Corfu is the second largest island of the Ionian Sea and it covers an area of 592 square kilometers and a luxuriant coastline of 217 kilometers. It is situated in the north side of the Ionian Sea, in the entrance of the Adriatic Sea, two and a half miles from the beach of Albania. The mythical island of the Faiakes is an ornament of the Ionian Sea, but it is also one of the most beautiful islands in Greece, combining the green mountains and the long sandy beaches. The mild and rainy climate of the island brings out the rich flora which creates the unique color of the island.
The beautiful beaches form many bays. The best known of them are: Ipsos, Garitsa, Limnothalassa Chaliopoulou (in Pontikonisi), Mantoukiou and others. Also, there are some capes like in Kavo Sidero in the City of Corfu, Agia Barbara, Kassiopi and Agia Aikaterini in the north of the island, Kefali, Asprokavo and Leukimmi in the south, Agios Stefanos in the west, Arilla, Falakro and Ag. Isidoros.
Three rows of mountains cross the island. The highest peak is Pantokratoras (914m). Between the mountains there are many fertile valleys, like Lefkimmi and the grassland of Ropa that are washed by many rivers, which, however, are dry during the summer. Around the island there are many small islands of the same beauty and clean beaches, like in Corfu. Opposite the city of Corfu there is Bido (ancient Ptychia) and Lasareto, northwest stands Erikousa, Mathraki, Othonoi and in the south the beautiful Paxi and Antipaxi.
The innumerable natural beauties of the Mediterranean climate, that result in cool summers and mild winters, the history and the rich cultural tradition, have made Corfu into an excellent holiday resort that attracts many Greeks and foreigners.
People of Corfu offer their hospitality to the visitors of the island, who experience a unique opportunity to enjoy comfortable and unforgettable vacations.
A mosaic of all nationalities and races walk through the picturesque alleys, known as the traditional "kadunia" of Corfu, which create an atmosphere of past times. In this scenery, one can find the ideal place for vacations, since he/she can choose between the small fishing-islands for quite and relaxing staying or the cosmopolitan places with loud night life. Also, the villages that are built in the green valleys are the ideal place for those who love the country or the innumerable beaches for those who love the extreme water sports.
The northern part of the island is mountainous and rises to the peak of Pantokrator, which is Corfu's highest point at 906 meters. Rolling hills mostly covered with olive groves make up the central and southern section.
The Ropa Valley, in the center of the island, is the most extensive farming region, and there are other agricultural valleys in the north west and in the south, as well as fertile coastal plains and wetland areas.
Climate Corfu enjoys a typical Mediterranean climate, with summers that are hot and dry. Heavy rain falls during the three months of winter, keeping the island green all year round. Spring comes to the island in February, and weather warm enough for swimming continues until early November.
Health Conditions Due to prosperity and the favourable climate, Corfu has no endemic diseases, and no special vaccinations are required. Hospital facilities, both public and private, are of a good standard.
The population of the island is approximately 120,000, of which 40,000 live in Corfu Town and the rest mainly inhabit the island's numerous villages.
Because of the island's superb climate and the fertility of its soil, and also because of its strategic geographical location guarding the southern neck of the Adriatic Sea between Italy and Greece, Corfu has always been a prize for conquerors.
After being part of the civilization of Ancient Greece, it was ruled by Romans, Byzantines, Normans and Angevins, before a 400-year period of stability under the Venetian Republic, which protected it from invasion by the Turks. Subsequently the island was occupied by the French and then the British. In 1864, Corfu became a part of Greece.
The influence of Corfu's many rulers is evident today in the character of the island, in its archaeological remains, in its historic buildings and in its cultural heritage.