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  • Writer's pictureLeslie

Is Corfu for You and Your Kids? Discover Why This Ionian Island Is A Family-Friendly Gem

Updated: Jun 20

Corfu restaurant waterfront
On our way back from visiting Mon Repos, we stopped at this oceanfront cafe

Move over Mykonos… especially if you’re traveling with kids to Greece, Corfu is an amazing island option. 

And if you haven't heard of Corfu, here's the deal: Corfu is an island off of northwest side of Greece (meaning it's in the Ionian Sea, rather than the Aegean Sea, which is where many of the well-known islands like Santorini or Mykonos are located). It's about a 3 hour and 15 minute flight from London or a 1 hour flight from Athens.

We went when our kids were one and three-years-old, and we loved that you could get in some awesome sightseeing in Old Town Corfu (a UNESCO World Heritage listed locale), and also combine it with a relaxing beach holiday.

We stayed a few nights in Old Town Corfu (in an apartment rental), and here's how we filled our time:

Visiting the Old Fortress. It was just a short walk from our apartment rental, which included a stroll (or a run for our toddler) down a long bridge to the entrance of the fortress. We explored the Venetian fortifications, took a quick dip in the water to cool off (be sure to bring a towel), then sat down for a relaxed outdoor lunch at the Corfu Sailing Club, which is located alongside the Fortress.

Corfu Old Fortress with Kids
Crossing the long bridge to get to Corfu's Old Fortress

Strolling Around Old Town. Be sure to check out Spianada Square (the largest town square in the Balkans — and a great place for kids to run around) and the pedestrian-only Liston Street. Us adults enjoyed a coffee and our kids each got an ice cream at one of the cafes that line this walkway. There's also a grassy field right by the cafes, which makes it easy for your kids to play while you enjoy the moment.

Old Town Corfu
We loved wondering around Old Town Corfu.

Also, if you like to shop, there are some wonderful boutiques in Corfu's Old Town that have beautiful linen dresses (perfect for those hot summer days in Greece). I couldn't help but buy one for myself as a souvenir... I also wore it throughout my trip!

Heading out to Mon Repos. We really wanted to go to The Achilleion Palace (which was built for Elizabeth or "Sissi," the empress of Austria, but it was closed when we were there. So instead, we took a long walk out to Mon Repos — a summer palace turned museum set in an impressive garden. The garden made for a lush place for our daughter to roam, and the museum gave us a nice dose of history (and a good opportunity to learn about Corfu's rich mix of cultures).

Pro Tip: There's a great little playground in Old Town with beautiful ocean views. We went there one day and would have gone again, but there was a heat wave when we were there, and our littles were just too hot to enjoy it.

For our second part of the trip, we went to two resorts to really kick back and enjoy Corfu's natural beauty (and cool off in the water... did I mention the heat wave?).

First we stayed at Akrotiri Beach Resort Hotel in the village of Paleokastritsa which had the best views from the rooms, and the most stunning scenery (I highly suggest renting a boat so you can get some gorgeous views of the iconic cliffs). The hotel had a lovely pool, and a pebble beach (where you can rent the boats) that we loved... although our toddler found it challenging to walk along. Unfortunately, it looks like the hotel may be transformed into an adults-only resort, so be sure to check their website before you book.

Palaiokastritsa beach
The view from the beach at Palaiokastritsa

To cap off our trip, we headed to Domes of Corfu, Autograph Collection (it’s part of the Marriott Bonvoy family, in case you have points to burn). They have a pristine sandy beach, which our littles loved, and also tons of kids activities (for example, our daughter could draw at a designated “art table” with teachers while we ate our lunch and enjoyed the view… and our son napped). They also had a Montessori-style kids club that looked fantastic, but we didn't try out. Still, our daughter could take part in many of the kids club activities — we just joined her for them. The hotel was upscale (not like it was designed only with kids in mind) but also welcoming for families — thankfully striking just the right balance.

In the evening they often had live music in their "Spianada" beachfront food court, which our kids enjoyed, and most nights we ate at their "Meze" restaurant right on the water.

Domes of Corfu beach
The sandy beach in front of the Domes of Corfu hotel

Getting Around: From the airport, we actually took a bus into Old Town, then walked a short distance to our apartment rental. Once in Old Town we got around by foot. Then, to get to the resorts we hired a car service (ask your hotel or apartment rental for a recommendation) and requested car seats. Thankfully the island isn't that big — so we were never in the car for more than about an hour.

Are you dreaming up any trips to Greece? And is the Ionian island of Corfu on your radar? Let me know if you have any questions about planning your next family trip!

Also, be sure to follow @bigworld_littletravelers on Instagram, and check out our Cofu trip reel below, so you can see the adventure in real life.


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