Date: Oct 13th-14th/2020
Place : Paleokastrttsa.
By: Lili Naveh
During the 2 previous consecutive days the cooling weather was accompanied by nature heightened audio-visuals of lightning, thunder, and massive showers, and had kept us frustrated, locked inside the apartment.
In addition to mainly, gazing at the bouncing rain droplets throughout the glass windows, following the stormy motions of the foamed sea, and saddened by the deserted awashed beach, we played a lot “hide and seek” stretching out our infantile imagination in entertaining the little ones, while their parents were entrenched in work zoom calls.
As soon as the sky brightened up and the sun reappeared in its full caressing warmth, we ceased the opportunity to explore another majestic corner of the Island.
Acquiescent to the GPS instructions, we incidentally ensued the longest and slowest but most scenic routes, on the Southwestern coast’s narrowest, snaky, meandrous terrain, heading toward Paleokastrttsa.
The car drive lead us up and down the lush green mountainous ridges, from which the fabulous vistas of the ionic turquoise sea and its green and blue bays could be admired on both sides, as well as through side-road salami quint small villages, engulfed by olive tree forests, grape-vines, fig trees and modest tended vegetable gardens.
Before getting down to Paleokastritsa’s port and beaches, we took a stop from where an heavenly bird-view scenery unfolded from the top of the mountain road above, and literally the breath-taking splendor had blinded our senses.
I highly recommend reaching this dramatic spot on the island, from the mountain end, making sure to stop by the “Golden Fox” restaurant, not to dine, but only to inhale from its veranda, this one of most exhilarating panoramic views. \
The word Paleokastritsa literally means “old fortress'', which can be seen on the rocky cave in the village, where now stands and dominates the
“Monastery of the Virgin”.
The monastery dates back to 1228 but the present buildings were constructed in 18c and are overlooking the blue bays and 6 coves of sandy and pebbled beaches, scattered all around the area.
The monastery hosts an interesting collection of post-Byzantine icons, books and other objects.
Also the ducks on its premise earned their "musical" team quite a reputation...
Paleokastritsa is one of most picturesque villages, and a main tourist attraction in Corfu.
This cosmopolitan resort which still retains its traditional charm and character, is located 23 km northwest of Corfu Town. It stretches out along a coastal road around stunning bays and a picturesque harbor, where excursion boats depart for the nearby and isolated beaches.
These beaches are considered as one of the best beaches in the Greek islands. In this part of Corfu the sea is very deep and the water a little bit cold.
There are many hotels, bars, restaurants and taverns surrounding them.
The main beach of Paleokastritsa just under the monastery is quite small, but extremely known for its cold waters and delightful environment.
A second nice beach is placed next to the small pier where in the summer many boats and yachts are parked.
The remaining beaches are reachable only from the sea with a private boat or with a taxi boat service.
A visit to Corfu Aquarium in Paleokastritsa is another attraction.
Amit the father introduced the kids to an exciting encounter with the underwater world of the Mediterranean sea creatures at the "Corfu Sea Discovery"
Then on land at the monastery high grounds, the ducklings’ noisy “live concert” had thrilled the kids even more.
By midday, the stressed parents unloaded both kids into our rented car, and rushed back to their zoom conferences' calls.
At the first sight of a PlayGround, on our way to Corfu Town, we sneaked the kids into the locked gated facility.
I climbed over the fence with the 5 years Leo and one year old Alex so the kids, who had been deprived of these pleasures for too long, could enjoy a proper swing and slide, at the grounds.
The grandkids' sheer delight of this basic activity, was a music to our adult ears, and was worth the mischief.
Replacing our much smaller and a bit clunkier rental car with a more conducive one for the Corfu’s mountainous drive, was the main reason for our visit, back at Corfu Town.
Lunch in Town
Once in town, which seemed even emptier, now when the tourist season was over, we couldn’t resists having, once again, a proper lunch at
Restaurant Barbas - Porta Remounda (Gate) especially as all the other recommended eating places were closed.
Anna - the friendly restaurant owner, who by now could recognize our family even from afar, and who had enjoyed joining us at the table for a chat, was amazed at Alex’s abilities to sit politely at the table, and independently feed herself.
Actually this tender baby, with an enormous appetite, takes great pleasure in “grinding” a limitless amount ,and a wide range of food pallets, all day long, with her few emerging teeth.
Anna -a grandmother herself to a 5 years boy, was puzzled about her grandson's lack of independence in feeding himself.
She speculated that her daughter’s breast feeding of the boy until he was 3.5 year, may have interfered with his self reliance.
Thus, the worried widowed grandmother was trying to solicit an “expert” advice from David whose professional training was actually in bio-tech engineering, yet, still he felt he was qualified to theorize and advise on the psychology of early childhood development, as the raised concern was related to his deep passion… food…
Anna resides in a small mountain village and her family also runs some apartments for rent. I have not seen them , but the info may be handy.
Veronica Apartment for Rent - Moraitika -Corfu
+30 2661022658 cell +30 6948847883 firstname.lastname@example.org
Moraitika is a modern tourist resort that lies around a natural bay.
The village is located 20 km from the town of Corfu.
Back to the sea
Upon returning to Agios Stefanos and though the weather was still friendly and sunny, yet the air and water definitely got cooler, David and Leo couldn’t resist dipping in the sea.
In addition to our daily walks on the beach and throughout the village, Leo like his grandpa David loves the sea, and these 2 have been going out every day into the choppy sea water, where David teaches Leo how to handle the waves or body surf, so Leo can master sooner, balancing standing on a surfboard .
David was literally the second wave-surfer in Haifa after the October 1973 Yom Kippur war (being this month commemorated) and then had extensively windsurfed. The number one guy was his mentor and role model Jérôme Avron , a brilliant tough ex paratrooper and also a Technion graduate who was a manager of the kite dept. at “Mattel” in Santa Barbara, and later a successful Cam-pill hi -techie, who gave David his first wave-board at a time when literally the 2 were the only wave surfers in Haifa.
David then windsurfed until 2013 when a back operation had limited his acrobatic maneuvers, but left swimming, as the most viable option.
Infect, prior to the Corona days, these 2 - the Giant Grandpa and the Lilliputian grand had been also meeting, weekly, and swimming together, at the amazing TLV Gordon sea-water pool . The water of this large crystal blue beautiful pool near the beach, is pumped 80 meters under the sea-bed from a salt water aquifer.
The 2 are definitely wishing to go back to their special pool routine in Tel-Aviv once this second lockdown is finally over.
To be continued…