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Sightseeing in Corfu town

Old Fortress: What you can see of Corfu Town today owes its architecture largely to the Venetians. The town was originally founded in the Byzantine Era on the site of the Old Fortress where the entire population of the town lived for a long time. During the Venetian occupation the town gradually spread out. The modern town also has French and British influences. The Old Fort although partly demolished by the British when they returned the Ionian Islands to Greece, still contains some impressive fortifications including some by the famous architect Martinego and is open to visitors. Look for the statue of Marshall Schulenberg by Corradini and the old bell tower. Inside the fortress there is one of the most beautiful churches in Corfu: St.George's that was built by the British. Sound & Light presentations are offered here in the summer.

New Fortress: The New Fortress near the Old Port was started by the Venetians in 1575 and completed in 1645. The British added to it. Today it is houses navy offices but it is open to visitors. Look out for the giant Venetian Lion over the main gateway.

The beautiful l6th century church situated in St. Spiridon's St., is the church dedicated to St. Spiridon, the Patron Saint of the island. Each year on four occasions the remains of the saint are paraded through the streets in celebration. You may visit the church at anytime. Dress suitably.

The Greek Orthodox Cathedral is in a square just off the Old Port and the Catholic Cathedral (a restored l4th Century building) can be found in the Town Hall Square (Platia Dimarchiou).

The Town Hall itself was built in the l7th century and is an exquisite example of Venetian architecture.

The center of social life in Corfu Town is undoubtedly to be found at the Espianade. The town gardens with their bandstand and the Liston Arcade offer a welcome break from the summer heat.

The Liston Arcade was built during the French occupation (1807-1814) by the father of Ferdinand Lesseps, the builder of the Suez Canal.

At the north end of the Esplanade is the Palace of St. Michael & St. George built by the English in the early l9th century as the Governor's Palace.

Just out of town on the National Road to Paleokastritsa you will find the Monastery of Platytera. Dating from 1743, it has several fine icons and a superb bell tower.

You may also like to take a short boat trip to the island of Vidos near the old port. This tranquil wooded islet has old Russian fortifications and a small amphitheatre.

The Ancient City of Kerkyra was built around the suburbs of Garitsa, Anemomylos and Kanoni and was founded around the 8th century B.C. You can see a number of sites being excavated.

In Anemomylos there is the l0th century Byzantine church of St. Jason & St. Sosipatros.

Further up in Kanoni is the Palace of Mon Repos where Prince Philip was born. Across the road is an early Christian Basilica and past it, towards the airport, an early Byzantine monastery next to the ruins of the Temple of Artemis.

At the very end of Kanoni you'll find the tiny

Lastly, the ancient Kardaki spring and temple is reached by a path from Analipsis - the highest point of Kanoni.

Museums: The Archaeological Museum: 3 Vraila St. (just off Garitsa Bay road near the Corfu Palace Hotel). Hours: 8.30 -15.00. Every day except Mondays. Tel: 30680.

The Museum of Byzantine Art is housed in the Church of Antivouniotissa, up a flight of steps off Arseniou St. Hours: 8.30 -15.00.

The Capodistria Museum: Koukouritsa, Tel: 32440.

The Folklore Museum at Danilia Village: For information call 91621.

The Museum of Far Eastern Art is housed n the Palace of St. Michael & St. George. Check with the Tourist Office for details.

The Museum of Paper Money: Situated on the first floor of the Ionian Bank in Iroon Kypriakou Agonos Sq. off N.Theotoki St. Open every day from 9 -13.00.

The Folk Museum in Sinarades: Open every day except Monday from 9.30 -14.30.

The Solomos Museum off Arseniou St. Open 9.30 -14.00 Everyday except Sat. & Sun. Tel: 30674.

The Serbian Museum in Moustoxidou St. Open from 9.00 -13.00 Mon. Fri. Tel: 26724

The Reading Society : 120 Kapodistriou St. Open every morning till 13.00 Tel: 39528

The Castello Art Gallery housed in the Castello Mansion grounds in Kato Korakiana. Open 10.00 -17.00 every day except Monday.


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