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09 Jun

When visiting the Greek island of Corfu and wandering around the picturesque little roads of its old town, you are likely to see a variety of bottles containing an enigmatic orange liquid. This is simply called Kumquat and is the local spirit that has become a trademark on the island.

Several distilleries produce the liquor, but also many other culinary products use this fruit as the principal ingredient.

The tiny orange fruit is originally from China and South Japan. In Asiatic countries they also use the kumquat in bonsai, and as an emblem of good luck, it is sometimes given as a gift. The meaning of the term is golden fruit and it was introduced on the island by an English agronomist in 1860. Kumquat has, since then, turned into one of the main agricultural products of the island.

The tree, also known as Marumi kumquat, produces a small, round or oval-shaped golden-yellow colored fruit with a sweet peel. The pulp, nevertheless, is rather bitter, and is mainly used as an ingredient for spoon sweets, marmalade, and jelly — although it is possible to eat the kumquat raw.

The color of the beverage determines whether the liqueur has been made from the rind or from the fruit itself. If the color is bright orange spirit, then it has been made only with the skin. It is very sweet in taste and exceptionally fragrant as well. Being also quite strong in taste, it is the favorite choice for making cocktails, as well as for adding flavor to creams, puddings, and other desserts.

The white liquor, instead, is considerably less sweet and locals usually serve it after meals, the same way they serve ouzo, tsikoudia, and tsipouro in other parts of Greece. In Corfu, many local companies produce a variety of delicacies from the fruit such as kumquat syrup (perfect on Greek yogurt), marmalade, and even cookies.

30 May

by Spyridoula Kokkali

-A tribute to Northern Corfu’s natural sights -
(With the compliments of S Bikes & Stamatis Banos)

Cycling is not just a sport or a free time activity; It is an experience and northern Corfu makes this experience unique for any kind of biker, since the diversity of its landscape invites everyone to discover the natural beauty of this magnificent part of the island. A biker then becomes a traveller.

Mountain routes, on road routes, trails of differential altitudes, a huge network of unpaved roads, places that can only be reached by bike, cliffs and mountains are abundant in Northern Corfu welcoming all kinds of bikers.

Spring and autumn are the seasons than can make you enjoy this experience to the full as nature is at its best decorated with a colourful wildflower patchwork and mesmerizing scents that soothe even the wildest of souls. Whether an on road route or off road route lover, all your five senses will be fine-tuned as your bike will become your means to a trip to paradise.

Cycling through traditional mountain villages, like Old Perithia, is a trip through time. Old stone houses, friendly hospitable people and a breathtaking view is an experience not to be missed. As you ride your bike on the narrow cobbled streets, your mind travels back in time as if in a time machine. Old people will put a spell on you with their wide smiles and warm your heart and like the Sirens from Odyssey will make you not want to go back. The luscious olive oil, the fruity local wines, the sweet kumquat liqueur and the overpowering scents of local herbs, are these people’s magic potions. As your trip continues, tamed creatures that roam the mountains will accompany you along the way.

Uncharted places are waiting to be discovered. The Grava cave, one of the most important caves on the island,is found in Loutses at an altitude of 300 metres on Pantokratoras mountain and offers travellers the chance to discover hidden natural sights and become witnesses of natural wonders. A feeling of isolation and peace is overwhelming as you enter the cave and leave the rest of the world behind you.

Antinioti Lake lies in every local’s soul. The serenity of its waters along with the unique flora and fauna create a mystery longing to be unraveled. The 7km flat route around it, offers the traveller this very chance. Antinioti lake is home to Lutra Lutra the European otter, which swims all the way from Lake Butrint in Albania, to nest and home to hundreds of rare plants and birds. It is protected by Natura 2000 as it is considered to be one of the most precious natural jewels of the island.

Sandy beaches with crystal clear waters that stretch as far as the eye can see give bikers a sense of freedom and eternity. Majestic sunsets and the sea breeze are healing to the mind and soul. Sand dunes in Almyros beach create a natural maze and add a bit of adventure to the traveller before moving on to the next destination.

Nymfes village hosts nature’s most impressive wonder; a waterfall with blessed waters that have been giving life for centuries. The tremendous sound of water falling is dominant to a place full of life turning it into a nature lover’s paradise . The remarkable route that begins in Askitario in Nymfes and ends in Platonas village is an unforgettable one as you travel through springs and small lakes, huge old trees and lush vegetation. The myth of “nymfes” the goddesses of water who have given the village its name, comes alive.

The routes through Northern Corfu’s numerous olive groves cannot be missed. Hundred-year-old trees that have been providing locals with their miraculous olive oil for centuries stand there motionless, untouched by time creating their very own ecosystem. Their silver leaves rustle with the slightest of wind and sparkle as the sun shines upon them.

A picturesque natural harbour is found in Kassiopi village. The boats seem to be dancing on its waters and the reflections of the lights at night create such a magical illusion that you cannot tell the difference between the waters of the sea and a starry night.

Drastis Cape is a must for every biker. A place waiting to be discovered to unveil its remarkable beauty through dense vegetation and steep cliffs. A place taken straight from a fairytale.

Canal d’ amour –the canal of love-is an impressive natural bay in Sidari created by clay cliffs, a very common sight in the area. The sea waves have the power to change the shape of  both the cliffs and the bay thus the scenery is different every year. Every visitor leaves with a different image in his mind.

People say that the trip is more important than the destination. In Northern Corfu, the trip within the ideal destination is simple perfection. No biker’s life will ever be the same again.

28 May

A new charity working to improve the health and safety of tourists

We all want to keep ourselves and our families safe and well on holiday. However, accidents do sometimes happen, so we want to help you avoid them wherever possible. For practical and simple advice on staying safe on holiday, visit the Safer Tourism Foundation website. Visit the Safer Tourism Foundation website here.

How to stay safe and well on holiday

Whether you are a solo traveller, part of a couple or in a family group, planning and booking your holiday is an exciting time. With so much choice of where to go, the type of accommodation you stay in and the activities you do, you can put together exactly the kind of holiday to suit you.

When we go on holiday we all assume that we will come home in at least as good a shape, mentally and physically, as we left. And for the vast majority of travellers that is the case. Holidays relax and refresh us, help us to re-charge and re-connect with what is important to us.

But for thousands of tourists each year, that is sadly not the case. Every year travellers suffer injuries from accidents that could have been prevented. Some of these end tragically in a fatality, turning a holiday into a nightmare.

No one wants to experience this. Reputable travel companies work hard to make a safe environment for your holiday, whether that is on the flight out, in your accommodation or during activities and excursions. But nothing is risk free, and things do still go wrong. If that happens, you should expect your travel company, accommodation or service provider to be responsive and to address the things within their control and within reason.

But sometimes things happen that are just bad luck, something no one could have foreseen or done anything to prevent. And sometimes we as travellers have a part to play. An unfamiliar environment, whether it is on the beach, on the roads or in and around our hotel, presents the potential for accidents to happen.

Added to that, when we go on holiday we sometimes behave a little differently than when we are at home. We might take a more carefree approach to life (that’s part of what a holiday is about, after all) but this can put ourselves at risk. If we hop on a moped wearing only shorts and flip flops we might ask ourselves, would we do this at home?

The Safer Tourism Foundation has been set up to help us all stay safe and well when we travel. We are a one stop shop for practical, down-to-earth advice for you to use at all stages of your holiday, from planning where to go to what to do if you need medical help abroad.

There is a huge amount of useful information available from travel companies, government websites and specialist advice sites, all aiming to help you and your fellow travellers stay safe and well when you are on holiday. But it is sometimes quite hard to find, and can look a bit overwhelming. We have pulled all of this together in one place to distil the most important things you need to know and what you need to think about to make sure you have the best possible holiday.

We are an independent charity so we do not represent any travel company or holiday provider. Our main aim is to reduce the number of people who are hurt or killed when on holiday, whether they are travelling independently or with the support of a travel operator or agent. From our website you can get a clear explanation of how to use the government’s advice on travelling to different countries (for example, what is the terrorist threat?), you can see what to pack in a first aid kit, and we highlight the particular things to be aware of if you are camping or if you are on a party weekend (like a stag or hen party).

We hope you find the advice useful and practical. Let us know.

Stay safe and well and, above all, enjoy your holiday.

27 May

By Claire Webb

Where’s your favourite place on Corfu?
Sidari Beach, on the northwest coast of the island, for the astonishing sunsets and scenery. And I love to drive up to Kaiser’s Throne – a panoramic viewpoint on a cliff in central Corfu.

Is filming The Durrells as idyllic as it looks – or does it get hot and sticky?
We shoot a little before or after the tourist season when the weather is perfect. I prefer spring, when the wildflowers blossom. Also, the actors and crew are like one big family now, so it doesn’t feel like work.

How do you spend your days off?
I wake up early and go to one of the small, private coves by Glyfada Beach on the west coast. I stay there the whole day until late at night – swimming, playing my guitar and hanging out with friends.

Have the locals welcomed you?
Look, all Corfiots are crazy. I haven’t met a Corfiot who is normal. They’re very fun people, always making jokes, and their culture is very different from the rest of Greece. I’ve made a lot of good friends there.

Different how?
They are very into music. All Corfiots can play an instrument, and all of them sing as well, especially when they’re drunk! They even speak differently, with a singsong intonation.

Do they have any culinary specialities?
Like everywhere in Greece, they have great taste in food. The most famous dish is bourdetto – a spicy tomato stew made with scorpion fish, or sometimes you can find it with octopus.

And to wash it down?
They have very nice wines and a digestif that can only be found on Corfu – a sweet, orange-coloured kumquat liqueur. Bourdetto is very nice with a glass of raki or tsipouro, a Greek brandy.

Where’s your favourite place for lunch?
Marina’s Tavern in Spilia, the old Jewish neighbourhood in Corfu Town. Marina serves Corfiot recipes and even a simple salad is delicious because she sources her ingredients from local gardens, so the tomatoes are very ugly but taste beautiful.

RadioTimes

27 May

By Gabi Ancarola 

There is a corner in the Ionian island of Corfu known as the Blue Lake, its name is Porto Timoni, a double bay with turquoise waters that is attached to the island by a narrow piece of land. Corfu, better-known for its unique historic town of Venetian flair, elegant buildings, and stunning colors, has also some of the most beautiful beaches of Greece, where the green exuberance of the vegetation combines with the unique color of the waters of the Ionian, giving birth to many beautiful beaches.

Some of them are really famous, attracting thousands of visitors every year, making Corfu one of the most visited Greek islands. Others, however, remain relatively unknown as it is rather difficult to access these areas. Among these hidden paradises, Corfu boasts the beauty of Porto Timoni, one of the most gorgeous beaches on the island.

A pristine double bay that has long remained a secret to tourists thanks to the fact that access by land is not easy.

Porto Timoni can be found near the village of Afiona, located in the Northwest area of Corfu.

The waters are blue and the two beaches created on the same small isthmus are covered with white pebble and lush trees and bushes. To reach Porto Timoni, visitors need to leave their vehicle and walk for about twenty-five minutes through a path that offers stunning views of the area.

Following this path, it is possible to reach the two beaches of Porto Timoni. Along the way, tourists will discover the unexplored magic of the amazing island of Corfu. Look at this video to learn more.

More infos for Porto Timoni, here

26 May

Laura and Luciano from Italy, preferred to visit northern Corfu, during their vacation, in late May, unlike most compatriots who prefer August. As good friends and colleagues of altercorfu.com, they had prepared us, since last winter, about their high gastronomic requirements. Being a cook in a hotel in Verona, Luciano, and a tourist journalist for a magazine in the same city, Laura, were certainly travelers and not tourists. Early in the evening they arrived in Acharavi and of course the first question after settling in their room was "Christina, what shall we eat?".

The Italian restaurant "Compass" in Roda was my first thought. I knew from the outset that the owner and cook Salvatore would satisfy the demanding tastes of our guests. We arrived at the "Compass" at 09:00 in the evening and we found easily a parking spot. "So far so good," I thought as we went into the restaurant.

Salvatore welcomed us with a smile and before leading us to our table, he guided us to his crystal clear kitchen. "We keep going very well," was my satisfied thought.

Laura and Luciano, clearly pleased with the reception of Salvatore and as related to the subject, began a familiar conversation with Salvatore about the gastronomy and preferences of tourists in northern Corfu. I did not understand much of Salvatore's gourmet creations, as my culinary knowledge is limited, but from the shining eyes of our guests I immediately realized they were impressed and satisfied.

The environment of the restaurant as well as the immediacy of Salvatore, gave us an idea about what would follow at the table.

Laura and Luciano did not ask for a menu. They asked Salvartore to bring whatever he considered. In just 10 minutes, Salvatore began to bring to the table a feast of colors, images and fragrances that made us craving them.

At the beginning, the table was decorated with Tagliere misto (wood board of various kinds of cheese, cold cuts, fried mozzarella, mix bruschetta, arancini & caprese salad), Feta al Forno (baked feta cheese with tomato & herbs), straccetti di Pollo (chicken with veg & tomato sauce - spicy) and salad caprese (with rocket, tomato & mozzarella).

What if they were only appetizers. We immediately made them disappeared and we were filled with the big portions of Salvatore, but our mind was stuck in the impressive pizzas served to the rest of the satisfied customers of the restaurant.

For Luciano, Salvatore brought a Greca pizza (with sausage, olives, feta cheese, tomato & oregano). Laura took a Capricciosa pizza (with tomato, mozzarella, ham, mushrooms, aubergines & olives). And I took a Quattro Formaggi (with tomato and 4 kinds of cheese).

Incredible pizzas, we were left with a stunning taste of flavors tied together.

The Salvatore's gastronomic journey did not stop there. Stuffed by the large quantities of appetizers and amazing pizzas, we asked the Salvatore, the next dishes to have smaller quantities as we wanted to taste a dish from each menu category.

The seafood was next. 3 dishes that left us with spechless. Salmon alla Grigla (grilled salmon fillet), Salmon al Cartoccio (with seafood sauce in foil) and Gamberoni al limone (kings prawns in lemon sauce).

One step before we burst out of the great food, Salvatore kept shooting us with their gastronomic creations. Next in line was the meat. Fillet Steak (served with balsamic vinegar sauce), Beef Fillet (in green pepper sauce), and Chicken Fillet (with cheese, ham & tomato sauce).

The silence that prevailed at the table made me feel content, seeing our guests finding exactly what they were looking for.

And along with the wonderful Cabernet wine, there were 3 great sweets. Cheese Cake, Brownies (ice cream) and Pannacotta (light fresh desserts served with the fruit of the forest coulis).

Laura and Luciano were ecstatic and began to search for their bags. "What are they doing?" I wondered, and before I finished my thought, Luciano pulled out his notebook and noted recipes given to him by Salvatore so he could apply them to the hotel where he was working in Verona. Laura, took off her camera, and photographed Salvatore's dishes, writing at that moment the tribute she would do for him, within the tourist magazine where she works in Verona

At that moment I realized that the first day of our guests went extremely well. It goes without saying that after so much food, there was no other program to go out at night. We remained at Compass until the early hours, drinking the wonderful wine and talking to Salvatore about his experiences on the island.

The three of them immediately showed that they had chemistry and switched telephone and social media profiles. A great friendship had just been born. A friendship with common passions as the love for gastronomy, northern Corfu and tourism.

And what else would someone ask for, in order to see his guests satisfied? Grazie Salvatore ...

 

25 May

With its white sand beaches, rose-roofed villages, and coves the colour of swimming pools, Corfu is one of Europe’s most beautiful islands – and it’s even more spectacular from above. Looking for summer holiday inspiration? Feast your eyes on these amazing aerial shots of Corfu… All images from Alamy:

Read More
25 May

Following the huge success of the previous three series, ITV has re-commissioned popular Corfu-based drama The Durrells for a fourth instalment.

Produced by thriving drama indie Sid Gentle Films Ltd. the new series will see acclaimed actress Keeley Hawes (The Missing, Line Of Duty) reprise her role as matriarch Louisa Durrell for a brand new six-part series.

Based on conservationist and author Gerald Durrell’s trilogy of books about his family’s time in Corfu during the 1930s, the fourth series will be once again written by BAFTA award nominee Simon Nye (Men Behaving Badly, Reggie Perrin) and filmed on the idyllic Greek island.

Josh O’Connor (God’s Own Country), Callum Woodhouse (Cold Feet), Daisy Waterstone (And Then There Were None) and Milo Parker (Mr Holmes) will also reprise their roles as Louisa’s spirited and slightly wayward children, Larry, Leslie, Margo and Gerry; whilst Greek actor Alexis Georgoulis (My Life In Ruins) will return as chauffeur and love interest, Spiros.

Described as “pitch-perfect period escapism” by The Guardian and “a warm-hearted creation with a steely core and mischievous twinkle” by The Times, The Durrells has gone from strength to strength since its launch in 2016. It continues to be one of ITV’s highest rating dramas, with the first episode of the latest series consolidating at 6.7m with a 26% share.

Founder of Sid Gentle Films Ltd. Sally Woodward Gentle (SS-GB, Any Human Heart) said: “We couldn’t be more delighted to be making more of The Durrells with our exceptional team and on the magical island of Corfu – it is a dream come true.”

ITV’s Senior Drama Commissioner, Victoria Fea, added: “The Durrells has proven immensely popular with viewers and critics alike, so we’re thrilled to have commissioned another series. Simon Nye’s writing is witty, big-hearted and hugely engaging, so we’re looking forward to seeing what the fourth series has in store.”

Fans were rooting for romance between Louisa and Spiros during the finale of the third series, which aired earlier this month. With the pair finally declaring their feelings for one another, it seemed that love was on the cards until the return of Spiros’ wife made for a teary ending. Will the couple be able to overcome the obstacles to rekindle their relationship in the new series?

The fourth series of The Durrells will be executive produced by Sid Gentle Films Ltd.’s CEO Sally Woodward Gentle and Managing Director Lee Morris (SS-GB, Da Vinci’s Demons), together with Simon Nye and Keeley Hawes. Filming is set to take place in Corfu later this year and Christopher Hall (Critical, Dracula) will return as the series producer.

10 May

Eleven blue flags (+ one in the Gouvia Marina) were awarded for this year in Corfu by the Society for the Protection of  Nature.  

More specifically, Corfu blue flags were given to the following beaches: 

- Canal d'Amour, 

- Agios Ioannis Peristeron / Marbella Corfu, 

- Almyros / Gelina Village, 

- Alykes Potamos / Family Life Kerkyra Golf, 

- Dassia / Ikos,

- Dafnila / Grecotel Daphnila Bay Thalasso,

- Issos / Sandy Beach Resort,

- Cavos / Mayor Capo di Corfu,

- Kommeno / Corfu Imperial, 

- Kontogialos / Mayor Pelekas Monastery 

- Kontokali / Kontokali Bay Resort. 

While, the Blue Flag also received the Gouvia Marina.

Compared to last year, Corfu has increased its flags by one, since in 2017 there were attributed only eleven.

22 Mar

CORFU. This is the programme of events for Easter this year:

Lazarus Saturday (31/3)

11:30 Choirs from throughout Corfu set off from Ag. Nikolaos church and Ag. Lazarou church (whose name day it is) singing ‘Lazarus Carols’. The choirs sing in various spots in the historical centre of town and meet up at 12:30 to sing the carols at the Old Town Hall. Organizers: ‘Corfu Expression Organization’.

20:00 Corfu Philharmonic Society – the oldest on the island – will give a concert at the Municipal Theatre.

Palm Sunday (1/4)

11:00 Litany with the Sacred Relics of Agios Spyridon. On Palm Sunday after the service at Ag. Spyridon church there follows the biggest – in terms of duration and length of route – litany with the Sacred Relics. It follows almost the whole length of the town’s old wall with Archbishop Nektarios of Corfu at the forefront. This litany was established in 1629 in remembrance of the island’s miraculous deliverance from the plague.

20:30 Concert with ‘Capodistrias’ Philharmonic Society and the ecclesiastical section of Corfu Choir at the Church of St. George in the Old Fortress.

Holy Monday (2/4)

21:00 ‘Mantzaros’ Philharmonic Society concert at the Municipal Theatre.

Holy Tuesday (3/4)

21:30 Poetry and Musical Evening ‘From Cavalry to the Resurrection’. Organized by the Corfu Events Organization in the colonnade of the Old Palace.

Holy Wednesday (4/4)

19:00 The Holy Metropolis Ecclesiastical Choir ‘Agios Arsenios’ sings the Washing of the Feet Devotional at Ag. Panton Church in town, with Archbishop Nektarios of Corfu.

Holy (Maundy) Thursday (5/4)

20:00 Washing of the Feet ceremony at the Catholic Cathedral (Duomo), at which the Catholic Archbishop Ioannis Spiteris will symbolically wash the feet of twelve children. This is followed late at night by the Agia Ora ceremony.

Good Friday (6/4)

All of the churches in town organize the Epitaphios procession in a particular order with musical groups, choirs, schools, scouts and others. The church choirs, especially that of the Metropolitan Church, as well as the Municipal Choir solemnly chant the Eulogies whilst the philharmonic (brass) bands play classical works such as Albinoni’s Adagio from the ‘Old’ Corfu Philharmonic Society (Red), Verdi’s Marcia Funebre from ‘Mantzaros’ Philharmonic Society (Blue) along with Mariani’s funereal elegy Sventura and Chopin’s Funeral March from the ‘Capodistrias’ Philharmonic Society.

12:30 Church of St. Irene (General Hospital) and Church of St. Artemis (Police Headquarters – Old hospital

14:00 Church of Pantocrator (Old Town-Cambiello) / Church of Spilaiotissis (New Fortress)

15:45 Church of Saint Nicholas of the Baths (St. Nicholas Gate): DOPAP & Corfu Scouts

16:00 Church of Saint George (old Fortress): Corfu Events Organization

16:30 Church of Saint Panteleimon (Psychiatric Hospital)

17:00 St. Efymias Monastery (Mon Repos)

17:15 Church of Holy Virgin Mary Odigitria – Panagiopoula (Porta Remounda): Corfu Expressions Organization

17:30 Church of Holy Virgin Mary Kassopitra in Figareto / Church of the Assumption in Analipsi / Church of Saint George in Mantouki

18:00 Church of All Saints (Agion Panton) (Town) / Church of the Resurrection in the 1st Municipal Cemetery in Garitsa / St. Theodoros Monastery (Stratia)

18:30 Church of Saint Sophia in the Jewish quarter / Church of Saint Paraskevi (Porta Remounda)

19:00 Church of Saint Anthony (Spilia) / Holy Trinity Church (Garitsa) / Church of Saint Constantine and Helen (Koulines) / Church of the Dormition of Holy Mary belonging to the Mamalos family (Koyevina Hill) / Church of Saint Iasonas and Sosipatros (Garitsa)

19:15 Church of Saint Eleftherios (Kofinetta) / Church of Holy Virgin Mary Vlahernon (Garitsa)

19:30 Church of Saint Spyridon (San Rocco Square-Kotsela) / Church of the Three Holy Martyrs (Garitsa)

19:45 Church of Holy Virgin Mary Faneromeni

20:00 Church of Saint Vasilios (Pinia) / Church of Saint Ioannis Lazos (Kefalomantouko) / Church of Saint Barbara (Potamos) / Church of Saint Nikolaos (Alikes)

20:15 Church of Saint Nikolaos (Cambiello)

20:30 Church of Saint Ioannis

20:45 Church of Saint Jacob & Christopher in Old Town Hall Square (Catholic Cathedral)

21:00 Church of Saint Spyridon – Epitaphios Procession in the church accompanied by Corfu Philharmonic Society

22:00 Metropolitan Church Spilaiotissis (Spilia)

Easter Saturday (7/4)

06:00 Church of Virgin Mary ton Xenon (strangers) located at Plakada (Saint Spyridon square): the earthquake that preceded Christ’s Resurrection is artificially recreated.

09:00 Church of Saint Spyridon. This is the only day of the year that St Spyridon’s Epitaphios procession is combined with a Litany of the Saint’s holy relics. Dating back to the mid-16th century, this is the oldest and most awe-inspiring litany. It commemorates the incident when the Saint saved his people from starvation, by redirecting ships loaded with wheat to Corfu after his apparition appeared to the captain. The long procession moves to the funereal tunes of the three philharmonic bands. The ‘Old’ Band play the funeral march from Faccio’s Opera ‘Amleto’, the ‘Blue’ band play de Michelis’ funeral march ‘Calde Lacrimae’ (Hot tears) and the Capodistrias Band play from Beethoven’s funeral march from the Eroica Symphony. After the end of the Litany, the Saint’s holy relics lie in repose outside the door of the crypt in Saint Spyridon Church until Easter Tuesday.

11.00 – The first Resurrection. After the end of the morning service at the Orthodox Cathedral, church bells around town signal what we call the “First Resurrection” and according to custom, people all over the island hurl clay pots ("botides" in the Corfiot dialect) from windows and balconies which crash noisily on the streets below. Another old custom of Corfu Town residents is the “mastella”, a great half barrel placed at the heart of the town, Pinia. The barrel is filled with water and decorated with myrtle and palm leaves. Passers-by throw coins in it and make a wish. When the church bells ring at 11 a.m. the person standing closest to the barrel is pushed into it. As compensation for getting soaked to the bone on a day like this, he gets all the money in the barrel. (Organized by Corfu Events Organization)

21:00 Easter Vigil Devotional at the Catholic Cathedral (Duomo) with ecclesiastical music and choir and officiated by the Catholic Archbishop Ioannis Spiteris. The ceremony ends at 23:00

22:00 Reception of the Holy Fire from the Holy Sepulchre. This takes place at the Pentofanaro (Liston) in the presence of local dignitaries. The Holy Fire is taken to the Church of Saint Paraskevi where the Devotional for the Resurrection begins, led by the Archbishop Nektarios of Corfu. Recently the ceremony has been established for the reception of the Holy Fire by the Catholic Archbishop from the Orthodox Archbishop during the procession to the Church of Saint Paraskevi in Porta Remounda.

23:00 Commencement of the Devotional Vigil for the Resurrection at the Church of Saint Paraskevi, near the Upper Square.

23:40 The procession sets out from the Church of Saint Paraskevi towards the stage in the Upper Square led by the Archbishop of Corfu Nektarios. The Resurrection is celebrated there and ‘Christos Anesti’ (Christ is Risen) is chanted and the Philharmonic Bands play in a spectacular atmosphere. There are Resurrection services in the following churches: All Saints, Virgin Mary ton Xenon, Saint Iasonas and Sosipatros, Three Holy Martyrs, Dormition of Holy Mary belonging to the Mamalos family, Saint Constantine and Helen (Koulines) and the following monasteries: Platyteras, Saint Efthimia, Kassopitras (Kanoni) and Saint Theodoros (Stratia).

Easter Sunday (8/4)

09:00 – 11:00 Most churches in Corfu hold the Holy Resurrection Liturgy based on the old tradition. There is also a litany with an icon of the Lord’s Resurrection according to Byzantine tradition as is also done in the Aegean Islands and in the Slav Orthodox countries.
Processions with the Resurrection Icon in Corfu Town

07.30 - Church of Saint Sophia in the Jewish quarter

07.45 - Church of All Saints (Agion Panton), Orthodox Metropolis and Church of Saint Paraskevi in Porta Remounda.

08:10 Church of Saint Eleftherios

08.15 - Church of Saint Spyridon (San Rocco Square-Kotsela)

08.30 - Church of the Assumption in Analipsi (Kanoni), St. George in Mantouki, Church of Virgin Mary ton Xenon (strangers) at Plakada (Saint Spyridon square) and Church of Holy Virgin Mary Vlahernon (Garitsa)

08.45 - Church of Saint Vasilios in Pinia.

09.00 - Church of Saint Antonios in Spilia. St. Ioannis in Piatsa and Church of Saint Nikolaos (Cambiello)

10.00 - Church of Saint Spiridon at Plakada with the (Old) Corfu Philharmonic Band playing Wagner’s ‘Tannhäuser’ and ‘Mantzaros’ Philharmonic Band playing Kritkos’ ‘Marcia Trionfale’’

18.30 - Church of Holy Trinity in Garitsa.

19:30 Evensong of Love at the Metropolitan Church with the Archbishop of Corfu Nektarios reading the Gospels in all languages.

Easter Tuesday (10/4)

18:00 At the Church of Saint Spyridon the holy relics of Saint Spiridon are ceremoniously placed back into the crypt in the presence of local dignitaries and with the two oldest Corfu Philharmonic Bands

from Enimerosi Newspaper
photo Giannis Mazis

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