Corfu Town or Greek Kérkyra is the capital of the island and of the Corfu regional unit. The city also serves as a capital for the region of the Ionian Islands.
Corfu town, especially for its oldest part, is one of the most charming and romantic places of all the Greece and a major tourist attraction.
The Old Town is a perfect example of ancient Venetian and Byzantine culture and architecture that fascinates both visitors and people living on Corfu permanently. The narrow streets, the artful facades, the two fortesses, the Liston, the Esplanade, the Old Port. There are too many beautiful places worth visiting again and again. And that, not only when it comes to historically interesting sights. Corfu Town is the vivid, pulsating heart of the island’s life with an uncounted number of cafés, excellent restaurants and taverns, nightclubs and bars, shops from international designers to local products, cinema, public theatre, museums and all this surrounded by the sea and gifted with a magnificient view towards the mainland.
Corfu Town has played an important role since the 8th century. In 2007, the old town of the city was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
Having grown up within fortifications, where every metre of ground was precious, it is a labyrinth of narrow streets paved with cobblestones, sometimes tortuous but mostly pleasant, colourful and sparkling clean. Many of them are too narrow for vehicular traffic.
There is promenade by the seashore towards the bay of Garitsa, and also the handsome esplanade between the town and the citadel called Liston where upmarket restaurants and European style bistros abound. The origin of the name Liston has several explanations: many former Venetian cities have a square of that name, coming from a Venetian word meaning evening promenade, but it can also refer to the closed-list aspect of an up-scale area reserved to the nobility registered in the Libro d’Oro.
With the modern part of its city, Corfu Town is today an island full of life also in the winter months, not least due to the institution of the Greek University of the Ionian Islands bringing many young people from all over Europe to the island.
If you decide to rent or buy a property in Corfu Town, you are right in the middle of life – and thus in close reach to beaches like Pelekas, Glyfada or Kontokali. Corfu Town itself also has two decent city beaches and a public open-sea swimming pool close to the Esplanades where you will find Corfiots turning their daily rounds in the sea even in winters.
Depending on your preferences, you will both find very vivid areas to live (like the Old Town) and quite quarters like Garitsa or Kanalia. We are happy to help you to find the perfect surrounding within this beauty of a city! Don’t hesitate to contact us!
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UNECO World Heritage
The Old Town of Corfu, on the Island of Corfu off the western coasts of Albania and Greece, is located in a strategic position at the entrance of the Adriatic Sea, and has its roots in the 8th century BC. The three forts of the town, designed by renowned Venetian engineers, were used for four centuries to defend the maritime trading interests of the Republic of Venice against the Ottoman Empire. In the course of time, the forts were repaired and partly rebuilt several times, more recently under British rule in the 19th century. The mainly neoclassical housing stock of the Old Town is partly from the Venetian period, partly of later construction, notably the 19th century. As a fortified Mediterranean port, Corfu’s urban and port ensemble is notable for its high level of integrity and authenticity.
The ensemble of the fortifications and the Old Town of Corfu is located in a strategic location at the entrance to the Adriatic Sea. Historically, its roots go back to the 8th century BC and to the Byzantine period. It has thus been subject to various influences and a mix of different peoples. From the 15th century, Corfu was under Venetian rule for some four centuries, then passing to French, British and Greek governments. At various occasions, it had to defend the Venetian maritime empire against the Ottoman army. Corfu was a well thought of example of fortification engineering, designed by the architect Sanmicheli, and it proved its worth through practical warfare. Corfu has its specific identity, which is reflected in the design of its system of fortification and in its neo-classical building stock. As such, it can be placed alongside other major Mediterranean fortified port cities.
The urban and port ensemble of Corfu, dominated by its fortresses of Venetian origin, constitutes an architectural example of outstanding universal value in both its authenticity and its integrity.
The overall form of the fortifications has been retained and displays traces of Venetian occupation, including the Old Citadel and the New Fort, but primarily interventions from the British period. The present form of the ensemble results from the works in the 19th and 20th centuries. The authenticity and integrity of the urban fabric are primarily those of a neo-classical town.
Quote taken from the official UNESCO World Heritage webpage: whc.unesco.org
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