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    Car hire in Corfu - Discovering the Greek Islands

    With its wonderful seascapes and stunning natural scenery, Corfu is generally regarded as the loveliest of all the Greek islands. Gateway to western Greece, it is some 40 miles in length and between 2.5 and 9 miles wide, with no less than 125 miles of glorious sandy coastline to offer. Its crystalline waters are among the cleanest in the whole of the Mediterranean, with snorkelling and scuba diving high on the list of seaside activities for visitors and locals alike.

    Located just off the western coasts of both Albania and Greece, Corfu is situated in a very strategic position at the entrance of the Adriatic Sea, with its roots firmly placed in the 8th century BC. There are many places of historic interest dotted around the island, most notably Achílleion Palace (once the home of Germany's Kaiser Wilhelm II), but it's the wonderful beaches (many of them long and pristine) that attract the majority of holidaymakers, especially during the warm summer months.

    Driving around the island is an absolute delight with trees and flowering shrubs cloaking much of its rolling terrain. There are very few high-rise hotels and over-crowded tourist resorts in Corfu, hence its immense appeal for people looking to hide themselves away for a few days of charming Greek-style peace and relaxation. With a cheap car hire in Corfu you'll have the chance to explore the island from north to south, visiting as many of the island's top attractions as possible. For general advice on getting around Corfu by car, please consult our Greece Driving Information section for information on road rules, speed limits, driving distances, etc.

    With its narrow streets and cobbled squares dating back to Roman times, Corfu Town is popular for its old-world charm and easy-going atmosphere. Known to the Greeks as Kérkyra, its centrepiece is the large square - the Spianáda (Esplanade) - which is lined by dozens of small, family-owned shops, taverns, restaurants and trendy boutiques. The Old Town's ancient cobbled streets feature an abundance of palaces, museums, fortresses and cultural venues in an atmospheric harbour area that explodes into life during the summer months.

    Auto Europe provides high-quality car hire at the most competitive prices at more than 24,000 pick-up and drop-off points worldwide. With almost 70 years' experience, we are able to meet all your car hire needs, whether it's a busy sightseeing itinerary in and around Corfu Town or an extended road-trip circumnavigating the island. With Auto Europe you can rent a car in Corfu either at the airport, in the town centre or from a choice of convenient pick-up points all over the island. And you can book your car quickly and easily in just a few clicks by using Auto Europe's state-of-the-art booking engine, or speak to one of our award-winning rental agents on +441233225114 if you need help with your reservation. Please visit our Corfu car hire reviews page to see the ratings and comments posted by some of our previous customers.

    How is the traffic in Corfu?

    Corfu Town has a modern road system and an efficient 21st-century infrastructure, which means that you'll be able to drive around and visit the top sights without encountering too many problems on the roads, except during high summer when the amount of tourist traffic is at its peak. Away from the large towns, many of the roads on Corfu are quite narrow so it's best to explore the island at a leisurely pace instead of rushing around trying to see and do everything in a day. While there is a good road running north-south along the east coast from Sidari to Lefkimmi, plus another from Corfu Town across the island to Paleokastritsa, some of the roads have inferior surfacing, so be prepared to encounter potholes and sometimes roadworks.

    Where can I park my car hire in Corfu?

    On-street parking can sometimes be difficult during the holiday season. Some parking areas are reserved for permanent residents but if you drive around with your car hire in Corfu you'll eventually find a space with a parking meter. As parking options are quite limited in the centre of Corfu Town itself, many visitors park just outside the town centre and walk into the old quarter, which is generally a cheaper and more convenient way of seeing the sights and soaking up the atmosphere. Parking at Corfu Airport is straightforward with plenty of parking spaces available, which gives you direct access to the island and saves you time both before and after your trip. With capacity for more than 250 cars, OnTime Parking is located right next to the Corfu Airport terminal building and offers parking by the hour (short-term) and the entire day (long-term), with vehicles monitored 24 hours a day with advanced security cameras.

    Corfu Airport

    Named after the first governor of Greece, Corfu's Ioannis Kapodistrias International Airport is located a few minutes' drive south of Corfu Town and less than half a mile north of the neighbouring village of Pontikonisi. First opened in 1937, the airport began commercial operations in 1949, and during the tourism boom of the 1970s and 1980s quickly developed into one of the country's busiest air transportation facilities, although much of its traffic today remains seasonal. The airport's on-site passenger amenities are wide-ranging and include a good selection of boutiques, cafés and restaurants as well as a large Duty-free shop selling locally-made products. Improvement works at the airport in recent years have upgraded the airport's facilities with improved lighting and sanitary services, free Wi-Fi and better fire-safety standards. The car hire supplier desk can be found conveniently located in the arrivals area.

    Corfu Airport (CFU)
    Telephone: +30 26610 89600
    Address: Corfu International Airport I. Kapodistrias, 491 008 Corfu, Greece

    What to do in Corfu

    With its fine wines, abundance of historic monuments, idyllic beaches, pretty little villages and tasty cuisine, Corfu is the must-visit island for people looking to indulge themselves in the best of Greece. Home to the majority of the island's top attractions, Corfu Town is the logical place to start your tour of one of the most historic and scenic places in the whole of the Mediterranean.

    • Corfu Town: The island's main tourism centre, Corfu Town has played an important role in Greek history since 8 AD and is still today a major cultural hub for visitors from all over the world. Located close to the centre, its Old Town revolves around the Spianada, a large park overlooking the Old Fortress (Palaio Frourio) to the east and the New Fortress (Neo Fruorio) to the north-west. This fascinating historic quarter (a UNESCO World Heritage Site) is a rich blend of architectural styles and harbours many of Corfu's most important buildings, museums and churches.

    • Old Fortress (Citadel): Constructed by the Venetians in 1546 on the site of an old castle, Corfu Town's wonderful and very sturdy Old Fortress stands on a rocky peninsula just east of the historic quarter. Inside is a lovely little church, but the best reason to visit the fortress is to admire the magnificent views from the lighthouse which stretch right over the town and as far as the Albanian coast in the distance.

    • Church of St Spyridon: Named after Corfu's patron saint, the beautiful Church of St Spyridon (Áyios Spyrídon) is easily recognisable for its red-domed belltower which dominates the Corfu Town skyline. The church's most important feature is a side chapel which houses a silver sarcophagus adorned with precious stones and containing the remains of St Spyridon, originally a shepherd from Cyprus who performed many miracles during his lifetime in the second century AD.

    • The Achilleion: A short drive from Corfu Town, the Achilleion is one of the island's most popular tourist attractions and a striking piece of royal architecture. Built in 1890 as a summer palace, it was a favourite place of residence for Empress Elisabeth of Austria (affectionately known as Sisi) and today is greatly appreciated by visitors for its fresoes, sweeping staircases, period furniture, paintings, gardens and pieces of the Empress's collection of clothes and other personal items.

    • Museum of Asian Art: Housed in a splendid Neoclassical building just north of the Esplanade in the centre of Corfu Town, this excellent museum features an impressive collection of Japanese, Indian and Chinese paintings, plus some very rare pieces of porcelain and sculpture, with pieces dating from the Neolithic period to the 19th century. Don't miss the chance to unwind in the museum's courtyard café to admire the sea views right across the Adriatic to Albania.

    • Mon Repos: Birthplace of Prince Philip, Queen Elizabeth II's husband, this delightful Neoclassical palace is one of the island's key tourist attractions. Located at the end of a lovely tree-lined avenue, it was built in 1831 for the British Lord High Commissioner, Frederick Adam, and was later used as a summer home by the Greek royal family. Mon Repos is a short drive from Corfu Town and is particularly appealing for its pleasant gardens which offer plenty of welcome shade in the hot summer months.

    Best day-trips with my car rental in Corfu

    As one of the most stunningly-beautiful of all the Greek islands, the best strategy is to book a car rental in Corfu and embark on an exhilarating road-trip around the entire island, either clockwise or anti-clockwise. With your own wheels you'll be able to stop off at small seaside towns and villages and enjoy a leisurely lunch with the water lapping at your feet at an al fresco eaterie, or relax with a picnic in the lush green mountains looking towards Albania in the distance.


    About twenty miles north of Corfu Town lies one of the most tranquil seaside settings on the island - Kassiopi. Overlooking a picturesque harbour full of traditional wooden fishing boats, this quaint little fishing village has retained much its original charm and character and is a popular lunch stopover for people touring Corfu by car. Bring your towel and swimming costume for a relaxing swim in Kassiopi's turquoise waters before heading back to your hotel.


    One of the main highlights when exploring the island of Corfu is the beautiful beach town of Paleokastritsa, located a twenty-minute drive north-west of Corfu Town. Blessed with a glorious stretch of indented coastline, it's popular for its crystalline waters (perfect for bathing) and some of the best sandy beaches on the island. After a few hours of swimming and suntanning, head up into the hills to visit the town's exquisite 13th-century monastery which comprises an old church, a wonderful shaded courtyard garden and a fascinating museum.

    Mount Pantokrator

    Situated in the north of the island, Mount Pantokrator is the highest point on Corfu. Rising to an altitude of almost 1,000 metres, it's an exhilarating drive to the top of the mountain from where you'll be rewarded with the most spectacular sea views imaginable, encompassing the southern tip of Italy on a very clear day. An added bonus exists right at the top in the form of the Pantokrator Monastery which dates back to the 14th century.

    Corfu Donkey Rescue

    Not far from Paleokastritsa you'll find the excellent Corfu Donkey Rescue Centre, which is home to a number of these docile animals who all seem to be enjoying a well-earned period of retirement. Set amongst vast swathes of olive trees, the centre welcomes visitors (particularly families with young children) who can spend time with the animals and donate a few euros to their upkeep if they so desire.

    How to get around Corfu

    The island has two main arteries for discovering the destination with a car hire in Corfu, namely the GR-24 in the north and the GR-25 in the west, the former linking Corfu Town with Palaiokastritsa and the latter linking Corfu Town with Lefkimi. There's a good network of filling stations (open from 8am-8pm) on the island and all sell both petrol and diesel. Besides all the organised tours being offered to visitors, Corfu also has a decent public transport system, meaning that it is possible to travel around the island independently and more cheaply. Corfu's buses are the main form of public transport; they criss-cross the island and can get you to many of the top seaside resorts as well as the ferry port if you'd like to spend a day or two on the Greek mainland. Buses run regularly throughout the day and connect Corfu Town with various popular locations such as Glyfada, Sidari, Paleokastritsa, Roda, Acharavi, Lefkimmi, Lefkimmi and Piri. City buses run through the city to Corfu Airport, Achilleion, Gouvia, Afra, Pelekas and many other places of interest. Travelling between Corfu and the other Ionian islands is possible by ferry with services to the island of Paxoi and the city of Patras on the mainland, with extended routes to Igoumenitsa and Sarandë in neighbouring Albania providing an added option. Once on the Greek mainland, coaches are a more comfortable (and expensive) option with routes available to Athens (the country's capital) and Thessaloniki (Greece's second city).

    Useful links

    Greece Tourist Info