This year my Husband Nick turned 60, and as part of his birthday celebrations we went to one of our favourite places, Kassiopi in Corfu. We have visited Kassiopi a few times now and we couldn’t wait to get back, visit some amazing places and of course see one of my best friends Lucy and her family, she has lived there for 17 years! Over our 3 week stay, more than 40 of our closet friends and families joined us – and they all had the same opinion- they loved this place – Kassiopi and Corfu.
How do you put together a family holiday, where everyone stays in the same place? A villa seemed like a great choice, however we all decided that staying in accommodation that we already knew and loved was the best idea – that meant everyone could fly out from different airports, different dates and different durations ( plus there was a cleaner and restaurant/bar onsite) the Katia Beach was once again perfect! https://www.katiaaparthotel.com
I’m going to do a plug for the amazing Alex and Joanne – Husband and Wife team with great staff. They keep the Katia Beach spotless, the food from the restaurant is fabulous with a massive choice, the rooms are tidy and comfortable and the pool area is lovely and clean with lots of sunbathing areas. The wild beach is just 5 minutes walk through the gardens, perfect for picnics, paddle boards ( hire from the Katia for 15 euros for 3 hours) and snorkelling. Kassiopi is a 20 minute stroll and beautiful Avlaki and the amazing Cavo Barbaro seafront restaurant https://m.facebook.com/profile.php/?id=100063957876927 is 15 minutes walk in the opposite direction. TOP TIP: Book the Greek Night a the Katia! Amazing value for money, really good fun and great atmosphere 1 we went twice 🇬🇷
Last time we visited Kassiopi was when there was a break in regulations through covid, this year it was heartwarming to see all the restaurants, shops and bars so busy and bustling – the atmosphere in the village was amazing and we were surprised (after visiting other countries post covid) what good value it was to eat and drink out! Kassiopi is perfect for all – our party ranged from a one year old to grandparents and there really was something for everyone to enjoy – boat hire, walks around the castle and headland, beaches, cocktails, shopping, late night dancing, an ice cream parlour or a romantic meal – the list is endless!
We don’t normally make many plans before we go, but with there being lots of us at anyone point we booked a few trips.
Paleokastritsa https://www.greeka.com/ionian/corfu/beaches/paleokastritsa/is always high on our list – it’s a stunningly beautiful area on the opposite coast to Kassiopi (west) about an hour away by car – with 14 of us wanting to go we booked a minivan to take us there and back (18 euros each) we booked into a fab beach club https://akron.gr/ and hired beds and an umbrella for the day (15 euros) – ah the views were idyllic, beautiful waters to swim in and for an extra special treat we ate in the restaurant- mussels, oysters, tuna and of course chicken nuggets for the kids! What more could a girl ask for… her best friends and families in one place! It really was a perfect day ❤️
Paleokastritsa is made up of around 6 beautiful beaches, and we spent a second morning and lunch in another cove, still idyllic but with a few more tavernas and shops – plus for a history fix, there is a fabulous monastery that you can walk too.
I love the sea, whether I’m swimming in it, listening to it, or my favourite thing… being on it! There is nothing better than hiring a little motorboat and seeing the island from the sea (it’s beautiful) and actually it is a fantastic way to move up and down the coast and find beautiful bays and restaurants that you would probably miss if on the land! It’s such fun and great value for money – we used https://www.filipposboats.com for 120 euros you can hire a boat that seats 6 for a full day plus petrol is between 30 and 40 euros.
We were lucky and managed to get out 3 times during our trip! At one point we had 5 boats in convoy – all very exciting. The days we went out to sea, we brought breakfast from the village bakery- Nikolas ( note: the pastries and cakes in here are to die for!) and then ate a couple of times at the Nikolas Traditional Taverna https://agnibay.com in Agni (there’s a theme 😂) and once at the Thalassa in Kaminaki. https://en.tripadvisor.com.hk/Restaurant_Review-g12818824-d24096614-Reviews-Thalassa_Sea_Food_Taverna-Katavolos_Corfu_Ionian_Islands.html
There are some beautiful bays to anchor up in, there is nothing better than jumping into to the crystal clear seas, snorkelling in uncrowded coves and seeing the Corfu landscape from the sea – it really is stunning.
Two great stopping points are Kalami, which is well know for being the home for novelist Lawrence Durrell and also Agios Stefanos ( North East) which is a vibrant seafront village with some great tavernas and little shops.
Corfu holds some very special memories for me. I spent lots of holidays here in my late teens and early twenties with my mum and dad, brothers, and friends, Holly came along and had her fist holidays here and of course it’s amazing to now come here with Nick. The boat trips and Nicolas Traditional Taverna brought back some wonderful memories of my mum – being the captain of her ship ( well boat) and her laughing and dancing at The Nikolas taverna Greek night – of course it brought on a few tears but these wonderful moments we had also made me smile.
As a family we just love greek food – I thought after 3 weeks we would get bored of eating out, not a chance! There are so many different restaurants to choose from in and around the area, we never ate the same thing twice – (except taziki and taramasalata, I will let you into a little secret, I am obsessed with dip – I absolutely love it ) and never had a bad meal, in fact they were all fantastic! My favourite village restaurants…
Uncle Simos, Tavernaki, Petrine and Poro Nuovo – all of them had fantastic fresh food and amazing service. TOP TIP: to avoid disappointment, definitely book.
These restaurants were brilliant at hosting large parties and intimate get together – nothing was too much trouble!
My absolute go to restaurant and massive treat is Taverna Glyfa – watching the sunset over the sea with the back drop of the mountains the setting is stunning. It doesn’t have a huge menu which makes the food incredible, especially the seafood and the service is fantastic. It’s a beautiful restaurant for really special nights.
The deal that Nick and I have, is that I drive on sea and Nick drives on land – it’s a great compromise and works well. The last two weeks of our holiday we hired a jeep jimney ( it was actually the same one we had hired last time we were in Corfu, you may remember the story!) this meant we could take a few of our family and friends to some of our favourite spots on the island. Old Perithia is so beautiful, I literally have to go every time I visit corfu. This year the journey up the mountains was a little bit different, the area had been effected by forest fires and the landscape looked so different – it wasn’t ugly and baron as you would imagine, you could see the new shoots bursting through, vibrant heather contrasting againt charcoal trunks and where you could just normally see woodland, the views had opened up over the coastline and it felt like you could see for mile and miles – stunning. Old Perithia village was built in about 400m above sea level in the 14th century and was made up of wonderful stone buildings. At this time, lots of people wanted to live in the hillsides away from the coast as it was cooler and there were no unwelcome visitors such as pirates, in fact it was built so the village could see the sea, but village not be seen. The village was really prosperous with very successful farming plus cultivation of olives and vines – fast forward and time moved on, it became harder and harder for the people of Old Perithia to make a living and many of the islanders including lots of the village residents left the hills to go back down to the coastal areas where tourism was booming. That said, now the old village is thriving, with a handful of fabulous tavernas serving delicious homemade dishes, a lovely gift shop and a friendly bee keeper offering a quick honey tasting in his beautiful garden – the protected ‘oldest village in Corfu’ makes for a wonderful day out.
Finally, nights out – as you can imagine with our daughters, nephews and nieces with us, we had a few very late nights, but what fun! Illusions Bar was great fun, dancing the nights away and my dad even went on the Karaoke. A little more sophisticated was the Limani Bar – a late night cocktail bar and for pre dinner cocktails, Virginia’s served an amazing Margarita.
We all had so much fun and it was so fantastic to spend time and make memories with all the people that we love, in a place that is very special to us.
Please get in contact with us for more information about Kassiopi, we would love to tell you more.
Helen & Nick