Greece has been going through a rough patch lately but despite problems here and there, my travel lust for visiting the Greek Islands has only intensified. Here are 5 things I’d like to see and do in Corfu:
1) Visit the Achilleion Palace
I’m a sucker for European palaces, which is why I’d like to visit the palace originally built for Empress Elizabeth of Austria back in the 1890s. Although the grounds have served multiple purposes over the years, including a casino, hospital and a cameo in a James Bond flick, the grounds are open to the public and filled with colorful outdoor gardens, detailed statues and masterly decorated rooms.
2) Wander through Corfu Old Town
Like many old European cities, Corfu’s old town sounds effortlessly romantic. Similar to any town, there are countless souvenir shops, restaurants and cafes to pass the time and enjoy a few minutes of people-watching. I have a tendency to get lost in cities where cobble stoned streets and winding alleys are involved so I have a feeling Corfu would be no exception. Getting lost is usually my preferred method of local travel.
3) Take in the View from Mount Pantokrator
Another thing I am slightly obsessed with while traveling is viewing a city or town from its highest location. In Corfu, this would be Mount Pantokrator. Standing tall at 2,972 feet, travelers can drive to the top and even visit the local monastery once they reach the mountain. More adventurous avant-garde travelers choose to hike Mount Pantokrator for a truly rewarding experience. Some people have said that the tip of Italy can be seen from this focal point.
4) Brush up on my Greek History
I’m not a huge museum buff, but Corfu has two particular museums that I find intriguing: the Archaeological Museum and the Byzantine Museum. The latter showcases carvings and other ancient artifacts dating back to the 13th century, although most items are from the 16th and 17th centuries. The museum is also located within the Church of Antivouniotissa, one of the oldest and wealthiest churches on the island.
5) Plan a Day Trip to Albania
Day trips can be tricky and may feel rushed, but I generally opt to do one or two during longer trips because it gives me a chance to see more of a destination. There are a few tour companies that offer day trips and overnight excursions to Albania, so it’s not an impossible venture. The scenic drive is roughly six hours so bringing along a book or in my case, catching up on blog entries is not a bad idea to help pass the time.
Looking for flights to Corfu? Check out these budget options and with a bit of luck, you can start planning your Grecian Getaway.
Photo via kamshots‘ flickr stream.
*This post made possible by Thomas Cook – little fares from the big travel company.