Corfu Town is one of the most appealing and romantic cities in Greece, as it constitutes a mixture of great civilizations and various architectural styles. Corfu is a wonderful Medieval town that has many features of Italian architecture.
A walk through the charming little streets can take you to romantic spots and panoramic points with stunning views to the Ionian Sea. Corfu Town combines historical places with modern venues and facilities, such as luxurious hotels, creating a unique unforgettable experience.
Here are our suggestions on the best things to see in Corfu Town.
The Two Fortresses
Corfu Town is especially famous for its two great fortresses, the Old and the New Fortress, on the one and the other side of the Old Town. The Old fortress is the most impressive castle in Corfu, built in the 15th century by renowned Venetian engineers on the site of a former Byzantine tower. It is situated on top of the promontory of Corfu Town and only few steps from Spianada square.
The fortress originally housed high society members, militaries and noble men, but later it was also used for defense purpose with the addition of an artificial moat around it. Nowadays, the Old Fortress hosts the Public Library, buildings of the Ionian University and the open space in front of the Chapel of Saint George is used for concerts and other outdoor events.
The New Fortress is a massive Venetian Castle located just above the old port, on the hill of Saint Mark, with impressive Venetian symbols carved on its gate.
This fortress was again built by the Venetians, but parts of it were reconstructed by the British in later years. The New Fortress may be less impressive than the Old fortress, yet it offers stunning views from its high top to the Old Town of Corfu. Many painting, photography and sculpture exhibitions take place on its grounds every year.
Spianada Square and Liston
Spianada Square is one of the best things to see in Corfu Town. This is the second largest square of Europe, after the Square of Saint Mark in Venice. The square was designed by the French during the Napoleonic Wars, who promoted it as an important place of trade, recreation and social activity. Today this is the most popular spot for gatherings and strolls, as it is lined up with cafes and restaurants, lively bars, as well as a cricket court.
The most beautiful part of the square is considered to be the Liston building and park, built by the French as a copy of the famous Rue de Rivoli in Paris. This building has cafeterias on the ground floor and houses on the upper floors. The building has amazing arches lightened by Venetian lanterns.
Church of Saint Spyridon
One of the best things to see in Corfu Town is the Church of Saint Spyridon. It is found in the streets of the Old Town, behind the Liston building, and its tall bell tower can be spotted from the ferries to Corfu. The church is dedicated to the protector of the island, Saint Spyridon, who saved the island twice during the Medieval times. The original church had been built on another square in Corfu, but was moved to its current location in the 16th century.
Kanoni and Mouse Island
The spot of Kanoni is a very popular place to be in Corfu Town. It can be reached with Bus No2 from Spianada Square that makes the round trip Mandouki-Kanoni. Kanoni took its name from an old cannon that stands on top of the hill. Below Kanoni is the famous church of Panagia Vlacherna and the tiny island of Pontikonissi, or Mouse Island. These two spots are the most photographed in Town.
The church of Panagia Vlacherna is a small 17th century chapel connected with the rest of the island through a small pathway. This is the most photographed spot of Corfu. Just opposite the chapel is the stunning Mouse Island that can be visited with a short 5 min boat ride of Panagia Vlacherna. Every summer on August 6th there is a religious ceremony at the old church of the Transfiguration of Christ that is found on the Mouse Island.