You’ll find yourself amazed at the extensive and diverse array of things to do in Corfu, Greece. One of the more popular Greek islands to visit, Corfu welcomes any visitor with open arms and promises a unique and memorable experience.
From stunning beaches, traditional villages, hidden secret coves, and tiny sea caves, this proud member of the Ionian islands provides the most idyllic setting for your vacation.
So, with that in mind, this list takes you through some of the absolute best options for you to add to your Corfu plans. Whether you’re interested in learning more about Corfu’s history, you’re on the hunt for some of the best beaches, or you just want a spot to eat good food and chill out, you’re in luck; Corfu is all things for all travelers!
|Location||Notable Features/Attractions||Type of Traveler||Price Range ($)|
|Paleokastritsa||Stunning beaches, crystal-clear waters, monastery visits, boat tours to sea caves||Nature lovers, beach enthusiasts, and history buffs||$$|
|Achilleion Palace||Opulent palace with beautiful gardens, statues, and panoramic views||History and architecture enthusiasts||$|
|Old Town Corfu||Narrow streets, historic architecture, museums, vibrant atmosphere||Cultural explorers and shoppers||$|
|Pontikonisi (Mouse Island)||Small island with a charming chapel, scenic views, boat trips||Romantic couples and nature lovers||$|
|Paleopolis Archaeological Site||Ancient ruins, Temple of Artemis, panoramic views||History and archaeology enthusiasts||$|
|Kanoni Peninsula||Scenic spot, views of Vlacherna Monastery and Mouse Island||Photographers and nature lovers||$|
|Aqualand||Water park with various slides, pools, and family-friendly attractions||Families with kids||$$$|
|Mount Pantokrator||Panoramic views, hiking trails, historic monasteries||Adventure seekers and nature lovers||$|
|Canal d’Amour||Natural rock formations, picturesque coves, romantic atmosphere||Couples and beach enthusiasts||$|
|Corfu Town Beaches||City beaches, water sports, beachside bars||Sunbathers and water sports enthusiasts||$|
The 15 Best Things to Do in Corfu
1. Explore the Achilleion Palace
One of the top attractions to visit in Corfu is the Achilleion Palace. Just over 6 miles (10km) out of the center of Corfu, the palace sits by surrounding olive groves and lush gardens.
Make your way over to the village of Gastouri to awe over this beautiful palace built in 1890 for Elizabeth, the former Empress of Austria. Once a summer residence for the Empress, it fell deserted after her assassination in 1898. It now serves as one of the top things to do in Corfu for tourists.
Achilleion Palace is renowned for its stunning classical features and impeccable gardens. When looking at what to do in Corfu, it would be worth considering a visit to the palace. Even more so, taking a tour of this scenic spot will help you better appreciate the impressive artwork and learn more about its history.
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2. Explore Corfu Old Town
Old Corfu Town is a UNESCO World Heritage site and can provide you with a whole bunch of great things to do in Corfu. Enjoy historical sites of significance, brilliant spots for the tastiest Corfu dishes, and unmatched beauty. Take a lovely stroll through winding streets with nowhere to go and everything to see.
Saint Spyridon Church is one of the most important Byzantine monuments in all of Corfu. Its red bell tower effortlessly rises above the surrounding buildings, so it’s very easy to find in Corfu Old Town. The architecture is distinctly Venetian and inside is housed the relic of Saint Spyridon.
Other activities you could do would be to visit the Archaeological Museum to enjoy the exhibit of Medusa, from Greek mythology, and witness the 17m-long piece highlighting her demise. Or, take a stroll to the Byzantine Museum for some truly exceptional local art dating back centuries.
Corfu Old Town is most certainly an experience, with its well-preserved beauty and attractions aplenty and stories to be told around every corner. Consider following on a walking tour to really get into the nooks and crannies of this historical UNESCO gem.
For places to stay in the old town, you can’t go wrong with the Acanthus Blue Hotel. It’s a mere 500 meters from the Royal Baths and provides all the luxury you might seek for a comfortable stay. There’s top-tier room service, and the hotel will help you organize tours around the island to make the most of your stay.
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3. Visit the Old Fortress of Corfu Town
If you’re interested in learning more about Corfu’s history, visiting the old fortress in Corfu’s old town is a great idea. The Old Fortress is one of the first things you’ll see on Corfu Island if arriving by ferry. Standing proudly out on a rocky peninsula, this fortress is dubbed ‘old’ as opposed to its counterpart, the “New Fortress,” also built to protect Corfu from pirates and other enemies!
Due to the varying influences throughout its construction, the old fortress has received input from the Byzantine, Early Venetian, and Late Venetian periods. When you step inside, you’ll find several buildings, like a prison, a chapel, and a former military hospital.
The old and new fortresses of Corfu town were once joined by large walls that kept inhabitants safe inside. However, it was destroyed, and now they stand as reminders of Corfu’s interesting past. They’re a must-add item for any history buffs’ list of things to do in Corfu.
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4. Enjoy the Wildlife of Corfu Island
One of the great things to do in Corfu is to embrace its natural side. The island is bursting at the seams with natural beauty for all to enjoy. Countless nature walks available throughout Corfu island that can lead you through diverse landscapes for ample opportunity to delve into the flora and fauna of the island close up.
Mount Pantokrator is an excellent option for hiking on the island. It’s the highest peak on the island, but you don’t have to go to the top to enjoy it! As you ascend the mountain, you’ll spot diverse butterfly species, reptiles basking on the mountain’s warm and rocky terrain, and a stunning array of wildflowers.
Moreover, the island is a brilliant spot to get in some top-tier bird-watching. About 200 different species of birds have been recorded on the island! The best place for bird watching is the great salt flat in Lefkimi. Other notable spots include the Korission and Andinoni lagoons.
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5. Visit Paleokastritsa Beach
Paleokastritsa Beach is an absolute beauty and a well-known popular beach spot in the Ionian Sea. The small beach area is kid-friendly and a great family day out filled with diverse activities and quality dining options.
Its curved bay makes this spot especially great for marine activities like canoeing and paddleboarding. If you prefer to see what lurks beneath the waves, go on an underwater cruise excursion! Sit comfortably dry while 6 feet (2 meters) below the water to enjoy the underwater world of Corfu.
If you’re not into watersports or marine life, the area can still provide some excellent cave exploration opportunities. You could easily fit in visits to multiple sea caves at Paleokastritsa, like the Blue Eye Cave or Nausika’s Cave, in one outing.
For families visiting the island, Mayflower Studios could be for you. It offers family-friendly apartments with a large outside pool and separate kids’ pool. Moreover, it’s conveniently close to the beach and even closer to the shops and restaurants of the nearby village, Moraitika.
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6. Enjoy Seafront Dining in Kassiopi
Kassiopi Harbor is a popular tourist spot on the northeastern coast of Corfu. It’s about 1 hour from Corfu town by bus and 30 minutes by car. Alternatively, you could make your way up to see Kassiopi via a leisurely cruise to enjoy more of Corfu’s gorgeous coastline en route.
One of the best things to do in Corfu is to eat as much of that delicious Greek cuisine as possible during your stay. The food in Kassiopi is reason enough to justify a visit. This fishing village can serve you some of the best seafood you’ve ever tried.
From highly rated restaurants like Janis Taverna or Petrino, you can enjoy freshly caught seafood with the sea it came from right by your side. In fact, both these restaurants were 2022 Travellers Choice winners on Trip Advisor.
If you would rather not rush your time in Kassiopi, you could always choose this as your base in Corfu. The Kontokali Bay Resort & Spa is a fine choice for anyone wanting beachfront accommodation, an incredibly sizeable pool, and on-site spa services.
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7. Discover the Corfu Museum of Asian Art
Of all the things to do in Corfu, your mind might not automatically think of admiring Asian art. The Corfu Museum of Asian Art was founded in 1928, and over the years, it has amassed a collection that now stands at about 15,000 pieces.
Tickets to the museum are reasonably priced, starting at a standard fare of EUR6 and a discounted rate of EUR3 during the off-season of November – March. Moreover, there are plenty of days where admission is entirely free if you time your visit right!
Just for a moment, take yourself away from the Greek islands into the far east. Wander round exhibits featuring stunning ornate sculptures, expressive paintings, and colorful textiles that have been meticulously curated over the past century. This small museum serves as a wonderfully refreshing hidden gem, not to be missed.
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8. Visit Mouse Island
Nearby Mouse Island is an excellent option for a boat trip off Corfu. This tiny islet is more formally referred to as Pontikonisi, and you can find it at the Halkiopoulous Lagoon. It’s well known for being the home of Pantokrator, a Byzantine chapel from the 11th century that only calls for a short amount of time to take it all in, but is well worth the effort to visit.
The history of this tiny island takes you down a legendary tale in Greek mythology. Pontikonisi was Odysseus’s ship, the one from ‘The Odyssey Poem’ written by Homer. Poseidon turned the ship into a large rock when it washed up on the shore of Pontikonisi Island, giving it its name.
Others say its name comes from the fact that it looks like a mouse when viewed from above. Either way, it’s a popular tourist destination and can easily fit into your Corfu sightseeing itinerary.
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9. Enjoy the Serenity of Porto Timoni
Corfu really is a bombardment of gorgeous beaches. But most notable would be the photogenic gem of Porto Timoni on the island’s west coast.
To visit the two beaches of Porto Timoni, you’re looking at a 20-30-minute walk to get down (and subsequent hike back up). If you’d rather not stretch your legs so much, visiting by boat is possible.
Porto Timoni provides two of Corfu’s most famous but small sandy beaches, drawing crowds. If you can’t make it for the off-season and find yourself visiting Corfu in the summer peak season, try getting to Porto Timoni as early as possible. You can avoid the crowds and the mid-day heat on the hike back up!
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10. Indulge in the Local Cuisine
The local cuisine of Corfu has strong Venetian, and British influences, blended in with that famously delicious Greek flare. Such a diverse history has provided Corfu with a tastefully unique flavor, which you must sample at least a snippet during your time on the island.
To get a taste of some of the best must-try local foods in Corfu, checking out the old town must have a firm place in your itinerary.
Wandering around Corfu Old Town solo will take you past numerous stores and open-air markets filled to the brim with new treats to try. If you’re in the mood for someone else to tell you what’s good, join a walking tour taking you on some of the most delicious food tastings.
Take yourself out of the old town; you’re still spoiled for choice. Delight in the local wines, or taste what olive oil is supposed to taste like at an olive oil tasting in the beautiful Ropa Valley. Moreover, the island is overflowing with excellent local seafood, so visit any of the traditional villages by the sea and indulge!
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11. Hike the Corfu Trail
For something a little off the beaten track, take on the challenge of the Corfu Trail. It’s certainly one of the best outdoor activities in Corfu. Go at your own pace, but be prepared to take 6-10 days to complete this trek.
The total length of the Corfu Trail is 180km (112 miles). The landscapes of Corfu are put in the spotlight during what is generally considered quite a challenging route. But if you’re up for it, you’ll enjoy a trail unspoiled by mass tourism.
If you’re visiting Corfu solo, or there are a couple of you, but you’d still like a bit more company, there are tours specifically open taking you along the Corfu trail. It’s not one of the best-marked hiking trails, so a tour might not be the worst option if you’re not a hardcore hiker.
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12. Attend the Annual Beer Festival in September
The annual beer festival held in Corfu was started by a small group of friends back in 2013. The festival runs for five days, and entry is free! So, if you aren’t into beers but want to enjoy the festival ambiance, it’s one of the great free things to do in Corfu.
Since its first event, it has quickly become a cultural tradition for the island, and tourists and visitors alike can enjoy the festivities.
Every year brings the contribution of a different foreign country. With its diverse history, it only makes sense that an event like this is celebrated on the island, continuing the trend of embracing other cultures!
Of course, the festival also serves local options in food and beer. Past events have seen traditional Greek food and locally brewed beverages on the menu, alongside the foreign entry of the year. It’s a brilliant festival of cultural embrace, good food, good beers, and good music.
13. Cruise to Albania for a Day Trip
One of the best day trips from Corfu is to leave the Greek island and pop over to Albania. The boat trip only takes about 30 minutes over the Ionian Sea, so you’ll have plenty of time during the day to explore.
While in Albania, you could visit Butrint National Park. It’s an ancient city, 7th-century BCE ancient, to be precise. So you can let your inner history buff out on a walking tour around this ancient hot spot and gawp over its impressive ruins, such as a Byzantine church and old theatre.
Also, as delicious as the cuisine of Corfu is, Albania has something going for it too! For example, dishes such as burek or baklava will make your taste buds rejoice if you give them a go. To end your day in Albania well, amble along the Saranda promenade to enjoy a top-notch Albanian brew or pop your head in the many souvenir shops before your return to Corfu.
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14. Vlacherna Monastery
You have probably already seen many pictures of Vlacherna Monastery, also known as Vlacherna Convent. It is perhaps the most iconic landmark in all of Corfu. Not too big in size, the monastery sits on a tiny islet connected to the Kanoni Peninsula.
Its architecture features a white facade and red-tiled roofs, well suited to the beauty around it. In fact, you could see the monastery on the same outing as a visit to Mouse Island, as the two are incredibly close together.
This spot makes for a picture-perfect moment to fill up that Instagram profile or simply to relax and enjoy the peaceful ambiance.
Vlacherna Monastery is a true cultural treasure of the island, so it’s no surprise it’s also one of its most visited – a definite must-see for any visit to Corfu.
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15. Visit Canal D’amour
Canal d’Armour is a coastal area on the northern coast on a Corfu map. As one of the island’s most famous and picturesque tourist spots, couples might want to visit the ‘Channel of Love.’
The unique rock formations and narrow sandstone cliffs, created by erosion over centuries, are truly impressive. There’s a saying that couples who swim together in its crystal-clear waters will be blessed with eternal love.
Aside from the romantic spin on the Canal, the area does offer other amenities for those not traveling with their sweetheart. The shallow seabed and sea caves provide a brilliant chance for snorkeling. Otherwise, numerous beach bars are nearby to grab a pint in the Mediterranean sun and relax.
Just be wary about visiting Canal d’Amour. It is one of the busiest spots on the island, so there will be crowds, especially during peak season. Get in early to grab a sunbed and a good lounging spot!
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How can I get around Corfu?
Almost every option you can think of transport-wise is available to you to explore the wonderful island of Corfu. The island has a very good public bus network that can get you to all the major tourist destinations. Or you could rent a car or scooter for greater freedom and flexibility on your travel day plans.
Of course, taxis are also available, as well as tour groups and bicycle rentals. Moreover, for getting off the island to visit neighboring islands, many boat tours and water taxis are waiting to help you explore!
What is the best time to visit Corfu?
The question of when is the best time to visit Corfu entirely depends on what you want to do when you get there. The summer months are peak tourist season, but all the things to do in Corfu that orbit around water activities and beautiful beaches might be best done during this time. Otherwise, if you want to beat the crowds and maybe pick up a bargain, the shoulder seasons of Spring and Autumn offer milder temperatures, and fewer crowds, with outdoor pursuits still being possible.
What are the must-try local foods in Corfu?
Pastitsada is a dish passed down from the Venetians and is a local favorite. It’s simply pasta cooked with beef or rooster sitting in a tomato-based sauce and then infused with spices.
Another very typical dish in Corfu would be Stakofisi. Stakofisi is stockfish that has been wind dried. The fish is then cooked with onion, leek, red pepper and stewed in tomato sauce.
Of course, Corfu has many other items on the menu. It would be best for you to join a food tastings tour to enjoy sampling as many as you can during your visit.