Villa Vivere  


A few words on Corfu


Corfu island is the second largest and the most popular among the Ionian Islands.

Corfu was long controlled by Venice empire who built a beautiful old town of venetian architecture that together with a variety of sandy (in south) and rocky (in the north corfu) beaches, archeological sites, museums and a number of sport activities attract people from around the word every year.

South Corfu is known for its sandy beaches and its smouth landscape, which differentiates it from the rest of the island. The largest city is Lefkimmi and worthwhile destinations are the sandy beach of Issos, Kavos, Benitses, Mesoggi, Alikes (translated as ‘salterns’) and Molo. The limnothallasa Korission and forest Arkoudilla are natural attractions somebody should not miss. The Palace, Achilleon, located in the village of Gastouri, which was erected in 1890 for Elizabeth (Sissy), the Empress of Austria as the solace of her soul, is one of Corfu's top attractions.

Greek mythology wants the island in the story of Oduseas, written by Omiros, as the island of the Faiakes, at the time called ‘Sxeria’. Over the centuries the island took a lot of other names until the recent ‘Kerkura’ that took from the nymph daughter of the river Asopos. The god Poseidon who loved the beautiful nymph, he brought to the island, giving the island her name. From their love Faikas was born, the mythical founder of Corfu,after whom the inhabitants of the island were named: Phaiakes.

Many scholars believe that the myth of the nymph of Kerkyra etymologically is related to the word ‘Coryfo’ (Κορυφώ) a name taken from the acropolis that is situated today opposite the current capital. It is from the word of Coryfo that then came the Latin name of Corfu, which is known outside the island.

The period of Venetian domination lasted four centuries (1385 -1796), a period in which the government held the island under the aristocratic system of Venice. The residents were divided into 3 different classes: nobles, bourgeois and the people. What still remains vivid is both the architecture and the dialects of the island stemming from the Venetian era. Corfu was long controlled by Venice, which repulsed several Turkish sieges, before falling under British rule following the Napoleonic Wars. Corfu was eventually ceded by the British Empire along with the remaining islands of the United States of the Ionian Islands, and unification with modern Greece was concluded in 1864 under the Treaty of London.