Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Friday, October 22, 2010 – Corfu, Greece – 71F – Mostly Sunny

Distance Traveled from Messina: 281 Nautical Miles

Corfu, founded in the 8th Century BC, is the second largest of the seven Ionian Islands with a total population of about 150,000.   The Island is 36 miles long and 18 miles wide and contains 4 million olive trees.  In fact, 60% of the land is covered by olive, cypress, citrus trees and vineyards.  The island may be the setting for the Tempest, and where Ulysses washed ashore in the Odyssey. The capital of the island is Corfu Town (Kerkira in Greek – named after Kira, the muse of mythology (and played by Olivia Newton-John in Xanadu).

 Corfu Sunrise (Small)

Sunrise over Corfu

This morning – pretty early – we are on a tour:  “Paleokastritsa, Lakones, and Wine Tasting” (see Map below).

Our first stop is Paleokastritsa (Old Castle) – 16 mi West of Corfu.  The town is essentially deserted with just a few restaurants open for people to drink coffee.  The highlight of the stop in Paleokastritsa is the boat ride (7 Euros) around the harbor to view the many caves.  I was comped for the boat trip.

Corfu Paleokastritsa view from boat dock (Small) Corfu Paleokastritsa boat dock view (Small)

View from Paleokastritsa Boat Launch

Ellen went on the boat ride first – my group is next.

Corfu Paleokastritsa E on boat (Small)

Ellen disembarking her tour boat

The boat ride is very scenic – a bit chilly this early in the morning – with rock formations and caves.  See below.

Corfu Paleokastritsa on boat ride (Small) Corfu Paleokastritsa Cave 1 (Small) Corfu Paleokastritsa Inside Cave (Small) Corfu Paleokastritsa Rock formation from boat (Small) Corfu Paleokastritsa Cave 2 (Small) Corfu Paleokastritsa Monkey Head Rock (Small)

Monkey Head Rock formation

We entered the Cave of St Nicholas.  This cave have an interesting water feature called the “Blue Eye”.  The blue color must be a combination of sediment and sunlight and it is pretty dramatic.

Corfu Paleokastritsa Cave of St Nicholas (Small)

Corfu Paleokastritsa Blue Eye (Small)

Top:  Cave of St Nicholas

Bottom:  The “Blue Eye”

Corfu Paleokastritsa Beach (Small)

View from the beach at Paleokastritsa

The tour then proceeded up the narrow winding road to the town of Lakones, where we were supposed to get an authentic Greek snack, some wine, and some shopping.  On our way, the view was terrific.

Corfu view from Hills (Small)

Paleokastritsa from the hills

We had our snack at the Kolombos Taverna in Lakones.  The snack, Feta, bread, olives, potato knish, and wine was similar to the one we had in Corinth last cruise.  The wine seemed pretty watered down – if not, Corfu is not a wine paradise.

  Corfu Laknas Restaurant (Small)

Kolombos Taverna in Lakones

Corfu H and E in Lakonas Lunch (small)

Together in Lakones

Corfu E in her bus (Small)

Ellen in her bus

Lakones was a pretty small place and we did spend a little too much time there.  Soon we were on on way back to the pier.  One particularly interesting site was the Theotokos Byzantine Monastery perched up on a hill overlooking the sea.

Corfu Byzantine Monastery Theotokos (Small) Corfu Harbaor Equinox (Small)

Look carefully and you might be able to see the Equinox in Corfu Harbor (above)

Back on the ship, we were able to get a nice view of Corfu Town.

Corfu Town (Small)

Corfu Full Moon (Small)

Full moon over Corfu

The Headliner tonight is Jason Chase – we saw part of his show since we had seen his full show last cruise.

We then took in “Celebrity Singing Star” – won by Joelle from Holland (Christina Aguilera song).  Maybe not the best singer but definitely the most difficult to sing.

1 comment:

  1. Columbus is not in Lakones but in Makrades