Corfu town

Corfu: Walking Tour with a profusion of Wildflowers


The island of Corfu is the greenest of the northerly Ionian Islands and has a history that weaves together Venetian, French and British domination over the centuries; a well-known literary connection to the Durrell brothers; and links to ‘Sisi’ Empress of Austria. The mountainous north of the island has extensive groves of olives, figs, almonds and orange trees, interspersed with traditional villages and areas of open maquis, and is especially noted for its mantle of wild flowers in spring.

We are based for 4 nights in a comfortable, family run 4 star hotel by the sea, with a pool overlooking a bay on the quiet northeast coast. Our focus then switches to Corfu Town for 4 nights, to a former 17th century nobleman’s elegant mansion, now a very comfortable 4 star hotel, centrally located with views over the park and sea. Every evening we eat out in one of the many tavernas and restaurants on the island, where specialities include fresh fish and seafood, spicy sausages and roast kid.

Cultural highlights include visits to Achilleon and Mon Repos (birthplace of Prince Philip) and a jaunt to the fascinating archaeological site of Butrint in Albania by boat.

OTHER HIGHLIGHTS of our Corfu walking tour include:  

  • Scenic walking through olive and orange groves and along beaches and headlands with sea views    
  • A profusion of Mediterranean spring wildflowers
  • Excellent seafood and fresh fish, plus special spring dishes such as stuffed artichokes and roast kid 

 

Guests' comments on this trip:


‘A super trip with an enjoyable balance between walking by the sea and in the mountains, and cultural aspects.’

' A most enjoyable and varied trip with some surprising elements eg how interesting Corfu Town proved to be - (we hadn’t been to Corfu before) and confirmation of the freshness and quality of much of the food in Greece. Kudu certainly continue to produce interesting and varied trips.’

Corfu walkers
Corfu statues
Corfu swallowtail
Corfu honeywort
Corfu weeds
Corfu Butrint theatre
DAY 1                                                                                                                                     
D included

After meeting at Corfu Airport in the afternoon, we drive 35 km north by private vehicle and settle into our hotel. There is time for a stroll and a swim before we dine locally, perhaps sampling the Corfiot stifado, a stew with red wine, herbs and tomato and the local ‘special reserve’ wine.

DAY 2                                                                                                                           
B, L, D included

After a short road transfer, our walk (3.5 hrs) offers us tremendous sea views out towards Albania, wild mountain scenery and delightful flowers. The easy track contours across the mountainside above a deserted village. We picnic in an olive grove and spend some time identifying wildflowers and birds. We return to our hotel and its delightful garden where Scops owls begin calling at dusk.

DAY 3                                                                                                                           
B, L, D included

Nearby is a Natura 2000 protected headland that we explore on foot (1.5 hrs), passing low rugged cliffs, lonely beaches and a pinewood. After a visit to an artisan working in olive wood, we drive further north with a picnic and gently climb through forest and olive groves to ancient villages and a ruined tower. Our round walk (2.5 hrs) descends through olive groves and ends up near a traditional bakery where we have tea and sticky Greek cakes with honey and nuts before returning by vehicle to our hotel. A grilled fish supper this evening is by the beach and we sample kumquat liqueur, a speciality of the island.

DAY 4                                                                                                                           
B, L, D included

A 5 hour round walk takes us to a romantic half ruined village, with churches and fine old houses, once one of the most important on the island, from where there are fine views back down to the coast. We should find excellent flowers by the wayside, including Jerusalem sage, tassel hyacinth and violet honeywort, and we may spot crested larks or hoopoes and hear nightingales singing in the thickets. We lunch in a local taverna, eating the locally gathered ‘horta’ (greens) and home-made cheese before heading down a dramatic gorge filled with wildflowers and on into an oak wood before returning to our vehicles.

DAY 5                                                                                                                           
B, L, D included

A scenic drive takes us around the Mount Pantokrator massif (906 m), Corfu’s highest mountain, ringed by traditional villages with their terraced olive groves and gardens filled with lemon trees. Next we commence a 2.5 hrs round walk up and across the limestone plateau that stretches below the summit of the massif. We picnic on freshly baked spinach pies, local crumbly cheese and fruit before returning to our vehicles and heading for Corfu Town, where we settle in to our hotel before setting out on foot to explore. Dinner tonight is in a nearby square overlooking the fine Baroque town hall. The cooking is modern Greek, dishes such as fava bean puree with caramelized onion and toasted almonds, followed by lamb with artichokes.

DAY 6                                                                                                                           
B, L, D included

A day trip by boat to Butrint (in Albania), the most important and best-preserved archaeological site in the Balkans, where we have a guided walk amidst holm oak and olive trees and see the impressive city walls and gates, the theatre and the 6C baptistery, all complemented by views across the surrounding lake and mountains. After a light lunch we visit the informative museum, then return by boat across the Corfu strait. Dinner in Corfu Town tonight is in one of the oldest and best known restaurants whose speciality is chicken with kumquats and stuffed artichokes.

Day 7

B, L, D included
We set off in vehicles to make a brief visit to Mon Repos, a fine Neo-classical villa overlooking the sea, birthplace of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. We continue to the south west coast to a lagoon, excavated by the Venetians who cut a channel to the sea, home to black-winged stilts, duck, herons and sometime pelicans. We walk (2.5 hrs) by the lagoon and then on the sandy beach and through dunes, picnicking along the way. Our return route enables us to visit Achilleon Palace, built in 1890-91, the summer residence of Empress Elizabeth of Austria, universally known as ‘Sisi’. It has a pretty garden with sculptures, including the famous ‘Dying Achilles’ from whom the building takes its name. Tonight we have an aperitif on the Liston, Corfu’s French designed arcaded street, the centre of evening life, before dining in the town. Who knows, perhaps cricket will be played on the Spianádha (esplanade) where people still sip ginger beer thanks to the British.

DAY 8                                                                                                                           
B, D included

A day to explore the old town with its maze of alleys, market and 2 iconic forts magnificently positioned overlooking the sea. The narrow streets lead to some beautiful churches, Agios Spyridon, home to the relics of the town’s patron saint and famous for a white marble iconostasis and the Mitrópolis, the icon-filled Orthodox Cathedral. Well worth a visit is the small but beautiful collection of artefacts in the church of Panayía Andivouniótissa, a collection to rival the Byzantine Museum in Athens. The rest of the afternoon is free to choose a café for lunch, take photographs and go shopping – perhaps for Greek linen, leather, honey and herbs. We have a farewell dinner outdoors under the stars.

DAY 9                                                                                                                           
B included

After breakfast and a final stroll by the sea, we visit the elegant Palace of S.S. Michael and George, built to house British civil servants of the Ionian islands and containing a really delightful collection of Asian art amassed by a Corfiot diplomat. Our journey concludes with a short transfer to the airport for flights home.

TBA per person sharing
TBA deposit per person
TBA single room supplement

If you are willing to share but no other suitable guest books on the trip, we regret that the supplement will be payable. We shall endeavour to obtain double rooms for single occupancy whenever possible, but some hotels do have single rooms that are small and less well positioned – in this case the supplement is simply ensuring your privacy.

 
Price includes
  • All accommodation for Days 1 to 9, on a twin shared basis
  • All meals (with wine at dinners and taverna lunches) as listed in the daily notation
  • All land transportation in a private vehicle as described except during free periods
  • Excursion by boat to Butrint in Albania
  • All entrance and sightseeing fees except during free periods
  • Gratuities for hotel and restaurant staff and drivers (appreciation for tour staff is discretionary)
 
Price does not include
  • Trip cancellation, medical or other insurance
  • Immunisations, prescriptions or other medical requirements
  • Passport, visa and health documentation
  • International transportation to and from Corfu Airport
  • Personal expenses (laundry, alcohol other than wine with group lunches and dinners, free time activities, etc.)
  • Meals noted as excepted in the daily notation
  • Transport and transfer of excess baggage 
  • Greek departure tax, if any

VALUE FOR MONEY - SO MUCH IS INCLUDED

On Kudu trips you will only need money for postcards, presents to take home, the odd G & T or an irresistible ice cream. Festival and opera tickets, museum and gallery entrances, National Park fees, all meals (with a very few exceptions specified in individual itineraries), wine with lunch and dinner, access to specialist books carried by the guides, gratuities for porters and hotel and restaurant staff, boat rides, train trips, internal flights, wine tastings, 4WDs with drivers, the services of skilled local guides and trackers etc are ALL INCLUDED in the cost of your holiday. 

We are confident that, like previous very satisfied guests, you will discover that our tours give you excellent value for money.

  • 4 nights in a comfortable, family run 4 star hotel by the sea, with a pool overlooking a bay on the quiet northeast coast
  • 4 nights in Corfu Town, in a a very comfortable 4 star hotel, a former 17C nobleman’s elegant mansion, centrally located with views over the park and sea

 

Tour Leader
Frances Fedden – both a botanist and an expert ‘foodie’ – with a Greek grandfather!

Visa and Health Requirements
Visitors from the EU, US, Australia, Canada & New Zealand require a valid passport, but not a visa, for entry to Greece (and Albania). If you are a national of any other country, please check visa regulations with your nearest Embassies of Greece and Albania.

At present there are no specific and compulsory health requirements for entry to Greece. Residents of countries in the EU can only claim free (emergency) medical treatment in Greece by presenting their European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). You may also wish to check the advice given to travellers by the Department of Health and the FCO.

Insurance
It is essential, and a condition of booking, that you protect yourself with a suitable travel insurance policy as soon as you book a trip. Follow this link for a quote for a policy available to UK residents. If you are already insured or a non-UK resident, please inform us of your policy at the time of booking.

Size of party
This trip will run with a minimum of 4 and a maximum of 14 guests.