Great scenery, excellent beaches and Byzantine museum equals Corfu

Corfu is the wooded island of the Phaeacians and was Odysseus' last stop on his long journey home from Ithaca is the best known of the Ionian Islands. It owes its charm to the meshing of the civilizations that have been on the island and to the natural beauty which it has been abundantly bleed wit such as it has many museums and ancient churches Corfu will certainly satisfy the sightseeing demands of every visitor.

Corfu lies to the north of the Ionian Sea at the entrance to the Adriatic Sea. It is the second largest island of the group of islands call the Seven Islands or Eptansia. The island of miracles and wonders is here every moment when the scenery without affecting the harmony of the terrain. It has great costal scenery and some excellent secluded beaches. On this cosmopolitan island you will be able to combine relaxation with good times and an active nightlife because Corfu is an international tourist center which can satisfy the demands of every visitor.

The capital of the island is also called Corfu. It was built on a promontory that project into the sea. For centuries all the popularity of Corfu lived within a citadel which was founded by Byzantines but expanded and greatly strengthened by the Venetians. The town of Corfu presents a charming picture with its broad streets and spacious squares. The popular Spianada which is the town green area that contrasts with its narrow back alleys that contain blocks of stone. Corfu Villas has been given a strong Italian influence with the famous Liston which is a French arcade, traditional Georgian mansions, a Byzantine church, Venetian monuments, and balconies with wrought iron railings and window grills. The sightseeing attractions in this town include: the Archaeological Museum, the Byzantine Museum which is housed in the Church of the Panayia Antivouniotissa., the Museum of Oriental Museum, and the Platytera Monastery, with its rare post-Byzantine icons, the old fort, and many other attractions.

The Byzantine Museum is probably one of the most famous Corfu attractions. The Byzantine Museum was founded in 1914 and is located on Vasilissis Sofias Avenue not far from Syntagma Square. The beautiful mansion in which the museum is located since 1930 was designed in 1848 by Stamatios Kleanthis for Sophia De Marbois who was the Duchess of Piacenza. The museum's collection includes objects that date back to the fourth century through the 19th century. Some of these items are unique and special because they give society a better understanding of Byzantine art and culture. The ground floor of the museum displays partial reconstructions of three churches. There is an early Christian basilica with three aisles and a middle age Byzantine church with a traditional cross in square plan, and a post Byzantine church. The first floor features a selection of frescoes, embroideries, textiles, examples of applied art, and Byzantine icons among which are the 13th and 14th century Mosaic icon of the Virgin Odigitria called Episkepsis or the visitation and the carved hagiographical icon of Saint George.

The Byzantine Museum features about ninety total icons that are portable and soon the museum will be complete with the exhibition of the archival material in the church. The exhibited icons date back to the second half of the 15th century to the 19th century and are indicative of the influence that Corfu had in the development of the Greek ecclesiastic iconography especially after 1664 when many refugees who were Cretan painters came to Corfu either to settle or who were on their way to Venice. 

The Byzantine Museum just like other attractions in Corfu tends to place the visitors in a state of awe. Visiting Corfu is an exciting experience.

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