In Palia Perithia, in northern Corfu, you will find the taverna Palia Perithia (Tel. (+30) 26630.980.55) that opened back in 1863 by the current owner’s grandfather and used to operate both as a tsipouradiko (restaurant serving tsipouro, a pomace brandy, with meze) and as a delicatessen where you could also buy groceries. The decoration brings an air of this old era in the interior, with the old grandfather’s bed being turned into a seat. It is also worth visiting the adjacent taverna of Evdokia (Tel. (+30) 26630.986.35), who is in love with gastronomy, picks fennel and dries laurel so that her food has the flavor of Palia Perithia. In southern Corfu, near Issos beach there is Ammolofos taverna (Tel. (+30) 26627.707.20), with generous portions and tasteful decoration that distinguish it from all the standard touristic tavernas.  

DO YOU SPEAK CORFIOT?

The people of Corfu do not speak, they sing. The melodic and light Corfiot idiom, with words sounding like neologisms in the ears of an uninitiated, will put a smile on your face. You could get an idea of the huge linguistic wealth of Corfu by visiting the blog “Corfu Dictionary of 5,000 Words” (kerkiraikolexiko.blogspot.com), a really interesting online project including words in standard Greek and their translation into Corfiot. Here we learned that Demosio (Public Sector), in Corfiot is called Camari, aftokinito (car) is called caro, chartonomisma (banknote) is called carta moneda and lepto (minute) is called minuto. Theatrizomai means to embarrass oneself, ipotecaro is to mortgage, ibizaromai is to interfere and capatsaro means to impose on somebody. 

ΤΙΡS

If you need information or guidance on the paths of Corfu (whether they are cleaned, adequately marked etc.), please contact the Hiking and Mountaineering Association, [email protected]

Explore the Corfu Trail with Aperghi Travel agency, Tel. (+30) 26610.487.13.

Keep in mind that your mobile phone in some parts of the island might automatically connect an Albanian network, in which case charges are different. 

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