Doukades, Corfu


This traditional hill village is situated a few kilometres from the popular resort of Palaiokastritsa in north-west Corfu. The name of the settlement came from its first inhabitants who bore the name Doukas (meaning duke). The village probably originated during a period of devastating pirate raids on Corfu’s coastal communities when people retreated to the more remote interior. The earliest written reference to Doukades is from 1616.

Of architectural interest are the restored stone mansion of the Theotokis family, the Venetian "Sagrado" of Quartanos, the Koraggios mansion, and the more recent late 19th century primary school building at the entrance of the village.

After a walk around this pleasant village you can enjoy a meal or a drink at one of the tavernas and bars in the central square.For the more adventurous there is a walk from the village to a tiny chapel with a spectacular view which takes about an hour each way.

Start at the square and continue along the main street for 30 metres, then go up right between stone steps and a telegraph pole. Climb to the old church with its red-domed apse. Keep to the right of the church and go up the stepped path. Note the Venetian mansion on the right, complete with Italian name-plate on the wall. When the path meets a roughly surfaced road, go right. Follow the road as it twists and turns uphill through olive groves. Leave the road where it bends sharply right and follow the rough track ahead crossing sections of ribbed concrete. Soon the track turns west and levels off. This is typical olive–growing country, remote and with a variety of wild flowers in spring. At a junction turn left. Go down through olive trees, then climb uphill. After a stoney section the track ends at a clearing. At the far side of this go down a narrow, rocky path to reach the tiny Chapel of St Simeon. The chapel stands at the very edge of sheer cliffs. Take great care, of children especially, when close to the unprotected edge. There are spectacular views down to the Paleokastritsa road, south to the villages of Gardelades and Liapades, and to Paleokastritsa itself. Retrace your steps along the same route back to Doukades.

Can be combined with Angelokastro.

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