Last updated on November 7th, 2023 at 10:22 am
Across Corfu island – from east coast to west ..on foot
Hey there, adventure seekers! If you’re looking to trade the usual road trip for a bit of excitement, I’ve got a journey that’ll have you feeling like a true explorer. Let’s talk about the scenic route from Benitses to Agios Gordios – it’s not your average drive, but boy, is it worth it.
Picture this: Benitses and Agios Gordios, two resort gems facing each other across the island, separated by only about 6 km. Now, you’d think a drive between them would be a breeze, but the roads have a surprise in store. Up and down you go, winding through the landscape, and that leisurely drive takes a good half hour.
But for those with a taste for adventure, there’s another way to journey between these two havens. Strap on your hiking boots, because walkers have conquered this route in less than 3 hours – talk about a scenic sweat session!
So, here’s the plan. Depart from Benitses and ascend the steep track leading to the quaint village of Stavros. Along the way, catch your breath at the small Agia Paraskevi church, where a spring offers refreshment to parched throats. Emerging from olive groves, you step into a village where time seems to have stood still for centuries. Stop by the bakery for fresh wood-cooked bread – a slice of authenticity that you won’t forget.
Then, it’s a downhill jaunt to a junction that marks the next leg of your journey. Keep your eyes peeled for a sign pointing you toward the monastery of Pantokrator (aka Holy Spirit). It’s worth the detour, trust me. You’ll climb to the peak of the hill, where a crater from a long-extinct volcano awaits. Nestled within is a charming monastery and a sprawling orchard.
If you’re lucky, the keeper might open the gates for you. But even if he’s away, the tranquility of this spot will captivate you. Picnic tables and friendly feline companions make it hard to leave. And oh, the views! Turn east, and you’ll gaze upon Corfu Town, the Corfu airport, and Gastouri village with the majestic Achilleion Palace atop. To the west, you’ll take in the hills, ancient villages, and the glistening sea beyond.
Prepare for another surprise – Corfu’s second-highest hill, Agii Deka, unveils its olive groves, vineyards, and lush vegetation. In season, you’ll spot rare wild orchids, delicate cyclamen, and the graceful autumn crocus. The tarmacked track, although narrow, traces the old donkey path all the way to Ano Garouna village.
With the descent into Kato Garouna and onwards, you’re on the home stretch. A well-deserved reward awaits – the sparkling blue waters of the Ionian Sea at Agios Gordios beach, perfect for a refreshing swim. It’s a journey that’s not just about the destination; it’s about embracing the journey itself, savoring every step, and discovering the hidden gems along the way. So, adventurers, lace up those shoes and let the path lead you to an unforgettable experience!