Drive to Palaiokastrítsa

This drive to Palaiokastritsa starts at Corfu airport and takes you across the Ropa Plan and through hill villages before returning to Corfu Town.

Palaiokastritsa on CorfuThis Drive Takes You to Beautiful Palaiokastritsa

Palaiokastrítsa (or Paleokastritsa) is one of the most popular beauty spots on Corfu, so much so that Sir Frederick Adam, the British High Commissioner in the early 19th century, built a road across the island to speed his journey. This drive takes you there on a more scenic, meandering route through the villages and idyllic landscape of the Rópa Plain.


These directions were accurate when we did the drive but signposts can always change so don’t assume it’s still 100% correct.

Drive to Palaiokastritsa

From the airport, make a left turn on to the road for the Achilleion and Lefkímmi. After 1 km (0.6 miles), turn right, following signs for Pélekas; then left again when this short road ends, and continue on the Pélekas road through the suburbs of Corfu Town (about 10 minutes). 


Turn right at the sign for Afra. (Note that it appears to point straight on, but is actually a right turn.) Cross a small bridge, and the narrow road winds uphill for 2 km (about 1.25 miles) past attractive houses with beautiful gardens.

Beyond the village, just past an old olive grove, you come to a stop sign. Go straight on (signposted Gouvía), along a cypress-lined forest and over a single-lane bridge. At the next stop sign, turn left towards Gouvía and after a few metres turn left again, following signs for Templóni.

The road winds through pretty rural scenery, bright with wildflowers in spring. Between the clusters of sage and olive trees there are views across the countryside to the distant hills. As you leave the small village of Templóni, you’ll have the first view across the Plain of Rópa before descending to the valley floor.

The Ropa Plain

At the end of the road, turn right towards Palaiokastrítsa. After a few hundred metres take the first left, signposted Giannádes and Mármaro. You are now crossing the wide, grassy Plain of Rópa, dotted with pleasant rural houses surrounded by vineyards and beehives.

At the far end of the plain, ignore the turning to Mármaro and Kanakádes and continue uphill towards Giannádes, with stunning views back over the plain.

Into Giannades

At a fork in the road, take a sharp right turn uphill into the village. Follow the parking signs and park near the village square. Unlike many mountain villages, Giannádes has a big, open square with a fountain and benches that affords a fabulous view over the Rópa Plain. Alongside the square is a taverna where the local men gather for coffee, brandy and gossip. Giannádes is a good place to stretch your legs with a walk around the pretty village and up to the yellow church with its stone bell tower. 

Retrace the route back to the bottom of the hill and take the sharp left turn signposted for Mármaro (1 km/0.6 miles) and Kanakádes (2 km/1.25 miles). Drive through an idyllic valley of olive groves, grazing sheep, small gardens and vineyards. The villages are little more than a string of houses which run into one another along a stretch of the road. Once past these, the road continues through the Rópa Plain up to the main road.

Turn left for Palaiokastrítsa, which is 6 km (3.7 miles) away. After 2 km (1.25 miles) turn left for Liapádes. The town is uphill to the left, but the streets are narrow and steep so if you want to explore, it’s best to park below and walk up into the town. You may see local women in traditional dress with white head scarves instead of the usual black. Alternatively, check out Liapádes’ beautiful beach, 1 km (0.6 miles) to the right. 

Leave Liapádes and at the main road turn left for Palaiokastrítsa. The road winds along its beautiful bays and inlets until it ends at the far edge of town.

You can return to Corfu Town on the fast main road (25 km/15.5 miles) or take another scenic route to the coast. As you leave town, you will see a right turn for Glyfádes and Ermónes. Ignore this, but watch for the next left-hand turn. It is unmarked from this direction but leads to Doukádes. (If you reach a petrol station on your left, you’ve missed it, so turn around there. It will then be signposted from this direction.)

Through Doukades

This narrow, old road has hairpin curves winding up through the olive groves. At the stop sign, turn left and the road goes through the centre of Doukádes, a pretty village with two churches and a popular restaurant. Follow signs for the parking area if you want to stop.

Leave the village, following the signs for Róda, Sidári and Skriperó. The countryside is decked with wildflowers, poppies, tall grass and vines among the olive trees. At the road’s end, turn right onto the main road for Corfu Town. Continue through Skriperó. At the next stop sign, turn left and follow signs for Corfu Town, 14 km (8.7 miles) away.

Print This Drive

If you want a print-friendly PDF version of this drive then click here.

Where to Stay on Corfu

Other Corfu pages

  • Corfu

    Corfu or Kerkyra is the main island in the Greek Ionian islands with Corfu Town being one of the most attractive of Greek island capitals.

  • Northern Corfu

    Northern Corfu is the most diverse part of the island, with Corfu's highest point, Mt Pantokrator, and beach resorts like Sidari and Palaiokastritsa.

  • Corfu Food and Drink

    Information for travelers on Corfu Food and Drink including restaurants and tavernas, Corfiot specialties, desserts, wine and other Greek drinks like ouzo.

  • Southern Corfu Beaches and Villages

    This guide to southern Corfu’s beaches and villages includes busy resorts, quiet beach, hill villages and the southernmost tip of Corfu at Cape Asprókavos.

  • Northern Corfu Beaches and Villages

    Northern Corfu’s beaches and villages include busy resorts and secluded beaches, with several hill and mountain villages well worth visiting.

  • Southern Corfu Drive

    This Southern Corfu drive starts and ends in Moraïtika, taking in hill villages, secluded beaches, lovely views, and a visit to Gardiki Castle.

  • Corfu Wildlife

    Corfu’s wildlife includes rare and colourful birds, snakes, lizards, fireflies, and insects, with plenty of places to watch the wildlife like lakes and lagoons.

  • Southern Corfu

    Southern Corfu has busy beach resorts like Benitses, historical buildings like the Achilleion Palace and Gardiki Castle, and wildlife at the Korision Lagoon.

  • Corfu and Cricket

    The history of Corfu and cricket goes back to 1823 when the island was under British rule, which left them with a legacy of loving both cricket and ginger beer.

  • Northern Corfu Drive

    There are two sides to every Greek island, the tourist and the traditional, and this drive from Corfu Town through northern Corfu shows the two faces of Corfu.

  • The Achilleion Palace

    The Achilleion Palace is one of the most visited sights on Corfu and contains a museum and impressive gardens with wonderful views over the coast.

  • Corfu Writers and Artists

    Corfu writers and artists inspired by the island include both residents and visitors, like Gerald and Lawrence Durrell, Edward Lear, and Henry Miller.

  • The Invasion of Corfu

    From Nero to Nicolas Cage, the invasion of Corfu goes back to Roman times and through to Hollywood today!

  • Fun Facts about Corfu

    These fun facts about Corfu include how the island got its name, who wrote the Greek National Anthem, and the eccentric Englishman, the Earl of Guilford.

  • Korission Lagoon

    The Korission Lagoon on the west coast of Corfu is also called Lake Korission and has abundant wildlife, especially birds, and one of the best beaches on Corfu.

  • Where to Stay in Northern Corfu

    Greece Travel Secrets picks where to stay in northern Corfu with budget and luxury hotels in Sidari, Daphnila Bay, Kontokali, Ipsos, Barbati and more.

  • Mount Pantokrator Drive

    This Mount Pantokrator drive takes you to the top of Corfu’s highest mountain with wonderful views to Albania, mainland Greece, and around Corfu.

  • Benítses

    Benitses is a popular resort town south of Corfu Town with its own marina, remains of a Roman Baths, an old town, and plenty of walks inland.

  • Kalámi

    Kalami in north-west Corfu is a hidden gem which many people know about because writer Lawrence Durrell once lived here in The White House.

  • Corfu Olives

    Corfu olives are an important part of this Greek island's economy, with an estimated 3-4 million trees producing olive oil of exceptional quality.

  • A Lawrence Durrell Walk

    This Lawrence Durrell walk takes you from Kaminaki Beach in northern Corfu to the White House in Kalami where the writer Lawrence Durrell lived for four year.

  • Best Beaches on Corfu

    The best beaches on Corfu, chosen by Greece Travel Secrets, include Paleokastritsa, Mirtiotissa, Sidari and Cape Asprokavos.

  • Corfu Festivals and Events

    Information for travellers to Greece on Corfu festivals and events including Easter, the Feast of St Spiridhon, Carnival and Name Days.

  • Corfu’s Marine Life

    Corfu’s marine life includes dolphins, loggerhead turtles, and rare Mediterranean monk seals.

Enjoy this page? Please pay it forward. Here's how...

Would you prefer to share this page with others by linking to it?

  1. Click on the HTML link code below.
  2. Copy and paste it, adding a note of your own, into your blog, a Web page, forums, a blog comment, your Facebook account, or anywhere that someone would find this page valuable.

Latest Posts

  1. Popular Paliokastritsa on Corfu Gets New Marina

    Greek Tourism Minister Vassilis Kikilias and Corfu Mayor Meropi Hydraiou inaugurated this week a new 103-berth marina at Alypa in Paliokastritsa. “The project will bring added value to the cosmopolita…

    Read More

  2. Poll: Cost-conscious Greeks Prefer Beach Holidays This Year

    Financially pressed Greeks are choosing beach holidays this year, according to a study released by Athens-based research firm Focus Bari in collaboration with YouGov. Carried out in July on a represen…

    Read More

  3. Costa Navarino Welcomes the ‘Democracy and Happiness Weekend’ in September

    World acclaimed authors, innovative thinkers and award-winning thought leaders will gather at Costa Navarino in Messinia in September to participate in the “Democracy and Happiness Weekend”, a cultura…

    Read More

  4. Chios State Airport to Get Long-awaited Upgrade

    The Greek Transport Ministry recently announced that the “Omiros” state airport on Chios will receive 9.6 million euros in funding to significantly upgrade infrastructure and expand facilities. The wo…

    Read More

  5. SKY express: New Routes from Athens to Milan, Munich and Sofia

    Greek airline SKY express recently announced the expansion of its network of destinations by adding new routes from Athens to the popular cities of Munich, Milan and Sofia. “We have announced the expa…

    Read More

  6. Vessels from 45 Countries Cross Greece’s Corinth Canal in July

    Vessels from 45 countries crossed Greece’s Corinth Canal in July after it reopened to transit, the country’s public assets authority said Thursday. One of the country’s most-visited sites, the Corinth…

    Read More

  7. Shopping Tips for Crete

    These shopping tips for Crete include advice on buying souvenirs like ceramics, icons, jewellery, leather, weavings, wood carvings, and food and drink.

    Read More

  8. Corfu Shopping Tips

    These Corfu shopping tips include advice on buying souvenirs like ceramics, jewelry, gold, silver, wood carvings, and food and drink, with tips on haggling.

    Read More

  9. Tinos: Island of Miracles

    The Virgin, the art of marble crafting, the vernacular architecture, the rich interior, and of course the north wind. Maya Tsoclis writes about her island.

    Read More

  10. Six Days of Sailing in the Dodecanese

    If you're looking for a time machine, the waters between Crete and Rhodes are where you should sail.

    Read More