CARNIVAL: which bears strong influences from Italy.
THE LITANIES OF THE PATRON SAINT SPYRIDON: performed accompanied by the philharmonic orchestras four times a year, on the following days when he is said to have miraculously delivered Corfu; from the plague in 1629 (Palm Sunday), from starvation in the 17th century (Easter Saturday), from the Turks in 1716(11 August), and from cholera in 1673(1st Sunday in November).
EASTER: is celebrated in great pomp, completely different from anywhere else in Greece!
Holy week is characterized by church services. The singular feature of Easter in Corfu is the moving choral church music. Most of the churches have excellent Byzantine choirs.
On Holy Wednesday the Municipal Choir gives a concert of ecclesiastic music.
On Holy Thursday you can attend the service of the 12 Gospels.
Good Friday is the day of ”Epitaphios”, a symbolic bier, decorated with flowers and bearing the embroidered image of Christ in the tomb. Every church brings out its own bier and parades it around the parish. The philharmonic orchestras and the choirs create an unique atmosphere.
The morning of Easter Saturday is the touching Litany with the Procession of the Epitaph of the church of St. Spyridon. At 11am, the bells of the Cathedral strike the Resurrection. This is also the signal to start the most famous custom, “Botides”:earthen jars filled with water, are thrown, from the balconies and windows of the houses, smashing onto the streets below.
The philharmonic orchestras, surge in the streets of the city striking joyous melodies.
On Easter Saturday evening, before the orthodox ceremony takes place (at Spianada sq.) you may attend the Catholic service at Duomo. In Spianada square, an impressive firework display takes place and then the bands traverse the streets of the town playing cheerful music.
THE IONIAN ISLANDS UNION WITH GREECE: on May 21st . Marked with a procession through Corfu Town wreath laying, cannons booming and a parade with several brass bands.
METAMORFOSI SOTIROS: 5th -6th August, a celebration at the Monastery on top of Mount Pantokrator.
VARCAROLA: a boat procession, on the 10th August, representing the legend according to which St. Spyridon prevented the Ottomans to occupy the city.
AUGUST 15th : all Panaghia (Virgin Mary) churches celebrate the Assumption. Paniyiris (festivals) are celebrated in many villages.
CORFU FESTIVAL: every Summer, in Corfu town. Many cultural events: Greek and foreign artists, concerts of choruses and philharmonic orchestras, theatrical performances.
THE CRICKET FESTIVAL: summertime, in Spianada, with the participation of many British teams.