Corfu, advice needed.

Discussion in 'Travel' started by Chef, Aug 18, 2011.

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  1. The Chef clan are going shortly for a week or so to Corfu. We are renting a self catering villa, so need to buy scoff for three meals a day, apart from dining out.

    Can anyone give a rough guide as to daily costs for two adults, and two teenagers to get supermarket provisions, milk, bread, and the usual stuff you buy at home for the week?

    I appreciate this is a how long is a piece of string question, but a ball park figure will help in working out how much dosh to take with us.

    Thanks in advance for any advice offered.
  2. Bread, milk and the basics slightly more than back in the UK. Don't worry about it.
    Top tip - don't eat anywhere that has tourists in it. Avoid anything that says Full British Breakfast like the plague.
    Wander the back streets until you find one stuffed with locals ( you'll recognise them cos they speak Greek - usually quite loudly - and kids will be running around freely without anyone being bothered.) Don't be put off by how ruined or unfinished the place looks. This is irrelevant to Greeks.
    Leap in and grab a table in the heart of the fun and get ready for the best food the island can provide at very reasonable prices ' cos Greeks are by and large not wealthy
    And you will be embraced by strangers - have jugs of wine appear from nowhere on your table and be danced around the room by a little old man with a suit , no tie and a fag in his mouth.
    Its great - have fun Greekstyle.
  3. Buy scoff for breakfast and good sized dinner. If you eat out with the local greeks rather than in the grockle bars you'll save a fortune as they are all really skint at the moment.

    Just a tip about tipping. Tip them aswell as you can. They really are decent folk and are struggling at the moment. I was surprised by the amount of free bread, wine and cake being thrown at us wherever we went and you should if you can return the favour.

    Let me know where you're going and I'll pass on a few must see's.
  4. I agree with the above! Self catering you can live well enough despite the higher taxation recently enforced.

    Beaches on the east coast tend to be a bit manky. Aghios georgios in the SW is a nice sand beach.

    My top tips:

    Don't miss an evening drunken bimble through Corfu old town.

    Use the backstreet restaurants where the locals go. They will tell you the best eating places if you ask.

    Don't chin an orthodox abbot even if he's nagging your missus to wear a skirt in his mouldy old monastery, them weird monks are all armed to the teeth and hard as nails.

    Fear everything on the roads, they are all insane, drunk and have no brakes.
  5. P.S Local beer (lager really) is quite acceptable and cheap. Suggest Mythos and Fix for a first sample. Buy Cheeses and meat from Lidl , vegetables and fruit wherever you see it as it is grown locally and top stuff.Eat loads of Melon in the heat of the day.
    Ouzo is great and cheap...but it is an aquired taste. Raki will be given to you free after a meal.In a locals restaurant it should be OK. In a tourist place it can send you blind. Believe your tastebuds....they know what they are doing.
  6. the Greeks do have cash machines you know :)
  7. Just don't go anywhere near Kavos...I spent a week there, and feckin hated it. It was like a Grockle Ghetto, inhabited by the nastiest examples of Brits abroad who couldn't afford a week in Ibiza.

    I remember listening to a couple of blokes by the side of the pool discussing an 'authentic' Greek restaurant by concluding: "Don't bother with tha' foreign shit...get y'arse down ta tha' British Restaurant - they do chops and chips ferra fiva!"
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  8. I generally find when travelling abroad you should eat where the staff struggle to speak English if they speak any at all.

    Also picking up the local tongue (In particular pronunciation) goes a long way with The Greeks more than anywhere else in the world I have visited.
  9. IIRC, and it was some time ago, the drier versions of the local kumquat (deformed dwarf orange) liqueur is also quite nice. The sweet stuff, however, is just arbitrary alcohol & sugar (not that there's anything wrong with that).
  10. I agree entirely, if you can say , hello, please, thank you, and how much? The locals will go to any length to understand the ensuing pantomime. As in

    Hello, (point) how much? After which with hand gestures you can indicate the amount you want, thank you at the end is just curtesy.

    I detest brits abroad who reckon SPEAKING LOUDLY (in English) will get the message through.

  11. I agree - this site may help Common Greek Phrases - Language Tutoring

    I found kalimera - good morning and kalispera - good evening useful along with efkaristo - thank you and parakalo - please was enough to show willing :)
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  12. Dress in the Turkish national colours wherever you go and ask where you can buy traditional Fez's from.
    They'll love you.
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  13. My kind of question... the Rumpelcestors are from Corfu, and we still maintain the small, ancestral (and sadly largely redistributed) farm in the NW. [showing off off/]

    I lost my (previous) job the spring before last, and spent 4 months living with there Mrs Rumpel on a budget of about £100 pw until I sorted myself out. And we lived very well indeed.

    This is how:

    If you go to a supermarket, shop local. Get feta out of the tub from the deli counter, rather than in a packet from the chiller, or buying imported cheddar. Depending on how much you like cheese, it will be worth experimenting with local, particularly Epirote cheeses, but that's up to you.

    Buy bread daily, from the baker. It's delicious, and costs pennies.

    Buy loukanika- garlicky, winey Greek sausages. They make great stews (cheaply) with local veg, garlic, wine, herbs and tinned tomatoes, along with cracking fry-ups.

    Wine: better than you'd think. Amazing wine is expensive; perfectly drinkable, weirdly strawberry-tasting red costs significantly less than a Euro a litre, if you go with the plastic bottles. But you'll have to sample a few first before finding the right one... If you go the Town, there's a great, cheap winery near the asylum (off San Rocco) which will fill up 2L water bottles for you. Great stuff, honestly.

    Locals: chat them up as much as you can, and watch gifts of oil, fresh eggs, and homecooked food roll in. They really are great people.

    Mythos: the best thing in the world.

    Souvlaki: AKA gyros. Rotisserie pork marinated in herbs and lemon juice, wrapped in a doughy naan-like pitta, with garlicky tzatziki, red onion, beefsteak tomatoes, and (sometimes) fresh parsley and Greek small-leaf basil. Literally the best lunch in the world. If you spend more than 1.50 on one, you've been done. It will fill you up all afternoon... and you'll salivate thinking about it when you get home, like I am now.

    Corfu Town: You will go here. There's a street called Arseniou (I think) which curves towards the sea from the Palace of St Michael & St George. If you get lost, ask for the Byzantine Museum. If you take a sharp downhill right, through a small tunnel/arch, you'll find, on the right, 'the swimming place'. For a small fee, you'll find a little cafe on the seafront, underneath the Venetian fortifications, where you can drink retsina/ouzo, swim in warm Med, and eat cheap, delicious grilled meat/whitebait/cheese-stuffed courgette flower/pumpkin patties. Honestly delicious. I've never seen a non-greek there, apart from the Mrs. It's the best place in town I can direct you to, without being there.

    Depending on where you're staying: find where the Greeks go, and go there, as everyone else has said. In my village (Peroulades), ouzo comes with free nibbles. For less than 2 Euros, they'll give you a platter of whitebait, tomato, cheese and cucumber to wash it down with; and if you charm them enough, free booze.

    If you have kids, Greeks will dandle and spoil them until the early hours in restaurants and bars. A few words of Greek will make them love you, especially if it looks like you're making an effort.

    And finally: the British cemetary in Corfu Town's worth a look. It's the most peaceful place I've ever been- wild tortoises ambling around IWGC tombstones- and I quite want to be buried there.
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  14. Thank you all very much!

    There is enough info to help the short break go with a swing.

    If there is an opposite to the Emperor Mong, truly Arrse is at the very least a disciple.

  15. :)

    "The Swimming Place"

    ed to add: if you're going this summer, you should be able to catch a panegyri (fiesta); essentially, each village toasts its own saint in summer with spitted lamb/suckling pig, folk dancing, fairy lights and LOTS of booze. Foreigners are not only welcome, they're essential to a village's self-respect. Painted banners on the mountain roads will direct you; if you can, do. But take a designated driver...

    Warning: weather can be shitty this time of year; heavy storms roll in exactly on English August Bank Holiday, until spring...

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