With its sheltered bay and narrow strips of land, the Ionian island of Corfu, close to the coasts of both mainland Greece and Albania, is a great place for sun-seekers and watersports enthusiasts alike. The coastline is lush with trees and plants, which gives a sheltered feel while you swim and sunbathe. There are secluded pebbled beaches and more popular, sandy stretches of the coastline with enough facilities to relax for the day. Find your perfect spot among these beautiful beaches in Corfu.
On the opposite side of the island from Corfu Town, you’ll find one of the most popular beaches – and for good reason. The sand at Glyfada beach is soft on your feet and looks like light brown sugar. The water is calm and inviting and remains shallow for several metres. Glyfada beach is laid out with sunbeds and umbrellas and has a few restaurants nearby. Be sure to get a doughnut or freshly cut fruit from one of the beach vendors.
Truly one of the most beautiful beaches on Corfu is Canal d’Amour. There are several rock formations that create hidden coves and caves around the coastline. You can lay your towel out on the smooth rocks to sunbathe or rent a sunbed. There are several spots set up for cliff jumping into the turquoise waters. It gets its name, French for Channel of Love, from the superstition that if a couple swims through the channel together, they’ll soon be married.
For a green and lush slice of paradise, head to the west side of Corfu to Paleokastritsa Beach. The water is spectacularly clean and very refreshing on hot summer days. The shore is a mix of small pebbles and sand. There are lots of fish in this bay, so be sure to bring your snorkelling gear. Finish your day at Paleokastritsa Beach with a climb up to the monastery for an incredible sunset view.
You’ll love sunbathing to the sound of the small waves on the pebbles and rocks of Barbati Beach. The green mountains make a beautiful backdrop, and offer early morning and late afternoon shade on the beach. It’s a beautiful beach that never gets too crowded. There are a few restaurants that serve the beach for coffee, cocktails and traditional food. Hire a boat or kayak to venture off to secluded bays and coves.
Rolling sand dunes and strong winds make Issos beach a great spot for adventure travellers. Learn how to kitesurf or windsurf through the deep blue waters along the western coast of Corfu. For those less inclined towards water sports, Issos Beach has golden sand and umbrella rentals to enjoy a day of sunbathing and paddling. Lake Korission and natural wetlands, where you might catch a glimpse of the pink flamingos, is within walking distance.
There are two beaches in Corfu, not far from each other, both called Agios Georgios, or Saint George. To differentiate between them, they’re known as Agios Georgios Pagon and Agios Georgios South. Agios Georgios Pagon is a horseshoe-shaped bay in the northwest of Corfu with a long stretch of golden sand. It’s a lovely beach with a beautiful landscape of trees, hills and wild plants. The water is calm and safe for the entire family. This beach is a great spot to catch the sunset.
Emerald waters and 2km (1.3mi) of sand await you at Agios Stefanos beach in the northwest corner of Corfu. It’s an old fishing village that has maintained its authentic identity, despite the development of nearby resorts. There are lots of hiking paths with spectacular views throughout the coastline that lead you to secluded beaches. The area has plenty of fish taverns and restaurants. It’s also the perfect spot for dinner with a sunset view.
Local people try to keep Avlaki Beach their secret – but with pristine water and gorgeous views, visitors to the island are happily discovering it. It’s a pebbled beach with some large rocks, but there’s a small pier to help you get into the water. There are kayaks and canoes available for hire to explore the small coves nearby. Avlaki Beach has just a couple of restaurants, where you can get a snack or full meal, and the food is particularly good.
This is an updated version of an article originally by Alex Sakalis.