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some practical information for visiting Corfù

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Diapondía Islands - Corfù

 

Othoni, Corfù

The three inhabited islands off Corfu’s northwest coast can all be visited on day-trips from Aghios Stefanos in the northwest and Sidári on the north coast in about 2 hours.
If there are no day-trips running on the day you want to go, or if you wish to spend some days on the islands, ask about the regular ferry services. These operate a few times a week from Aghios Stephanos (ship Pegasus, 1 hour and 30 minutes) and Corfu Town (ferry Alexandros, 4 hours) for the use of local people.
All have at least one place to stay and one or more places to eat, but most of these are open only in the summer months. If you really want to experience these little islands you should stay at least two or three days on one of the islands. You might want to take some supplies with you, in case all you can find is a simple room to stay in.

Mathráki
The closest of the offshore islands is the smallest and least populated, although numbers swell in the summer when people who have left the island return to their family homes. It is densely wooded, with a lengthy sandy beach (nesting site for loggerhead turtles) and fine walks. From the harbour, a single main road leads inland to the village of Kato Mathráki, where there is a taverna. There are also a few rooms to rent, but don’t rely on one being available. Note that you cannot camp at the beach because of the turtles.

Eríkoussa
Eríkoussa is the most visited of the three islands, with a choice of beaches, including one of golden sand close to the arrival point, Pórto. Not until the excursion boats leave does it live up to its description as a “desert island”. Pangini Beach, on the other side of the island, is quieter and can be reached by a footpath through the flat, wooded interior. Three small villages are separated by groves of cypress trees and there is a hotel and restaurant, plus a taverna and some rooms to rent. For an overnight stay away from Corfu itself, this is the best choice for both facilities and appeal.
If you are on Corfu in August then the Feast of the Assumption on the 15th is a great day to visit Erikoussa, if you can get there. But don’t plan on staying overnight as the little island will be packed.

Erikoussa

Erikoussa

 

Othoni
Othoni is the biggest of the islands with rooms to rent and several places to eat, plus a few shops and cafés, partly supported by the visiting yachts.
The interior of Othoni is more hilly and rugged than the other two islands, and you can arrange a visit with a local boatman to take you to “Calypso’s Cave”, which is said to be the home of the nymph who kept Odysseus captive for seven years in Homer’s Odyssey.
There are several beaches along the western shore, including Aspri Ammos, the “white sand”.

Othoni