It’s been a while since I did a travel post! Happy to report that I’ve now finally been on my (albeit delayed) summer holiday for this year, so it’s time to tell you all about it…
Last year, I published a post titled My Top 5 Bucketlist Travel Destinations. One of those destinations was the Greek island of Santorini. Sadly, Santorini was out of my current price range but I still managed to visit a Greek island for the first time, in the shape of Corfu.
Travel dates: 22nd September to 29th September 2019
Flights: Ryanair flying from Liverpool
Accommodation: Fulvia Apartments booked via booking.com
Transfers: Fulvia Travel
This was a family holiday and I travelled with my parents and younger sister to Kassiopi. This was around a 50-60 minute drive from Corfu airport.
We stayed in a two bedroomed, self-catering apartment, which had everything we needed. There were plenty of shops/supermarkets around to stock up on food essentials and bottled water.
Kassiopi is a beautiful harbour village on the north east coast of Corfu. Albania is less than 5 miles away and is clearly visible on a daily basis across the sea. It really is stunning to look at.
There are plenty of beaches and small coves to enjoy in Kassiopi. The main three beaches being Kalamionis, Pipitou and Bataria. All three of these beaches are shingle/pebble though so make sure that you take sensible footwear! Hire of a sunbed is 3 Euros all day – and an additional 2 Euros if you’d like an umbrella for a bit of shade. I thought this was really good value. There are some beautiful blues and greens in the sea and the water is so clear! Plenty of people were swimming and snorkelling but I preferred to just lounge!
This was a holiday in which we wanted to relax and unwind, so many of our days were spent either on the beach, around the pool or out on our balcony. I did a little bit of reading but mostly listened to podcasts to while the days away in the sun.
The temperature averaged between 26 – 28 degrees most days. There was a bad electrical storm on our second evening but apart from that, no weather complaints at all – and certainly much better than the UK was experiencing at the time!
Onto the main event – FOOD! If you know anything about me, you’ll know that food is probably my favourite thing in life. I was so excited to eat out and sample some local Greek dishes. Give me alllll the olives and feta cheese please.
Kassiopi is not short on cafes/restaurants to dine in and being self-catering, we ate out a couple of times a day, most days. My personal favourites would have to be:
• Sousouro – a traditional Greek tavern, tucked away down a side road off the main road down to the harbour. Sousouro was really cosy and the staff were lovely. My sister and I ordered a range of starters and therefore, had Greek tapas! I can’t comment on any main meals but the food that we did have was so tasty.
• Porto Nuovo – this restaurant is down on the harbour so comes with beautiful views. My sister and I decided to have a main and a dessert, as it was our last night and so far, we’d not ordered a dessert anywhere we’d eaten! After ordering our drinks and mains, we were unexpectedly brought some bread and dips… would have been rude to refuse. But in doing this, the restaurant did itself out of two dessert orders as we were much too full after our mains to order them in the end! A nice touch was that we were both given two free shots of limoncello with the bill.
(Bloody love a good dusk shot 😍)
• Virginia’s Place – again, this one is down on the harbour with its incredible views. Virginia’s only serves food until 6pm but the food was so good, that we visited twice during our stay. Virginia’s had a number of smaller plates on their menu, which made it ideal for a light lunch. The prices were really reasonable too. There were also lots of delicious fruit slushes to choose from. I had a mango one and it was to die for!
• Little Italy – OK, so you may find me strange for visiting an Italian restaurant whilst in Greece, but the menu caught our attention. I’m so glad we went in as the food was amazing. I had the salmon and my sister had a pasta dish. Again, we were too full for any dessert!
Speaking of sweet treats though, Cool and Fresh had tons of gorgeous flavours of ice cream, sorbet and frozen yoghurt to choose from. There was also Nicolas Bakery, which was about a two-minute walk from our apartments.
The pies, cakes and pastries in here were something else. Look at the size of this jam donut – definitely needed two hands for that!
There were plenty of bars and pubs to visit in Kassiopi of an evening. This isn’t the place to come if you’re into mad clubbing till 6am though, Kavos would probably be more up your street!
A couple of our favourite places were Illusions and Kostas. Both bars were table service so there were no big queues at the bar, which was great. The staff across both bars were so lovely and welcoming too.
Illusions ran a quiz after 10pm each night with prizes ranging from a bottle of wine one night to a week’s accommodation in Kassiopi another night. Guess which one we won? Yep, the wine! We were third place for the holiday unfortunately but you can’t win ‘em all as they say. The DJ at Illusions was also a Scouser so we felt right at home.
Kostas provided entertainment in the way of traditional Greek dancing every night after 10pm. This was so fun to watch and towards the end, audience participation was encouraged. The staff at Kostas were also very generous with their free shots!
In terms of things to do in Kassiopi, given that it’s a small village, there isn’t an abundance but there is definitely enough to keep you busy for a week. Aside from lounging around on beaches and eating/drinking, there are the remains of Kassiopi Castle to explore.
The castle is visible from the harbour and a short walk will take you right up there. The four of us visited a few days into the holiday – again, wear sensible shoes!
Kassiopi Castle is one of three castles of the Byzantine period, ensuring the defence of the island during the Venetian period of 1386-1797. The castle is regarded as one of the most important architectural remains in the Ionian Islands. As stated, there are only remains to see here but it’s still definitely worth the walk up as the views are amazing given the height you reach.
Another day we went out on the glass-bottomed boat from the harbour. You’re out at sea for just under an hour for a cost of 10 Euros each. There was some lovely sea life out there but I have to admit that the glass needed a bit of a scrub! Also, I felt rather seasick and couldn’t bring myself to take any photos, although I doubt how clear they would have been given my aforementioned comment…
There are some lovely little shops to have a mooch in. My favourite one being… drum roll please… I can’t remember the name of it 😭 I’m gutted and kicking myself for not taking a photo of the shop front. However, it was down by the harbour, near Porto Nuovo. I’ve googled it and even been on street view to find it but to no avail – the date on street view was October 2014, so maybe it wasn’t there then?
Anyway! Everything in this shop is made with reused/recyclable materials. The handbags were made out of paper and were incredible!
There is a quaint little church in the centre of Kassiopi, which we also visited. Unfortunately, photography was not allowed so I only have a picture of the entrance before you follow the path down to the church.
One thing I will point out is to be careful on the walk down the main strip to the harbour. There can be a lot of traffic at times and I definitely think that part of it should be (or is meant to be) pedestrianised, yet people still drive up and down it!
Aside from Kassiopi, we also visited Corfu Town. We travelled there by boat for 18 Euros each, booked via Fulvia Travel. It took around an hour and a quarter to get to Corfu Town and we spent 4 hours there before having to catch the boat back. I have to say that 4 hours simply wasn’t long enough and I definitely hope to go back to Corfu Town one day!
We explored as much as we could in the time we had. The buildings and views in Corfu Town are incredible and the weather was especially good that day.
We visited the Church of St. Spyridon (again, no photography was allowed in here), The Old Fortress, the Palace of St Michael and St George, and had lunch in a café in the Liston along Spianada Square.
Exploring The Old Fortress was fantastic, there was so much to see and we ran out of time to get around all of it. I wanted to climb right to the top but probably only managed to make it two thirds of the way. Little tip: we went on a Saturday and were unaware that it’s free entry on weekends, so that was a nice bonus.
Before we knew it, our week away was over and it was time to head home. I would definitely go back to Corfu. As stated, I’d like more time to see what the whole of Corfu Town has to offer. Kassiopi was stunning, the weather and food were amazing and the local people were so lovely and hospitable. This place is well worth a visit, so what are you waiting for?
Have you visited Corfu before? What were your favourite places and/or recommendations? I’d love to know, drop me a comment!