ODYSSEUS TOUR WITH SAILING - 15 Days - 14 Nights
We recommend a midday arrival in the beautiful island of Corfu. Meet by our representatives at Corfu International airport and private transfer to your hotel. To eliminate your travel fatigue, it is a day of relaxation. This evening, everyone gets together for a "Meet and Greet" Cocktail Reception at the hotel's bar. Your guide will introduce you the hotel's facilities , he will present you day by day the tour's program and he will be at your disposal for any questions you might have or any information you might need, regarding your stay in Corfu.
After your breakfast, your professional guide will wait for you for a walking tour at the town of Corfu. This is definitely a browser's town, where as you're strolling in search of a snack or a souvenir, you may discover an old church or monument. We start with the Esplanade area or Spianada Square (one of the biggest squares in Europe) bounded by the Old Fort and the sea on one side. The small haven below and to the north of the Old Fort is known as Mandraki Harbor, while the shore to the south is home port to the Corfu Yacht Club.
At the northern part of the field, known as Plateia, exists the Cricket ground, while opposite, the Palace of St. Michael and St. George is the home of the Museum of Asian Art. The Museum of Asian Art (the only one in Greece) was founded in 1927 after the donation of 10.500 items by Gregorios Manos. Until 1974 it was a Chinese and Japanese Art museum, but later it was enriched with other private collections of items from central Asia, so it became an Asian Art museum. Walking along the coast road we descend to the square at the old port. Above its far side rises the New Fortress, and beyond this is the New Port, which hosts a numerous Cruise ships all year round. We continue on to the part of old Corfu, known as Campiello with its stepped streets and narrow alleys. The heart of old Corfu is a mélange of fine shops, old churches, souvenir stands and other stores in a maze of streets, alleys, and squares that seem like Venice without the water. The broadest and most stylish is Nikiforo Theotoki. Worth visiting is Ayios Spiridon Cathedral, dedicated to Spiridon, the patron Saint of Corfu. Inside the church is the saint's embalmed body in a silver casket, as well as precious gold and silver votive offerings and many fine old icons. Four times a year the faithful parade the remains of St. Spiridon through the streets of old Corfu.
Walking among the old town's alleys, you may feel as if you are in a labyrinth -- and you will be -- but sooner or later you'll emerge onto one or another busy commercial street that will bring you down to the Esplanade again. South on the Esplanade, you'll see a bandstand (Corfu is the home town of 17 philarmonic orchestras!) and at its far end the Maitland Rotunda, which honors Sir Thomas Maitland, the first British Lord High Commissioner of the Ionian Islands. Past this is the statue of Count Ioannis Kapodistrias (1776-1836), the first President of independent Greece. The western side of the north half of Esplanade is lined by a wide tree-shaded strip filled with cafe tables and chairs, then a street reserved for pedestrians, and then arcaded buildings patterned after Paris's Rue de Rivoli. Begun by the French and finished by the British, these arcaded buildings, known as the Liston, provide a great backdrop for a cup of coffee or a delicious meal. This is where we have our lunch, at a famous local restaurant with Corfiot delicacies. After lunch, free time and transfer back to your hotel.
Afternoon and evening at leisure. Dinner at the hotel.
Today is the day!! Morning time free for relax and swim. Have a light lunch because early in the afternoon you will be transferred to Corfu Town for a lifetime experience! Play cricket at Liston Square Cricket Ground versus a local cricket team, or a cricket team from another country which would have a trip to Corfu at the same time. Remember that " No cricketer's education is complete until, besides Australia, he has visited this island" , cricket writer R.A.Roberts wrote of Corfu. Enjoy the game! After the game time for an ice tea or a cold local fresh beer at the cafes of Liston. Transfer back to the hotel and dinner.
Although these sites and destinations are not next door to one another and have little in common, they are grouped here because they all lie south of Corfu town. Everyone who comes to Corfu town will want to visit these places, even if he goes nowhere else on the island.Another exciting day at the Magnificent island of Corfu. With our local guide , we go for a morning half day tour to Kanoni, Pondikonisi, Achilleion and Mon Repos Palace.
Kanoni is approached south of Corfu town via the village of Analipsis. The area is known as Kanoni (after the cannon once sited here). Make your way to the edge and enjoy a wonderful view. Directly below in the inlet are two islets. To visit them both we take a 10-minute walk down a not-that-difficult path from Kanoni. One islet is linked to the land by a causeway; here you'll find the Monastery of Vlakherna. To get to the other islet, Pondikonisi (Mouse Island), we must go by small private boat. Legend has it that this rocky islet is a Phaeacian ship that turned to stone after taking Odysseus back to Ithaka. The chapel here dates from the 13th century, and its setting among the cypress trees makes it most picturesque. Many Corfiotes make a pilgrimage here in small boats on August 6 for the Feast of the Transfiguration. It's also the inspiration for the Swiss painter Arnold Boecklin's well-known work Isle of the Dead, which in turn inspired Rachmaninoff's music of the same name.
We continue on to the next destination, a villa known as Achilleion. Empress Elizabeth of Austria-Hungary built this villa between 1890 and 1891. Approaching the villa from the entrance gate, you will see a slightly Teutonic version of a neoclassical summer palace. Take a walk through at least some of the eclectic rooms. Among the curiosities is the small saddle-seat on which Kaiser Wilhelm II of Germany sat while performing his imperial chores. The terraced gardens that surround the villa are now lush. Be sure to go all the way around and out to the back terraces. Here you will see the most famous of the statues Elizabeth commissioned, The Dying Achilles, by the German sculptor Herter; also, you cannot miss the 4.5m-tall (15-ft.) Achilles that the Kaiser had inscribed, TO THE GREATEST GREEK FROM THE GREATEST GERMAN, a sentiment removed after World War II. But for a truly impressive sight, step to the edge of the terrace and enjoy a spectacular view of Corfu town and much of the eastern coast to the south.
On the way back to our hotel, we pay a visit to the last destination of our today's tour, Mon Repos Palace. Mon Repos Palace is situated on top of Analipsis hill, in the middle of a beautiful setting full of greenery. It was built in 1826 by the British Commissioner Frederic Adams as a gift to his Corfiot wife, Nina Palatianou. It is a small but very beautiful palace with colonial architectural elements. Later on, the palace became the summer residence of all British governors of Corfu and when the Ionian Islands were united to Greece, in 1864, it was given as a gift to King George I of Greece. This is also the house where Prince Phillip, Duke of Edinburgh, the husband of Queen Elisabeth II, was born into on June, 10th, 1921.
During the Italian occupation of Corfu, in the Second World War, this palace became the residence of Parini, the Italian governor of the Ionian Islands. Nowadays this house is used by the Municipality of Corfu as a tourist attraction and is visited by hundreds of tourists every year. The palace has today been restored and reflects its original and classical imposing features. It hosts a museum that includes many Ionian treasures. The palace itself is placed in a very nice environment and is surrounded by a big park. In fact, walking through its paths is a delight!
Afternoon and evening at leisure.
Dinner at the hotel.
Morning at leisure. Enjoy the facilities and the amenities of your hotel. Enjoy the sun and the clean waters of the Ionian sea.
Early in the afternoon private transfer at the "Marina Cricket ground" for your second cricket game. The ground is part of the Corfu marina at Gouvia, the first privately owned marina in Greece, situated about 6 kilometers from the town of Corfu. For many years seamen considered the harbor and the bay of Gouvia as a natural link between the Adriatic and the Mediterranean Sea as well as a port of call, where they could sail in, to repose, enjoying the climate and the beauties of the island.
The Marina, fully organized, offering facilities and services of high standards, has a total capacity of 1100 berths, on both permanent and floating pontoons, while there are dry dock facilities for approximately 520 boats. In the 17th century Venetian seamen selected the area of Gouvia as an ideal location for creating a naval station and shipyards, remains of which have survived in the region. This tradition has been maintained until today while sailing yachts and motor boats from all over the world arrive at Gouvia Marina, enjoying the beauties of the sea and the environment, the cool breeze and the beautiful island of Corfu. After the game, you will have a unique experience, having BBQ next to the cricket field in the open air. Lying next to the blue sea, with cold refreshments and beers, tasty char coiled grilled meat and soft music will etch this night into your memory for ever…
Free Day. You can relax at your hotel, swim at the crystal blue water or you can spend your day in Corfu town, strolling in the narrow alleys searching for souvenirs or local products to buy as a remembrance gift when you are at home. Our recommendation is to join one of our selected boat trips (check out cruise options here).
Dinner at the hotel.
Morning time free for relax and swim. Early in the afternoon private transfer to “Marina cricket ground” for your third cricket match. Snacks and refreshments to be served.
After the match, private transfer to the hotel and get ready for your last entertainment in this beautiful island. Farewell dinner at a local restaurant with life music.
After dinner, private transfer back to the hotel.
Morning check out from the hotel and private transfer to Gouvia Marina, this time not to play cricket, but to embark at the Sailing Boat! Our skipper will wait you to introduce you the boat where you will spend the next 8 days, sailing the Ionian Sea. Afternoon departure for the small fishing village of Petritis. (14 NM).
Departure from Petritis, heating Paxos island. Weather permitted, we shall make a tour of the island and a stop at Antipaxos for a swim . Depoarture for Gaios port, the capital of Paxos. (20 NM).
Today is the longest sailing day! Departure from Gaios to Meganisi island and arrival for overnight at the gulf of Spartohori. (50 NM).
Time for sailing round the famous Skorpios island (owned by Onassis family). After that sailing to Kefallonia island (the biggest from the Ionian islands) and specially to one of the most picturesque ports in the Ionian sea, the port of Fiskardo. (20 NM).
Departure from Fiskardo with final destination Lefkada island. Overnight at Lefkada’s Marina. (20 NM).
Sailing round Lefkada and departure for North Greece’s beautiful shores. Arrival at Syvota village , 5 miles south of Igoumenitsa. Syvota is a beautiful old fishing village at Mainland Greece, where you can stroll among the old streets , buy leather and gold in dozens of small shops and enjoying a fresh Sea Food Dinner at one of the local restaurants, overlooking the sea.(35NM).
Today, before the return to Corfu, you will have the opportunity to sail to Blue Lagoon beach. The beach is very exotic and it does not look like Ionian Sea beach but it is more like Caribbean. Time for swim in crystal clear blue waters. Then sail to Corfu and the Gouvia Marina.
Check out with a private transfer to Corfu Int’l airport for departure.
- All private transfers and tours mentioned in the program, by local air conditioned coaches.
- Seven night accommodation at Corfu Holiday Palace Hotel (5 stars), in Kanoni area, in double/twin rooms.
- Breakfast daily at the hotel.
- Five (5) dinners at the hotel, buffet style, drinks excluded.
- Lunch at Liston , drinks excluded, day 2
- BBQ at Marina cricket ground, including drinks, day 5.
- Farewell dinner, including half bottle of wine or two beers per person, day 7.
- One snack and two refreshments per person, during the cricket matches, day 3, day 5 and day 7.
- Cost of three cricket matches (rent of the field, equipment, umpires).
- Services of professional local guide during the tours, day 2 and day 4.
- Entrance fees at the museums, during the tours.
- Services of local assistant from our office, during the whole stay.
- All local taxes, including VAT.
Includes ALL of the above PLUS:
- Rental for 8 days, a sailing boat type: Dufour Gib Sea 51 or Bavaria 49 (both having 5 cabins and can accommodate up to 8 people, plus the skipper cabin, including standard equipment as per inventory list.
- Linen equipment.
- Water - Cooking gas for departure and taxes.
- Harbour fees for the 1st and the last charter night.
- Cost of the Skipper.
- End cleaning.