Early Spring is the perfect time to plan your Summer vacation (in my case, every day is a perfect time to plan a Summer vacation, considering the fact that somewhere out there you will always find a place where is Summer, but let’s not focus on that now :p) and why not start today and take into consideration spending one week in Corfu in September?
Get some inspiration on Thassos Island as well
But why Corfu?
Well, because I have been there some years ago on a chill trip with one of my best friends, in early September and this is what I’ve learned:
- The weather is just perfect – not too hot nor cold, with averages at around 23°C and maximums of 28°C, it offers the right conditions for staying at the beach all day long without melting
- It is not that crowded – ok, some areas of the island will get crowded (Corfu Town for example), but the little village we’ve stayed in ( Agios Gordios) was actually very airy. This way, you won’t have to worry about finding a place on the beach, stepping on anyone’s toes in the souvenir shops, or finding a table for lunch
- It is cheaper – you can find incredible hotels at a lot cheaper prices than in high season
- You’ll find the perfect destination for relaxation – especially with the lower number of tourists in the period, don’t expect a lot of entertainment going on, but it sure is the place to be if you want to disconnect from the hectic life you usually have
- It’s close to the European continent, making it easy to reach by car, but it has also an international airport
- It has beaches for everyone – you can find also nudist beaches on the island (in Agios Gordios for example) if you are into that kind of thing
- People are very friendly
- It is a location appropriate for all kinds of travels: group travels, couples, families or besties
- There is a cat for everyone :)) I’m a big cat lover and of course, you are in Greece so expect a lot of cats everywhere
I personally liked Corfu very much and I think the vacation there was one of the most relaxing ones I’ve ever had. Staying in a bungalow overlooking the sea, on a hill; the incredible light Greek food cooked at the hotel with plenty of vegetables and fruits to choose from (even if I gained a few kgs, from the pastry); the sandy beaches and the clear blue water; the one day trip to the versatile Corfu City; the trip from the continent to the island on the ferry, it all contributed to the success of the holiday and what made me recommend you to give it a try!
When to visit Corfu?
Early September or October would be just perfect. And if you cannot wait until then, April or May are as good of a choice. What do you say, does it sound good enough?
How to get to Corfu Island?
For us, living in Romania, getting to Corfu island was relatively easy by car and ferry. However, not everyone lives so close and can drive to the island.
Corfu is one of the Greek islands served by an airport: Corfu International Airport Ioannis Kapodistrias. Thus, you can fly directly to the island from Athens, Thessaloniki, or Preveza.
Another option to get to the island is by ferry, especially when you are driving.
Ferries to Corfu depart from Igoumenitsa daily during the travel season. Additionally, thanks to its great location in the Ionic Sea, Corfu is reachable from Italy as well with ferries linking Brindisi, Ancona, Bari, or even Venice to Corfu.
Plan your trip and check out ferry timetables here.
How to get around Corfu Island on your vacation?
The easiest way to get around Corfu island is by renting a car. This way, you will have the flexibility to travel around and see as much of the island as you like. Drive through olive groves, explore as many remote beaches as you want, admire some stunning views, and do something fun every day.
If you choose to rent a car, check out Discover Cars, an aggregator that will help you find the best offer out there, and save you up to 70%. They have a flexible cancellation policy, and I’ve always found the best prices.
If, however, you don’t want to rent a car, Corfu has a public transportation operated by buses that link most of its towns. You can check out the timetable and routes here.
How many days do you need in Corfu?
For us, one week was just perfect, but we mostly wanted to relax. You can have a mix of beach time and exploration when spending one week in Corfu.
That being said, you won’t get bored if you choose to stay more, especially if you want to do some sightseeing and sunbathing as well. The Ionian Island has plenty of panoramic views, towns with at least one sandy beach, remote beautiful beaches, and plenty of day trips to choose from.
Which is better: Santorini or Corfu?
I have spent vacations on both islands and it would be hard to say which one of the two is better. They are very different and I think tourists choose each for their charm.
Santorini is more luxurious and vibrant, especially on the western side with towns like Oia or Thira attracting people for honeymoon vacations and photo sessions. The island has incredible sunsets, but also no real beach.
Corfu, on the other hand, is much more laid back and has plenty of beautiful sandy beaches where you can do nothing more than relax with a good book and a glass of wine. It is the dream destination for sun loungers, families, and history lovers as well.
Where to stay in Corfu?
When it comes to the best area to stay in Corfu, things are different depending on what you want to do on your vacation.
Stay in Corfu Town if you want to be close to restaurants, have an Old Town to explore on foot, and also be linked to the rest of the island. On the other hand, if you want to spend the perfect summer vacation at the beach, choose to stay in places like Agios Georgios, Gouvia, or Glyfada.
If you want to travel by bus, most buses leave from Corfu Town and link the whole island, but it would be easier if you choose to stay in places like Perama, Benitses, Moraitika.
I have chosen a few of the best hotels to stay in some of the most important destinations on the island.
The best place to stay in Corfu Town
Kâmara Old Town Studios
I fell in love with this place! It is perfectly located for exploring the Old Town, the interior design is new and modern, and from the rooftop terrace, you can see the blue sea.
I would say this is a great place for a weekend escape, but also perfect for a longer stay since the studios offer a fully equipped kitchen.
Siora Vittoria Boutique Hotel
A pretty boutique hotel with a class interior and a stunning garden where you can enjoy a glass of wine and some delicious Greek food.
The hotel is perfectly located and it’s hosted in an old pink villa!
Best Places to Stay in Paleokastritsa
Set 30 meters from the sea, the view that you get from this villa is simply breathtaking. It is a holiday home and you can rent it entirely when you travel with your family. It is fully equipped, set in a quiet and restful area, close to the beach, and in the middle of an olive tree garden.
It has a kitchenette, a terrace with deckchairs, a table for 6 people where you can enjoy dinner while watching the boats coming and going, and a coffee table for 4 people, in the shade of olive trees.
Tango Apartment On The Beach
Minutes away from the beach in Paleokastritsa, these apartments are perfectly furnished to offer you the most comfortable vacation in Corfu. From your balcony, you will have a sea view, and in the garden, you can relax on the sunbeds.
Best Places to Stay in Gouvia
Art Hotel Debono
A fabulous hotel set in the middle of a huge garden with olive and palm trees. Guests can enjoy a big outdoor swimming pool, but also very nice and comfortable rooms.
Guests speak highly about the hotel and recommend it for those looking for relaxation.
Ktima Loumoumba, Private Villa
A big villa, with 4 rooms that can host up to 8 people, perfect for when you are traveling with a group of friends or with a larger family.
The villa has mountain views, a lovely terrace, a barbeque area, and private parking, so you don’t have to worry about your car.
Best Places to Stay in Kavos
Set in the South of Corfu, in the middle of a lush garden, boasting an outdoor swimming pool and a beautiful terrace.
Korina Apart Hotel
Nicely furnished apartments, with a small balcony where you can enjoy your breakfast. The building is set close to the beach and all rooms have a kitchenette where you can prepare your food when you had too much Greek cuisine (if that is even possible).
Luxury stays in Corfu Island
MarBella Nido Suite Hotel & Villas
An adults-only 5-star resort with a breathtaking view, an infinity pool, a wellness center, and an organized beach area.
The hotel is set in Agios Ioannis Peristeron and looks like a small colorful village, perched on the top of a hill, in a remote area that will offer you the tranquility you need.
Corfu Imperial, Grecotel Exclusive Resort
Luxury interiors, stunning dining area with a sea view, perfectly organized beach, 2 outside swimming pools, and colorful bungalow nestled in the gardens that lead down to the sea.
Some of the rooms have private infinity pools, and the hotel is set on the North-Eastern part of the island, in Kommeno.
Best places to visit and things to do in Corfu in one week
While the island is relatively big and has plenty of activities on display, when you only have one week in Corfu and want to spend some time at the beach as well, you will have to plan your time carefully.
The Corfu Old Town is a jewel that should not be missed, no matter on what part of the island you will choose to stay. Chances are there will be direct buses from your village, and you can always go on a guided walking tour with local food tasting.
Pay a visit to the Archeological Museum, Achilleion Palace, the Byzantine Museum, the Banknote Museum, the Museum of Asian Art, or Corfu’s Old Fortress.
The Venetian castle overlooks the sea and is the perfect place for a picture or to simply admire the local life. Set on the top of a rock, it also hosts the Church of Saint George inside of its walls.
Sip a strong Greek coffee at one of the many terraces in the city squares, shop for souvenirs, or simply stroll through the streets of this UNESCO World Heritage Site.
On a day when you feel more athletic, explore Mount Pantokrator with the highest peak on the island, located in its northern part. At the top, there’s a tourist cafe where you can enjoy a drink with a stunning view.
Paleokastritsa is by far one of the most beautiful beaches, with 7 golfs surrounded by mountains. Look for the La Grotta bar from where you will have the most staggering view.
The Canal d’Amour is another popular destination you should not miss, set close to one of the most beautiful beaches on the island, Sidari beach. It is actually a calcareous formation shaped in the form of a heart. The legend says that couples who swim together through the waters of the canal are bound to get married.
A day trip to Paxos and Anti-Paxos should also fit into your schedule, where you can swim and snorkel in some of the bluest waters of Greece. You will explore traditional small villages on the remote islands, learn about the history of the region, and relax at the beach. See more here!
Go on a half-day scooter tour for a more unconventional way of traveling around the island and admiring the coastal views. You will also get to taste some local wine and olives, with sweets and a Corfiot lunch. See more here!
Don’t go to the same beach every day, and choose from the countless beautiful beaches Corfu has to offer. Kerasia beach, Agios Spyridon beach, Porto Timoni, or Issos, are only a few of the beaches you should offer a chance to seduce you with their sand and turquoise waters.
Last but not least, plan for a full-day boat trip to the Blue Lagoon, the Greek Caribbean. Visit beautiful and secluded caves, swim in the blue waters, snorkel and admire the colorful underwater world, or simply relax on the boat. See more here!
What to eat in Corfu
Gastronomically, Corfiot cuisine is a mix of Greek, Italian, and British food. You will find plenty of pizza and pasta options, but also french fries, or the traditional Greek mousaka and Greek salad.
Eat plenty of fresh fish and seafood, and try bourdeto – a traditional dish made with vegetables and fish.
The best food to try will always be the street food you will find on the narrow cobbled streets in the city center of Corfu Town.
Himadri Negi says
This goes on my list. Love the post!
Hi Himadri! Happy you liked it, you won’t regret visiting this little island 🙂
It sounds perfect! Haven’t heard of Corfu before, but I’m looking forward to that just-right weather, blue waters and Greek food you mentioned. 🙂
It looks beautiful and relaxing. A new place to add to my list!
It sure is, especially if you go there in early September, the wheather is just right and the place is really calm.
Lyndsay Paige says
Corfu is such a beautiful city. Got the best seafood there on the beach! We even had a few cats sit with us as we ate.