We first visited Corfu in June 2016 to celebrate Ryan’s birthday. Ryan had been plenty of times before but this was my first time. I had heard so many good things from Ryan from all of his previous visits with his dad so I was so excited to see what Corfu had to offer!
I usually like to plan every last detail of our trips so that when we get there we know exactly where to go, the best places to stay and the best places for food however this time as Ryan had been so many times before I didn’t plan at all!
I just wanted him to show me what he knew and loved about Corfu. We stayed in the Gouvia area of Corfu for 4 days.
When we arrived we got a taxi from the airport to our hotel, Saint Nicholas Hotel. We were not expecting much from the hotel as we got a pretty cheap deal on it but when we arrived we were so pleasantly surprised.
The hotel was so beautiful! It was such an authentic little greek hotel. The gardens and the pool area were stunning with lots of beautiful flowers. This is a great thing about Corfu, it’s a very green island even with the warm climate so the scenery is beautiful all year round. Our room was spacious and clean and we had a balcony with great views of the mountains!
We were so happy with it and couldn’t wait for this to be the base of our stay in Corfu. We arrived late afternoon so by the time we had checked in and unpacked a little it was getting rather late so we just went out for a walk around the local area of Gouvia to see what we could check out over the next few days. The hotel was up quite a high hill so not the best location for people that have difficulties with walking.
Exploring corfu – Day 1
When we woke up we were so excited to spend our first day exploring Corfu. We met up with Ryan’s dad as he was also in Corfu at the same time! We rented out a Suzuki soft top 4×4 and I must say there was no better was to explore corfu, renting a car is a must to really get out there and see what this stunning greek island has to offer.
We started off by driving up the north coast stopping off in Dassia and Ipsos for breakfast. The main feature of Ipsos is you’re so close to the turquoise sea. Enjoying breakfast and looking out over the beach is just something we love to do and this is one of the best places to do it with such a variety of places to eat.
Next we carried on up the north coast stopping off whenever we seen a view that we just couldn’t miss. As you climb high these views just keep coming and coming! The next stop off for an ice cream was Nissaki and Barbati at a stunning taverna with a secluded beach serving freshly made ice-cream!
The next stop that Ryan wanted to visit was Paleokastritsa on the North West coast as he had never visited and had heard so many locals saying how beautiful it is.
We arrived in the sun kissed town and were amazed how beautiful it was. I took some time to relax on the beach and soak up the sun while Ryan and his dad went snorkelling in the caves. We had all worked up an appetite and seen a stunning little restaurant over looking the golden sand and managed to get a window table and enjoyed some fantastic greek food.
We all decided to go back to our hotel and relax in the afternoon sun and get ready for the nights meal. As it was Ryans birthday he chose his favourite restaurant on the whole island, its a very very small place right up in the mountains in a town called Kato Korakiana.
The restaurant is called Strapounto Grill House. Ryan has been coming here for years.
The owner can barely speak English and Ryan and his dad were surprised to see that they had menus which they didn’t have before, you had to try and speak greek or wait and be surprised about what you would have!
We first knew about this place by speaking to the locals and getting them to recommend places and we have found this is the best way to find the top places.
Soak up the greek sun in Corfu – Day 2
Our second day was spent having a really relaxing time around the pool at the hotel. We had done so much exploring the day before we wanted to do nothing but relax and with the hotel being so nice we thought we would spend the day there.
The hotel is set up a hill with nothing next to the building so you can enjoy the breatiful green gardens surrounded by beautiful flowers in peace without hearing a car or any noise. The pool was always kept to a very high standard and was cleaned everyday.
They have a small pool bar which serves food and drinks throughout the day with a little seating area where you can enjoy some shade and the most delicious greek salad!
At night we decided to go and find a cute little restaurant which we had passed in the village of Gouvia which was right on the beach overlooking the sea. Liada Beach Bar Restaurant has two tables where the seats are swings! With the sun setting this made for the best views and the food matched.
Searching for the Durrells – Day 3
Our third day was spent out in the car again doing some more exploring of the island. We went in search of the Durrells house. The Durrells were a famous British family who moved to Corfu in 1935 and fell in love with the island.
There is a British TV programme based on the family and their greek adventures which we really loved so when we found out that you could visit their home we were so excited to get out and find it!
We asked around all the locals if they knew where this house was and it just happened to be 5 Minutes from where we were staying. You couldn’t get right up to the house but could see it from the beach and see areas where the show was filmed.
After driving around exploring again we decided we wanted something a little naughty to eat and went and tried out a little cafe called Fresh on the Gouvia main road, OMG this place serves the most amazing waffles! we both had a chocolate waffle with nutella ice cream, everyone needs to try this place it serves some amazing deserts!
Exploring corfu town – Day 4
It was my first time visiting corfu and Ryan had told me so much about Corfu Town and how nice it was so we started off the day by getting the blue bus from outside Gouvia main road. The trip only takes around 20 minutes and costs around €2. This really is the best and cheapest way to get into corfu town without paying €25 for a taxi.
I instantly fell in love with this stunning city, from all the different artictecture on the building to all the cute narrow streets with tiny shops selling all sorts of different items, and finding some really cute restaurants, coffee shops and cafes.
Achillion Palace Corfu
After walking around corfu town we got a short taxi to Achillion Palace. Ryan had also visited here before but was so excited to go back again and I could see why! This house itself is filled with some amazing art and articture with the house being built in 1891 by Sisi of Austria.
Ryan has a love of greek and Roman history and as you’re walking up the huge staircase you can see a very large painting of a scene from Troy, with Achilles dragging Hector’s head with his chariot in front of the Troy army.
You then take a walk outside and see a statue of an arrow in the heel of the great Achilles. Also near that is a huge statue of Achilles himself standing with his Speer and shield. This is one of Ryans and now my favourite buildings on the island, high up in the mountains of Corfu is not somewhere you expect to find this but that just makes this even more special.
As we came to the end of our first trip to Corfu together we felt so sad to have to leave and knew for sure that we would be visiting again one day! It’s such a charming, beautiful, relaxed Greek island that we highly recommend and have completely fallen in love with.
We would love to know what you think of Corfu if you have ever been, let us know in the comments!
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