The municipal section of Esperion (most famous Sidari) is situated in the northwestern part of Corfu and includes some of the most beautiful places of the island. The picturesque villages Agioi Douloi, Agrafoi, Velonades, Karoussades and many more, enchant the visitor with their old mansions, their very old churches and their picturesque alleyways. Hidden amongst the colors of nature or perched on abrupt slopes, the villages in the region of Esperion still preserve the authentic features of the Corfiot countryside as well as its long history.
The beaches in the region of Esperion are unique. This is where, you will find the famous Channel of Love in Peroulades but, also Loggas below the village of Peroulades.
This region is also the main transport hub with the Diapontia Islands because ships depart from the small port of Agios Stefanos in Avliotes in order to go to these beautiful and picturesque islets which are the boundaries of Greece in the west and which are worthwhile visiting.
Agios Stefanos in Avliotes
Agios Stefanos in Avliotes is a small, seaside village which has developed above a lovely, sandy beach. It is an old fishing village, which in recent years, has mildly developed as a touristy destination with some rentable rooms and studios (bachelor’s rooms). From the small port of Agios Stefanos depart ships for the Diapontia Islands which are situated right across the settlement. During summer, the schedules are daily and frequent. In Agios Stefanos in Avliotes you will find mini markets and touristy shops. The small taverns and coffee shops are located on the beach. Agios Stefanos in Avliotes is the ideal place for someone seeking calm and relaxing holidays. Besides, it is not far away from the cosmopolitan resorts of Sidari and Acharavi which are also commercial centers. MORE
Magoulades is a large village in the north-western end of the island which extends from Sidari to the Arillas beach. It is a village with a long history which is mentioned even by Homer with the name Magoula which means a hill. Magoulades was visited by Plato in 405 A.C. when he participated in the feasts of Linaion to honor the God Dionysus which took place in the village Nymfes. The history of Magoulades is depicted in the many mansions of the village but, also in the numerous churches and monasteries it has. One of these is Panagia of Magoulades , or Panagia Ypsili which is one of the oldest and biggest Monasteries of Corfu, as it dates back to the first quarter of the 10th century. This Monastery, due to the significance and the greatness of its architecture and of the relics it keeps, has been characterized as a Historical Preserved Monument. MORE
Velonades is a lowland village near the beaches of northern Corfu. It extends to a large area and includes the settlements of Livadi, Kounavades and Psathyla . Velonades is an old village mentioned in written sources of 1472. Its name probably came from the surname Velonis. This surname suggests someone who worked with needles during the Byzantine years. Velonades has very impressive old mansions which are maintained, some in good condition and unfortunately, others are in ruins, such are the mansion of Makris and the mansion of Mariena, meaning the wife of a man called Marios. Velonades introduces intense, cultural activity with a very active, cultural club. It has a small folklore museum with old tools and household items, a library, a conservatory and a dance group. The residents of Velonades are occupied today in the tourism industry, in the nearby resorts of Sidari and Acharavi. MORE
Built on the inland of the Corfiot countryside, Valanio is a small and traditional village with great history which dates back to the beginning of the 15th century. The name of the village probably derives from the world Valanio which the Romans used for baths, as there is an opinion that back in those days, a Roman bath was situated in the banks of Mavrolimni, nowadays a small lake which is located between Valanio and Kyprianades. There is also a second opinion concerning the name which says that it probably comes from the oak tree (velanidia) because before planting olive trees which created the famous Corfiot olive grove, the region was full of oak trees. Valanio is famous for its tradition of music. In the village live 350 people and it is said that all of them are occupied with music. The choir of Valanio has a long history and its fame surpasses the boundaries of Corfu. MORE
The village Avliotes is built on a verdant hill above the seaside settlement of Agios Stefanos and its beautiful beach. On the two tops of the hill are located the churches of the village. On one top is the church of Agioi Taxiarches and on the other, the church of Panagia Odigitria. From these tops you can enjoy a magnificent view towards Albania and of the three Diapontia Islands that are situated right across. Tradition is a very important element of the civilization of Avliotes. In the festivals of the village you will see dancers wearing traditional costumes and you will enjoy Corfiot songs. In the village there is also a choir and a philharmonic, while a library also operates. MORE
The village Agioi Douloi is a traditional, small village of the Corfiot countryside with Venetian houses and picturesque alleys. The village was named this way because during the Byzantine era its inhabitants were slaves who cultivated the areas around the church so they were called agiodoulites (meaning slaves who work for the church). Today, in the center of the village, dominates an impressive mansion of the 18th century. It is the mansion of the Laskaris family built by local constructors led by the Italian architect Enrico Soresini. In Agioi Douloi you can also visit the Monastery of Agios Dimitrios which is constructed in the traditional Corfiot way of building churches. On the road, which leads to Nymfes, you will also find the Hermitage of Pantokratoras Kamarela , a female monastery which was named after the neighboring spring «Kamarela». MORE
The village of Agrafoi is one of the most picturesque villages in northern Corfu. Old, well-maintained, colored edifices are located on the right and on the left of the main road, creating a beautiful and traditional scene. Agrafoi has a history which goes back to the Byzantine years. The name of the village is named after the «agrafoi», villagers free of taxation towards the state. The main church in Agrafoi is Panagia Odigitria, also a church with a long history dating back to the 13th century. In the forecourt of the church, you will be impressed by the monumental main entrance with its elaborate decoration and with the murals of St. Peter and St. Paul on the right and on the left. Every year, on the 22nd and 23rd of August, a festival is organized with the participation of the dance club of Agrafoi wearing their traditional Corfiot costumes and celebrating with large crowds. MORE
Antipernoi is a pretty, picturesque village «encountered» by dense vegetation and located next to the village of Karousades. It is said that Antipernoi has preserved its name from mythology, because Homer refers to this village with the name Antipernaia, which means «to go across», meaning across the fortress of the city of Faiakes which is believed to be situated on the hill where, Agrafoi is today. It is a very quiet village, even though it is a few minutes away from the big resorts of the northern coast of the island, Sidari and Roda. MORE
In the southwest of Karousades is situated the picturesque village Kavallouri, which was named after the noble Kavalourios, who was a great landowner in the region during the Venetian occupation. In Kavallouri there are many old houses and mansions. The one that stands out is the farmhouse made of stone which belonged to the Chalikiopoulos family and which was built in 1540. This house was bought by the Corfiot painter, Agelos Giallinas who was the favorite painter of the Empress of Austria, Elizabeth. Ever since, this house is known with the name Archontiko (Mansion) or Giallinas Farmhouse. Kavallouri is 3 kilometers away from Astrakeri beach and only 5 kilometers away from the large beach of Roda. MORE
Goussades is a lowland settlement near Sidari in the north-western shores of Corfu. It has approximately 185 inhabitants who are mainly occupied in the tourism industry. Very close to Goussades is located the famous Channel of Love where, you must certainly swim but, also the beach of Loggas in the west, near the picturesque village of Peroulades. MORE
Mega Ydri is a small settlement with a few holiday houses very close to the touristy Sidari, the picturesque Peroulades and Avliotes in north-western Corfu. From Mega Ydri you can head to the enchanting beaches Loggas and Drastis, with the unique sedimentary formations and the deep blue waters. MORE
Garnades is a small village in the north-western part of the island, very close to the lovely beaches of Arillas and Agios Stefanos in Avliotes. Garnades is built at an altitude of about 150 meters and approximately 50 people live there. MORE
Kouknikades is a small settlement in the north-western part of the island, built on the provincial road, near Peroulades and Avliotes. Kouknikades is situated very close to the beautiful beaches of Loggas and Agios Stefanos in Avliotes. MORE
Agios Ioannis in Esperies
Agios Ioannis in Esperies is a seaside settlement right next to the touristy Sidari, built above the vast, organized beach of the cosmopolitan resort. It is situated right on the national road that connects Roda to Sidari where, you will find many rentable apartments, gas stations and touristy shops. The Tyflos River passes through the western side of Agios Ioannis in Esperies, just a few meters before it flows into the sea. MORE