I have just returned from my first trip to Greece, which included a hike on the Corfu Trail. Because it went to the Greek island of Corfu. Back I am now with lots of adventures in my luggage. But I also packed experiences and impressions and a lot of enthusiasm… that’s how much I really liked Corfu.
I set up my station in the northwest of the island, in the Corfelios bay. From there, we also went on lots of (exploratory) tours over part of the island – e.g. also on a part of the Corfu Trail and that’s exactly what I want to tell you about today.
The Corfu Trail – Corfu long distance hiking trail
Before I tell you a little bit about our little tour on the trail, I want to explain you a little bit about the Corfu Trail (or also Corfu Trail – both spellings are used diligently).
The Corfu Trail is a long-distance hiking trail on the Greek island of Corfu. In total, the trail is about 220 kilometers long and it leads from the southern part of the island to the north and back again. For the island itself is only 62 kilometers long. &
The trail is (actually) marked with yellow signs. I say here ‘actually’ because we could discover quite often in fact no more signs. But more about that later. The advantage of the Corfu Trail is that you get to know the island from its natural side, because tourist areas are mostly avoided. If you want to walk the whole trail, you should take your time. There are variants for 8 days, 10 days and 15 days. But also just to walk a part of the trail in one day is a great experience, which I can only recommend to you. & Even on short stretches, the path offers an incredible amount of variety, views and beautiful moments.
Attention: you have an old Corfu Trail map? Maps that are older than two years show some passages that probably don’t exist anymore. As the path is a very ‘natural’ path, nature likes to change the course of the path and alternative routes are created. This is what you should know if you are on your own on the Corfu Trail. &
But you can not only read the way in the guidebook or on a map, there is also the possibility to use a Corfu Trail App or to be on the way with a hiking guide… like we did… &#Our hiking guide Andy from Corfelios knows the area around Corfelios Bay like the back of his hand and he regularly offers great hiking tours (not only on the Corfu Trail).
Corfu Trail hiking with Andy from Corfelios
Since the long distance hiking trail ‘Corfu Trail’ also leads through Corfelios Bay, the tour operator Corfelios regularly offers day hikes on a part of the trail. So that it does not become boring (e.g. For Corfelios regular customers, who have been coming to the small bay for years), Andy also thinks up new routes and path variations from time to time.
On our hiking day (early June) it was very hot on the island. All in all June was probably hotter than it has been for a long time. But of course we did not let that stop us. We start our tour around 9 am, with a motivated group, at already 25°. It was going to get a lot hotter that day… so we all had big water bottles in our backpacks and of course we had put on sunscreen too.
We start in the Corfelios bay #AgiosGeorgios
Our tour started at the surf station in Corfelios bay Agios Georgios. We moved out of the village, first along the coast, to the start on the road, then over a gravel road, until after a first hill, we turned into a small path – into the forest, uphill of course. Without our hiking guide Andy, we would probably not even have found this turnoff. & Also because a part of the original route has sunk in the winter and was replaced by an alternative route, which of course also not really out or. was marked.
The small path and climb through the forest turned out to be a very interesting route, with first very nice views of Corfelios Bay. But here you should look carefully where you step, because it was partly also steep downhill.
At the top we turned onto a wider path. On the left a big rock face, on the right the unique panorama on the sea and the Diapontic Islands: Mathraki, Othoni and Erikoussa.
The rock gate: the perfect setting for the view of the Ionian Sea
It went steeply uphill and shortly after the rock gate we turned off into an olive grove, to then dive in Pagi again into civilization. But not for long, because before we really passed through the small Greek village, we turned again onto a sandy path, and shortly after that into the next beautiful olive grove. In between, the trail gave us great views of the sea, of church towers in the distance or of cultural treasures like. B. Angelokastro (angel castle – built ca. at 1.100). Once it was one of the most important defensive fortifications of Corfu, today it is a popular ruin for tourists, high up on a cliff.
Part of our path was very overgrown and Andy bravely stepped forward, armed with his secateurs, to clear the way for us. As a reward, after about 12 kilometers, a delicious lunch was waiting for us in the small village Makrades. The small village looks like something out of a Greek picture book and the Greek salad we ate (for 5,50 Euro) was so rich that we couldn’t eat it at all.
Tip: At the end of the tour, stop at the Fischerman’s Cabin (in the Corfelios bay Agios Georgios). Eat fish, wait for the amazing sunset and enjoy the ambience (looks like from the movie Mama Mia). The restaurant Fisherman’s Cabin is the oldest fish restaurant in the region. It is a bit hidden, in the middle of the olive groves at the end of the bay, directly at the sea.
On the Corfu Trail: In the shade of the olive groves
The way back led us also another time through picturesque olive groves and over a section of the stony path, behind the rock gate. In the meantime this stage was in full sunshine, in the early morning we could still hike here in the protection of the shade. The temperatures swung slowly around the 35 ° degrees and we had to drink really much to brave the heat. Therefore we were really happy that most of the way back, after the rocky path, was through shady olive groves. At the end of the hike we came out again at the coastal strip, just as we started.
Corfu Trail pictures, conclusion& Recommendation
Overall, the tour was, despite the heat and about twenty kilometers of march, very relaxed and above all it offered a lot of variety. I recommend you for the individual routes and stages, calmly times an experienced hiking guide like e.g. Andy. Because such an ‘Andy’ not only knows the way (even if the signposting is missing), he can also tell you a lot about the region, the landscape, the customs and the history.
Who wants to walk the route alone, should be well prepared. Because as already mentioned in a Corfu Trail book / guidebook, you can otherwise get lost quickly and easily (due to lack of signposting). & Also on an older version of the Corfu Trail map one should not rely necessarily. Because, as mentioned above, the trail changes its course (almost) every winter. If the nature, in winter, on Corfu lets its forces rule, a way is already gladly times simply weggeschwemmt, overgrown or however simply breaks off.
Since a picture says more than 1000 words, I’ve put here a lot of Corfu Trail pictures and general Corfu hiking pictures, so that you can convince yourself of the beauty and variety. Even though I have to admit that the pictures don’t do the trail justice, not even to 70 percent. Because the smell of the herbs, olive trees or other blooming plants, the smell of the sea, the sound of the waves or the twittering of the birds and rustling in the undergrowth or also the feeling of sun on the skin, photos (and even a small film) can not really capture.
Good to know: Corfu Trail Accommodations
If you want to hike on the Corfu Trail, you will of course need accommodation. You can find all kinds of hostels on Corfu – from hotels to apartments or private accommodation. Who would like to hike, does not necessarily in high summer…& but chooses for this rather the climatically more pleasant early or late season. In the time you can also find spontaneous accommodation on Corfu (also along the Corfu Trail).
But if you also want to start for day trips on the trail, I really recommend the (not yet so touristy) north/west of the Greek island. The Corfelios bay Agios Georgios offers a great starting point and accommodations are available (depending on the season) already quite cheap from 14.- Euro per person / night.
Tip: The hike was just one of many hikes we did in Corfu during the week. We also explored a few other trails on our own and in addition we also participated in offered hikes by Corfelios – like for example. B. the night hike, via Afionas (at sunset) to the twin bay or the culinary tour to Afionas.
*My trip to Corfu is a (partially organized) blogger trip. Some components were provided to me free of charge by the tour operator Corfelios. Others (like e.g. our flights, rental cars u. v. m.) we also paid completely ourselves. Without this support I would not have been able to explore and experience Corfu, in such a short time, so extensively. Many thanks for the many great impressions and the nice support from all Corfelios staff on site, who tried to answer all questions and also spontaneously took us to one or the other activity &