Hidden ocean gems
Greek island holiday packages wouldn’t be the same without the sand and sea that go with them, and Benitses’ focus on life by the sea means it has a few little surprises for visitors to its sandy shores. The local sea museum, for example, is an excellent place to learn all about the history of the area. There is an amazing collection of beautiful marine life, which has actually earned itself a Guinness World Record title because of its rarity.
Entering Benitses from Corfu Town and the airport, you may notice an oddly balanced rock protruding from the water. This is Laopetra, or the people’s rock. Made from the typical stone of the area, this rock has stood in the bay for many centuries. It is said that it fell from atop the mountain and landed as it is, balanced in the ocean for all to see.
The sardine has become a staple in Greek culinary culture. For years this little fish has held an important role in island tradition. If you’re in Benitses in early August then don’t miss the Sardine Festival. The merriment goes on for 10 days, and during this time you’ll be able to experience true fishing village culture in all its glory.
Locals practically give away grilled sardines straight off the barbecue and you can drink locally bottled wines by the carafe and Corfu Beer from the island’s brewery. A must-see, the streets are full of people chatting warmly, singing in Greek and dancing happily to traditional island music, until late at night.
History and hikes
If you’re in the mood for adventure, you’ll find there are plenty of opportunities to explore your Corfiot paradise. Achilleion Palace in the neighbouring Gastouri is one such example. This palace was built in 1888 with the legendary Achilles in mind when it was designed.
In Benitses you’re also just a short trip from the British Waterworks and Roman Baths. These ruins sit at the end of a scenic hike around the towering hills that frame Benitses beach. Bicycles are also available to hire from the resort if you’d rather a faster mode of transport.
An evening out
Benitses itself is relatively mellow, the handful of bars in the village all stay open late and attract both locals and visitors. You’re unlikely to find anything too loud and lively, but you can guarantee a great local wine and a new friend or two if you’re sticking to Benitses bay. Many of the local tavernas host live musicians, which often means the evening ends in a lot of Greek dancing.
If you’re looking for a wilder night, Corfu Town is just north of Benitses and offers a virtually endless variety of things to do. You can while the night away at one of the traditional rembetika clubs, or dance until morning to the latest chart bangers. Corfu Town bars tend to stay open until the last one leaves, so you’re the boss. Buses run there regularly, but if you’re staying out late you may want to book a taxi home.
Authentic Greek food
Benitses is where you’ll find the best grilled swordfish and boiled mussels in Corfu. Its famous status as one of the best fishing villages in Greece makes the resort an attraction for locals and tourists alike. People come from all over Corfu, and further still, to taste the seafood that is caught everyday from Benitses bay.
Restaurants in Benitses have first pick of the catch, meaning that you can’t get a fresher fish anywhere else on the island. Many of these tavernas bring you local specialities, whereas others focus on international cuisine. Whatever your preference, you can bet it’ll taste amazing.