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Corfu (Kerkyra in Greek) is an island in the Ionian Sea, northwest of mainland Greece and also just a short boat ride from Albania. It's a popular destinations for people searching for good weather, nice landscapes and cultural and gastronomic highlights. The island has roughly 120,000 inhabitants.
The northeastern coastline of Corfu lies off the coast of Sarandë, Albania, from which it is separated by straits varying in width from 3 to 23 kilometres, while the southeast side of the island lies off the coast of Thesprotia, Greece. With the island's area estimated at 588 km2, it runs approximately 65 kilometres, with greatest breadth at around 30 kilometres. Corfu's coastline spans 217 kilometres including capes; its highest point is Mount Pantokrator (906 metres); and the second Stravoskiadi, at 849 metres. The full extent of capes and promentories take in Agia Aikaterini, Drastis to the north, Lefkimmi and Asprokavos to the southeast, and Megachoro to the south. Two islands are also to be found at a middle point of Gouvia and Corfu Bay, which extends across much of the eastern shore of the island; are known as Lazareto and Ptychia (or Vido). Camping areas can be found in Palaiokastritsa, Agrillia, with four in the northern part, Pyrgi, Roda, Gouvia and Messonghi.
Two high and well-defined ranges divide the island into three districts, of which the northern is mountainous, the central undulating, and the southern low-lying. The more important of the two ranges, that of Pantokrator (Παντοκράτωρ - the ancient Istone) stretches east and west from Cape Falacro to Cape Psaromita, and attains its greatest elevation in the summit of the same name. The second range culminates in the mountain of Santi Jeca, or Santa Decca, as it is called by misinterpretation of the Greek designation Άγιοι Δέκα (Hagioi Deka), or the Ten Saints. The whole island, composed as it is of various limestone formations, presents great diversity of surface, and views from more elevated spots are magnificent. Beaches are found in Agios Gordis, the Korission lagoon, Agios Georgios, Marathia, Kassiopi, Sidari, Palaiokastritsa and many others. Corfu is located near the Kefalonia geological fault formation; earthquakes have occurred. Neither Corfu city or the countryside of the island have lost their traditional architecture hailing from the 16th century.
Corfu has a typical Mediterranean climate with warm, dry and sunny summers and mild but wet winters. It's one of the wettest parts of Greece. During summer average temperatures are mostly around 30 °C from June to September, with nights of 16-20 °C. Winters last from December to February when it's between 13 °C an 16 °C during the day and around 6 or 7 at night. Summers have only about 3 or 4 rainy days a month but from November to February about half of the days have rain with most of the rain falling during November and December, around 200mm each month! Snow and frost are very rare.
Corfu International Airport (CFU) has a wide range of airlines and destinations serving the island. Many of them are season (mosty April-October for example) and there are significanly less flights during the winterperiod. Air Berlin and TuiFly serve the German market, with flights to/from Berlin, Cologne, Dresden, Düsseldorf, Frankfurt, Hamburg, Hannover, Leipzig, Munich, Nuremberg, Stuttgart and the Swiss cities of Basel and Zürich.
Thomas Cook Airlines and Thomson Airways serve the British market, with destinations like London, Manchester, Birmingham, Bristol, East Midlands, Glasgow, Cardiff, Sheffield, Leeds, Liverpool and Newcastle. Easyjet has flights from a few places as well.
Several other airlines fly to Athens, Brussels, Luxembourg, Malta, Barcelona, Vienna, Madrid, Thessaloniki, Belgrade, Oslo, Warsaw, Helsinki, Stockholm, Copenhagen and Budapest.
You can rent a car at the airport or through one of many local companies. In general, it is cheaper to pre-book a hire car via the internet before arriving. Many of the roads are very narrow so it can be better to choose a small car. While there is a good road running North-South along the East coast from Sidari to Lefkimmi and from Corfu town across the island to Paleokastritsa, many roads have poor surfacing. Often the insurance provided for hire cars does not cover damage to the underside of the car so watch out for large holes in the road. Hire car companies often provide a free map but you may find it worth buying one in advance as the maps are not especially good, especially for the northwest interior.
There are two types of bus in Corfu. Blue buses serve Corfu town and surroudings, green buses serve the rest of the island.
The Blue bus terminal in Corfu Town is in San Rocco Square. The bus information kiosk displays timetables and provides maps showing exactly where the buses terminate (some terminate a few blocks south of the square). Bus stops have electronic displays, and self-service ticket machines. Tickets are single-journey only and must be validated on the bus. They can be bought from the machines, or from the driver (for €0.50 more).
Useful lines include the number 7 which goes to and from Dasia every 20 minutes (30 minutes on Sundays), the 10 which goes to and from Achilion every two hours, the 6 to and from Benitses (not quite hourly) and the 11 to and from Pelekas every 2-3 hours.
The airport bus is No 19 - check the timetable as frequency varies during the day with some big gaps. It is only a ten-minute ride, and costs €1.10. Number 6 Benitses bus also goes past the end of the airport access road from where it is a 500-metre walk to the terminal.
The Green Bus Station is near the New Port, from where buses depart for all villages of Corfu Island. Regular departures to Paleokastritsa, Sidari, Kavos, Roda, Acharavi, Kassiopi.
A great way to explore the island and access beaches that can't be easily accessed otherwise is to rent a boat. Most towns have at least one boat rental company and boats up to 30HP do not require a licence to hire.
|Andromaches Holiday Apartments||Achilion/Benitses||APARTMENT||90|
|Angelica's Backpacker's Hostel||Ayos Ioannis Karousades||Hostel||90|
|Arion Hotel||Sxerias 6 Mon Repo||Hostel||-|
|Bella Vista Beach Hotel||Benitses Ionian Island||Hotel||-|
|Belvedere Hotel Corfu||Ag. Ioannis South of Benitses Tsaki Strongilis||Hotel||-|
|Bintzan Inn Hotel||Gastouri||Hotel||-|
|Camping Village Dionysus||Dassia||Campsite||-|
|Coral Beach Hotel||Roda Kerkyra||Hotel||-|
|Corfu Backpackers||Agios Gordios Beach West coast||Hostel||74|
|Hotel Konstantinoupolis||Corfu 11, K Zavitsianou Str., Corfu, Kerkyra||HOTEL||-|
|Marbella Hotel||Agios Ioannis Peristeron||Hotel||-|
|Ipsos Studios and Apartments||Ipsos||Apartment||84|
|Irene Apartments||Agios Gordios||HOTEL||80|
|Kavos Scrivas Apartments||Kavos||Apartment||-|
|Kontokali Bay Hotel Corfu||Kontokali Kontokali||Hotel||-|
|Louvre Hotel||Gouvia, Corfu||HOTEL||-|
|Pink Odyssey Beach Bed & Breakfast||Agios Gordios Beach Sinarades||HOTEL||82|
|Sunrock||Sunrock (Vrachos) Resort Pelekas Beach,Sinarades,49084||Hostel||85|
|The Pink Palace||Agios Gordios Beach Sinarades,49084||Hostel||82|
|Vickys Apartments||Agios Gordios, Sinarades, Corfu||Hotel||-|
|Villa Argiris||Agios Stefanos Avliotes||Apartment||-|
|Villa Litsa||Ermones batos||Guesthouse||-|
|Corfu City Apartments||Alepou Kerkyra (Corfu Town)||Apartment||-|
|Corfu Beach Apartments||Glyfa Nissaki||Apartment||-|
|Isabella Country House||Saint Loukas Gouvia||Hotel||-|
|Hotel Semeli||Roda - M. Thinalion - Corfu Island||Hotel||-|
|Corfu' Dream Village||Ipsos||Hostel||88|
|Aeolos Mareblue Hotels & Resorts||49100 Perama||Hotel||-|
|Hotel Benitses Arches||Benitses - Corfu island||Hotel||-|
|Gorgona St & Apts||Ipsos - Pirgi||Apartment||-|
|Aloha Hotel Corfu||Agios Gordios - Corfu||Hotel||-|
|Saint Nicolas Hotel||Gouvia Area||Hotel||-|
|Bella Vista Apartments||Pelekas beach Kontogialos Corfu island||Apartment||86|
|Lemon Tree Apartments||AVLAKI (KASSIOPI)||Apartment||-|
|The Comfy Hostel/Studios||Ipsos||Apartment||82|
|HOTEL EROS||ETHN.LEUKIMIS BENITSES CORFU||Hotel||-|
|City Marina Hotel||15, Donzelot Street||Hotel||-|
|Hermes Hotel||Gerasimou Markora str. 12-14||Hotel||-|
|Dimitra Studios||Benitses Corfu||APARTMENT||85|
|Bella Studios||Benitses Corfu||APARTMENT||-|
|Hotel Yannis-Corfu||PO Box 89, Pyrgi, Feakes 49083, Corfu||HOTEL||-|
|Frida Apartments||49084 Benitses, Corfu||APARTMENT||-|
|River Studios and Apartments||Messonghi Corfu||HOTEL||-|
|Golden Nests Apartments||Agios Gordis||APARTMENT||79|
|Corfu Palace Hotel||2 DEMOKRATIAS AVENUE||Hotel||-|
|Hotel Ariti||40, Nafsikas Street, Kanoni, Corfu Island 40, Nafsikas Street, Kanoni, Corfu Island||HOTEL||-|
|Corfu Hostel||Agios Ionais (near Aqualand)||HOSTEL||75|
|Orpheus Hotel||Gouvia Corfu||HOTEL||-|
|Gongis Hostel||St. George Argirades||HOSTEL||-|
|BoutiqueTen||Pikoulatika, Achilleion 49084 P.O.BOX 37 Corfu||GUESTHOUSE||-|
|Villa Spiros||Paleokastritsa, Corfu, Greece||APARTMENT||-|
|Mina's Apartments||Ipsos/Pyrgi Tzavros||APARTMENT||-|
|Villa Stefanos||Ipsos / Pyrgi||APARTMENT||-|
|ElGreco hotel||Lefkimis national road Benitses||HOTEL||-|
|Vrachos Backpackers Hostel||Pelekas beach, Kontogialos||HOSTEL||-|
|Angela Hotel & Apartments||Tzavros Gouvia||HOTEL||83|
|Charietta Studios & Apartments||Dassia, Gouvia||APARTMENT||-|
|Twin Studios||Benitses, Corfu,||APARTMENT||-|
|Aquarius Aparthotel||Messongh Corfu||APARTMENT||-|
|Olive Grove Studios||Moraitika Village Moraitika||APARTMENT||-|
|Riviera Hotel Corfu||Benitses Main Street Benitses||HOTEL||-|
|Coryfo Studios & Apartments||Moraitika Main Street||APARTMENT||-|
|Eleni Family Apartments||Sidari||APARTMENT||84|
|Andreas House||Dassia Main Street Dassia||APARTMENT||-|
|Villa Martha||Benitses Village Benitses||APARTMENT||-|
|Rio Grande Rooms||Benitses Village Benitses||GUESTHOUSE||-|
|Akim Studios||Benitses Village Benitses||APARTMENT||-|
|Abelaki Studios||Boukari, Lefkimi||APARTMENT||-|
|Anna Maria Studios & Apartments||Moraitika Main Street, Moraitika,||APARTMENT||-|
|Villa Kapella||Vatos, Post. Code 101||APARTMENT||-|
|Costa Blu Hotel||Benitses||HOTEL||-|
|Corfu Secret||Agios Markos||Guesthouse||-|
|Galini Studios||Lefkimmi National Road||Apartment||-|
|Villa Kokoros||Agios Vasilios Kato Korakiana||APARTMENT||-|
|Varvara Studios & Apartments||PEROULADES||Apartment||-|
|VarVara Studios & Apartments||Peroulades Sidari||APARTMENT||-|
|Faliraki Apartments Corfu||Gialos Gastouriou||APARTMENT||-|
Internet access is widely available throughout the country. Almost all hotels provide internet access, either free or paid. Local coffee shops usually offer free Wi-Fi access, as many other public places do. Feel free to ask for the password, if the network is locked. Internet cafes however tend to be expensive, about €1.5-2 per hour.
See also: International Telephone Calls
The cheapest way to call someone abroad is to use a pre-paid calling card and call from a land line anywhere (also from your hotel room). Pre-paid calling cards are sold in many shops and kiosks. The calling card is not much more than a phone number and a pin code, which you dial prior to dialing the usual phone number. If you want to call internationally, ask for an international calling card. For one euro you can call for about 45 minutes, so buy a card in the cheapest value (which is about €3). Calling someone for half an hour is cheaper than sending one email from an internet café. Cards expire usually 90 days after first use. You can also use this pre-paid calling card at public phone boxes, which are widely available.
Mobile phones are prevalent in Greek's communication, and if you need to talk with your co-travelers it is advised that you buy a local prepaid plan instead of using roaming, as it is far cheaper. There are at least three mobile carriers, Cosmote, Wind and Vodafone all of which require by law presenting some form of identification in order to activate your prepaid plan. Choose whichever has better reception in your area, keeping in mind that GSM 900, GSM 1800 and UMTS 2100 bands are supported. Data usage is cheap, costing about €3 per 100 MB. Ask the mobile carrier for more information.
Hellenic Post is the Greek postal service. On their website you find more information about options to send letters, postcards and parcels and there is a search function regarding post offices and post boxes. It also has information on services like paying bills, transferring money, financial products etc. Greek post codes are five digits long and are usually written as follows; 123 45. The first three digits are used to identify the city, municipality or prefecture, for example the digits between 100 and 180 relate to the city of Athens. The last two digits identify a street or part of a street. Most post offices are open Monday to Friday from 07:30-14:00, although the largers ones usually have longer opening hours. For sending packages, you can also use international courier services like DHL, UPS or TNT.
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